Space Rawks on my Arcade machine.

Ever since I first watching my old brother play Asteroids in a cafe near to our school , I’ve always been drawn (in a straight line 🙂 ) to vector based arcade games such as Omega Race, Lunar Lander, Battlezone and Star Wars of course…it’s just something about those intense glowing lines moving incredibly smoothly against a darkened backdrop. To a much younger me, vector graphics were a symbol of the future. Today, they symbolise retro and boy do I love my retro.

As such, I’m a Vectrex player and alongside emulation with Mame/AAE I’m always seeking out all forms of vector styled games be it new concepts or remakes of original arcade classics. One developer that’s been releasing some truly outstanding games over the past few years is Sokurah of Tardis Remakes.

Available predominately for Windows PC (although there are quite a few for OSX now) his current roster of Vector styled games are –

Omega Race (2006 and 2009 edition) – Brilliant rendition of Midways classic.

Rip Off – Sadly, I never came across Rip-Off in the arcades as it’s one of my favourites on my Vectrex. Sokurah’s release is such a joy to play and looks amazing with those digital backdrops.

Star Castle – Another arcade/Vectrex classic. Check out the Atari 2600 port if you haven’t already.

Black Widow – A brilliant remake of Atari’s dual stick shooter (even more so than the original I think) and plays incredibly well when setup with a PC dual stick controller.

Zektor – It’s like Omega Race, Rip-off, Star Castle and Asteroids all in one game! Again, another machine that I didn’t come across in the arcades although I fear my pocket money would not have lasted very long if I had.

Space Fury – Intense Schmup action which gets even better (see below)

Arcadia – A vector styled re ‘imagine’-ation (sorry!) of an early 8-bit hit. I spent many happy hours playing this way back then on my humble Vic-20 , and this new version is just as fun and looks amazing with all that neon glow.

….and finally, his latest game, Space Rawks which is based around Asteroids Deluxe but with a shed load more rocks, plenty of power ups and frequent visits from those pesky saucers.

Just look at those gridlines…heaven 🙂

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As with previous games, you’ll find plenty of useful options including redefinable controls and the ability to jack up (or down) the amount of vector glow.

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‘Sir, the possibilities of successfully navigating an asteroid field are 3,720 to 1’. I’d say, twice that judging by my score!

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I didn’t think that playing these game could get any better but man, how wrong was I after transferred them over to my arcade machine.

Classic controls and extra bass from the wooden cabinet.

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Space Fury – Of all the games I’m tried, this one plays so well on an upright cab and feels just like a genuine coin-op arcade game from the 80’s.

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Eek!

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I do hope that Sokurah continues to make these games so spread the word and show your support by visiting –

http://tardis.dk/wordpress/

Flash gaming: Frantic

Phew, a bit of a crazy week at work in the land of I.T. so free time in the evenings has been a bit sparse these past few days. Still… in need of a gaming fix now an again, I’ve opted for a spot of casual gaming and have been thoroughly enjoying this , flash based bullet hell shooter called Frantic.

You get to pick one of the available three crafts at the beginning of the game ranging from those with greater fire-power, speed or shield. I prefer the first one as it’s low profile makes it a bit easier to duck and dive around the (lots) of incoming fire.

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Control is via mouse or w,a,s,d keys – fire is auto.

Frantic needs no explanation, just blast away picking up the odd weapons/health upgrade until reaching the end of level boss. Each downed foe will leave behind gold coins. Pick these up as you can use these to buy further upgrades between levels,

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One of the many end of level bosses. Remembering the five rules of Dodgeball will help here 😉

 

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Time to spend all that lovely dosh. What shall it be? – increased shield power, health replenish or kick ass side missiles?

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Quoting Mr Palpatine – ‘wipe them out…all of them’

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You might have noticed that blue bar in on the left. With each enemy craft you destroy, this bar will fill up until full anf the little ‘lightning’ icon is lit. Hit the Spacebar or Mouse button to activate your time limited super-weapon and smite away.

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Frantic really is a gem of a game which plays really well and looks great with it’s minimalistic style. Of course, there’s also the benefit of it being online without the need to install (other than flash of course!).

Great fun and well worth checking out –

http://www.crazymonkeygames.com/Frantic.html