Amiga Games

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Showing posts with label Amiga Games - E. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Amiga Games - E. Show all posts

22/03/2012

Amiga Games - Exolon - Classic Commodore Amiga Game

Exolon Amiga
This classic game had been yet another quality release for the ZX Spectrum, C64 and Amstrad CPC (published by Hewson Consultants).

Unfortunately the version we got for the good old Amiga was, well, a huge pile of steaming dung dropped by the quick-and-lazy 16-bit port over creature.

On the 8-bit platforms Exolon had been an arcade game with a difference. Here it was just a completely awful, tedious and unrewarding gaming experience.

I will now persevere with playing and reviewing Exolon...

Trying to duck out of the way of quick and lazy ports...

The aim of the game was to fight your way (from left to right in classic arcade fashion) through four levels of 25 screens, making a grand total of 100 screens to conquer.

The alien world you were placed in was infested with rotund attackers released from 'birthing pods', homing missiles, exploding mines, accelerating space lice and crushing hydraulic plungers.

For protection your character carried a blaster to destroy the lesser thin-skinned aliens and weaker obstructions.
Note the washed out colours

You were also armed with homing grenades that were able to destroy stronger creatures, machinery and any obstructing pieces of landscape such as rocky outcroppings.

It should have been classic arcade game weaponry, but the grenade launcher seemed about as powerful as wet fart on a wet Wednesday.

Blaster ammunition and grenades were replenished on the loss of a life, but extra ammunition could be collected from supplies that were lying around the landscape.

For additional safety and kill-a-bility, walking through a dressing unit 'clothed' you in an armoured exoskeleton, giving you have extra blasting power and protection against ground mines and even some aliens. Again this part of the game had been implemented perfectly on 8-bit machines but here it was (for want of a better word), crap.

If you were wearing this suit on the completion of a level your bravery bonus was decreased. But by this point you just didn't care anyway.

Unimaginative graphics are the order of the day in Exolon...

I suppose I should also mention that Teleport pods were also dotted around the screens allowing you to 'move' to higher or lower ledges on the screen and collect various items.

This also made for more than one route through some of the screens - it was up to you to find out which way was the easiest. To be honest the game was so unplayable that there were no easy routes to take.

With 100 screens to fight your way through, this title was a tough nut to crack... I never ever cracked it and never will.

With really poor graphics, unimaginative sound effects and negative playability this game screams 'amateur' at every turn. Not even the musical talents of J Dave Rogers can raise this game above mediocrity. Turgid.

We recommend getting hold of the real Amiga hardware - but if not then download an Amiga emulator and download anything but Exolon! Alternatively you could try and play it online.

Please see our other Amiga retro game reviews - all links are listed in alphabetical order. Cheers guys. 

GENRE: Arcade Game
RELEASE DATE: 1989
RELEASED BY: Hewson
DEVELOPER(S): Martin J Bysh, Gary Felix, Guido Henkel, J Dave Rogers
PRICE: £24.99? - UK

Classic Games, Arcade Games and Amiga Games

26/05/2010

Amiga Game - Epic - Classic Commodore Amiga Game

Epic Commodore Amiga
Surely one of the most famous Amiga games ever? Probably for all the wrong reasons too.

This classic game was released in 1992 by Ocean Software after being delayed more times than an M8 commuter.

It was supposed to be the definitve space opera on the Amiga - but ended up being a bug ridden 3D arcade game that featured nice cut scenes and haunting incidental music.


Epic on the Amiga The whole back story to the game (most classic games have one!) was basically taken from the plot of good old Battlestar Galactica - you had to lead a rag tag fleet of ships across the galaxy after fleeing their homeworld before the sun went super-nova.

Unfortunately this route would take you through the heart of the dreaded Rexxon empire - who decided to take it upon themselves to blow you out of the stars. So - the scene was set by impressive opening cut scenes overlayed with story text and orchestral music. You were immersed within the universe of Epic...

Some of the cut scenes were excellent The game was mission based with action taking place in outer space or on the surface of a planet.
What was immediately apparent was the quality of the graphics. The 3D spaceships zipped around at a fair old rate and exploded very nicely. You could also look to the left, right and behind you (the rear view like a sort of remote camera view looking back past your craft) which was very impressive.

Some of the planet's surface features were equally impressive with you having to destroy huge radars, installations and surface cannons.

After a couple of plays what also became apparent was the lack of gameplay depth. Once you got the hang of the controls the game was very easy to beat. Your ship was almost indestructable - and with some of the missions played against the clock you were nearly at the end of the game before you knew it.

Impressive 3D graphics could not save this game
There were still too many bugs in the game - such as your flight computer not telling you which target to go after next (you had to work it out yourself) and the all time turkey of things included in the instructions: The 'cheat code' of press the numerical Enter key to replenish your supply of shields, fuel and weapons! Crazy...

Despite it being possible to 'branch' the story depending on the outcome of certain missions the game was far too easy to complete - and once completed you didn't have much reason to go back to it...
The story unfolds in Epic on the Amiga... The one saving grace in this almost arcade masterpiece was the final battle. The bad guys launched a massive offensive against your fleet and you and your buddies had to defend the fleet against them at all costs.

