Amiga

Games on the Commodore Amiga

FIRE AND ICE

SNOWBALL FIGHT WITH A COYOTE
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INTRO
As the Amiga’s and Atari ST’s time was coming to an end there were still great games like this one being released. The IBM port of this game didn’t get much attention and the master system version was so cut down it was rubbish and begs the question why they didn’t go with a Megadrive/Genesis version instead!?

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BACKSTORY
So here’s a wacky fucking story for a pretty straight forward game, Suten an intergalactic criminal hides on earth in the desert trying to elude capture. He is being hunted by Glem who tracks him to earth and decides to get one of its inhabitants to do his dirty work for him because he is a giant pussy! He doesn’t want a human as he sees them as stupid and clumsy! Sutens magic is affecting the other simpler animals so he decides to choose a fucking coyote and will help him subtly from a distance.

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GAMEPLAY
You start this side scrolling platformer in the Arctic and move your way through gradually hotter levels until you get to the desert at the end. This is apparently Glems way of gradually getting you ready to take one Suten. Movement is done via the joystick with jump being up, and the button firing little snow balls which is your primary weapon. Other than snowballs you can pick up other more powerful one off weapons from hidden ice boxes around the level and lightning bolts from shooting rain clouds. Shooting enemies freezes them so you can run through and shatter them, but make sure you do this before they thaw You occasionally get a little puppy following you that is invincible and helps by running through baddies but is generally pretty useless. To complete a level you must find all the pieces of a key which number 6 from the enemies and find the exit door. A time limit it is in place which is the sunsets in the background which you get 6.

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IN THE REAL WORLD
In the Arctic throwing snow balls at enemies makes sense but in the jungle or desert what the fuck!? Where is he getting the fucking snow?! Biology wasn’t my strongest subject but I’m pretty sure if you freeze an animal it will die and still be dead even when thawed. Sonic the Hedge Hog was in the same boat all his animal pals were turned against him but he had the decency to break them out of there robot skin and they hopped away, Cool Coyote leaves none alive! That’s how you be cool kids!

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CONCLUSION
This game was the most colourful game I owned apart from Zool and Trolls, the setting sunset in the background was ground breaking for the time. Also the mini map of the world stretched the entire base of the screen with beautiful shimmering water that would load up a good minute before the game was ready, giving you something to look at. The levels had heaps of hidden boxes, weapons and things to do and all the enemies were varied and unique to their levels. The only issue was there wasn’t a save option you had to complete the game with 3 lives and many levels had leaps of faith that would generally have you landing on a bad guy. That being said it can’t take away from such a beautiful a game that is actually fun to play so bring this one back!

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WORTH REPLAYING?

GOOD
Amazing graphics
Nice touches in animation
Awesome world map
Heaps of variety in levels

BAD
Leaps of faith
Your puppy is a half wit
No save option

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Released on the Amiga & Atari ST in 1992, then ported to PC & Sega master system.

LOTUS ESPRIT TURBO CHALLENGE

IT TAKES TWO

Released on the Commodore Amiga in 1990.

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INTRO
Awkwardly named game but don’t let that fool you, this was a game changer that would make designers look at how they made racing games from then on. Designed around the Pitstop model this 1 or 2 player game was a sensation, yet it has been forgotten only remembered by those who lived through that time. If you owned an Amiga you had this game.

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BACKSTORY
Make your own one up, this is a driving game dumb ass!

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GAMEPLAY
The goal is simple one car must finish in the top ten of the twenty cars ontrack to progress to the next race. The position you finish your last race in will be reversed for the next race ie: Player 1 finishes 1st Player 2 finishes 3rd : Player 1 starts next race 20th Player 2 starts 18th. There are 32 tracks, 7 easy, 10 medium and 15 hard with varying race lengths and objects scattered across the road in parts such as water, oil, rocks and roadwork’s. On the longer races you will need to refuel which is done by stopping in the pitlane just after the start finish straight, once stopped there you will be shown a screen with mechanics working on your car, once you believe that you have enough fuel push fire to continue with your race.

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You steer your Lotus esprit by moving your joystick from left to right and down acts as your brake. Acceleration has two options either pushing up on your joystick or pressing fire, this you will chose at the start of the game. You can also have computerized gears (automatic) or manual gears that use the opposite button layout to your acceleration ie: forward accelerate, fire button change gears.

