Tempest 4000: The Tube Shooter Comes of Age

In the beginning there was Dave Theurer’s tube shooter, Tempest. Then came Jeff Minter’s Tempest 2000 on the Jaguar, a psychedelic take on Dave’s masterpiece. This was then followed by Tempest 3000 on the defunct Nuon and finally the contemporary take on Tempest for the PS Vita, the awesome TxK. And now we have the imminent release of this iconic tube shooter, Tempest 4000, again coded by Llamasoft’s Yak (Jeff Minter), which means the franchise is still in great hands!

Strap into your Claw peeps, cause the adrenaline-pumping Tempest 4000 will be available on your PlayStation®4 and Xbox One systems on July 17, 2018 for $29.99!

The original Tempest was one of the first videogames to use 3D vector graphics, securing itself as one of Atari’s hallmark titles and one of the most popular arcade games of all time. It has been featured prominently across pop culture, including Ernest Cline’s dystopian Ready Player One novel.

Developed by legendary game designer Jeff Minter, Tempest 4000 remains faithful to the fast-paced gameplay of the arcade original, while adding brand new features and visually stunning graphics.

As in the original game, players are in control of the Claw, a powerful spacecraft equipped to destroy deadly creatures and other obstructions with rapid-fire shots on vibrant geometric prisms. With three game modes to choose from and 100 levels to conquer, players must eliminate all enemies as quickly as possible to survive, aiming for the coveted spot at the top of the leaderboards.

Additional Key Features Include:

  • Arcade Style Shooter: Hordes of enemies will test players’ reflexes in this fast-paced arcade style shoot ’em up;
  • Visually Stunning Graphics: Revamping the look of the original arcade game, Tempest 4000 features vibrant graphics in sharp 4K resolution;
  • Multiple Game Modes: Three different game modes will push players’ skills to the limit, including Classic, Pure and Survival:
    • Classic: Equipped with three lives, players battle through enemies until all lives run out. Players can begin their next playthrough from the last completed stage with their previous high score.
    • Pure: The classic arcade mode, Pure gives players three lives to start from the beginning and progress as far as possible.
    • Survival: A brutal challenge, Survival gives players eight lives to survive as long as possible.
  • Level Up: With 100 unique geometric levels to progress through, players must equip themselves with various weapons and power-ups, earning upgrades through bonus rounds;
  • Global Leaderboards: Players can duke it out for the top spots on leaderboards for all three game modes in the quest to be recognized as number one;
  • Retro Techno Soundtrack: In true retro space shooter style, the game features a thumping soundtrack inspired by early 1990s techno;
  • Old School Gameplay: Nostalgia is here to stay with the traditional gameplay of the original Tempest with enhanced graphics on current generation consoles.

We can’t wait to EAT ELECTRIC DEATH!

image source: Tempest 4000

Highest-Grossing Arcade Machines of All Time

Let’s reflect and gloat for one second – it was great to be alive during the Golden Age of Arcade video games and experience arcade joints first-hand; from the clean franchised ones to the decrepit dark and scary independent ones – we loved them all.

Oh yeah, we loved the games too, from coin dropping in Galaga, Bomb Jack, Pac-Man, Tron, Double Dragon, DragonNinja to Sega’s beasts like Space Harrier, Super Hang-On, OutRun, After Burner and Thunder Blade – we spent up big and loved every single second of it.

The 1990s started with us hammering coins into Atari’s Pit-Fighter, Capcom’s Final Fight and Street Fighter II. However, it was Sega’s Daytona USA that emptied our piggy bank of coins – we just could not get enough of it.

source: The Arcade Flyer Archive

Looking at the top 10 highest grossing arcade games (below), we can tell you that we played them all during their heyday and understand why the dot munching Pac-Man is perched right up top – the game was a breath of fresh air (for its time), as it wasn’t a derivative of the then plethora of space shoot’em ups. Pac-Man was truly a revolutionary title which had universal appeal, both male and female gamers loved chasing Inky, Blinky, Pinky and Clyde.

So what of Atari’s Pong then? Well, the 1972 game did very well for Atari, they sold somewhere between 8,500 to 19,000 units (1972 to 1973) grossing them around $11Million US dollars – not bad for 1973!

The revenues generated were quite staggering, reaffirming the Golden Age of Arcade video games period as the most prosperous of them all, with Street Fighter II, Mortal Kombat and NBA Jam flying the flag for the 1990s.

Source: Wikipedia, USGamer and Goliath

 

Ted Dabney: The Passing of Atari’s Silent Co-Founder

Last week news broke that Atari’s Co-Founder, Ted Dabney had passed at age 81. We wouldn’t usually post this type of news on here as it has already been covered enough by the bigger online media outlets. However, we didn’t want Ted’s passing to go unnoticed by our readers, as Ted’s importance to the video gaming industry is equal to his contemporaries, like Nolan Bushnell.

