Archipelagos came out on the Atari ST, Amiga, and for PC MS-DOS, and was developed by Astral Software in the UK and published by Logotron in 1989.
It is a strange first-person puzzle game where you must cleanse a series of islands of the ‘Blood of the Ancients’ by clicking on some obelisks.
Getting to the obelisks is not always easy, however, but the idea is to find and click on a series of them to open a portal to the next level.
The Blood of the Ancients (represented as red on the ground) prevents you from walking through it, and will kill you if it surrounds you with no way to escape to untainted ground, so you have to be careful where you walk. And not step on the blood…
All of the levels are procedurally-generated using seed numbers – from zero to 9999 – which makes an awful lot of levels… Archipelagos does have some variety, though. Later levels introduce enemies that you must avoid contact with, and other hazards.
Archipelagos was a critical success upon release, and is fondly-remembered by some (enough to have been re-made at least once), but it hasn’t aged too well overall. It’s just about fast enough to enjoy for a while and does present a reasonable challenge. Whether the gameplay contains enough variety to keep your attention for more than ten minutes is another question, though.
One thought on “Archipelagos, Atari ST”
I got the impression this was one of those games that really didn’t need to be in first person, and having checked out some footage I think I’m still of that train of thought. While I’m sure being on the ground gives a really atmospheric and claustrophobic feel, I think a top down view would’ve just made a better puzzler game overall.
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