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Ruff's Bone
Living Books - Titles-Ruff's Bone..png
Living Books CD Rom (1994)


May 13, 1994




English, Spanish




Little Monster at School


Arthur's Birthday

Ruff's Bone is the sixth Living Books game (or fifth if you were to go by the PC release dates) released in 1994. Written by Eli Noyes and co-produced by Colossal Pictures, it is exclusively Living Books' second original story not being an adaption from any pre-existing titles (first if not counting Mark Schlitching's adaption of The Tortoise and the Hare).

The story is about a dog named Ruff, who fetches his bone that was thrown by his master.



When Ruff is ready to fetch his Sunday morning bone, his master accidentally throws it over the fence into their neighbor, Slim's yard. Ruff goes to search for it, but when he finally notices it, it falls into a tree, which leads him underground and into a cave. The cave is full of bones and he isn't sure which one is his. When he finally does, it's too late and a caveman tosses it out of the cave, which leads Ruff into the clouds in the sky digging for it. It falls into a jungle, and then into a sunken ship in the ocean. Ruff then sees a ladder that goes into space, and finally lands on a bone planet. He at last finds his bone, and an alien takes him back home in a UFO space-ship. Once he makes it back home, his master congratulates him, only to throw his bone yet again.


  • 1 It was time for my Sunday bone. My master always threw it and I always brought it back.
  • 2 This time my bone landed in Slim's yard. I searched for it everywhere.
  • 3 I looked down a dark hole. My nose knew that bone was near, but where?
  • 4 I dug 'til I reached a cave full of bones. Which one was mine?
  • 5 Just when I found it, my bone and I fell out of the cave and into the clouds.
  • 6 A giant bird caught me and dropped me into a big nest. Her baby had my bone!
  • 7 I reached for my bone, but it dropped into the ocean. In I dove and swam to the bottom.
  • 8 A fish took my bone and swam into a sunken ship. Inside I found many doors, but not a single bone.
  • 9 I saw a ladder and climbed up through the stars. Would the ladder lead to my bone?
  • 10 At the top of the ladder was a bone planet! I knew I would find my bone now!
  • 11 I got into a spaceship and headed for home. I had my bone at last.
  • 12 When I got home I gave the bone to my master. He said, "Good dog." I said, "Ruff."


  • Slim Song
  • Under The Ocean
  • Dem Bones Can Dance
  • Rocket In My Pocket
  • Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star
  • You Are My Star
  • You Are My One
  • Silvery Moon Song
  • Beautiful, Beautiful Ring
  • Party Satellite Song
  • Jump Down, Spin Around
  • Upside Down For So Long
  • Ruff's Song
  • Welcome Home


  • Like The Tortoise and the Hare and Harry and the Haunted House, this is the second game to be an original story and not being based on any existing books, and was the only original title that was both created and written at the same time when the Living Books version was produced, making this the only title officially created for Living Books rather than being a retroactive original title.
  • This is the first Living Books game for several things:
    • The first Living Books game to use a different running cursor icon– Ruff's spinning bone– instead of a running man. However, it was only used on the Macintosh platform and not the Windows platform for reasons unknown.
    • The first Living Books game to have the "A Random House/Broderbund Company Ltd." by-line, due to Living Books beginning its partnership with Random House.
      • However, the game was originally about to be released under the plain Broderbund's Living Books era, hinted by a then-untouched line being "Then get Broderbund's Living Book, 'Ruff's Bone'!" in the V1.0 editions of The Tortoise and the Hare and The New Kid on the Block (otherwise in 1994, the line was shortened to "Then get Living Books' 'Ruff's Bone'!" in the V1.1 editions of said two games for the above reason).
    • The first game onward not to feature the two generic kids as "No" and "Yes" buttons on the QUIT page.
    • The first game to use a different variant of the original plain gray-background THE END screen (just the font for this one and the background is light green). The only other Living Book to do this with the original THE END screen was The Berenstain Bears Get in a Fightand Sheila Rae, the Brave.
    • The first game to use an entirely custom credits sequence and not the usual jazz one. Other games in the series to do this include Green Eggs and Ham, Arthur's Computer Adventure, and D.W. the Picky Eater.
  • A preview for this game (see script below) is featured on V1.1 of Just Grandma and Me and Arthur's Teacher Trouble, and both versions of The Tortoise and the Hare and The New Kid on the Block.
  • This demo version can be featured in Dr. Seuss' ABC, The Berenstain Bears in the Dark, Green Eggs and Ham, Stellaluna, and Arthur's Reading Race.
  • The running gag in this game is Ruff's actual bone, though it's not hiding on every page and is entirely absent on the ninth page where Ruff is climbing up the ladder.
  • Ruff only speaks by barking, even in the home page; therefore, an off-screen narrator (possible his master) is heard talking as him, since Ruff can't physically speak any human language.
  • You leave the book when Ruff says, "OK, goodbye!" (if "Yes" is chosen), the same games as Arthur's Teacher Trouble and The Tortoise and the Hare. But you might want to keep playing when Ruff says "OK" (if "No" is chosen). The "No" answer is the bulldog, and the "Yes" answer is a brown dog (maybe a golden retriever or a weiner).
  • On the 9th page when Ruff climbs up the ladder, when you click on the smiling satellite, you can hear a sample of a hidden song that can be found in its entirety as a hidden track on the CD soundtrack.
  • On the Living Books Samplers, this game was placed before Little Monster at School, making it commonly mistaken to have been released before that game, despite Little Monster at School actually being initially released on a Philips CD-i console port earlier between the releases of The New Kid on the Block and Ruff's Bone.
    • This was likely because the producers sorted the game by its PC/Mac release date.
  • This game along with Harry and the Haunted House was reviewed in Brutal-moose's review of the Living Books series.



Living Books - Ruff's Bone

This is the video for this game.


Page 1[]

Golfer: Doggone it, meet the gang! [Ruff barks] Hey there Ruff old boy!

Woman on Chair: Don't worry, Ruff. He'll be out in a minute.

Girl with hula hoop: Hey, Ruff! Look at me, look at me!

Man: I guess I missed!

Woman on Chair: I think I hear him coming now!

Master: Now where'd I put that bone?

Man: I'm a coming! I hear ya!

Master: Okay, Ruff, here's your bone. Ready? [throws bone] Whoa, I didn't know my own strength! Go get it, Ruff!

Preview Script[]

Master: Okay, Ruff, here's your bone. Ready? [throws bone] Whoa, I didn't know my own strength. Go get it, Ruff. [Ruff barks three times and then runs away to find his bone]

Girl with hula hoop: Where is Ruff gonna find his bone?

Golfer: In the jungle?

Master: Under the sea?

Golfer: On another planet?

Girl with hula hoop: Wow!

Golfer: You want to find out whether Ruff ever gets his bone?

Master: Then get Broderbund's Living Book called Ruff's Bone. [alt: Then get Living Books' Ruff's Bone.]

All three: See you then! [all three wave good-bye]


Snakes And Ladders


Ruff: (barking) Ruff! Ruff! Are you sure you want to quit?

[when the user clicks "No" which the bulldog is holding]: Okay!

[when the user clicks "Yes" which a red dog is holding]: Okay, goodbye!