Jill of the Jungle
Description official descriptions
Jill of the Jungle is the first episode of a shareware series. It is a platform game where the player takes the role of the titular character: an amazon woman who takes the untypical role of monster-slaying, leather-wearing feminist warrior. Jill's most distinguishing ability is morphing into various creatures, such as a bird, a fish, and others, which allow her to explore specific areas. Levels often feature platform structures that must be navigate precisely, as well as keys that must be found in order to advance. There are no boss battles in the game. The game can be saved anywhere.
Credits (DOS version)
6 People (4 developers, 2 thanks)
Average score: 74% (based on 3 ratings)
Average score: 3.4 out of 5 (based on 47 ratings with 6 reviews)
Jill is a beautiful 2D blonde who defies the "helpless" stereotype as she leaps, climbs, soars and swims her way through various dungeons. I was lucky enough to play this when I was just getting interested in computer games - it wasn't easy back then to find games with a strong female lead. There is no deep intellectual involvement here - a little puzzle-solving and weapon-throwing, but still fun after all these years. The graphics are appealing despite the blockiness; they are colorful and bright and the reds and yellows stand out like gems against the dungeon backgrounds.
Jill marked my first experience of "flying" in a game and playing as a character other than human. Being a phoenix, frog and fish were all unique adventures, and unlike some games I played later, you have to work to stay aloft or to swim. This has the benefit of involving you just that little bit more in the experience.
Jill starts the game with a dagger and later acquires a throwing-star. The dagger returns to you boomerang style, but if you're not careful you can lose it in a lava pit. The throwing-star is a particularly satisfying weapon for demolishing boulders, which make a nice shattering sound.
The background music is low-key and unobtrusive. Sound effects are just wonderful throughout the game, from the oddly frightening "ah" sound the evil frogs make (Yes, scary frogs!)to Jill's "got the apple powerup" noise. You can play back all the special effects sounds to your hearts content on the clever little noisemaker feature outside the game.
I find it really unfortunate that Epic abandoned Jill after the trilogy; just think what adventures she might be having now!
The Bottom Line
I love this game! It's mildly challenging, graphically beautiful, and it has a quality of innocence that makes me return to it again and again.
DOS · by DJP Mom (11318) · 2007
Jill of the Jungle is a 256-color side-scrolling action game from Epic MegaGames. This company was the one responsible for creating the ZZT series, but it was Jill who made Epic famous. Jill is the first of a three-part series. Only this game is shareware, and this means that people are allowed to copy it, and then send those copies off to someone else. The other games in this series are Jill Goes Underground and Jill Saves the Prince, but you were required to get these two games through Epic MegaGames or a reseller in your country. Overall, a good game with nice music and excellent sound effects.
Story: Jill, a beautiful Amazon blonde who dons a green swimsuit, must survive the dangers of the jungle by making her way through various areas, using her weapons to slay certain enemies that get in her way.
Gameplay: Once you start the game, you are presented with a map. This map has a total of sixteen doors which you can enter, most of them blocked with locked doors or passages that you must unlock with gems, and most of these doors you can't get to without completing others. The doors, by the way, lead to levels that you must complete before moving onto the next one.
The first stop Jill has to make is "through the boulders". Jill is not alone here, as the first enemies that she will encounter are alligators, birds, and frogs; but later on, she'll face giant ants, bees, stingrays, piranhas, scorpions, and more. If Jill kills enemies, they will transform into different-colored balls that go off the screen. If she touches any of these nasties, she will start to lose health. Once she loses all her health, she will die and you have to start the level again. Health can be restored by collecting apples, but occasionally when you collect them, the game give you tips on how to survive, what dangers you'll face, and so on. Instead of just running around, Jill can jump onto enemies and platforms, and use her knife or spinning blade to slain enemies. With the knife, it is intelligent. You see, after the knife is thrown, it will come back to Jill, ready to be used again. The only exception to this rule is that if Jill is running away from it. Jill can also be killed if she touches water or lands on a set of spikes.
