INTV D-G

Alien Brigade – By Atari

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 Deep Pockets Super Pro Pool & Billiards - By IntelligentVision

Ever wanted to learn nine different types of billiard games? Well, here is your chance! Deep Pockets boasts nine different types of pocket billiards (pool) and carom billiards and it is only available on the Intellivision. The opening screen for the game looks and sounds like a billiard parlour as you have a lit and very nicely rendered table appear. From this screen you move to a menu screen where you can choose from five variations of pool and four variations of carom followed by a screen (which is another beautiful screen with two guys over the billiard table) where you select the number of players. At this screen, in the two-player mode, you can then select number of matches and up to how many points to play for. You are then taken to the table itself which is seen from above. The rules of whichever game you have selected apply and the cue ball will need to be positioned according to those rules using the disc on your controller. Depending on the game you are playing, you can select the ball or select the pocket. You then take aim, apply spin if so desired, and shoot. Deep Pockets lets you play a nice game of billiard. The table graphics are simple but work well. Sound is also minimal during the game itself. Deep Pockets was a limited IntelligentVision release. Unfortunately, you will definitely need to go deep into your pockets if you want to get it!

Review by TrekMD

8/10

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 Defender - By AtariSoft

Released to the arcade in 1980 by Williams Electronics, Defender was an immediate hit. That meant that the game would be ported to many consoles for players to enjoy in the comfort of their home. Atari, of course ported the game to the 2600 but did not as good of a job. Ironically, Atari released a port for the Intellivision that put their 2600 version to shame. As in the arcade, the player is in control of the starship Defender as it attacks an invading alien force that is capturing the humanoids on a planet’s surface in order to transform them into mutants. Destroy an entire wave of mutants and you receive bonus points for all the surviving humanoids. Fail to save all the humanoids and the planet below you explodes as the aliens continue their attack on you. If you survive enough waves, the planet is “restored” and you get to try to save the humanoids again. Keep in mind that you can kill the humanoids yourself either by shooting them should the aliens have grabbed them or by letting them fall if you destroy the alien at a high enough altitude from the floor. This version of Defender is truly awesome. The graphics are pretty close to the arcade, though the Defender itself is rendered in just one colour. The scanner works as it should and looks great and the explosion, should the Defender be hit by enemy fire, looks superb. Game sounds are also excellent and the title screen looks plain amazing. This is definitely a worth title to have in your Intellivision collection.

Review by TrekMD

9/10

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 Demon Attack - By Imagic

Demon Attack is, without a doubt, Imagic’s answer to the arcade hit, Phoenix. As in Phoenix, you control a ship that moves left and right at the bottom of the screen with the goal of destroying wave after wave of attacking birds (though, here they are supposed to be demons). The attacking demons come in several shapes and they attack you with different movement patterns. Once you have completed several waves of demons, your ship takes off to face a huge mothership of demons. The mothership sends several waves of demons to defend it while you attack it until there is a weak spot on the barrier through which your weapons fire hits the core of the mothership blowing it up to bits. If you are able to destroy the mothership, the game restarts with greater difficulty and now the demons also shoot bombs that explode when they hit the ground. Demon Attack has nice graphics and gameplay. The first screens, with the attacking waves of demons, feature the lunar surface and Earth can be seen in the background. This is most definitely nicer than what the game looks like in the Atari 2600. The demons are not as colourful as on the 2600 but they are well rendered in three different shapes and in varied colours. The most impressive aspect of the game, though, is the mothership. It is truly stunning to look at as it looks more like a city in space than a mothership. When you hit the core and blow up the mothership, the animation is excellent as well. Demon Attack offers two levels of difficulty to choose from and it has a two-player co-operative mode as well. Definitely another excellent game to add to your Intellivision library.

Review by TrekMD

9/10

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 Dig Dug - By INTV

Dig Dug is an adaptation of the arcade game of the same name. If you’ve never played Dig Dug you must have been living under a rock all these years. In Dig Dug, you play the character of Dig Dug, a miner who digs through the ground and is chased by dragons, called Fygars, and rounded red monsters that wear yellow goggles called Pookas. The goal of the game is to kill all these creatures without letting the last one escape. You can kill the Pookas and the Fygars by inflating them until they pop or by having a stone fall on them. Be careful when you dig under the stones as they will also crush you if you don’t move from under them. Fygars are also not defenceless. Like any other dragon, they can breathe fire and burn Dig Dug to his death. They can only breathe fire on Dig Dug when they are looking at him, though, so you can catch them if they have their back turned toward Dig Dug. Both Pookas and Fygars are able to change to a “ghost” form that is able to traverse the ground to get to Dig Dug, so they don’t need tunnels to reach him. If you drop two stones, bonus items (fruits, vegetables, etc.) appear in the middle of the screen. The point value of these bonus items increases the further along the game you get. Bear in mind that when there is only one enemy left, it will do its best to escape by getting to the surface and running out the left side of the screen. The Intellivision version of Dig Dug captures all of these game elements and does it very well. The ground that you dig through looks granular, as it should, and Dig Dug himself is nicely rendered in two colours. The Pookas are red with no goggles and the Fygars are solid green in colour. Sadly, they lack detail but one can hardly fault the Intellivision as there are other home versions (i.e. Atari 2600, Atari 5200) that were done similarly. All of the gameplay is here and the game does capture the essence of the arcade game very well. Though Dig Dug is only for one player, it does have a hidden game that combines the gameplay of Tron Deadly Discs with the Hot Dogs from Burger Time. This is definitely another winner that should be in your Intellivision library of games.

