System Requirements Anything faster than a 386
More than 2MB of Ram
600K of disk space
VGA graphics card or better


Keen 1 is the first game in the Commander Keen Series. In it, Commander Keen (Billy Blaze's alter ego) flies to Mars with his Bean-With-Bacon Mega Rocket. While he explores Mars, the aliens steal parts of his ship. Your mission is to go through Mars and get the pieces of his ship back.


Keen 1 is a 2d VGA platform game. The graphics are pretty bad by today?s standards, but they are still OK. The aliens are rather cute looking, and are not blocky. The laser guns are done well, complete with a sprite that flashes ZAP when they hit something.

Game play

The game play is typical of most 2d games. Go through the levels, get the appropriate key cards if they are needed, and exit. Some levels have a piece of your ship in them. In those levels, you get the parts and then exit the level. The levels are rather well-designed, and there are a lot of them. Some are optional, they just give you more points. There is one secret level which can be found if you know where to look. A few levels have ice in them. It makes it much harder to move around because you slide on all of the ice. There are several different aliens in the games. Some cannot hurt you directly, however, they can push you into danger. Others can shoot at you from a distance.


Controls are the basic platform keys. Arrows keys move around, control jumps, alt uses the pogo stick when you find it, space pops up a status display, and hitting control+alt at the same time fires your gun.


The sound in Keen 1 is just PC Sound. That uses the internal speaker to make various beeps and clicks. They are adequate to figure out what you are doing. The sound, again by today?s standards, isn?t that great, but it is to expected from a 14 year old game.


Keen 1 is extremely stable. I didn?t run into any problems, even running under Win2k or XP.


You go through the levels shooting aliens. When Keen dies, his head and shoulders fly off the top of the screen, and the rest of him disappears. There is no blood. Keen is at Mars without his parents permission, and then lies to them when he gets back. His spaceship is made out of household items that he ?borrowed? from the rest of his family.


Keen 1 is a good game to play if you like platform games. It is completely free, all you need to do is get it from here. It is also a good game for the kids, if the minor violence, and one bit of lying doesn't bother you.

Final Ratings

Game Play: A
Graphics: C-
Sound: D-
Interface: A-
Stability: A+
Offensive Content: A-

Overall 76%

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Cheryl Gress

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Christ Centered Gamer looks at video games from two view points. We analyze games on a secular level which will break down a game based on its graphics, sound, stability and overall gaming experience. If you’re concerned about the family friendliness of a game, we have a separate moral score which looks at violence, language, sexual content, occult references and other ethical issues.

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