Jill can also climb vines to higher places, but even a monster can crawl up or down them. On some levels, passages are blocked by a locked door or gem gates, and as usual, you are required to unlock them with keys or gems. A few things can help you in the level. For example, even though Jill can't jump high enough, getting one or more "red up arrows" can change that. Furthermore, during the game, you get to change into a different animal like a fish, bird, or frog; and each one of them provides an advantage. The fish can swim in water, whereas the bird can fly up toward the very top of the level, and like Jill, the animals can shoot. You change into these animals by collecting their "special icon". To restore back to Jill's original form, just find her icon.
The game also has a bonus level, but this is real easy to find. All you have to do is just find the word BONUS written above a passage that leads you to lots of vines. You have access to the control panel during the game, which lets you save, restore, turn the noise on/off, enable slow motion, and more. When you save a game, you can save to six positions, and when you restore one of these positions, you resume back at the point where you save the game, not at the beginning, like you do in games from Apogee Software. Below this, your inventory is displayed, and this shows your current score, health, weapons, keys, and gems.
Graphics: They are basic. You see just a plain background on the map, with shades of blue at the top, gray in the middle, and black at the very bottom. This background is not repeated in the actual areas, as the backgrounds there make you think that you are in jungles, caves, villages, or just a colorful maze. These are the type of backgrounds that I like. Very good.
The game will look amazing if you have a VGA card installed in your machine and you state that you wish to play in VGA. This game can also be played in CGA or EGA, but Jill won't look as sexy as she does in VGA, and you have less of a gaming experience.
Sound & Music: One thing that I like about the game is the digital sound effects that you get when you play the game with your Sound Blaster, and you can listen to them all by entering the NoiseMaker, which can be accessed from the main menu. Here, you can press almost every letter on the keyboard and you'll hear a sound from the game. Speaking of sounds, by the way, some of them are quite unexpected, and some of them are appropriate to events. Jill yells out when she loses all her health, laughing sounds are heard when she makes contact with water or spikes, and a record-scratching sound is heard when you attempt to shoot when there is no knife or blade in your inventory.
This game can only be played with Sound Blaster, so it is Sound Blaster or nothing. This means that if you have any sound card other than an SB, then you will just have to put up with playing the game through the PC Speaker. Playing through PC Speaker produces different sound effects to the Sound Blaster's, so you won't be disappointed.
The bluish background on the map doesn't fit well in the game, and needed some more detail.
You may have trouble running this game on your machine. Be warned, though, don't use DOSBox if you want to play this game, as it contains a bug. You see, if you play Jill on DOSBox for about ten minutes, the keys used to access some of the functions on the control panel won't respond, forcing you to restart DOSBox and Jill.
The Bottom Line
Epic decided to discontinue Jill ages ago, so you might want to get a copy from a friend, or browse those illegal abandonware sites.
DOS · by Katakis | カタキス (43051) · 2004
A simple and neat shareware platform game, I got Jill of the Jungle when I was about 9 or 10 as a gift in a chocolate package. It didn't work on my computer (XT) of course, so I had to go to the neighbours to play it on their 386. But it was worth it: cool (if not amazing) graphics, good music, great (or so I thought) PC-speaker sound effects and fun, fun gameplay made it an instant favorite of mine (and my brother's too). It's just plain cool, and I still play it from time to time to this day (pathetic, I know).
The controls are programmed slightly on the bad side and tend to occasionally function erratically; the sound effects/music routines aren't very well programmed either and do not work on newer computers (mine at least). Also, the premise is really stupid - but that's part of the charm :-)
The Bottom Line
A really cool shareware game. Play it, you'll like it.
DOS · by Tomer Gabel (4539) · 2000
One of the 'non-game' features in Jill of the Jungle is the 'Mega Noise Maker', which obviously only does just that: Make noise. Press any letter key/qwerty key and it delivers state of the art...Noise.
Jill of the Jungle was given as a gift if you bought three packages of local Israeli chocolate (Elite).
Information also contributed by Indra is here
Related Sites +
- MobyGames ID: 774
- Wikipedia (en)
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Contributors to this Entry
Game added by Tomer Gabel.
Game added January 22nd, 2000. Last modified August 15th, 2023.