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IN THE REAL WORLD
So you and your friend have the only red cars in the field and all the rest are white, so are they all one team against the two of you? Clearly this is the case and they seem to have been celebrating their inevitable victory the night before because today they are all driving like they’re fucking smashed just swaying from one side of the road to the other! Our red cars do have a swish cd player (rare for the time) in them and the dealership seems to have left me with one CD that only has four fucking songs on it! Now this brings me to the race tracks, why the fuck am I racing on race tracks that have fucking roadworks going on and god damn boulders all over the place?!?

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When I stop at the pits (red cars are the only ones that need fuel it seems) why do I get wheeled into the garage to have one mechanic work on my engine and one clean my front left tire, someone put fucking fuel in!

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CONCLUSION
This was one of my favorite Amiga games and best played with friends. The best memories of this game were carving my way through the pack with a friend. You were racing each other ultimately but it felt like you were doing it for the greater good of the team. One thing this game didn’t have which a lot of games have today is rubber banding. If you built up a lead and drove well you would not be disadvantaged by the game pulling your friend up behind you. So you could be in second place until he crashed then you had a chance to get past him. I liked this it made try to be a better driver and if you won you deserved it, nothing like stopping in the pits from second to see your mate just exiting them it made you want to put less fuel in and gamble. It was also the first game I know of that had brake light that blew my fucking mind! If you haven’t played this but want to give it a try, do it with a friend and it will be worth it.

WORTH REPLAYING?

GOOD
Great Two player
Great music
Graphics great for the time
20 cars on track at once

BAD
Swaying opponents can be annoying
No full screen in one player

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FLOOD

Fatty likes to recycle

Released on Amiga and Atari ST. Date of release 1990.

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INTRO
This was one of the first games released by Bullfrog Productions. Founded in 1987 they were responsible for some amazing games in the 80s and 90s most notably Populous, Magic Carpet, theme hospital and syndicate the latter which is still around today. The company was acquired in 1995 by EA. Bullfrog productions continued making great games until 2001, then in 2004 it was broken up and scraped for parts. Flood as a game was ahead of its time but never got a sequel unlike most of their other games, let’s find out why.

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BACKSTORY
You play as ‘Quiffy’ a fat little green bastard who is the last of his race that lives in the underground sewers and caverns and feeds on discarded rubbish. War has been raging amongst Quiffy’s kind and a band of nasty creatures including psycho teddies and more weirdly Quiffys distant cousins. To make matters worse the ‘taps of wrath’ have ended their neutral stance and have begun flooding the caverns to be rid of both sides (this is how the manual actually reads!). So Quiffy has to get out of the sewers and escape the madness.I never knew this story until I began writing this review, I may not have played this game if I knew the loopy backstory!

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GAMEPLAY
The idea is simple, move Quiffy around the level picking up all the rubbish and once you have done this find the exit cave and enter it. As you make your way around the level you will need to avoid the bad guys and your Aunt. When you enter a level you have 15 seconds before the ghost of your Aunt Matilda appears and follows your exact footsteps, so keep moving! If you touch an enemy you won’t die, your health bar depletes slowly while in contact with that enemy and when it runs out you’ll die! Most levels have taps on them that pour out water that runs down and pools at the bottom, slowly flooding the level. Along with your health bar you have an oxygen bar that gives you limited time underwater. Quiffy can run, jump, stick to walls and climb up them to navigate the level and he has an arsenal of weapons at his disposal including grenades, timed explosives, flame throwers, boomerangs and ninja stars.

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LAUGH AT THE GAMES EXPENSE
So he’s green (ecologically) picking up what looks like coke cans around the sewers and in doing so does his bit for the environment. Yet he is blowing the shit out of the level with grenades and burning the rest to the ground with flame throwers. And what the fuck is up with your Aunt Matilda?!? You must have been a real prick of a nephew!

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CONCLUSION
Most true gamers who have lived through multiple consoles have a passion for great water physics and back in the day this was the shit. It was great to start a level in the dry only to have the other part of the level flooded. Yet this game has one fundamental floor and one that makes no sense, AUNT MATILDA! Why the designers thought she was necessary is beyond me, the game already has a time limit imposed its being flooded so you don’t have time to hang around anyway. It would have been better to make you die instantly when you touch an enemy than to have them and Aunt Matilda drain you. This game was great to look at in the pictures in magazine but when playing it you missed its beauty because you were trying to keep on step in front of Aunt Matilda. Maybe this why it didn’t spawn any sequels, a shame really because it could have been great.

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