Lode Runner was a game that I had become familiar with back when it was a 2-D platformer. When the game launched as a 3-D game in 1999, I was excited. Lode Runner 3-D was a Nintendo 64 exclusive, and that was a pretty big deal at the time.
Lode Runner 3-D was not the first of the series, so there were many players that were familiar with the gameplay mechanics. Players would run around the level collecting gold and trying to avoid enemies. Players could drill holes in the ground to trap enemies and make their way around the level. The difference that this installment brought was the 3-D aspect.
There have been other Lode Runner games available for launch, but none of them had the charm this one did. Being able to see the worlds from another perspective, depth, was just stunning. The puzzle variety that a three-dimensional world offered was just outstanding.
The enemies seemed completely redeveloped. In the two-dimensional game, they were bland looking characters, but in Lode Runner 3-D they vary. There are three main types of enemies. There is a standard monk that is fairly easy to escape and trap. Then there is the more difficult blasting monk that can shoot. Finally, there is the hovering robot that cannot be trapped so the player must evade it.
Lode Runner 3-D easily topped the chart for a Nintendo 64 game. It seems a shame that no team has made another full retail launch. The other launches of this game all seem to stick to the two-dimensional world; it would be amazing to see the develop another three-dimensional world for us to explore.