Rocket Ranger is a 1988 action adventure computer game developed and published by Cinemaware.
Like many Cinemaware games, Rocket Ranger draws its inspiration from Hollywood, and likely The Rocketeer comics. This title pays homage to the many 1950s sci-fi serials, using the look and feel of the serials, including action-packed cut-scenes and an art treatment loyal to the futuristic visions of that era. It also features the cliché elements of that era, including a dashing, courageous hero and a beautiful, voluptuous damsel in distress in need of rescue.
Sitting in a top secret bunker one night puzzling over some challenging physics problems, some futuristic artifacts are amazingly teleported to the player—in the role of a US Army scientist—along with a note that says the artifacts are from the future, a future in which the Nazis won World War II and subsequently were able to enslave the entire world. The scientists who sent the artifacts did so in a hope that the player could reverse the outcome of the war, a war Nazi Germany should have rightfully lost.
The success of the Nazis is based on their use of a mineral named lunarium, which has the ability to lower the IQ of human males drastically, thus effectively preventing military resistance when the Nazis invade. The lunarium is dropped in the form of bombs from a fleet of zeppelins flying at a higher altitude than anti-aircraft guns could possibly reach. What is even more puzzling is that lunarium is - as the name indicates - only mineable on the Moon, and mankind so far does not yet have the technology to reach it.
Using a rocket pack and a radium pistol, the player must fly around the world fighting the escalating Nazi technology. Sometimes this includes shooting down enemy fighters with the radium pistol to intercept enemy shipments. Sometimes the sequences degenerate into bareknuckle fistfights with enemy Nazi guards in order to gain rocket parts, and sometimes he has to disable the defenses of two available lunarium depots to get fuel for both his own rocket pack and the rocket ship he must assemble.
From time to time, the hero must catch up with a kidnapped scientist and his voluptuous daughter (the love interest for the game) in a zeppelin. In these encounters the player must engage in dialogue with them (notably for the time, featuring digitized speech) to win their trust.
One part of the game takes the form of a strategy game: from a world map display the player directs five agents to search for hidden Nazi bases and they can also "organise resistance" to slow the enemy's advance towards the USA.
The ultimate goal of the game is to collect five parts for a rocket ship and 500 units of lunarium to get to the Moon and close down the mines. But as it turns out, the Nazis were not the only ones involved in the scheme: an "Interplanetary Union of Fascists", which was formed by aliens, have struck a deal with the Germans. In order to achieve final victory, the Rocket Ranger must battle one of these aliens.