Amiga: Rick Dangerous II (1990)

"[...] one of the most enjoyable 16-bit arcade games in a long time." Computer and Video Games, 88% 

Be prepared to save the world, acting as a blend of Superman and Indiana Jones!

Rick Dangerous II

In 1990, Core Design presented the sequel to the platform game Rick Dangerous and continued its plot. The imminent alien invasion has now become reality as UFOs have recently landed in Hyde Park, London. Of course, our smirking superhero has no fear and welcomes our visitors right away. 

For a start, Rick carries a laser gun and bombs, which can be either placed on the ground or slid towards the enemy. He can also punch his enemy thus freezing them for a short time. 

The game itself has a linear story but as a special feature, you may play the first four out of five levels in any order. After you have completed Hyde Park, Ice Caverns, Deep Forest and the Atomic Mud Mines, the final level "Fat Guy's Headquarters" will be unlocked where the ultimate boss fight is waiting for you.

If you are looking for a funny Jump and Run with smooth gameplay and a good story be sure to check out Rick Dangerous II.


Amiga: Chase H.Q. (1989)

Today, a short post on an arcade racer by Taito. A quick little fun for in between and another successful arcade port ...

Chase H.Q.

Almost every little kid dreams of driving a police car and maybe a Porsche too. In Chase Headquarters, you do not have to choose between those two things. You act as Tony Gibson, a police officer and get to drive a Porsche 928 (I know, this is not a Porsche for real men... anyhow).

Along with your partner Raymond Broady, you must stop fleeing criminals which results in high-speed pursuits. Now who would have guessed that!

The gameplay is easy. You always start your pursuit miles away from the the suspect and after a sweet girl's voice informed you about your mission through the radio.

The rest is arcade standard. The suspect is fleeing from you, while you are trying to catch up until the time limit exceeds. To finish the job, you have to ram his car a few times, which sounds easier than it actually is.

Honestly, it might be just the nostalgia effect of such games, but today I am wondering why I loved this classic so much. It is really short and although I was never good at this genre, I have always been able to finish the five levels in around 15 minutes, or maybe less. And the funky music makes me crack up whenever I hear it today. However, I would suggest: "Go, Mr. Driver!"


Amiga: Prince of Persia (1989)

My last post has received lots of favorable feedback for Brøderbund the game designer and publisher of many fantastic games. Today, I want to present you another landmark in computer gaming:

Prince of Persia

Now this classic was truly fascinating from the very beginning on. I got sucked into the story and atmosphere almost instantly after seeing the intro and hearing the oriental theme.

It all happens in ancient Persia. While the Sultan is trying to expand his empire on a campaign, the evil Grand Vizier Jaffar seizes power. But before he can come to the throne, he needs to get rid of the princess. You can tell how it goes on from here. Jaffar locks the princess in a tower and throws her lover into the palace dungeon, surrounded by deadly obstacles. 

You have one hour to save the life of your love or else she must marry the Grand Vizier or die!

As you can see in the animation above, this game offered wonderful character animations for its time. Very smooth movements give you the impression of being in the middle of this dungeon. Despite that, the controls are kind of wobbly sometimes. It can be hard to tell the right time to jump, which regularly results into fatal falls. At least you will be "rewarded" with blood and nice sound effects!

Nevertheless, Prince of Persia is an absolute must have for any Amiga or emulator. Originally released for the Apple II system, there are ports available for mostly all other classic platforms: Amstrad, Gameboy, NES, SNES, Atari ST, Mega Drive, MS-DOS, Xbox 360 and even the iPhone OS.

In recent years Ubisoft has developed a new game: Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time and Disney released a movie with the same name.


Amiga: Wings of Fury (1988)

Who wants to be on vacation? Maybe somewhere in the pacific... on one of those paradisal islands? Blue skies and beautiful beaches surrounded by turquoise waters? You get all that and more in...

Wings of Fury

Of course, there is always a drawback. Once you reach your destination, USS Wasp, you will be piloting a F6F "Hellcat". You have now gone back in time and find yourself in the middle of World War II. I admit, it is not going to be a relaxing time, try to see it as adventure vacation.

Your goal is to defeat all Japanese forces, by destroying their bunkers, turrets and barracks. It is a nasty job, sometimes they will leave the bunker, after getting hit by one of your bombs and you will have to take every single one of them out, either by machine-gunning them or dropping more bombs. They run and scream but do not feel intimidated, you are just following your orders!

select your deadly freight and ...

... get airborne
This seams easy. But it is not. Be prepared, the enemy will take counter-measures in order to destroy your aircraft. The bunkers open fire, interceptors will take off from enemy carriers or one of the islands and you always seem to be running out of fuel. Luckily, you can reload at your carrier and return to battle.

heavily damaged Hellcat

All in all, Wings of Fury is perfectly entertaining. There is nothing, that will bug you and make you quit the game after 5 minutes. Even though the steering and especially the lading procedure needs a bit of practice, it is manageable after a few tries.

In case you want to feel like Chuck Norris, the cheat for unlimited planes and ammo is: COLINWASHERE [before spawning your Hellcat] then M [ammo], P [lives], D [no damage], F [fuel], C [switch weapons].

Do not stay away from your carrier too long, or they might try to sink it ;-)


Amiga: Desert Strike (1992)

This classic was previously going to be named Apache AHX: Desert Madman, but Electronic Arts decided to connect this game more to Operation Desert Storm from the Gulf War and titled it

Desert Strike: Return to the Gulf

It hit the shelves in 1992 for the SEGA Megadrive but a much upgraded version was released in 1993 for the Amiga. The plot is simple: A middle-eastern dictator goes mad and threatens the western world, the US forces intervene. What a unique idea for a game. Well, back then I guess it was! So here we go: you are flying a lone helicopter over enemy territory, while you are all on your own.

The pilot commands a AH-64 Apache helicopter and although Desert Strike is a shoot-em up, it is less frantic than typical games of this genre, which is due to the emphasis of strategic elements. Something enjoyable in this game is the freedom of movement. Viewed from an isometric perspective, the player is free to fly his chopper multi-directional across a large map.

But before you can enter the battlefield, there is a quick briefing prior to any mission.

Once you have reached enemy territory, you will be able to fire your machine guns, Hydra rockets and Hellfire missiles. Destroy enemy installations, vehicles, weapons, rescue hostages or capture enemy personnel. Your craft has limited fuel, ammo and armour. However, power-ups are available on the whole map, as well as supply zones.

Desert strike, remained a top-10 best seller for a long time and earned around 90-95% scores throughout the reviews! It is definitely worth a try, if you enjoy retro gaming.