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Video Game / Monty Mole

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Monty Mole (no relation to the Super Mario World enemy) is the hero of a series of Platform Games from British developer Gremlin Graphics. The series began on the ZX Spectrum, with the more popular games ported to the Commodore 64 and Amstrad CPC.

The moley adventures start with Wanted: Monty Mole (1984), where Monty decides to raid his local coal pit to help himself through the long winter. By the end of the game, he has acquired a bucketful of coal and a five-year prison sentence.

The story continues in Monty Is Innocent (1985), a short Action-Adventure game in which Sam Stoat helps break Monty out of Scudmore Prison.

In Monty on the Run (1985), Monty flees to a safe house, and, using his five-item freedom kit, navigates escape tunnels and heads for the English Channel, where a boat is waiting to take him out of the country.

Auf Wiedersehen Monty (1987) has Monty, starting in Gibraltar, traveling through the countries of Europe and collecting enough money to buy the Greek island of Montos, where he retires.

Attached to the January 1988 issue of Your Sinclair was a game titled Moley Christmas, where Monty shepherds the production of a Monty Mole game and distributes it to faithful readers.

One more game was produced, Impossamole (1990), developed by Core Design for various computers and the TurboGrafx-16. Here Monty Mole is transformed by aliens into a caped superhero.


  • Anti-Hero: Despite being referred to as "our hero" a few times, Monty's actually pretty self-serving and rarely does things to help other people, even doing something illegal in most of the games he appears in (though he doesn't really directly hurt anybody either).
  • A Winner Is You: Though perhaps "A Loser is You" would be more apt. After completing the final room in the first game, the ending is simply a text crawl detailing that Monty was arrested for all the coal he stole.
  • Drought Level of Doom: In Impossamole's Slippy-Slidey Ice World, you are bound to take a lot of unavoidable damage from Goddamned Bats and Malevolent Architecture, and healing items and powerups are very scarce here.
  • Flip-Screen Scrolling: Most of the games, with the exception of the side-scrolling Impossamole.
  • Inventory Management Puzzle: Pretty much the whole challenge of Auf Wiedersehen Monty. Items are collected when running into them and only relinquished when used, and your inventory maxes out at four items - you can be stuck holding the wrong thing for a long time if you're not careful (like the football, obtained very early in southeast Spain; but it'll be a while before you get to Turin to use it), and your inventory also includes your air tickets, making it very easy to trap yourself.
  • Mooks, but no Bosses: The games have enemies, but don't really have any bosses or villains, with the exception of "Impossamole"
  • Nintendo Hard: Very much so. Tricky jumps + oddly timed traps + fast moving enemies X One Hitpoint Wonder = Frustration.
  • Oddball in the Series: Monty Is Innocent, which is not a Platform Game and does not star Monty.
  • One Hitpoint Wonder: Monty, except in Impossamole.
  • Reformulated Game: A Famicom Disk System version of Monty on the Run was released by Jaleco in Japan (alternate title: Monty no Doki Doki Daisassou), and is almost completely different: in particular, Monty in this version is not a mole. The PC Engine version of Impossamole is also very different from the computer version.
  • Smashing Hallway Traps of Doom: The crush pillars.
  • Unexpected Gameplay Change: Monty on the Run has a driving stage, "Drive Sir Clive's C5."