Issue 6 – Download
The World in November 1988
The previews here are a bit more unknown to me than previous weeks. Puffy’s Saga I don’t know, but a quick Youtube suggests it has much in common with Gauntlet. Turbo Cup is a racing game I’ve heard of but never played, Galactic Conqueror looks like a standard space shooter, along with Outland, then there’s a pepsi ad-game. They ended up being quite big in the 90s with games featuring the 7-up spot and the Quavers mascot proving to be big hits. This one I’ve not heard of so I can only assume it was awful.
The Munsters looks like standard platform license fare, Thunderblade seems to be a shooter of some kind but google has been inconclusive. I see F-16 Attack Fighter and I suspect that’s the game that eventually came to be known as F-16 Combat Pilot. I found it a bit too complex as a kid, preferring Microprose’s F-19 instead. We finish up with Superman and Lasertrain which look deeply uninteresting.
Missing the cut this month were Spitting Image and Return of the Jedi owing to the publishers sending blank disks, cybernoid owing to being all graphics and no substance, Daley Thompson Olympic Challenge on some flimsy excuse, and some uninteresting junk.
Games reviewed this month:
Powerdrome (3D space racing game – Electronic Arts – £24.95 – 95% Format Gold)
Rocket Ranger (Collection of minigames in one overarching story – Cinemaware – £29.99 Amiga or £24.99 ST [unusual] – 90% Format Gold)
SDI (Shooter – Activision – £19.95 – 85%)
Pacmania (Isometric Pacman – Grand Slam – £19.95 – 80%) – note the version shown is the Amiga version which is MUCH better looking than the ST conversion
Battlechess (Chess – Electronic Arts – £24.95 – 85%)
Colossus Chess X (Chess – CDS Software – £24.95 – 87%)
Speedball (future angry sports game – Imageworks – £24.99 – 80%)
Zero Gravity (3d pong – Lankhor – £19.95 – 75%)
Driller (Freescape game – Incentive – £22.95 – 70%)
That’s actually quite an exciting selection. I’ve played Pacmania (came with my ST), Colossus Chess and Speedball and enjoyed all three, while Driller is intriguing as I never got a chance to play a freescape game though I did dabble with the 3d constructor demo on an ST Format cover disk. Then there’s Rocket Ranger which I don’t quite know what to make of. I’ll give it some thought and choose some suitable games to review in due course.
Rocket Ranger Note that the game requires use of a copy-protection code wheel which has been brilliantly recreated at https://www.oldgames.sk/codewheel/rocket-ranger (UK release) and https://www.oldgames.sk/codewheel/rocket-ranger-us (US release) if you want to play along. Note that they are different. Cinemaware have a particular style, their games often graphically excellent and featuring an array of minigames. Rocket Ranger is no exception to…
It’s likely you won’t have heard of Powerdrome, the EA racer from 1988. It’s not enormously well-known but it’s a little something different from the norm at a time where most of what was being released was platformers and shooters, with most racing games being Outrun-clones. 3D filled vector racing games were certainly unusual at…