- For the character with the same name, see here.
Flicky (フリッキー Furikkī?) is a game developed by Sega and released by Bally Midway on arcades in 1984, using Sega's System 1 Hardware. After the official arcade release, it has been ported to numerous platforms, mostly known SG-1000, MSX and Sega Genesis. It is known to be the first appearance of Flicky, one of Sonic's original animal friends and a recurring character from the Sonic the Hedgehog series and even years before the first installment from 1991.
The player controls Flicky around a series of simplistic levels. Flicky moves left or right and has one action button to jump and to shoot. Flicky has a very good jump range, but cannot actually fly.
The aim of the game is collect Flicky's lost 'children', who are all called Chirp (Piopios in Japan) and who are scattered around each level, and return them to the doorway/entrance that Fl used to enter each level. To get a Chirp to follow Flicky in a line like ducklings, player need to touch them, usually this involves jumping to reach them. If player have more than one Chirp and place them in the doorway, player's score per Chirp will increase by 100 (i.e. 100 points for the first Chirp, 200 for the second, 300 for the third...). If player place the Chirps separately player will get a flat rate of 100 points.
Player's main problem is Tiger (Nyan-Nyan in Japan) tabby cats that are similar to the cats in the Mappy franchise. If player hit a Tiger it will lose Flicky life. If a Tiger clips player's Chirp line the clipped Chirp will break the line and player will have to re-collect it and any behind it in the line. Iggy (Choro in Japan) is an Iguana that does the same thing. Like Mappy, player are never helpless, for each level has a set of objects, ranging from telephones to chairs to flowerpots, if player touches one of these objects player can carry it until player jump (this is because 'throw' is the same button as 'jump'). When player throw an object, player will send it spinning off in a straight line, and if a Tiger or Iggy is unfortunate enough to be in the way of the object, they'll go spinning and player will get extra points. Hit more than one with the same object and a gem will appear and give player even more points.
Each level loops, and is thus making the game endless. Between every few rounds is a bonus round, where Tiger catapults Chirps up in the air, and Flicky must catch them in the net. The game is simplistic and has the feel of being aimed at a younger audience, but can become a challenging and frustrating game.
The game was popular enough to be ported to Sega's home consoles, the SG-1000 in 1984 and Mega Drive (or Genesis) in 1991 (the same year Flicky guest-starred in the first Sonic the Hedgehog). Both suffer from the downsizing in graphics [due to the consoles' capabilities]. Choro is particularly affected by this, but plays virtually the same. Both versions also lose their cute balloon intro for the Title screen. In 1992, the game was given a Sega CD Meganet port on Game no Kanzume vol.1 series, with upgraded graphics and sound much closer to its arcade counterpart, and a port on the Genesis Meganet port on Game no Kanzume Otokuyou.
Due to her close links with the Sonic franchise, the Mega Drive port of Flicky was included as an unlockable game in the Sonic Mega Collection and Sonic Mega Collection Plus compilations that were compiled under Sonic Team's supervision. Unlike Comix Zone and The Ooze, Flicky was kept in the Western version of Sonic Mega Collection for the Nintendo GameCube. The game was included in Sega Smash Pack 2 compilation for the PC. Flicky is also one of the many classic games to be ported onto the Sonic Cafe service. A low quality version of the game was released in the early days of Sonic Cafe, but has since been replaced by a graphically enhanced version.
Connection to Sonic the Hedgehog series
- Flicky was one of the animal friends released from destroyed Badniks and capsules in the original Sonic the Hedgehog, and has appeared in numerous Sonic games since then. Another of the original animal friends was named Chirps in the West, similar to the name of Flicky's children in the Genesis version of Flicky, Chirp.
Flickies as a species have been explained further in Sonic 3D Blast, where they were able to travel between dimensions by using giant rings. The gameplay mechanic in Sonic 3D Blast is similar to the Flicky game, involving collecting birds and delivering them to an exit, receiving extra points for delivering multiple birds at once.