Review by TrekMD

9/10

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 Diner – By INTV

Peter Pepper, that brave chef from Burger Time is back once more in an all-new, original sequel exclusive to the Intellivision! The Hot Dogs are back chasing Peter but now they have new friends: Cherries, Bananas, and Mugsy, a mug of root beer that leads the pack. Instead of building burgers, Peter now has to kick food balls down ramps to put them all in a plate at the bottom of the screen. These food balls are made of meatballs, lettuce heads, rice, mashed potatoes, and macaroni. The ramps are not flat like in Burger Time. Diner has been designed to have a pseudo-3D look so the platforms allow Peter to move forward, backward, left, and right. Peter must avoid any of the walking food enemies or he’ll die. As in Burger Time, he can use pepper to temporarily paralyse his enemies but he also has one more trick - he can roll the food over his enemies to squash them. Once Peter has successfully completed four food plates, he gets a chance at a “Blue Plate Special” bonus round. Catch as much food as you can for extra points before moving onto the next set of platforms. Do be careful, though, avoid the flashing food balls during the bonus round or you are toast! During the standard rounds it is also important to try to pick up some of the bonus items that appear (cups of coffee, hot fudge sundays, double thick malts, cans of pop, and hamburger buns) as these will increase your pepper count. In addition, the more bonus items (side orders, as the game instructions call them) you pick up, the more food balls will appear during the bonus round. Diner is quite the fun game to play and an excellent sequel to Burger Time. Though the basic principles of the game are similar (food chases you and you have to build some kind of meal), Diner’s pseudo-3D graphics, original music, and gameplay are unique enough to make this a winner. The graphics are well done with each type of character easily recognised even though they are rendered in only one colour. The platforms themselves are also well rendered and are interesting mazes in themselves. They also become tricky as sections of the platforms appear and disappear once you reach a certain point in the game. You have to be very careful when this starts happening because there is no way to know where a platform will disappear (there are no visual cues of any kind until you see the platform open up!). If you are standing at a spot where a platform opens, you are dead meat! One strategic point to mention: be mindful of walking over where you have had a food ball squash an enemy as they will reappear in the same spot. If you are on the spot when your enemy reappears, you trash a life. Diner has a two-player alternating option and offers 4 skill levels to choose from. This is a rare Intellivision game but a must-have for any Intellivision owner.

Review by TrekMD

10/10

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 DK Arcade (D1K) - By Elektronite

There are certain games that everyone always wanted to see improved from what was originally ported to a given console. Donkey Kong is such a game and it, finally, has gotten the attention it deserved on the Intellivision. Where the Coleco port of Donkey Kong for the Intellivision was embarrassingly bad, this version of Donkey Kong is a shining star. You know you have a winner when you turn on the console and see a very nice title screen with a menu of options, great music, and a nice render of Kong himself! If you’ve never played Donkey Kong (under what rock have you been hiding if you haven’t?), your goal is to rescue a damsel in distress who has been captured by a giant gorilla called Donkey Kong. Kong doesn’t make things easy for you as you have to move up through girders that he has damaged, all while he is throwing barrels your way. There are also fireballs that chase you, jumping springs, huge pies, and other dangers through the four different screens of game play. Yes, ALL four screens from the arcade game have made it into this port and impressively so. Let me say this again, the barrels, rivets, elevators, and pie screens are all here! With this port, the Intellivision has the honour of being one of the few home systems to have all of the arcade screens. Each screen has been given a great level of detail and each one is as close to the arcade as possible. To make the game even more fun, you actually get to choose between three characters to play: Mario, Toni, and Bruno, each with unique attributes. Mario is your standard, middle of the road man, and the original character in the game. Toni is a fast runner and Bruno is the slowest of the three but he can climb the ladders while holding the hammer. Having the choice between these characters adds to the game play by altering your strategy and it also adds replay value. Graphics and sounds on this DK Arcade are fantastic. Kong looks like himself, Mario (as well as Toni and Bruno) look great, and the enemies all look nearly arcade perfect. The damsel in distress shouts out for help like in the arcade and even little animation details, such as the barrels bouncing and Kong rolling his eyes when he falls at the rivet screen, are present. Game control also works well (I know this is always a concern with the Intellivision controllers) and seldom did I find myself having any trouble because of this. All the familiar arcade sounds are also here and we even get the intermission screens saying “how high can you go?” I simply cannot say enough good things about this game. I should also mention that this game has a two-player option as well. If you have an Intellivision, you need get this game yesterday! If you don’t have an Intellivision, get one and then get this game. You will not regret it!

