Duck Hunt is a 1984 video game for the Nintendo Entertainment System. It is part of the once popular light gun shooter genre, and makes use of the NES Zapper, one of the system's earliest peripheral controllers. The game was an early release, and would go on to inspire elements in later Nintendo franchises.
In the game there are three modes, the Game A (1 Duck), Game B (2 Ducks) and Game C (Clay Shooting). In the former two modes, a dog will jump into the grass, indicating the start of the game. Soon after, one duck (two in Game B) will fly onto the screen, with the player's objective being to shoot any ducks on screen while using at most three shots and before the ducks fly away. If successful, the aforementioned dog will reappear holding your bounty. This will repeat until ten ducks have been encountered, at which point the player will either move on to the next round or receive a game over depending on how well they did and what round they're on. In the Game C, the gameplay shifts from duck hunting to shooting at play pigeons. Two clay pigeons would be thrown at a time, from the bottom of the screen right in front of the player and go forward in an arc towards the grounds. As the games progress, the speed of the targets exponentially get higher, until it becomes physically impossible to progress any further.
Duck Hunt has little to no story. The shooter is never named or given any characteristics, unlike other games of the time like Super Mario Bros. or Gyromite. The game simply records the player's efforts to imrpove as a hunter. The most notable narrative element in Duck Hunt is the characterization of the player's dog. The dog faithfully collects the ducks shot throughout the game no matter what, but also mocks any errors made during gameplay, in a noticeable juxtaposition
- Duck Hunt was packaged alongside the first Super Mario Bros. at launch, but would go on to become far lass remembered than that game
- Despite an urban legend, the dog within the game is not named "Mr. Peppers," and so far has no individual designation.