Secret Agent is a 1992 side-scrolling Platform Game released by Apogee Software (now 3D Realms) and based on the engine of the earlier Crystal Caves. Much like its predecessor, it was released as three games and licensed as shareware: the first game is free as a teaser, while the other two were made available for purchase (and can be still bought from 3D Realms or from GOG.com).
The games feature a secret agent, who, throughout the series, infiltrates the islands occupied by the evil organization DVS. Each island is covered with DVS bases where our intrepid agent faces villainous guards and dangerous robots, along with many traps, while trying to find and destroy the radar on the level and then blow up the elevator door to escape. On the final level, the agent seeks out blueprints; collecting them and exiting the base ends the game and treats you to a nice picture as your reward.
June 30, 2021 saw the surprise release of Secret Agent HD, a full remake of the original Secret Agent by Emberheart Games. This version includes all-new music, achievements, improved frame rate, multiple difficulty levels, a level editor, animated ending screens, and a brand new fourth episode with new graphics, enemies, and items.
This game provides examples of:
- Brutal Bonus Level: The HD edition contains a secret level which is significantly more difficult than anything that came before, featuring unique hazards such as moving blocks that can kill you instantly.
- Card-Carrying Villain: DVS stands for Diabolical Villain Society.
- Collision Damage: The ceiling fans look like meaningless decorations, but will deal collision damage when jumped into.
- Death Throws: When killed, your character leaps off the screen while waving his hands and eyes madly as if he had an epileptic fit.
- Floating Platforms: The game has a lot of these, though it always takes care to make them at least a little realistic; even in outdoor settings, all platforms are visibly attached to something solid, like a pole. Though, curiously, the clouds sometimes serve as floating platforms.
- Goggles Do Something Unusual: They cause a bunch of previously "invisible" (read: nonexistent) platforms to appear.
- Graphics-Induced Super-Deformed: The title screen and the cutscene pictures show the secret agent with normal human proportions, but his in-game sprite has his head take up half of his body.
- Instant Gravestone: Happens to the human enemies once you kill them completely. The higher-ranking enemies turn into lower-ranking enemies until you kill the lowest, weakest form, at which point they become a gravestone (which can be picked up or just destroyed for points.)
- Interchangeable Antimatter Keys: And picking up a key when you already have one of the same color will make it disappear, usually making the level unwinnable.
- Interface Screw: The question mark, which reverses your left/right controls.
- Invincible Minor Minion: The robot that floats one square above ground.
- Invisible Block: See Goggles Do Something Unusual, above.
- Jetpack: The HD release adds a jetpack pickup. It can be used to fly for a limited time.
- No-Damage Run: You get a reward after finishing a level if you pull it off.
- One Bullet at a Time: A power-up allows you to fire a total of two bullets at once.
- Painfully Slow Projectile: Enemy bullets travel at the same speed at which you run. Your own bullets are a bit faster.
- Robot Dog: One of the enemies.
- Shout-Out: Each one of the episode names: "The Hunt For Red Rock Rover", "Kill Again Island", "Dr. No Body", and in the HD remake, "The Spy Who Dumped Me".
- Super Drowning Skills: Touching water means instant death. (Except at the end of the second episode, where you leave the island in scuba gear.) However, the HD release adds a scuba gear pickup which allows you to survive in water for a limited time.
- Spelling Bonus: Collecting the letters S-P-Y in order gives a score bonus.
- Sprint Shoes: Literal shoes that make you run fast (and, more importantly, jump further).
- Thief Bag: One of the things you can collect to earn points.
- Threatening Shark: Some of the pools of water have sharks in them. They do one hit point of damage, which makes no difference because you'll land in the water a split second later and die.