The Archimedes has a flawless version of Populous – Bullfrog‘s seminal God sim – that was programmed by Richard Walker and published by Krisalis Software in 1992.
For those who’ve never played Populous before: the idea is to raise and lower land – using your mouse pointer – so that your population can build on it and grow in size. As your little people/followers flourish, so does your power and your ability to cause disasters on your rival’s population. The brown slider in the top right corner of the screen indicates your current power level. Using the buttons in the bottom left of the screen you can create flash floods, volcanoes, earthquakes, swamps, knights, and even start an ‘Armageddon’ (which causes all your people to go to war). When you do initiate an Armageddon, though, you better make damn sure that you’ve got more followers than your opponent, because it basically ends the level and makes everyone fight to the death. It’s a war of attrition, and whichever side has the most followers wins.
Populous on the Archimedes has some atmospheric music and the graphics are identical to the original Amiga version. There do, however, seem to be a few features that are exclusive to the Archimedes version, like weird monsters – that I haven’t seen in other versions – that appear and tear up the landscape. While playing I saw a grey alien-like creature appear on one map which I hadn’t seen in any other version of Populous. You’ll see it in the screenshots below.
The game has hundreds of levels to play, of varying difficulties, and is a damn sight better than many Archimedes games. If you like God games then it’s sure to appeal to you. Populous on any system is a classic game, but on the Archimedes it is stand-out title.
See also: The King of Grabs Archimedes Special
More: Populous on Wikipedia