Hello out there in PlayStation-land! This is Chris Kohler—I’m Editorial Director at Digital Eclipse, co-developer of the upcoming Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The Cowabunga Collection. We’re excited for the upcoming release of a landmark collection containing 13 classic Konami TMNT games produced in the 80s and 90s for home consoles, portables, and the arcade.
With all 13 games included in the Cowabunga Collection, you can see the mutation of TMNT games unfold in front of your eyes. Today, we thought it would be fun to look at the evolution of two mainstays of the Turtles games—Shredder’s loyal but hapless goons, Bebop and Rocksteady.
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (8-bit)
You encounter the pair early on in the first TMNT home game. Bebop is the game’s first mini boss, attacking you in a cramped sewer corridor. While this fight is going on, Rocksteady stands guard over April O’Neil. If you touch Rocksteady, he will do damage to you—there’s no way to beat him now, just concentrate on Bebop. Bebop doesn’t fire a weapon; he just tries to ram you! At the end of stage 1, you get the chance to take on Rocksteady and his trusty machine gun. Just when you think you have an upper hand, Shredder shows up and kidnaps April yet again!
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles The Arcade Game (Arcade/8-bit)
Rocksteady is the first boss you take on in the classic four-player experience. Again with a machine gun, he fires diagonally to punish you for doing too many jump kicks. Bebop shows up at the end of the next stage, packing a Ripple Laser weapon. And as if that weren’t enough, Bebop and Rocksteady show up together at the end of stage four!
Don’t let these two goons get you down, we have a range of helpful options that will beat them, including Rewind, Save/Load anywhere, and a custom Watch Mode that lets you view a playthrough of each game and jump in any time to start playing.
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Fall of the Foot Clan (Handheld)
In the fearsome foursome’s first portable adventure, Bebop and Rocksteady are armed with their same tricks in the Ripple Laser and machine gun. Fortunately, in this version, you can knock down their projectiles with a well-timed attack, making these mutated punks a couple of pushovers. (Check out Bebop’s goofy damage animation in the original design document!)
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II: Back From The Sewers (Handheld)
Rocksteady doesn’t fight fair when you encounter him in this portable sequel, calling in a bunch of Foot Soldiers to drop flowerpots on top of your head. Bogus indeed!
Back From The Sewers is a unique combination of side-scrolling and three-quarter-view action; the Rocksteady fight takes place in side-scroll mode while the Bebop fight later is in the three-quarter view.
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles III: The Manhattan Project (8-bit)
An 8-bit masterpiece, with tons of stages and many inventive bosses, you see Bebop and Rocksteady begin to get a little more creative with their ambushes. Rocksteady emerges from the Key West surf firing a spear-fishing gun. (Whoops, did we interrupt his vacation?)
Meanwhile, Bebop goes ridiculous with a ball and chain attached to his head that he swings around with his neck muscles before launching at you. Did he design this himself? Is he okay? Has anybody checked in on Bebop lately?
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles IV: Turtles In Time (16-bit)
Although Bebop and Rocksteady didn’t make an appearance in the Turtles In Time arcade game, the duo is in the expanded 16-bit version as the bosses of the pirate ship level, “A.D. 1530: Skull And Crossbones.”
Since this is ye olden times, they are dressed in elegant finery, and Captain Rocksteady attacks with an elegant epee, while poop-deck-swabbin’ sailor Bebop tries to tame you with his whip.
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The Hyperstone Heist (16-bit)
Rocksteady without Bebop? That’s Peanut butter without chocolate! Pizza without cheese! But it’s true, this adventure is the only time in the Collection Rocksteady and the reliable machine gun show up as a boss without his best pal.
Do Your Own Research!
On this trip through Turtle times past, we’ve looked at some never-before-seen design documents from the Konami archives and a glimpse how these legendary games were created. Want to see more? When you load up the Cowabunga Collection, you’ll be able to dive into the Turtles’ Lair and dig through hundreds of pages, with secrets around every corner!
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The Cowabunga Collection hits PlayStation 5 and PlayStation 4 real soon. We know the waiting is hard as shell… but it’ll be worth it!