Circus Charlie is an action/platform game originally released by Konami in which the player controls a clown named Charlie. The game was a hit arcade game in 1984, which also had a successful release on the MSX in 1984, the Nintendo Famicom in 1986 by Soft Pro and on the Commodore 64 in 1987. It was released along with other Konami classic games on the Nintendo DS compilation Konami Classics Series: Arcade Hits.
In the game there are six regular stages (plus an extra stage) of differing tasks that are to be completed by Charlie. Grabbing money bags, performing dangerous tricks, avoiding enemies, completing stages, etc., earns Charlie points. After the sixth stage is completed, the game starts over again but with a faster pace and more difficult (but exactly the same in terms of task to be completed) levels. Charlie also races against time. Bonus points are awarded according to the time remaining, but running out of time will cost the player a life.
Circus Charlie (NES version)
The standard Arcade version has 6 levels in total. Level 1, 2, 4 and 5 have 5 sublevels. Level 3 contains 7 sublevels. Each sublevel gets more difficult. Level 6 also has 5 sublevels, but repeats as long the user got lives.
Level 1: ride on a lion and jump through flaming rings
Level 2: tightrope walking whilst jumping over monkeys
Level 3: Jump between trampolines and beware the knife throwers and fire breathers. In sublevel 3 and 6 the trampolines are placed in a swimming pool and the knife throwers and fire breathers are replaced by jumping piranhas.
Level 4: Jump from ball to ball
Level 5: Ride a horse and jump over trampolines and walls
Level 6: trapeze
In the Famicom version, the trampoline stage is omitted, but it has a 'B' mode, in which all the levels are repeated with added difficulty. The game often shows up on Famicom clone systems and multicarts, usually with its title screen altered to remove copyright, some versions also have the levels split up to make up separate games in multicarts.
Find digital download of this game on
The NES version of Circus Charlie was originally controlled via the NES controller with a cross-shaped joypad and two action buttons. The basic description of game controls is summarized in the table below. Detailed description of how to play this game can be found a in the attached game manual. Please note that individual
gamepad buttons are emulated by different keys on your PC keyboard depending on the settings of your online emulator (see the table next to the game).
Use the D-pad to direct Charlie to the left or to the right in most scenarios. In the Horse Hurdle stage, the D-pad is used to control the speed that the horse runs at, and in the Trapeze stage, the D-pad influences Charlie's momentum. Up and down are not used in this game.
Press A and B to make Charlie jump in most scenarios. In the Trapeze stage, it is used to make Charlie let go of the Trapeze he is currently holding.
Same function as button A.
Press Select on the title screen menu to select between a one or two player game.
Use to start the game. Press during play to pause. Press again to resume play.
This version of Circus Charlie was designed for the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES), which was an eight-bit video game console manufactured
by Nintendo in the years 1983 - 2003. In that time, it was the best-selling video game console for which more than 700 licensed games and a number of non-licensed
games were created. Worldwide, approximately 62 million units of this console were sold at approximately price $ 100 per unit. More information about the
NES console can be found here.
Recommended Game Controllers:
You can control this game easily by using the keyboard of your PC (see the table next to the game). However, for maximum gaming enjoyment, we strongly recommend using a USB gamepad that you simply plug into the USB port of your computer. If you do not have a gamepad, buy a suitable USB controller on Amazon or AliExpress or in some of your favorite online stores.
Available online emulators:
6 different online emulators are available for Circus Charlie. These emulators differ not only in the technology they use to emulate old games, but also in support of various game controllers, multiplayer mode, mobile phone touchscreen, emulation speed, absence or presence of embedded ads and in many other parameters. For
maximum gaming enjoyment, it's important to choose the right emulator, because on each PC and in different Internet browsers, the individual emulators behave differently. The basic
features of each emulator available for this game Circus Charlie are summarized in the following table:
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