Tag Archives: Archer MacLean

Archer Maclean’s Pool, Atari ST

Following on from Jimmy White’s Whirlwind Snooker, Archer Maclean’s Pool was published in 1992 by Virgin Games. It was of course designed and programmed by Archer MacLean.

And, because pool is much more simple to play than snooker, and because this game uses the same engine as the previous game, Pool is arguably more immediately playable and more fun overall than its predecessor.

Continue reading Archer Maclean’s Pool, Atari ST

Jimmy White’s Whirlwind Snooker, Amiga

Programmed and designed by Archer MacLean and published by Virgin Games in 1991, Jimmy White’s Whirlwind Snooker was one of the first ever billiards simulations to use 3D graphics to represent the table, and it worked very well.

Continue reading Jimmy White’s Whirlwind Snooker, Amiga

International Karate Plus, Game Boy Advance

This handheld conversion of Archer Maclean‘s classic IK+ was published in 2002 by Ignition Entertainment and is generally quite excellent.

Continue reading International Karate Plus, Game Boy Advance

International Karate, Atari 800

International Karate was released in 1986 by System 3 Software.

It was written by Archer MacLean and was one of the first beat ’em ups – ever – to actually feel like a decent game to play and not a ridiculous slug-fest.

Continue reading International Karate, Atari 800

Dropzone, Atari 800

Archer MacLean‘s Dropzone was initially released on the Atari 8-bit machines in 1984, before it later appeared on the Commodore 64 and became a smash hit.

Continue reading Dropzone, Atari 800

International Karate Plus, Atari ST

Programmed by Archer MacLean himself (the man behind the original Commodore 64 version), and published by System 3 in 1988, the Atari ST conversion of the classic International Katate+ is pretty much flawless, and is also arguably the best beat ’em up on the entire system.

Continue reading International Karate Plus, Atari ST

Dropzone, Commodore 64

Archer MacLean‘s seminal Commodore 64 shooter, Dropzone is like a cross between Defender and, erm, Defender, but with more realistic graphics. And slightly different gameplay. But the principles are pretty much the same: super-fast, super-smooth, side-scrolling shooting. Avoid touching anything – or instant death.

Dropzone is just as tough as Defender, and arguably just as good. High praise indeed…

And, yes: I know Dropzone was developed and released for the Atari 800 first, but I prefer the Commodore 64 version. There is something about it that just sings!

More: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dropzone

International Karate Plus, Commodore 64

Archer Maclean’s IK+ (International Karate Plus) ushered in a new wave of fighting game on the Commodore 64, back in 1987.

Gone were the days of sluggish beat ’em ups, and in came an altogether faster and cleverer fighting game. This one being somewhat dignified with the martial art of karate.

It is still – to this day – very satisfying to deliver a perfect punch to the gut, or land a flying kick to the face. The skill interludes in-between bouts are pretty maddening fun too.

But it is the core of the game that makes International Karate Plus so good. The rules and moves are simple. You’ve got to be good to pull them off.

Rob Hubbard wrote the memorable music too.

More: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/International_Karate+