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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

The Tech Deck

This week’s free game: “Cheeky Mouse”

Universal released "Cheeky Mouse" to arcades in 1980, letting you live out your Tom and Jerry fantasies with hand tools.
Universal released "Cheeky Mouse" to arcades in 1980, letting you live out your Tom and Jerry fantasies with hand tools.

Are you a gamer? Do you like free things? Of course you do!

We here at the Tech Deck are just like you: poor gamers looking for cheap entertainment. And nothing's cheaper than cost-free gaming. Each week, we'll bring you a title (or two or three) you can legally play at home without plopping down a single dollar. If you see games you think we should be featuring on the blog, email us at or

Mistreating miscreants is a time-honored tradition in gaming, but "Cheeky Mouse" took it to a visceral level. As a hammer-wielding handyman, your job is to protect subterranean slices of cheese from a never-ending wave of mice. Smack them before they eat all your cheese and the platform you're standing on disintegrates! I'm not certain the hardness rating for a load-bearing cheese, but in any event you can play Universal's 1980 arcade classic by clicking below, thanks to the folks at the Internet Archive!

Click here to play 'Cheeky Mouse' for free in your browser!

The game's manual refers to our protagonist only as "man," but it certainly seems as though he's a custodian of some sort, right? And in what world is hacking at mice with hammers the best extermination technique? 

Universal, a Japanese company, is probably best known for its "Mr. Do!" games, the first of which released in 1982, two years after "Cheeky Mouse." While "Mr. Do!" borrowed heavily from Dig-Dug, its foray into narrative gaming, 1984's "Super Don Quix-ote," took the art style and gameplay from Dragon's Lair and played fast and loose with Cervantes' original tale. After the release of the title, Universal got out of the arcade market and started making slot machines.

What's your favorite hammer-wielding video game protagonist? Let us know in the comments below, and check back next time for another free game. 

Kip Hill
Kip Hill joined The Spokesman-Review in 2013. He currently is a reporter for the City Desk, covering the marijuana industry, local politics and breaking news. He previously hosted the newspaper's podcast.

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