This 1991 arcade classic from Konami is a simultaneous four-player, horizontally-scrolling run-and-gun game with a colourful, cartoony, wild western theme.
This interesting 2006 release is based loosely on the story of Joan of Arc and her struggles against the English occupation of France during The Hundred Year War of the 15th Century.
Jeanne d’Arc is a cutesy fantasy adventure with magic and tactical combat sections (in the style of Ogre Battle and Final Fantasy Tactics), developed by Japanese video game developer Level-5.
Wow… Now this is something special… An enhanced version of Cinemaware‘s classic Defender of the Crown, with cool new sequences and graphics not seen in the original!
Defender of the Crown II was created by James D. Sachs in 1993 and is seemingly a bit of an ‘auteur piece’, since Sachs programmed it, made the graphics, and did the music himself. And – it has to be said – he did a brilliant job. Defender of the Crown II is arguably the best iteration of the original game and was clearly a labour of love for him.
Lasso is an obscure arcade game, developed and manufactured by SNK Corporation in 1982. In it you play a rancher/cowboy trying to round-up his cattle with a rope.
A classic, original game on the Commodore VIC-20, Chariot Race is an exhilarating and fun recreation of Roman chariot races, viewed from an overhead perspective.
Released on the Nintendo 64 in 2000, The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask is a direct sequel to Ocarina of Time.
The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time is regarded as one of the best RPGs of all time.
Developed by High Moon Studios, Darkwatch is a First-Person Shooter/survival horror game that crosses the American “Wild West” with ghosts, zombies and werewolves and that kind of material.
When it was first released, back in 2005, is was quite impressive for the time. In this day and age Darkwatch looks and plays very simply, but is not entirely without its redeeming features.
Atmospherically, Darkwatch is still excellent, with lots of ghostly visual effects creating some interesting scenes. The horseback chase sequences are particularly good.
Where the game falls down, though, are the terrible cut scenes and the bogstandard script and voice acting.
The weapons and special powers are interesting. The baddies and bosses are interesting. The environments are interesting. It’s just that the dialogue and rather uninteresting protagonists hold Darkwatch back from being a true classic.
These grabs were taken on a development XBox that outputs lossless screenshots over a network, with pixel perfect quality. A grabber’s dream. 🙂
Prince of Persia 2: The Shadow and the Flame was originally released for PC MS-DOS by Broderbund in 1993, but has a had a number of high def Apple-based remakes since.
Like the first Prince of Persia, The Shadow and the Flame is a side-on, Persian-infused action/platform game with sword fighting and fantasy elements.
And – also like the original Prince of Persia – this sequel uses “rotoscoping” to help create the animation effects. Rotoscoping is where you basically take actual film footage of a subject, before using it as animation reference. The result is: very realistic animation. Particularly of human figures. Making the play experience more cinematic. In theory, at least.
One other similarity to the original is that Prince of Persia 2 is very tough. The gameplay is unforgiving and can be quite brutal at times.
But all other similarities end there.
Graphically, the sequel is lovely, and very colourful. Much more lush than its predecessor. Blue skies, beaches, flying carpets, underground caverns… The presentation throughout is excellent and follows on from the first game nicely.
There are also a number of key story sequences that really add variety to the gameplay, like having to run and jump for a leaving boat, and getting to ride a horse.
The great variety, as you run from one swashbuckling scene to the next, is what makes Prince of Persia 2 worth playing now.
Sequel to the award-winning Epyx multi-event sports game, Summer Games II is arguably even better than its predecessor.
This one features: triple jump, rowing, javelin, equestrian (show jumping), high jump, fencing, cycling, and kayaking.
Each event is a fantastic game in its own right, and graphically: Summer Games II is still very impressive. At the time of release (1985), it really wowed the critics. And games-players alike. Like all the Epyx sports games: still great to pick up and play now.