Thursday, May 30, 2019


Published on Golden Disk 64 12/90

B-Bobs is a single-screen platformer that takes some inspiration from the arcade game Pang and adds a cranial twist to it. Quite fittingly, it eventually becomes a bit of a headache to play.

Sunday, April 28, 2019

Elite Squad

Published on Game On 07/90

For today's game, Elite Squad, I simply want to show you the loading screen without giving away any details just yet:

Based on the name and this image alone, what kind of game do you expect to play? A vertical or horizontal shooter with an exotic roster of enemies? A platformer depicting the player character's recurring nightmares? An action RPG in an unsettling sci-fi setting?

Saturday, April 13, 2019


Published on Game On 07/90

Up until now, I've deliberately skipped over any Pong clones that I came across on CP Verlag's diskmags. Mainly because all of them were either tediously boring and/or made with minimal effort. Dynamoid is different. It's still Pong, but it does its best to hide the simple gameplay behind an outstanding presentation.

Saturday, March 30, 2019

Fantasy Designer V.1

Published on Magic Disk 64 05/90

One of the more frequent applications found on Magic Disk 64 were demo/intro creators that allowed C64 users to make flashy intros without requiring any programming knowledge. Fantasy Designer V.1 is a fine example of such a tool, and it comes with a simple, straightforward interface. While its usefulness may be limited, it certainly makes for better screenshots than a spreadsheet program.

Wednesday, February 20, 2019


Published on Game On 06/90

Vertical shooters belong to my favorite video game genres whose classics I still revisit regularly. There is just something uniquely satisfying about blowing up various enemies raining down from the top of the screen while having to weave through an onslaught of bullets.

It's a pity, then, that the first vertical shooter featured on Adventures in 16 Colors isn't very good. Say hello to Ryshka:

Saturday, February 9, 2019

Magic Disk 64 04/90

When I saw this issue at the newsstand, the cover art immediately reminded me of the docking bay from Star Wars: A New Hope. I suppose that was the artist's inspiration, even though it is not an exact copy from the movie.

Compared to last month's facial disaster, this picture is actually pretty good. For one, the perspective is quite accurate with a common vanishing point, and the only people depicted are either very far away or have their face obscured by a helmet. If I want to get extra nitpicky (and that's what I usually do here), I can point out one thing: Assuming the ship in the front is the same model as the ones seen further back, then the pilot in the cockpit must be a giant compared to the people you can see standing around the other ships.

In any case, the cover evidently fulfilled its purpose, as I found it quite captivating. It's a pity, though, that it somewhat oversells what is on the disk. None of the games feature any space stations or ships. One game has a starfield and some moons/planets in the background, but that's about all the similarities I can find.

Saturday, February 2, 2019

Game On 04/90

Looking at this artwork, I just realized that it took me four issues of Game On to finally get to a cover involving a space battle. One would expect the subject matter to be much more prevalent, considering how often C64 games have you shoot lasers at flying enemies in outer space.

It's all the more curious, then, that none of the games in this issue feature any spaceships or anything science-fiction related. Up until now, the cover art always referenced one of the games on the disk. It's possible that the list of games changed at one point or that the artist didn't get enough time to create a fitting cover. In the end, it doesn't really matter, does it?

What matters, however, is me trying to come to terms with this scene's proportions: Either all the ships involved in this epic struggle are exceptionally huge or that planet is extremely tiny. Furthermore, the green moon looks to be so close to the blue planet, it might as well be attached to it. But, to be honest, I always liked this cover, and I still do. I find its colors quite pleasing, as well as the flashy lasers and the non-black space background.

Tuesday, January 29, 2019


Published on Game On 06/90

In the wake of Tetris, the early nineties became a fertile ground for computer puzzle games. During that period, everyone had to release something that involved dropping and/or removing tiles. Here's a game that not only fits the trend perfectly but it also comes with the added bonus of taking place IN SPACE!

Orbit sure knows how to make a remarkable first impression. Here's the game's title logo, orbiting the title screen. You know, because it's called Orbit. Anyway, the logo is made up of a total of 24 sprites, thus each of the C64's eight hardware sprites gets drawn three times per frame. Actually, strike that, it's five times per frame: The sprites are also used in the upper and lower border to display the scores. That's a lot of multiplexing just for the title screen.

Thursday, January 24, 2019


Published on Magic Disk 64 04/90

If we want to reduce C64 games to their basic essentials, a lot of them come down to a test of reflexes. Reaction is different. It does the reduction for us in advance and simply presents itself as a pure test of dexterity:

You can't accuse the game of false advertising; what it's about can be found right in its name. Admittedly, the iconography surrounding the title logo may be a bit bewildering. Without wanting to spoil too much, I can already confirm that Reaction does indeed contain stars, moons, balls, arrows, blue windy paths, and a disembodied hand doing thumb signals. Unfortunately, that probably makes the game appear more exciting than it ends up being.