Shotgun: 4-Player Death Match On Your C64

shotgun-box-contents-1What’s better than playing a death match with a friend in the same room? Playing a 4-player death match with your closest mates in the same room on your venerable Commodore 64!

Forget Goldeneye 007 on the N64, we give you Dr Wuro Industries’ Shotgun! This fast-paced death match game is available to download for free or you can grab the awesome boxed version (€16.90 + shipping) which comes in a plastic box with a flip-cover (which can be turned around to showcase the different covers), a 5.25″ floppy disk and a printed manual! The boxed version also comes with three additional extras – everyone loves surprises!

So grab the Protovision 4-player interface, plug in four joysticks, invite three of your closest friends and load Shotgun for some death match shenanigans on your C64 – let the rage begin!

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shotgun-box-contents-2image source: Dr Wuro Industries

 

The Art Of Atari: From Pixels To Paintbrush

Were you one of those kids that would stare in wonder at the Atari VCS/2600 game boxes? I recall being wide-eyed whenever I spotted the box art of any Atari game. Walking to the counter, I was somehow spatially aware even though I would have both hands clasped around the box and my eyes fixated on the art. The nostalgia of remembering those times is truly intoxicating.

The still-in-development coffee table book, The Art Of Atari: From Pixels To Paintbrush, is a trip down nostalgia lane, celebrating the golden age of video gaming box art design. Creator Tim Lapetino is hunting down 136 original Atari game box artworks, some of which could be seen below. To say we are excited would be a gross understatement!

Defender
ATARI_Defender-2
Video Chess
ATARI_Chess-2

Millipede
ATARI_millipede

Star Raiders
ATARI_star-raiders-cropped

Warlords
ATARI_Warlords-2

image source: Hexanine and Polygon

Review A Bad Game Day: Street Fighter

Welcome aboard the Crapsville Express. Last year, Hard Drivin’ was served up as a turd for Review A Bad Game Day – this year the gong goes to another coin-op conversion.

street_fighter__coverGame: Street Fighter
Genre:
Fighting
Format:
C64
Year: 1988
Publisher: GO!
Developer: Tiertex

 

Prior to the sublime ‘Street Fighter II: The World Warrior’ SNES home conversion, there was the abhorrent C64 fighting game’ Street Fighter’.

Where does one even start with this game? For those of you not familiar with the series, ‘Street Fighter’ made its debut in the arcades in 1987. On the back of its success, the home version quickly followed on all conceivable platforms of the time, including the C64.

Tiertex brought this foul stench of a fighting game to our trusty and much loved 8-bit home computer. I suspect the coding was done by a drunk programmer or their pet monkey. How this passed any quality assurance testing is beyond my comprehension. Anyway, on with the review…

Street_Fighter_1

‘Street Fighter’, as you may have guessed, is based on Capcom’s 1987 arcade game. You enter the worldwide martial arts tournament as Ryu and fight opponents from across the globe in order to become the street fighting champion. Ryu’s fighting arsenal is made up of various punches and kicks – that’s it (no special attacks!). Each battle has timed rounds; the winner being the last fighter standing. After each battle, Ryu competes in bonus rounds, smashing bricks to earn extra points.

street_fighter_2a

If you manage to bribe a friend to play ‘Street Fighter’, you could have yourself a two-player grudge match – Ryu vs Ken. The winner proceeds to take on the computer-controlled fighters, while the loser is subjected to watching this dreadful game being played – even the CIA plays by fairer rules of torture!

The graphics are childish and messy – they do nothing to show off the C64’s abilities. The fighters tend to clash with the background. I reckon I could have drawn better sprites and backgrounds with crayons! ‘How about the sound?’ you may ask – let’s not even go there if you like your hearing the way it is. The effects and tunes are better suited for an Atari 2600 game, not a game that should be taking advantage of the C64’s SID chip. The clincher of this turdfest is the control – before there was button mashing, there was joystick and wrist breaking. The control is absolutely abysmal, by the time you attempt to pull off an attack; it is already too late, game over (which is probably a good thing!).

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The C64 had quite a few poor arcade conversions in its time, and sadly ‘Street Fighter’ makes this list. Had it not been for the stinker Hard Drivin’, this would have been number 1 in Crapsville. Play it at your peril!

Graphics Crappy sprites with even crappier backgrounds.

15%

Sound Turn down the volume on your TV, I am warning you!

10%

Playability Laughable. Apart from the terrible look and sound of this game, the controls let it down big time.

5%

Lastability It will last as fast as you can turn off your C64.

2%

Overall Stay away! This is another poor C64 arcade conversion. If you want to play a great fighting game on your C64, try International Karate!