Ted Dabney co-founded the tiny electronics company called Syzygy Engineering in 1971 (renamed Atari in 1972) with his more famous business partner Nolan Bushnell. Ted and Nolan had previously partnered to program Computer Space, the first coin-operated video game ever brought to market. Computer Space was produced at the Northern California trivia game maker Nutting Associates, named after its owner Bill Nutting.

image source: RePlay Magazine

At Atari, Ted played his part, along with designer Al Alcorn (and Bushnell, of course) in the design and production of Pong, the first “hit” TV game which ushered in the age of video gaming. If you have read Curt Vendel and Marty Goldberg’s Atari Inc: Business is Fun, you’d know the background to Ted leaving Atari (Ed: It wasn’t pretty nor fair to Ted). But Ted being Ted, he never harboured any ill will towards Atari and went on to work at electronics firms outside the coin-op business. Ted preferred a simple life to the limelight that Atari should have afforded him.

According to the Huffington Post, Ted died of the esophageal cancer he’d been fighting. He and wife Carolyn had spent part of his remaining years operating a grocery store up in California’s Sierra Nevada Mountains.

May his legacy live on! Rest In Peace Ted Dabney.

 

Behind The Scenes: Making of the Ausretrogamer Header Image

After her awesome work on the Ausretrogamer Fun FactoryMs Ausretrogamer’s turned her talents to creating the ausretrogamer social media header image you have all seen (and hopefully like) on Twitter and Facebook.

Check out the behind the scene of making this header image, as it it definitely wasn’t easy. The end result was all worth it!

What if Ready Player One was made by a Gamer?

By: D.C. Cutler, U.S.A.

Steven Spielberg, the legendary director of Ready Player One, has let it be known that he is not a gamer. But what if a gamer was given the chance to adapt Ernest Cline’s science fiction bestseller?

Spielberg’s ambitious film was entertaining and visually stunning at times, but there was something about the story, especially the virtual reality scenes, that felt detached and not cohesive. Cline’s book was heavy on the 1980s nostalgia (perhaps, a little too heavy); nevertheless, you really felt like you were in a fantastical universe.

What made the novel so good was the power of escapism for our young hero, Wade Watts. The film didn’t capture that heightened sense of stepping away from the real world into a new, immersive virtual world, like the book accomplished so brilliantly.

If a gamer had made “Ready Player One,” the OASIS would’ve felt more authentic. Don’t get me wrong, “Ready Player One” captures the virtual reality experience better than any film in recent cinema history; VR is not an easy plot device to pull off on screen. I just didn’t feel totally immersed in the world Spielberg and his digital wizards created. Cline put it on the page brilliantly.

A gamer knows what it’s like to be another virtual being. That innocent escapism is one of the reasons so many people play video games; especially first-person shooter games. Maybe a gamer’s eye could’ve presented a more engrossing and cohesive virtual world. Spielberg’s virtual world, unlike Cline’s, felt banal and, at moments, enclosed.

The film was fun, although, Spielberg could’ve consulted with some seasoned gamers to create a more unreserved, virtual world experience. But, for 71, Spielberg can still direct an action sequence with more skill and precision than most directors half his age.

image source: Teaser Trailer

 

Best Atari Jaguar Games

If we had a dollar for every time we have been asked to list our favourite Atari Jaguar games, well, we’d be able to buy a few Snickers bars. Jesting aside, you can stop Googling for the ‘best atari jaguar games‘ as we present to you, the definitive list (in no particular order) of the best Atari Jaguar games of all time*

*List may change when another awesome Jag homebrew title is released!

Before you get all, “But where the hell is AVP?”, relax, it’s a great game, so it makes the honorary list:

  • Total Carnage
  • Defender 2000
  • Alice’s Mom’s Rescue
  • Hyper Force
  • Rebooteroids
  • Super Burnout
  • Alien Vs Predator

So there you have it. What do you reckon, agree or disagree? What are your fave Atari Jaguar games?

PS: If you want to have a robust discussion about our choices, hit us up on Twitter or Facebook.

 

Replicade X Tempest Mini Arcade Machine: The Early Bird Catches The Cool Worm

If you were like us, you may have backed New Wave Toys’ first Kickstarter which was a Replicade Centipede mini arcade machine.

When we got the note that their Replicade X Tempest mini arcade was now live on Kickstarter, we jumped on it right away! Yes, we broke our first New Year’s resolution – no backing Kickstarters in 2018, but we made an exception for this, cause it is that good.

The Replicade X Tempest Kickstarter has already blown past its goal, so this will happen and we can’t wait! For everyone that went gaga at our photos of the insert coin light up keychain, here is your chance to grab one by backing this campaign with as little as $25USD.

Instead of regurgitating all about New Wave Toys’ Replicade X Tempest mini arcade right here, why don’t you go and check out the Kickstarter now and decide for yourself.

source: Replicade X Tempest on Kickstarter