Review: Conqueror


ST Format Review

My Review
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For this review I’m running Steem with a 1MB STFM, running TOS 1.04. With a few releases to choose from, I’ve gone with Medway Boys 60, but I could just as easily gone with Automation 273, SuperGAU 799, Pompey Pirates 25 or Vectronix 773.

We get 2 intro screens, the second animating by sliding columns of the image up the screen, while some shit music plays and a graphics equaliser runs. Still, 6 games on one floppy is not to be sniffed at. Even if the picture of a pig is shit.

Conqueror is a tank game, written by David Braben, of Elite and Zarch/Virus fame. This game uses an enhanced version of the Virus/Zarch engine to generate its landscapes, but instead of a spaceship, you control a tank. The intro screen is a model of hopelessness when it comes to usability, so let’s hope I can figure it out. One positive note, the ST Format cover disk pages at least informed me of the controls. Either two joysticks or a single stick to direct the tank and fire the gun, with the mouse directing the gun. It sounds like another shite Braben control scheme. The tank rotates in 3D at about 3 frames per second, which doesn’t bode well.

It turns out the ST Format instructions were a lie. The game systematically ignores my instructions from the joystick, though the turret does move when I move my mouse, albeit I’m not sure how they correlate. Here is the screen for the keyboard controls. I want to kill myself.

Eventually I bite the bullet and configure a 2nd joystick, as apparently joystick and mouse isn’t an option after all. This is going to be fun. Or not.

So I drive around a bit, the 3D chugging along slowly, and somehow knock some tanks out, no idea how, and somehow remain alive, no idea how. I feel like this is a tech demo still searching for a game, much like Virus. I can’t honestly recommend this. The good news though is that this is likely to be the weakest of this month’s games.

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