In 1998, a man called Tim Furnish, known also as Hungry Software, made an indie game for DOS called Ducks, a game similar to Lemmings. It also came with a level editor, and I made quite a number of level sets.
Sadly, the official website has since died, taking the game, its add-on packs, editing tools, and official list of user-made add-on packs with it. Therefore, with the help of Stan Stoyanov, we have tried to archive as much of the content as possible here.
Extract the contents of the above zip file somewhere onto your computer. You will then need to use DOSBox to run the game is it does not run natively on Windows. You will want to use the following configuration options in the dosbox.pref file:
As the game was once a paid game but then became freeware, you still need to enter a registration code in the options to play the full game. Use the name EVERYONE and the code 004893.
Alternatively you can play a version directly on the web on archive.org here.
Load add-ons by placing the .zip file inside these zips into the eggs folder of your Ducks installation, then run pickeggs.exe to choose the files you want to load. Note that some, like Beak to the Future, contain extra objects and cannot be loaded alongside other add-ons, they must be the only add-on loaded.
Want to make your own level sets, or play around with the game files? The Ducks Editor Suite is what you need! Note that the download here is a snapshot of a copy I'd backed up while one of my level sets was in production, so you'll need to go into the .ini files for each program and change the file paths to wherever you extrated the files.
The editor requires a location to load and save levels from, and also all of the graphics extracted from the offical data files as well as the objects definition file. Good news, these are already extracted into the folders you'll find inside the Duckstuf folder inside the zip, so you should be able to get up and running in no time.
Lastly, inside the Duckstuf folder you'll find 2 text files I made detaining some info you might need if you want to hex edit your level files. This is necessary if you want to use the extra objects from Beak to the Future in your level sets, as they cannot be added via the editor directly.
Once Tim also shared the object editor, a piece of code for BASIC that took an input and spat out object definitions files (albeit a bit limited). Unfortunately this appears to be lost to the ravages of time, but if you can recover a copy, please let me know!
The sound effects for Ducks are saved in a funny format, Stan helpfully converted them all into WAV format.
Here are all of the user add-on packs we have been able to recover. If you know of any more, please let me know and I'll add them to the list.
Credit to Stan for the funky table below.
|Tim Furnish||Ducks||Main||80 4 2||1998-2000|
|Tim Furnish||Xmas Ducks 2000||xmas2000||08 1 1||1999-2000|
|Tim Furnish||World Wide Webbed||worldwid||40 4 1||06.06.2000|
|Tim Furnish||Beak to the Future||BeakFutu||40||??.??.2001|
|Fernando Márquez & Marcelo Celis||Space Apocalypse||SPACE||40 4 2||09.08.2000|
|Fernando Márquez & Marcelo Celis||Shrapnel City||SHRAPNEL||40 4 2||21.11.2000|
|Fernando Márquez & Marcelo Celis||Planet Duck Destruction||PDD||40 4 2||04.04.2001|
|Fernando Márquez & Marcelo Celis||Collaboration Quack||CQ||40 4 2||28.09.2001|
|Fernando Márquez & Marcelo Celis||Xmas Time||XMASTIME||20 2 1||05.12.2001|
|Fernando Márquez & Marcelo Celis||Quackdown Design Contest||QUACKDWN||03||01.05.2002|
|Fernando Márquez & Marcelo Celis||Attack of the Aliens||DAOTA||40 4 2||14.06.2002|
|Fernando Márquez & Marcelo Celis||Future Revealing||REVEAL||25 3 1||10.05.2003|
|Kieran Millar||Ducks UK||Ducksuk||45 5||??.??.2001|
|Kieran Millar||Quack Attack||QUACKATT||50 5||??.??.2001|
|Kieran Millar||Halloween Ducks 2001||HALO2001||13 2||??.??.2001|
|Kieran Millar||The A-Z of Ducks||A-z||26 3||??.??.????|
|Kieran Millar||The New World of Ducks||WORLD||20 2||??.??.????|
|Kieran Millar||Halloween Ducks 2003||HALO2003||13 2||??.??.2003|
|Kieran Millar||Halloween Ducks 2005||HALO2005||13 2||??.??.2005|
|Kieran Millar||Xmas Ducks 2006||XMAS2006||10 1||02.12.2006|
|Kieran Millar & Fernando Márquez||Psychedelic Chaos||PSYCHAOS||20 2 1||23.01.2007|
|Kieran Millar & Fernando Márquez||3001: A Ducks Odyssey||3001ADO||75 2||15.12.2010|
|Ducker X||Quack It Out||QUACKIT||56 1||15.06.2003|
|WebMuppet||South Park Ducks||SOUTH||00||25.08.2000|
|WebMuppet||Crazy Ducks Town||CRAZY||14 1||29.10.2000|
|Windfowl Productions||Great Levels||Greatl03||10||17.06.2000|
|Windfowl Productions||Great Extras||Greatext||06||15.06.2000|
|Windfowl Productions||Xmas Ducks+||Xmasplus||20||??.??.2000|
|Windfowl Productions||Ducks+ 2 Demo||Dp2demo||04||18.11.2000|
|Number of secret levels|
|Number of secret images|
|Xmas Ducks 2000 graphics, sounds and decoration|
|World Wide Webbed sounds, tilesets and backgrounds|
|Beak to the Future sounds, tilesets and backgrounds|
|+ Beak to the Future objects|
I wrote guides to accessing the secrets in my add-on packs, there was also a walkthrough for Xmas Ducks+ we found. Unfortuantely we have been unable to recover the official strategy guide, please let me know if you have a copy.
Type the following codes into the main menu, note that they are in capital letters.
Before Ducks there was a 10-level demo of a game called "Get Piste!", which shares many similarities with Ducks. If you're interested, you can download it here, or watch a playthrough recorded by Stan here.
Note that this is provided mainly for archival purposes. Get Piste! isn't anywhere nearly as good as Ducks, and is a bit annoying to play.