Tag Archives: retro games

Beach Head II

What does any self-respecting dictator do when he gets the smackdown from the allied forces? He strikes back in a sequel, of course — and that’s exactly what happens in Access Software’s Beach Head II: The Dictator Strikes Back.

Offering a series of competitive minigames that can either be played against the computer or a friend, Beach Head II is an enjoyable game that feels like a noticeable improvement over its predecessor in many ways. Just a pity that the Atari 8-bit version missed out on the Commodore 64 version’s digitised speech!

Check it out in the video below, and don’t forget to subscribe on YouTube for more!

Super Challenge Football

Sports games, sports games, will I never be free of sports games? Apparently not, as we’ve got another one today. This time it’s not actually all that offensive, however — though it’s still a two player-only affair.

Super Challenge Football is, like its Baseball counterpart, an adaptation of an Intellivision game for the Atari 2600. Unlike most American Football games, this game allows you to program all your linesmen individually, making for a somewhat more understandable game for American Football newbies like myself.

Check it out in the video below, and don’t forget to subscribe on YouTube for more!

The Temple of Apshai

The Temple of Apshai and its later Temple of Apshai Trilogy “remaster” are best known as 8-bit titles, but the latter actually got a port to Atari ST in 1986 — by Westwood, no less.

The ST version is, as it turns out, pretty good. It not only incorporates all the classic gameplay into a friendly GEM interface, it also includes all the room descriptions from the Book of Apshai into the game itself, making for a much more convenient way to play.

Check it out in the video below, and don’t forget to subscribe on YouTube for more!

Action Biker

Sponsored video games are nothing new! One of the earliest I ever came across was Action Biker by Mastertronic, supposedly developed in collaboration with KP Skips, the melt-in-your-mouth prawn cocktail flavoured corn snack.

KP Skips had a mascot named Clumsy Colin, who was the main star of Action Biker, and the game challenged you to control Colin as he attempted to find all the bits for his bike and then compete in a drag race. It’s an early “open world” game of sorts, and is a bit of a “love it or hate it” affair — particularly when it comes to the music. Oh, the music.

Check it out in the video below, and don’t forget to subscribe on YouTube for more!

Super Challenge Baseball

And you thought we were done with sports games! Nope, there’s a few more… only a few more though, including a couple from Mattel’s “M Network” label, where they ported Intellivision classics to Atari 2600.

Super Challenge Baseball for Atari 2600 is a port of the Intellivision’s Major League Baseball, a game which paid up for the MLB license and then didn’t use any player names, likenesses or team names. You can understand why they dropped the licensing for subsequent rereleases. It’s a two-player only game, so I recruit my long-suffering wife to suffer some more with me.

Check it out in the video below, and don’t forget to subscribe on YouTube for more!

Screaming Wings

Screaming Wings for Atari 8-bit was an excellent clone of Capcom’s arcade classic 1942, complete with loop-the-loops, a Lockheed Lightning under the player’s control and some satisfying gameplay.

Screaming Wings for Atari ST, meanwhile, is probably one of the worst shoot ’em ups on the system, since it abandoned almost everything that made the 8-bit version good and instead produced a steaming pile of pap whose only real redeeming feature is its use of digitised sound effects.

Check it out in the video below, and don’t forget to subscribe on YouTube for more!

Zenji

Zenji for Atari 8-bit is an early Activision game I’d never heard of — I’m surprised, since I thought I’d stumbled across all of their work from the early days of video gaming at one point or another.

I’m doubly surprised, since Zenji is a really good game! It’s a fun puzzler where certain elements will feel familiar to fans of Pipe Mania and its numerous imitators, but with its own distinctive twist that makes it stand out as something truly original.

Check it out in the video below, and don’t forget to subscribe on YouTube for more!

Super Breakout

Yep, here we are again with Super Breakout, this time for Atari 5200. This was the pack-in game for the system for quite some time, and left a fair few people rather underwhelmed — the system was certainly capable of better.

That said, it’s still a competent enough version of Super Breakout, and comes complete with all the different ways to play you’d expect from that game. There are certainly far worse ways to spend your time with your Atari 5200!

Check it out in the video below, and don’t forget to subscribe on YouTube for more!

Renaissance

Sometimes, the concept of something is sound, but the execution is disastrous. Such is the case with Impressions’ Renaissance, ostensibly a collection of classic arcade games with “enhanced” contemporary versions.

Unfortunately, an absolute mass of broken promises set by both the packaging and the manual makes this an enormously disappointing package that, quite rightly, still makes people surprisingly but understandably furious to this day.

Check it out in the video below, and don’t forget to subscribe on YouTube for more!

XPoker

When contemplating video game history, an important side of things that often gets overlooked or ignored is the public domain sector.

Here, programmers would put together often very good pieces of software, release them into the wild for free and be perfectly happy for people to distribute them as they saw fit. Such is the case with this week’s game XPoker, which was originally released via a bulletin board system, and subsequently found itself getting into the hands of all sorts of people.

Check it out in the video below, and don’t forget to subscribe on YouTube for more!