Review by TrekMD

10/10

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 D2K Arcade - By Elektronite

How do you make an already excellent game even better? You create original content for it, of course! D2K was inspired by D2K: Jumpman Returns and released by Elektronite as a game that could be considered a natural extension of the original Donkey Kong Arcade by adding five more screens of gameplay. This means that now there are NINE screens of Donkey Kong goodness (or badness, depending on your perspective) to play! The D2K cartridge is actually two games in one as the menu allows you to play Game 1, the original D1K, and Game 2, D2K. The additional five screens include twisted girders, the mixer, the refinery, triple elevators, and the eliminator (aptly named!). Each of these new screens introduces new elements into the game and add to the difficulty level. One great aspect of all these screens is that, despite being new, they all retain the spirit of the original and do feel like a logical extension to the game. As with D1K, you have the choice of playing as Mario, Toni, or Bruno which, again, will add to the strategy of the game and will bring you back to play more. Even if you are DK expert, this game will prove challenging and fun. I can easily say that this version of Donkey Kong now puts to shame any other home console version of this classic and that it is the ultimate version of Donkey Kong for classic gamers. As with D1K, a two-player option is also available. So, what are you waiting for?

Review by TrekMD

10/10

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 Donkey Kong - By Coleco

I figured that I had to give the original Coleco release of Donkey Kong a try, if only to confirm just how great D1K truly is. It truly is remarkable to realise that both games were made for the same console given how piss poor this version is! I though those of us who only had the 2600 version back in the day had it bad but, boy, was I woefully wrong! Like the 2600 version, this Intellivision port has only two screens (barrels and rivets) but the characters are pretty much unrecognisable. Mario is some square-ish dude that lacks any detail and has no resemblance of his arcade self. Kong is a blob with two legs that throws barrels at you. Control is bad, jumping is somewhat unpredictable and you can get you killed by a last minute miscalculation. The rivets screen looks better and the fireballs do move around like in the arcade, so there is some saving grace. This screen also has the bonus items as in the arcade. This port also has a two-player alternating option but, to be perfectly honest, don’t waste your time. Get D1K or D2K instead and forget Coleco ever ported Donkey Kong to the Intellivision. Think of this as the bubonic plague and avoid it at all costs.

Review by TrekMD

2/10

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 Donkey Kong Jr. - By Coleco

After trying out Coleco’s shameful port of Donkey Kong for the Intellivision, I had reservations about playing Donkey Kong Jr. Thankfully, they made a better effort when porting this game but not without faults. In Donkey Kong Jr the player controls Donkey Kong’s son as the roles are now reversed and Mario is the “bad guy” who has captured Kong. Jr must traverse the challenges Mario has prepared for him if he is to save his dad. The action starts at a vines screen where Jr must climb and jump while avoiding snapjaws that try to stop his progress. Jr can use hanging fruits to dispatch the snapjaws but timing is everything. If Jr succeeds, he then moves to a screen with chains and keys that Jr must push in order to free Papa Kong. Of course snapjaws will try to stop him from getting this done and joining them are some nasty birds that will do their best to stop Jr. Push up all the keys and find yourself back to the vines. Succeed again at the vines and then Jr moves into a screen with a jump board and vines where birds are throwing eggs at him to get him to fall. Succeed in saving Kong at this screen and the game starts all over again at a higher difficulty level. Unfortunately, the fourth screen where Jr has to face sparks is gone. The graphics of Donkey Kong Jr are fairly good but I must say that Kong looks hideous and Mario is not even recognizable. Game sounds are also done nicely but in-game music is constantly interrupted by sound effects, making it annoying. A fair port of the arcade classic and definitely better than the original DK.

