The Tokyo 2020 Summer Olympics may be going on at the time of writing, but that doesn’t mean we can’t enjoy some winter sports action from 33 years ago!
Tynesoft’s Winter Olympiad ’88 was a well-regarded release for Atari 8-bit despite its relatively limited number of playable events. Despite releasing Summer Games on the Atari 8-bit, Epyx had decided to eschew the platform for its follow-up Winter Games, so many critics and consumers alike saw Winter Olympiad ’88 as a more than acceptable substitute.
I am one of the least sporty people I know, and I find the prospect of winter sports particularly terrifying. But I’ve always found something appealing about games involving skiing and suchlike.
My interest in this type of game dates right back to the imaginatively titled Skiing on the Philips G7000 Videopac (aka the Magnavox Odyssey 2 for American readers, where the game was known as Alpine Skiing) and the slightly later Winter Games from Epyx for various home computers.
Sometime around the PlayStation 1 and 2 eras, winter sports games started to place a heavy focus on technical, trick-based gameplay rather than the straight racing of early titles such as Skiing. And I kind of missed that simplicity.
Enter Namco’s Alpine Racer 3, the third installment of a series that began as a 1994 arcade title.