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The A-Z of Atari ST Games: Volume 1

The A-Z of Atari ST Games: Volume 1

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The A-Z of Atari ST Games: Volume 1

Lunghezza:
192 pagine
1 ora
Editore:
Pubblicato:
Jun 6, 2017
ISBN:
9781785387005
Formato:
Libro

Descrizione

The A-Z of Atari ST Games: Volume 1 features reviews of three different games for each letter of the alphabet. The games range from the very earliest releases in the mid 80s to the modern homebrew games of today. This book shows you just how diverse the library of titles is for the Atari ST range and how it became one of the popular home computers of all time.
Editore:
Pubblicato:
Jun 6, 2017
ISBN:
9781785387005
Formato:
Libro

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Anteprima del libro

The A-Z of Atari ST Games - Kieren Hawken

2017

A

Asteroids Deluxe

Atari - 1987

Programmed by Paradox and released for the ST by Atari themselves, this is an update of the classic vector based arcade game from 1979. The basic gameplay is exactly the same, to rid each level of the asteroids by shooting them into smaller pieces until they disappear. Your craft can still thrust, the screen still wraps around and you can still enter hyperspace if it all gets a bit too intense. Your ship is now equipped with a shield though, that is represented by an energy bar at the top of the screen. Once this has depleted you lose a life and you have three of these to start with. Another new feature is the addition of a simultaneous two-player mode, meaning you can team up with a friend to eliminate the dangerous space rocks. This is a great feature and really adds to an already solid gameplay experience. There is also more than one type of UFO in this version too, with some being much harder to kill than others, especially the homing ships that hunt you down! The biggest change however in this version of the game is that the vector graphics have been dispensed in favour of shaded and coloured bitmaps. They look pretty decent and make the ST version quite similar to the 7800 and Lynx ports of the game. If you do want to see real vectors then I recommend the Sinister Software PD version of Asteroids. The sound is a little weak, it has plenty of effects but they certainly lack the punch of the original arcade game. While not a massive update, Asteroids Deluxe provides a nice variation on the classic and is great fun to play too, especially when you add a second player.

7/10

Arkanoid

Imagine - 1987

While Atari’s Breakout, programmed by Apple founders Jobs and Wozniak no less, was the very first bat and ball brick breaker it was Taito’s Arkanoid was the game that revolutionised the genre. It took the basic gameplay of Breakout and added a host of new features like enemies, different formations, multi-hit bricks and of course power-ups! Collecting these coloured icons allows you to do stuff like shoot the bricks with a laser, aim the ball where you want, expand your bat and even skip a level. The new level formations are interesting too with some even based on other popular Taito arcade games such as Space Invaders and Bubble Bobble! There are also different types of bricks including ones that require numerous hits to destroy and others that can’t be removed at all. All these features added so much more to the game and made it much more than just another Breakout clone. In fact Arkanoid has since been cloned hundreds of times itself and can still be seen in some shape or form in games of today. Despite lacking a paddle controller, like the original Breakout, it’s easy enough to play with a joystick or mouse, the latter being the far more accurate of the two. Arkanoid is not about graphics or sound, although both are very good here, it’s just pure playability, and there is loads of it here. I have always been a real sucker for these types of game and this is no exception, Arkanoid still sits around the top of ST games to play pile. It’s also worth checking out the sequel too.

9/10

Addams Family (The)

Ocean Software - 1992

In the late 80s and early 90s Ocean Software were pretty unstoppable on the home micro, releasing hit after hit in quick succession. Their main forte was licences, whether they be movies or arcade games. This was one their biggest of the nineties and among the very best titles they produced for the good old ST. In it you take the part of Gomez Addams, played by the late great Raul Julia in the movie, a pretty blatant Super Mario World clone. Loosely based on the movie in question, you must make your way around the grounds and many rooms of the Addams mansion trying to find the lost family fortune and rescue the other members of the family who have been imprisoned there by your former lawyer. Wads of cash and bags of money have been left everywhere and are being guarded by all sorts of spooks and nasty creatures. Gomez can walk, jump and duck and in order to kill the enemies you must jump on their heads in true Mario style. The mansion is huge with many rooms, secret passages and catacombs underneath. There is certainly lots of exploration to be done here before you can complete it. The graphics in The Addams Family really are top notch with gorgeous backdrops and cartoon-like sprites. The classic theme song plays throughout the game and while it does sound very good it can get a bit annoying after a while. The Addams Family is far from being original but it just does everything extremely well. If you are a fan of platformers then I think this game will be right up your street, it’s certainly one of the best examples of the genre on the ST.

9/10

B

Bionic Commando

GO! - 1987

Originally known as Top Secret in Japan, Bionic Commando was one of the first Capcom arcade games to be converted to the home computers by U.S. Gold on their GO! label. When the game was renamed for the western market it was promoted as the sequel to the smash hit Commando, although it was not created as such. They renamed the main character Super Joe, to match Commando, and the story was altered slightly to follow on from the first game. Bionic Commando is a side scrolling affair, compared to the top down view of the original Commando and plays very differently too. It combines elements of arcade adventures, beat ‘em ups and platformers to great effect and was also the first ever video game to feature the now famous grappling hook. You use this to latch onto platforms above you, swing from ledges and even to eliminate bad guys. Super Joe cannot jump so this bionic arm must be used to traverse each level. The idea is to simply fight your way through each level (this is like the first game!) and defeat the enemy boss. You are also armed with a gun and throughout each stage handy power-ups are dropped via parachute, which enhance your weapon when you pick them up. The Atari ST version is rather good, it has some lovely colourful graphics and a fast moving pace. But the best part of all is the award winning music by Tim Follin, the ST version of this music is probably the most similar to the original arcade game (which also used a Yamaha sound chip) and will have you playing the game just to listen to it!

8/10

Bubble Bobble

Firebird - 1987

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