Tag Archives: pioneering

Hard Drivin’, Arcade

Hard Drivin’ is a 1989 arcade game developed and manufactured by Atari Games. It allows the player to drive a sports car on a track that emphasises speed and stunts, and was one of the first driving games with a fully 3D polygonal environment.

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Brainstorm, ZX Spectrum

Written by Pete Cooke and published by Firebird (as a £1.99 budget game) in 1987, Brainstorm is a clever puzzle/strategy game where the aim is to draw lines using a pointer in order to make a bouncing ball travel over coloured sections of the screen, to accumulate points.

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ActRaiser, Super Nintendo

ActRaiser is an interesting Japanese fantasy action game that was developed by Quintet and published by Enix on the Super Nintendo in 1990. It has side-scrolling, platform-based hack-and-slash sections, with an interesting overhead ‘God game’ component.

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Shinobi, Arcade

The arcade version of Shinobi was developed and published by Sega in 1987. It is a scrolling run-and-gun action game featuring a lead character called Joe Musashi who is on a mission to defeat the Zeed terrorist organisation. The aim of the game is to rescue kidnapped students of his clan and each level has a certain number of hostages to release.

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Contra, Arcade

Contra is a run-and-gun arcade game developed and published by Konami in 1987. It is the first game in the long-running Contra series and was renamed as Gryzor – and tweaked slightly – for European arcades.

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Renegade, Arcade

Renegade is an arcade beat ’em up that was developed by Technos Japan and distributed into arcades by Taito in 1986. Although Renegade might appear basic by today’s standards it was in fact an important game in the fighting genre and one that defined many of the gameplay standards we still see today.

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Batalyx, Commodore 64

Written by Jeff Minter at Llamasoft and first published by Ariolasoft in 1985, Batalyx is a compendium of six minigames that can be played in any order. Completing them all must be done within a set time limit in order to beat the game.

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Revenge of the Mutant Camels, Commodore 64

Revenge of the Mutant Camels is the 1984 sequel to Attack of the Mutant Camels and this time you play as a camel who must fight his way through 42 different attack waves. You can choose sequential or random attack waves, but the aim is the same: you must survive through all 42 waves to beat the game.

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Psychedelia, Commodore 64

Psychedelia, by Jeff Minter of Llamasoft, is not a game but a “light synthesizer” – a program that turns input (either from a person via a joystick or keyboard, or from a sound input) into graphical on-screen patterns. Psychedelia was first released in 1984 and was one of the first “light synthesizers” ever made; certainly ever to be made available commercially; and it was the seed that led to the Winamp visualisation plugin craze of the late 90s/early 2000s, and to the evolution of light synthesizers or “sound-to-light” technology in general.

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Matrix: Gridrunner 2, Commodore 64

The sequel to Gridrunner, Matrix: Gridrunner 2, is a more refined, varied and engaging incarnation of Gridrunner than was seen previously. It was written by Jeff Minter and first published by Llamasoft in 1983.

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