Tag Archives: trippy

Fantasy Zone, Arcade

Fantasy Zone is a colourful scrolling shooter from 1986. It was created by Sega and it looks simple and cartoony, but is in fact very challenging.

The main character, Opa-Opa, is sometimes referred to as “Sega‘s first mascot” and is very similar to the one seen in the earlier TwinBee. Both TwinBee and this game have been credited with the creation of the “cute ’em up” genre, and that is probably not too far from the truth.

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N2O: Nitrous Oxide, PlayStation

This 1998 Gremlin/Fox Interactive release for the Sony PlayStation is a fast, tunnel-based shoot ’em up with trippy visuals and a pumping Crystal Method soundtrack. It was designed and programmed by the prolific Tony Crowther.

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Rez, Dreamcast

Developed by United Game Artists and released simultaneously for the Sega Dreamcast and Sony PlayStation 2 in 2001, Rez is a trippy, mind-bendingly-original and visually-stunning ‘Rail Shooter’ (meaning: the path you follow is ‘on rails’, like a rollercoaster), with hacking and music influences.

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EarthBound, Super Nintendo

This 1994 cult classic Super Nintendo level-grinder was originally titled “Mother 2” in its native Japan – later changed in English-speaking territories to EarthBound.

This was due to the fact that no one outside of Japan had seen the first Mother (released in 1989 on the NES) and the bigwigs at Nintendo of America worried that it might confuse people.

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Neon Drive, PC

Neon Drive is a beautiful modern retro game that is a kind of cross between an old, ’80s arcade game, and a rhythm game.

Rather than drive normally, you veer left and right to the beat of the game’s soundtrack.

Obstacles thrown in front of you as you drive are timed to the beat, and making your way successfully through a course requires Zen-like concentration and relaxation. Well, not really relaxation. Neon Drive definitely gets the blood pressure going!

Beautiful to look at too – the retro neon styling in this game is gorgeous. Neon Drive is well worth a play, if you like a challenge.

Released in 2016 and developed by Fraoula.

Website: http://neondrivegame.com/
Steam: http://store.steampowered.com/app/433910/Neon_Drive/

Space Harrier, Arcade

Developed by a team led by Yu Suzuki at Sega in 1985, Space Harrier is a super-fast third-person, flying-into-the-screen fantasy blasting game, originally housed inside a hydraulic cabinet in arcades. This would jerk around as you moved the control stick, giving you a feeling of movement as you played the game.

Graphically, the game is a mix of pseudo 3D effects (the checkerboard floor), and high speed 2D sprite scaling and rotating (for objects and enemies). The arcade machine utilised advanced graphics hardware to move big sprites around the screen quickly.

Space Harrier was a hit in arcades back in the Eighties, and is still popular now, having been re-released numerous times on various online services.

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

Iridis Alpha, Commodore 64

Jeff Minter‘s classic Iridis Alpha is a weird horizontal shoot ’em up first released in 1986 through Llamasoft and Hewson Consultants.

Iridis Alpha is one of those games that may be too “out there” – too strange – for a lot of players to bother getting their heads around, but it really is worth the effort.

I’m not going to explain how to play it though. Just look at the pretty pictures…

More: https://www.c64-wiki.com/wiki/Iridis_Alpha

Ancipital, Commodore 64

Jeff Minter‘s seminal shooter Ancipital features psychedelic sprite-based visuals and fast blasting/running/jumping action.

It’s like a weird run-and-gun game with strange gravity. And you controlling a goat running around, shooting stylised sprites, and wondering what the hell is going on.

Llamasoft released Ancipital for the Commodore 64 in 1984.

More: Ancipital at retrogames.co.uk

The Magic Circle, PC

Hugely fun, satirical 2015 indie game about playing a broken RPG.

The Magic Circle cleverly mixes modern high res graphics with retro DOS-style graphics, and is something of a first on that front.

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Tempest 2000, Atari Jaguar

Jeff Minter’s 1994 remix of the classic arcade game Tempest is quite exciting on the Atari Jaguar!

Tempest 2000 features the same intense blasting-down-a-tunnel-style gameplay as the original, but also with new enemies, new tunnel styles, bonus levels, power-ups, and new challenges. This version also features loads of great Minter-style trippy colour cycling and visual effects as well.

More: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tempest_2000