During the heyday of the Nintendo versus Sega showdown for game publisher supremacy a third company found themselves caught in the middle. NEC's PC Engine / TurboGrafx-16 had a loyal following amongst its few fans in 1990, but ultimately bowed out of the console wars. Before that happened, however, NEC and Hudson Soft created Bonk, master of the caveman headbutt. The original PC Engine title Bonk's Adventure was just the beginning for this steel-skulled mascot, so on this slow news day why not catch up on the rise and fall of the series over at The Bonk Compendium?
Bonk first appeared in a series of four-panel comics strips on the pages of PC Engine Monthly. The magazine featured comics of upcoming games until a time in 1989 when it was converted to feature PC Genjin, a new character designed by Kobuta Aoki of the Red Company. The name PC Genjin was a spoof of the system that the magazine covered, PC Engine. The new character, a genjin, meaning primitive man or caveman, was a hit. Popularity of the comic increased to the point that Hudson Soft and Red decided to make a game based on the character, which would serve as the system's mascot, much like Mario for Nintendo and Sonic for Sega.
Although Bonk's journey came to an end some time ago, during his final days on the PC Engine there were plans for a fourth game in the series, an RPG. Electronic Gaming Monthly featured the title along with some early screenshots, but the game was canceled when poor sales in North America doomed the console. Oddly enough, Bonk IV fell apart around the same time that Sega's Sister Sonic RPG plans were canned. Mario's RPG debut in Super Mario RPG would come only a few years later.