Tag Archives: retro games

Atari ST A to Z: Ultima 2

Today’s game hails from the relatively early days of what would go on to become an incredibly popular genre worldwide: the RPG.

Ultima II: The Revenge of the Enchantress is often regarded as the “black sheep” of the Ultima series, but it nicely demonstrates how things worked for this type of game back in the Good Old Days… as well as makes me realise that I really had no need to feel intimidated by the supposed complexity of RPGs back when I was a kid!

The ST version perhaps isn’t the most visually impressive game you’ll see on the platform, but it does make good use of the GEM interface, and provides some solid, enjoyable adventuring action!

Find a full archive of all the Atari A to Z videos on the official site.

DEPA★PAKU: Department Store Munching

Japanese artist ryokuchamichi, also known as Green Tea Area, leads a double life.

Not only do they draw rather lovely ecchi art with a particular focus on squishy plump girls and silky sheer hosiery (see their somewhat NSFW Twitter), they also have a talent for paying homage to the classic 8-bit home console era with their own original games.

At the time of writing, we’ve already seen the SameGame-inspired endless puzzler Dig Dig Minenow, get ready for DEPA★PAKU, a platformer that feels even more like a lost NES title.

Continue reading DEPA★PAKU: Department Store Munching

Atari A to Z: Ants in Your Pants

Type-in listings in computer magazines in the ’80s were more than just an opportunity to get some “free” software, with the only expense being the cost of the magazine and your time. They were also a chance to learn something.

In many cases, type-in listings were accompanied by commentary from the author explaining the processes and techniques they’d used in order to create the various functions within the program. In the case of Ants in Your Pants by Allan Knopp, published in issue 27 of Page 6, the technique in question was “page flipping” — a method of getting the computer to draw several screens in advance, then seamlessly switching between them to create the illusion of full-screen animation.

As a game, it’s fairly limited, but as a demonstration of some of the things it’s possible to do in Atari BASIC, it’s definitely worth a look!

Find a full archive of all the Atari A to Z videos on the official site.

Dig Dig Mine: Cake or Death

Don’t you love it when you find a happy little bonus; something unexpected on top of something you already like?

I encountered one of my own this week. I’ve been following a bunch of Japanese and Korean erotic artists on Twitter recently — partly to satisfy my bottomless libido and partly to drown out the endless negativity of Western Twitter — and I was delighted to discover that one of them is not only into drawing pretty girls flashing their pants at you (NSFW, obviously), but also into making loving homages to retro-style games.

That artist’s name? Albe– wait, no, that’s something else. That artist’s name is @ryokuchamichi, also known as “Green Tea Area”, and the first of their games I’d like to share with you is Dig Dig Mine, which you can snag your own copy of for a mere ¥200 (about $2) over on Booth, a Pixiv offshoot focusing on independently developed digital art of various forms — including video games.

Continue reading Dig Dig Mine: Cake or Death

Atelier Iris: Eternal Mana – It’s an Alchemy Thing

cropped-atelier-megafeature-header-1.pngThis post is one chapter of a MegaFeature!
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Despite being the sixth game in the series, Atelier Iris: Eternal Mana was the first to come West.

The exact reasoning behind this isn’t entirely clear, but it may be something to do with the fact that the early Atelier games were primarily abstract management simulations with RPG elements, while Atelier Iris unfolds in a manner much more like what the Western audience would have understood “an RPG” to be in 2005.

Perhaps it was assumed the West wasn’t ready for that sort of thing. Perhaps the amount of text in the earlier games made them impractical to localise at the time. Or perhaps they just sort of fell through the cracks. Whatever the reasoning, Atelier Iris: Eternal Mana was the West’s first Atelier game, so that’s where we begin our journey.

Continue reading Atelier Iris: Eternal Mana – It’s an Alchemy Thing

Final Fantasy Marathon: The Search for the Black Mask – Final Fantasy II #7

With Fynn safely back under the control of the Wild Rose forces, the time has come to take the fight to the Empire. To do that, we’ll need some firepower.

Minwu set off for Mysidia a while back in an attempt to track down the Ultima tome, but no-one’s heard from him for a while. Firion and company decide to set off in search of him… but not before they stop by the Tropical Island to track down the Black Mask they’ll need to find what they’re searching for. Which, of course, begs the question why Minwu didn’t take it with him… but we’re not supposed to think about that.

Today’s episode is a bit shorter than previous ones; we’ll probably go back to about this length from hereon, as it’s a little more practical for me to record. It’ll mean the series as a whole takes a bit longer to get through… but these games aren’t going anywhere!

Atari A to Z: Zybex

We made it to Z once again, folks, and it’s time for an all-time classic shoot ’em up for the Atari 8-bit: it’s Zybex, from Zeppelin Games.

Zeppelin began their life as a company specialising in budget-priced titles on cassette; the first time I came across them was when they released today’s game Zybex and motorcycle racer Speed Ace for £2.99 each. Speed Ace was fairly decent, from what I recall — though at the time of writing it’s not one we’ve revisited as yet — but Zybex was something truly special.

Featuring frantic shoot ’em up action for one or two players, Zybex truly brought the arcade-style scrolling shoot ’em up home in style — and it still holds up pretty well today.

Find a full archive of all the Atari A to Z videos on the official site.