In a distant country far, far away the longstanding peace between US and THEM looks to be coming to an end as our Secret Services are reporting that THEM is massing great weapons of war towards our border. Being a President that acts first and thinks later, we scramble our jets to take our enemy by surprise and eliminate this threat once and for all. Go on pilot, it’s time for you to get behind the controls of our latest multi-purpose aircraft…it’s time for Bridge Strike!
Project R3D’s latest release for the Commodore Amiga, Bridge Strike, sees you take control of an aircraft fighter and as you fly into combat against insurmountable odds with the sole objective of eliminating as many enemies as you can.
As you load up the first disk, we are eventually taken through a series of animated cutscenes setting out the premise of a backstory. The introduction is gorgeously presented in a series of cut-scenes all backed by some suitably atmospheric music.
Before we can start playing the game, we have to switch to disk 2 and endure a bit of a loading time wait before the actual game is presented. As you start playing the game, you will no doubt be struck with the thought that this looks like the classic River Raid game, and you would not be far wrong in respect to game play style. The aim of the game is to accumulate as much points you can by destroying various on screen objects. You will come across bridges which must be destroyed. Destroyed bridges act as a checkpoint from which the game begins, when your aircraft crashes. When your last aircraft crashes, the game ends.
The 16-bit pixel art graphic display is quite attractive and the vibrant colours really do pop when you are playing the game on a CRT monitor. The whole look of the game is very clean and defined.
The in game music soundtrack is quite good to listen to on its own but I am not sure that it appropriately matches the gameplay at times.
It does take a little while to get used to Bridge Strike’s controls as they are not immediately responsive. Your aircraft needs to build up momentum before you can start flying across at a decent pace. Learning how your plan accelerates and decelerates is a key to progressing through the game.
The shooting mechanism is also borrowed from River Raid in that you can steer the bullets after they have been shot. But beware that doing this also moves your plane in the same direction and if you’re not attentive when doing this, you’ll find your plane crashing into the side of the canyon environment.
In addition to navigating the landscape, you will have to deal with a number of enemy units, ranging from ordinary patrol boats to complex automatic rocket systems. Fortunately, your aircraft is equipped with an endless supply of rockets.
However, your fuel supply is not endless so you will have to keep an eye out on the gauge at the bottom of the screen and make sure you fly over friendly aircraft carriers to automatically refuel.
A nice touch that I really appreciated is the night time effect that makes the playing area go gradually dimmer, reducing playing visibility a little. It’s funny but I found it somewhat unsettling while playing with the night time effect. I would presume that this is what the developers had intended and to this end, they succeeded.
Given that the primary objective of Bridge Strike is to build up points, it makes sense that the game offers a high score table to record your best gaming efforts.
Everything within Bridge Strike is well presented and the arcade action on offer is fun. It is just a shame that the whole experience is marred by the loading system. You see, when you lose your final life and record your name on the high score table, you want to be able to go straight in and start another game. Unfortunately, with Bridge Strike you have to endure the initial waiting time while the game loads up again before you can start to play again. This is a major buzzkill in my mind and severely impedes the game, though it should be noted that a lot of this time wasting can be eliminated by installing the game on an Amiga computer equipped with a hard drive
Setting the game loading issue aside, Bridge Strike is a well produced arcade game that looks great and provides a somewhat addictive gaming experience in short burst. I can’t help but think that the game would benefit greatly if it had mission levels but what is on offer is undeniably of a good standard.
Bridge Strike is available to purchase from AMIGA.net.pl.
If you want to see more of Bridge Strike including the physical packaging, you can check out the video review below.
A wonderfully produced game that looks great and provides an enjoyable arcade type gaming experience.
Retro gaming journalist promoting NEW C64, Amiga, Amstrad CPC & ZX Spectrum games. Contributes to RetroGamerNation YouTube channel, RVG and Vintage is the New Old blog sites, Reset 64 Magazine, The 8-Bit Annual and various other publications.