Review by TrekMD

6/10

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 Dracula - By Imagic

You have lived in a small town all your life and things have always been quiet, until now. A new person has moved into town. Some Count has bought a house next to the cemetery and now people are disappearing every night. This town certainly has some grave problems for the new Count in town is none other than Count Dracula! As the player, you control the Count himself as you terrorize the citizens and either drain them dry or turn them into zombies. At midnight you wake up from your graveyard home and walk about town finding victims. Should no one be in the streets, you scare out of their homes by knocking at their doors (why anyone would leave the safety of their home when a vampire knocks on their door is beyond me). The townsfolk are not entirely defenseless against your blood-sucking hunger, though. Police officers know they can use wooden stakes against Dracula and there’s a white wolf that will hunt him down. Dracula can try to escape (or even hunt down humans) by turning into a bat; however, he must keep an eye out for a nasty vulture that will grab him in his bat form and kill him should he be able to drag the bat off the edge of the screen. Dracula has beautiful graphics and has some fun animations to enjoy. The game can be enjoyed by one or two players (players take turns controlling the Count or the person who has been turned into a zombie). Though the gameplay can get repetitive, this is still a fun game, particularly around Halloween.

Review by TrekMD

7/10

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 Dragonfire - By Imagic

Anyone who knows me, knows that I like dragons so whenever I see a retro game with dragons on it, I jump at the chance to play it. Having played Dragonfire on the Atari 2600, I was looking forward to an enhanced version on the Intellivision. Did it live to my expectations? Well, let’s just say that it is indeed Dragonfire and it is just as fun to play but there are some things that could have been done better. For the uninitiated, this is a game in which you take the role of a prince who is trying to take back the treasure that was stolen from the kingdom by a greedy band of dragons. To do this, the prince must cross bridges over moats while avoiding fireballs thrown at him by dragon hatchlings and he must deal with a traitor archer who shoots arrows at him from a castle tower. Make it across to then enter a treasure chamber where the prince must recover every bit of treasure before the exit makes itself visible. Beware, though, as a dragon inhabits this chamber and will fiercely protect the treasure. If the prince survives, he moves onto another castle. Dragonfire looks better than the 2600 version on the moat screen but is lacking on the chamber screen. The dragons look as nice as on the 2600 but the treasure is rendered in one colour only (a downgrade from the 2600 version). Regardless, the game is enjoyable and a good catch on the Intellivision.

Review by TrekMD

7/10

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 Frog Bog - By Mattel

In Frog Bog you control one of two frogs that sit on lily pads in a pond. The goal is to achieve the highest score by “eating” the greatest number of bugs possible. You do so by jumping from lily to lily and capturing bugs with the frog’s tongue. Frog Bog sounds simple but it does require skill, particularly if one plays in the hardest level. Two players can play simultaneously, each at their preferred skill level. From easy to hardest, the levels determine whether the frog moves in the same arc each time or whether the player controls the movement. At the hardest level the player not only controls the arc of movement but also when the tongue sticks out to grab a bug. You can choose to start at day or night and you can change the skill level at any time during the game. If you choose day, the game starts in easy mode and if you choose night, the game starts in harder mode. Pressing clear, zero, and enter change between easy, harder, and hardest skill, respectively. If you start in day mode, you will see as the day advances, dusk sets in, followed by night. In night mode it is just a dark sky with flashing bugs. On either mode, the game ends when the stars appear. The graphics of Frog Bog are beautiful and the sounds are simple but work nicely. I really like the splashing water and the frogs crocking in the night.

Review by TrekMD

7/10

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 Frogger – By Parker Brothers

If have to admit to being somewhat disappointed with this version of Frogger. I wouldn’t say that it is a bad port, but there are certain things about it that did not work for me. For those who’ve never played Frogger, you are a frog that has to cross from the bottom to the top of the screen by going through a car and truck infested road and a river full of turtles and logs. You lose a life if any of the vehicles run you over, if you fall into the water, or if certain other dangers touch you (for example, an otter or a snake). Some of the turtles will take a dive and, if you happen to be on them when they do, you end up dead (aren’t frogs supposed to be able to swim?!). You are awarded a bonus if you decide to help a lady frog get to the other side of the river (she waits for you on the logs) and if you catch a fly when you reach the top of the screen. All of these elements have made it to the Intellivision version; however, not everything is “quite right” with this Frogger. The game has the classic Frogger music on the title screen and when the game starts; however, the tune gets interrupted the second you move your frog and then there is no music. From what I’ve seen from other Intellivision games, it should have been possible for the game tune to continue during gameplay (or, at the very least, have the tune finish while the player starts moving). Controlling the frog is also not as easy with the Intellivision controller as it is somewhat sluggish to respond. One can look at this as part of the challenge in playing this version of Frogger, however. I did get better at controlling Frogger with some persistence. The graphics also prove to be adequate but they look blockier than the Atari 2600 graphics, something that I find odd. I think Parker Brothers was trying to make things looks more refined but ended up making them look worse. One cool thing, though, is how the frog moves when you make it jump. Despite my complaints this is indeed Frogger with all of its elements and it is worth getting if you own an Intellivision.

Review by TrekMD

7/10

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