C64 D-G

Alien Brigade – By Atari

screenshot

 Daley Thompson's Decathlon – By Ocean

This is the celebrated sports simulation and “joystick waggler” famously released to coincide with Daley's success at the 1980 and 1984 Olympics. The game features the 10 different sporting events from the decathlon. These are 100 metres, long jump, shot putt, high jump, 400 metres, 110 metres hurdles, pole vault, discus, javelin and 1500 metres. The running events require the joystick waggling, moving the joystick vigorously left-to-right to simulate moving each leg and propel Daley to victory, or not as the case maybe. They are the toughest parts of the game. Where as, the throwing events (e.g. discus) are probably the easiest to master, as they are more about precision and timing. The jumping events' difficulty is probably some where in-between, again, timing is more the key there. There is an updated version of the game which allows for two players to compete in the running events. Graphically the game is okay, the munckin-type sprite scrolls well, if lacking in definition. The music and sound effects do however, make good use of the SID chip, with the introduction music being “Rydeem” by Yellow Magic Orchestra and completion of the game heralds Vangelis' theme tune for “Chariots of Fire”. A decent addition to the list of sports games for the C64, that is, if you can find a joystick which can survive the punishment.

Review by Katzkatz

6/10

screenshot

 Dropzone – By US Gold

A “Defender” type clone which was developed by Archer MacLean. The action takes place on the Jovian moon of Io. It has come under attack from aliens. You don a spacesuit fitted with a jetpack, laser, three smart bombs and cloaking device. Let the mayhem begin! You can scroll bi-directionally, either left or right. The object of the game is to pick up your men from the moon's surface and return them safely to their base. Make sure you protect them as well – the aliens have a nasty habit of targeting them. Whilst this is happening, you'll be under attack from the aliens as well! They can also drop deadly “androids” on to the surface. Avoid these at all costs. There is a radar screen on the bottom of the screen to help you navigate your way around the planet. The action is very fast paced, particularly at later levels. The graphics are good, the explosions flash up well on the screen and the scrolling is very fast. The sound effects are good as well (look out for the “Over here!” call from your men). An excellent shoot 'em up for the C64.

Review by Katzkatz

8/10

screenshot

 Druid 2 : Enlightenment – By Firebird

This game is the sequel of an interesting “Gauntlet clone”. You are the druid Hasrinaxx. About 103 years ago, you exiled the evil Acamantor from the world of Belorn. He didn't take too kindly to that and has returned with a vengeance. It's time to take him out again. Battle takes place over 15 different levels. The levels have distinct types of terrains (e.g. desert, marshland, forest, etc.). Naturally being a druid you know a thing or two about magic. There are 6 attack spells to use, these are : fire, water, lightning, death touch (causes enemy creatures to die upon your touch), death light (a smart bomb) and death land (like death light only stronger in its effect). Certain opponents are more vulnerable to specific types of spells. Choose wisely. There are many other types of spells available as well, including the “elemental spells”. These are similar to the “Golems” in the first game. Basically it gives a creature to control as a handy weapon. It is quite limited in single player (much like in the first game), but with the aid of a second player it comes into its own. There are a choice of : fire, air, water, earth and air elemental spells. In total there are 30 spells for you to use, but you only have space for 8 of them. A juggling act is required here. The graphics are very good, with nice level of detail, the scrolling is smooth, only resorting to flick screen when changing the environment. The sound effects are reasonable and the title music well orchestrated. The game has more features than the original, and it probably did so well on the C64 because the port of Gauntlet was disappointing compared to the arcade version.

Review by Katzkatz

7/10

screenshot

 First Samurai – By Imageworks

Appearing late in the C64's life cycle, this game really pushed the old machine to the limits. An arcade platform game with some beat 'em up through in for good measure. It had already had some success on the 16 bits and PC. Taking control of a lone samurai, your task is to find and kill the “Demon King”. You see, he killed your master! The revenge trail takes place across 10 levels of Japan (some in ancient times and the others in the future). Punch and kick your way through enough enemies, then you'll get your sword. Other throwing type weapons are in the game (knives, axes, etc.), but they are only available for a finite amount of time (i.e. until you use them up!). There are various puzzles along the way, including one to finish each different level. There are also end of level bosses as well. Considering the vast scale of the maps, this is an amazing conversion. The graphics are superb. The sound effects, whilst missing the limited speech and samples of the 16 bits' versions, is still very impressive. The game play is excellent. It does seem to throw more enemies at you than other versions, but it is manageable. Now, grab your sword and prepare to take on the Demon King.

Review by Katzkatz

10/10

screenshot

 Flak – By U.S. Gold

This game features on the old “Soft Aid” compilation and is an early vertical scrolling shoot 'em up for the C64. It sort of plays like Namco's “Xevious”, but without any flying enemies – instead you only attack stationary ground targets and dodge their shots. The usual stuff is here : a flying craft armed with a projectile weapon and equipped with 4 lives. The controls are responsive. Graphics are a bit on the blocky side, but the scrolling is both fast and smooth. There is some nice music on the title screen and some decent sound effects are put to good use in the game. This is a small scale game that doesn't have some of the flair of the other shoot 'em ups in C64's catalogue, but it is not without its own fun moments.

Review by Katzkatz

6/10

screenshot

 Gary Lineker's Superstar Soccer – Gremlin Graphics

A celebrity endorsed football game for the C64. It is sort of “six-a-side” football here. There are teams from the USA and England included here. The game features a rather unique control system. You can either be the lead striker, goalkeeper or coach. It can be played with two players, but only on the same team for simultaneous play (with one of you as either the positions mentioned and the computer fulfilling the remaining role). It is then you versus a computer controlled team. To be honest, this is the best way to play the game. It certainly seems more fun and more involving. The controls for the striker do feel a little vague at times. You can “bicycle kick” as well. It does seem like a lot of luck is involved in trying to score. The recommended playing method would be to have one person as the striker and the other as the goalie. The goalie can have a tough job, as it does seem possible to score for the other side of the pitch. Flick screen scrolling doesn't help here. The graphics are okay, but on the blocky side. The sound effects are much better (the whistles and crowd cheers are pretty good). Okay – but only for two players. Anything else and the gameplay mechanics seem to let it down too much.

Review by Katzkatz

4/10

screenshot

 Gumshoe – By A & F Software

You know what it's like? The world is in black and white, you smoke cigarettes, wear a fedora hat, look like Humphrey Bogart, bad guys are on to you and there is a damsel in distress. It sounds like something from the era of film noir - but it is not, it's a C64 game, so maybe it's film brun (brown to the non French speakers amongst you)? Anyway, this is a neat little platform type game. You take control of a detective armed with a gun and have to find the dame, who is located somewhere in an abandoned building. There are lots of obstacles in your way : escalators, elevators, trap doors, chutes and ladders. Lookout for the thugs as well, they have shooters. Fortunately, your character can fight back with his fists, but be warned that fisticuffs only has a 50% chance of winning. Alternatively, you can use your gun! There is also the option of ducking to avoid any incoming bullets. The “chutes” can help you out in a tight situation, they can transport you to another part of the building. This is one unforgiving game, the enemies come in thick and fast and you also have to time the elevators and escalators just right. The sprites are quite simplistic. Movement is handled well. The sound effects are underwhelming with only the bullets standing out. A distinct little platformer with some old world influences.

Review by Katzkatz

7/10

Next Page: Commodore 64 H-K

SMF spam blocked by CleanTalk