Here it was possible to accidentaly shoot one of your own which could be easily done as there were roughly 200 spaceships flying around the screen. Again - this was techinally impressive and those guys at Digital Image Design really knew their graphics...

At the time it was the nearest thing to the final battle from Return of the Jedi anyway.

This Amiga game received either rave reviews, or was lamented for what it was when it was released. It was a shame as it still needed further development, and DiD could have gave us a truly epic game with a little more tweaking, testing and bug fixing. It was almost there on a grand scale. All in all this game can probably be considered as a near miss...

We recommend getting hold of the real Amiga hardware - but if not then download an Amiga emulator and download Epic. Alternatively you could try and play it online.

Not quite Elite, definately not epic.

Please see our other Amiga game reviews - all links are listed in alphabetical order. Cheers guys

GENRE: Arcade Game (3D shoot em up)
RELEASE DATE: 1992
RELEASED BY: Ocean Software
DEVELOPER(S): Russ Payne, Martin Kenwright, Paul Hollingwood
PRICE: £25.95 (£15.99 re-release) - UK

Almost classic arcade action...


Classic Games, Arcade Games and Amiga Games

07/09/2009

Amiga Games - The Empire Strikes Back - Commodore Amiga retro game

Amiga Games The Empire Strikes Back
The Empire Strikes Back was another wireframe 3D arcade game released by Lucasfilm for the Commodore Amiga.

The developers of the game were the famous name in 3D gaming, Vector Grafix, who had also developed the previous game in the series (the Star Wars arcade game for the Commodore Amiga).

For people who were familiar with the original Star Wars arcade game (nearly everyone!), Empire was created in a similar style, using the settings of the movie within the game.


The Empire Strikes Back Amiga
As nearly everyone in the world (and in Galaxies far far away) are familiar with the movie, there is no real need to dig deep into the plot details. Especially considering 'Empire' was the best of ALL of the Star Wars movies eh? ;-)

The Empire Strikes Back on the Amiga took place over four levels which roughly spanned the movie.

On the first level, you took control of a landspeeder and flew over the surface of the ice planet Hoth. Imperial probe droids were scouting around (making that funny ernanasenda noise) and you had to destroy them and any transmissions they relayed (viewed as wireframe 'signals' rising upwards).

The probots would shoot back at you, and any fireballs hitting you would deplete your shields. Blasting enough droids would move you onto level two.

It's a good bet the empire knows we're here...
The second stage had you flying a snowspeeder once again. This time you had to take down Imperial walkers (both the AT-AT and AT-ST types) using the same methods used in the movie by the rebel pilots. It took a fair bit of practice to fly through the legs of the walkers and deploy your tow cables to entagle their legs and bring them down.

Success in stage two moved you onto stage three.

Those Probots can become annoying
Stage three now had you flying the fastest hunk of junk in the galaxy, the Millenium Falcon. Manning the laser cannon you had to blast away at the swarms of tie fighters that were intent on destroying you. To get past this stage you had to shoot away at the enemy tie's and their fireballs and ensure that the Falcon was not destroyed. Keeping the Falcon intact (and not getting cocky!) led you into....

The asteroid field. Lazer bolts and blasters were ineffective agianst asteroids, so you had to use your flying skills to weave in and around the floating space rocks. Any collision would deplete your shields, so fancy flying and sharp moves were the only way to survive this. The aim was to make it to the largest rock (as in the movie) and to safety. Once this had been achieved the four levels were completed and the game would start at the beginning again with the difficulty level a little harder.

There were bonuses to be had during the game; extra points could be earned by destroying a specific number of enemy targets and letters were also awarded along with the bonus points. If you managed to spell out JEDI then you were given invincibity against all enemies for a period of time. Nice.

When The Empire Strikes Back was released on the Amiga it was nothing new in concept - there were plenty of good vector graphic arcade games already on the Commodore machine. However the graphics were pretty smooth (far better than the version that graced the 8-bit machines) and the large imperial walkers were nice to look at.

The game appealed to fans of 3D vector graphic games and fans of the Star Wars movies. Empire was fun and playable and was regarded as a decent (not brilliant) movie tie-in, which was not always the case with official licensed games. You always felt that the Amiga was capable of so much more though when this came out, and it was.

Here in the land of Amiga games we reckon that The Empire Strikes Back is definately a product of it's era. By the late 80's vector graphic arcade games were commonplace and this one did not really stand out from the crowd. The game is very simple to play, and can be quite fun for a little while.

It is pretty easy to work your way through the four levels, gathering the bonuses and a JEDI powerup is where the real challenge lies.

So, stick on the movie and give this one a go - but remember the possibility of successfully navigating an asteroid field is approximately 3,720 to 1.

We recommend getting hold of the real hardware but if not then download an Amiga emulator and download The Empire Strikes Back for the Commodore Amiga. Alternatively you could try and play it online.

Please see our other Amiga retro game reviews - all links are listed in alphabetical order. Cheers guys

Luke gives Chewie a Han in The Empire Strikes Back - Amiga Games:

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