9%

 

 

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PAX AUS 2013: It’s A Wrap

iphone 5750-expohall

Wow! What a great three days we just had at the inaugural Penny Arcade eXpo Australia (PAX Aus) 2013. To say the event was a success would be a gross understatement (even CNET loved it!). Ignore the trolls’ comments  on forums, the event was a blast.

As for any new event of this magnitude, of course there were some teething problems, but these really were minor and just leave room for PAX Aus 2014 to be bigger and better!

It was an honour and privilege to exhibit in the ‘Classic Consoles Freeplay’ area along with my Australian retro gaming friends: Retrospekt, Retro Domination and Retro Gaming Australia (what an awesome bunch of guys).

 

Thousands of people visited the classic consoles area; it was great to see them smile with nostalgic joy. There were teenagers “wowing” at the Amstrad CPC464, parents showing their children the datasette on the C64 and explaining that you had to wait tens of minutes to load one game! There were four player battles on the N64 and lots of fighting action on the Dreamcast, Neo Geo AES, 3DO and Saturn. The serious retro gamers were most impressed by seeing the Nintendo Famicom and Sharp Twin Famicom ‘in the flesh’. There were popular high-score competitions on the Amstrad GX4000 (Robocop 2) and the Atari Jaguar (Tempest 2000).

iphone 5645-cc-c64

The crowds were constant, from the start of day 1 to the end of day 3. Some came, looked around and played a game or two; some picked their favourite game or console and played to their heart’s content; and others worked their way around and played each console. But most pleasing were the repeat visitors who came back again and again to get their hit of nostalgia.

The Classic Console Freeplay area was a roaring success at PAX Aus 2013. Roll on PAX Aus 2014!

To view the PAX Australia 2013 photo album go to our facebook page.

 

 

How To Pick The Perfect Video Game

I was stunned to find that this “How To Pick The Perfect Video Game” flowchart was created by Mike Brunson of online gaming company, Silver Oak Casino.

Mike has plotted a decision tree with modern and retro video games covering most genres. Go through the flow and find out which game you end up on.

Click on the image to see the full flowchart

pick-video-game-teaser
Created by: Mike Brunson [Silver Oak Casino]

 

 

Ten Of The Best Games: PC-Engine

PC-Engine

I am often asked to list my favourite games for different systems. Such queries have led to the creation of my  “Ten Of The Best Games” series. The first cab off the rank is NEC’s PC-Engine. I am sure there will be an uproar about certain games being left off the list, but hey, that is the beauty of gaming, we all have our own tastes.

Here are the ten best games to play on the PC-Engine (TurboGrafx-16):

PCE_Bomber_Man_93 Title: Bomberman’93
AKA: –
Genre: Action
Rating: 91%
PCE_PC_Kid Title: PC Genjin
AKA: PC Kid / Bonk’s Adventure
Genre: Platform
Rating: 90%
PCE_RType1 Title: R-Type
AKA: –
Genre: Shoot’em up
Rating: 93%
PCE_NewAdventureIsland_Takahashi_Meijin Title: New Adventure Island
AKA:
Genre: Platform
Rating: 93%
PCE_Battle_Lode_Runner Title: Battle Lode Runner
AKA: –
Genre: Puzzle
Rating: 89%
PCE_Devil_Crash Title: Devil Crash
AKA: Devil’s Crush
Genre: Pinball
Rating: 93%
PCE_Galaga_88 Title: Galaga ’88
AKA: Galaga ’90
Genre: Shoot’em up
Rating: 90%
PCE_Ultimate_Tiger Title: Kyukyoku Tiger
AKA: Ultimate Tiger/Twin Cobra/Tiger Heli
Genre: Shoot’em up
Rating: 91%
PCE_Super_Star_Soldier Title: Super Star Soldier
AKA: –
Genre: Shoot’em up
Rating: 90%
PCE_Don_Doko_Don Title: Don Doko Don
AKA: –
Genre: Platform
Rating: 90%

Notable mentions that would make any top PC-Engine games list:

° Gomola Speed ° Street Fighter II: Champion Edition
° Splatterhouse ° Bloody Wolf
° Dungeon Explorer ° KLAX
° The Legend of Hero Tonma ° Legend Of Valkyrie
° Lode Runner ° Momotaro Katsugeki (aka: Peachboy)
° Out Run ° Parasol Stars
° Parodius ° 1943 KAI
° Raiden ° Shinobi
° Soldier Blade ° Space Harrier
° Ninja Spirit ° Ys Book I & II [CD]
° Dracula-X: Rondo Of Blood [CD] ° Seirei Senshi Sprigan [CD]

 

Best Of The Web: Retro Gaming vs Modern Gaming

Playing video games these days is not quite like it used to be. As funny as this meme may be, it is the current trend in modern gaming. The gulf between old school and current generation gaming has never been greater.

PlayingVideoGames_1980-2000s

Source: cheezburger