Lode Runner was named #80 overall among the “150 Best Games of All Time” by Computer Gaming World Magazine (15th Anniversary Issue -- November 1996).
An Amiga version is mentioned in the French manual, ported by Loriciels' Annecy studio, but beyond that, no information of an official Amiga port exists.
One of the biggest ever Lode Runner competitions took place during Japan's World Fair in August 1985. Gameplay was shown on a massive Sony Jumbotron (then the world's largest television at 80x150 feet). Over 3,000 people entered from across Japan and only 50 were selected to try their luck at achieving the highest score within three minutes. 12 year old Yasutaka Fujii was proclaimed the winner.
The original Lode Runner proved so popular a coin-op version was commissioned and appeared in 1984 housed in its own cabinet and complete with artwork.
Macintosh game of the original "Lode Runner" features added mouse support used for 'game options' from top/down menus and pop-up dialogue boxes to actual 'level creation'.
Lode Runner was enhanced for the Apple Macintosh (and packaged as such). It remains the only 16-bit version of the first game and has possibly the highest resolution at 512x342 pixels on a crisp monochrome display. This version also features added mouse support for in-game configuration within windows, pull-down menus, pop-up dialogue boxes, and level creation. The game itself is played using the keyboard.
Lode Runner was being ported to the Atari Lynx but was abandoned while in a fairly advanced state.
While they both spawned strings of sequels to lead series of their own, Lode Runner and Choplifter can be considered to share not just human sprite animation, but a "game world" along with Will Wright's Raid on Bungeling Bay. All three games (all published by Brøderbund) ultimately featured the militaristic denizens of the Bungeling Empire as the primary antagonists.
Daron Stinnett, the executive producer of several LucasArts games including Dark Forces and Outlaws, was a beta tester for Doug Smith back when Lode Runner's working title was Miner. Daron lived just down the street from Doug and was one of the kids who made levels for the game too.
The NES version of Lode Runner was marketed by Brøderbund as part of its "Action Series."
The game was re-developed and re-released under three different names. The best known PC versions are Sierra's Lode Runner: The Legend Returns and Lode Runner 2.
Lode Runner was voted #52 in the "Top 100 Games of All Time" poll published by Game Informer Magazine (Issue 100, August 2001).
The "human" animation is uncannily similar to the human animation in Choplifter.
When Broderbund bought the game they demanded that it contain 150 levels. The creative solution Smith came up with was to give the kids in his neighbourhood the level designer, promising to pay each kid who make a good level.
The original version of Lode Runner was called Miner. The creator, Doug Smith, tried to sell it to four companies, Electronic Arts, Epyx, Sirius Software, and Brøderbund. Broderbund offered him $10,000 and 23% of future profits and he actually rejected an offer of $100,000 without royalties. The man clearly believed that his game would be successful!
Strings found in the game code:
If the original MASTER disk fails
to run, return it to Broderbund for
replacement. COPIES WILL NOT WORK.
Thanks for the run. See ya' next time.