Commander Keen 4: Secret of the Oracle
Description official descriptions
Commander Keen 4: Secret of the Oracle is a platform game, the fourth in the Commander Keen series as a whole, and the first in the second series Goodbye, Galaxy.
Eight-year-old genius Billy "Commander Keen" Blaze receives an interstellar transmission while working on a Photachyon Transceiver (a radio that can receive signals anywhere in the galaxy). While the transmission is choppy, Billy manages to figure out that the galaxy is once again in danger from an alien race known as Shikadi. In order to get more information about this threat, he sets out to consult the Oracle. But it turns out that the eight Council Members necessary for the Oracle's activation have been kidnapped by the Shikadi and imprisoned in the dangerous Shadowlands. Billy heads out to save the Council Members.
The game begins with a top-down map of the Shadowlands. This is the level select screen, where Billy can walk around and the player can choose the next level they want to enter (though some of the levels are islands located on a lake and require you to find a wetsuit if you want to reach them). On each level, Billy has to make his way to the exit. Once a level is completed, Billy ends up back on the overhead map.
The levels are typically full of enemy creatures, such as poison slugs, deadly mosquitoes or hopping crazy mushrooms. There are also many hazards - pits, cannons, spears. If Billy gets shot or touched by an enemy, or falls into a pit or touches something hazardous, he dies and loses one life.
Thankfully, Keen can stun most enemies with his raygun, although some cannot be stunned at all, and some are only stunned for a few seconds. Keen also carries a pogo stick which allows him to jump very high. Other items to find include: ammo, gems that acts as keys to open locked doors, bonus items which give score, raindrops (100 raindrops give extra life) and the rare Lifewater Flask which gives an extra life.
Credits (DOS version)
|Graphics / Artwork|
Developer Tom Hall on the creating the infamous Dopefish (taken from the 3D Realms website):
"The Dopefish, upon reflection, is pretty much based on one of two little faces my brother, sister, and I would draw on everything. Except stuck on a fish. I guess they were sort of the emoticons of the seventies. And of course, he's inspired by the Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal from The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. That's why they're the SECOND dumbest creature in the universe."
Eat Your Veggies
The song "Eat Your Veggies" in the Well of Wishes level actually was written for Commander Keen: Keen Dreams, but was removed from that game to save disk space. Explains the name, now, doesn't it?
There was a special version released specifically for CGA, as the EGA/VGA version didn't support CGA.
In 2016 VileR released an unofficial patch that allowed the CGA version of the game to use the CGA Composite mode. This results in CGA 16 colors graphics, as opposed of the CGA 4 color graphics of the original release.
The game was bundled with the Gravis PC Gamepad
The opening sequence (with the words floating by each other) is a parody of the opening sequence of the movie The Terminator. When you select "Return to Demo" from the options screen, the story that's shown is an obvious parody of the Star Wars scrolling text opening sequence
Information also contributed by Itay Brenner, Jimmy Sherril, Kirschsaft, Roedie and Tony Gies
Related Sites +
All-you-can-eat Commander Keen
Excellent fan site for the Commander Keen series.
Beyond the Pogo
This is the ultimate Commander Keen fansite. You'll find almost anything Keen-related here.
Commander Keen Fan Site
A fan site which includes game reviews, screenshots, downloads, media and more.
S&F Prod.'s Commander Keen Page
This is the only place where you can find sound players, add-ons, Keen2Dopefish patch, cheats, hex cheats, extras, links and things alike for Commander Keen.
The Official Dopefish Home Page
Everything you always wanted to know about the big green fish from Commander Keen 4.
- MobyGames ID: 219
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Contributors to this Entry
Game added by Tomer Gabel.
Additional contributors: Steve Hall, Frenkel, Nico HafO, formercontrib, Neville, Patrick Bregger.
Last modified February 27th, 2023.