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Old 08 October 2019, 10:17   #1
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Off with the rose-colored glasses! The hard look back at your Amiga childhood

Many of us have fond memories of certain games they played for countless hours in their childhood and teen years. To young eyes, what some development teams managed to bring to the screen must have looked and sounded amazing, and with a limited library of similar games to choose from and compare to, we might have easily overlooked major flaws in these games. Let's face it: even "classic" games from the era often had severe gameplay issues that made them little more than graphic demos. This does not mean that a game must be bad; it's rather about games that are less impressive as a whole when viewed with the more analytical mind of an adult.

What are the games you thought were really awesome back in the day, but now realize how bad some of the design choices actually were?

I'l start with one I'm sure I'll get a lot of flak for

The Chaos Engine. By many considered to be THE definitive Amiga classic, I played through it a couple of times with my older brother as Navvie and Priest. When I tried to do so again with a friend recently using the HD version, we couldn't get farther than World 2-2 when it became frustratingly difficult. The main problem is the way ambushes work; You trigger some invisible point in the map and suddenly a horde of enemies appear, sometimes right on top of you, and you take too long to react or don't have enough firepower to kill them quickly enough before they run into you and take a large chunk of your health with them. When surviving a level means having to memorize these patterns, that game is not for me

Last edited by Cherno; 08 October 2019 at 14:10.
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Old 08 October 2019, 10:56   #2
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Well, when I was a kid, I blissfully thought that Final Fight for Amiga was utter crap

And now, when I took off the rose-tinted glasses, I realized that Final Fight never came out for the Amiga
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Old 08 October 2019, 12:26   #3
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I love all my games I loved.
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Old 08 October 2019, 12:41   #4
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For me the typical game which looked absolutely stunning visually, but ended up as crap for gameplay, is Another World.
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Old 08 October 2019, 13:14   #5
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Chase HQ. I loved it as a kid
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Old 08 October 2019, 13:16   #6

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Actually most of the games for the Amiga were crap in hindsight.

Actually Turrican is imo being revered for being "normally playable" in a sea of low fps, shoddy sounding, badly playable and garish looking games.
The Amiga was lucky for having some excellent looking games in its early "career", like Marble Madness, Bard's Tale and Defender of the Crown.
Which are mostly down to excellently drawn graphics with well chosen palettes, and not hardware power.

I was shocked how well most stuff looked and played when I got my SNES in 1993.
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Old 08 October 2019, 16:41   #7
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I don't think I ever liked Supercars much, but I still see it being a go-to game for people returning to the Amiga and the original going for quite a lot of money on online auctions.

Supercars has got cool still graphics and a funny tune, but it moves and sounds like a mediocre Atari ST game.
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Old 08 October 2019, 16:44   #8
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However, I think the gold medal must go to Giana Sisters.

It's a clone of an 8-bit game from 1985 for a platform from 1983, which is in itself something that shouldn't impress on a 16-bit computer whose users seem to think it compares favourably to a SNES. And it lacks all that attention to detail which made the original a timeless classic.
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Old 08 October 2019, 16:56   #9
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Yeah, I don't really suffer from those rose-tinted glasses for games because I found most Amiga games pretty rubbish back then as well, and so didn't play them very much at all. Plenty of exceptions, but games like Turrican, Giana Sisters, countless pseudo-3D, Outrun-style racers, Zool etc. that were hyped at the time, always disappointed me.
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Old 08 October 2019, 17:01   #10
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Tass Times in Tonetown narrative structure is very commonplace, yet the cute and colorful still graphics may have fooled our young eyes during the Amiga heydays. Also Novagen's Backlash comes to mind, popular when it came out, nowadays you would probably feel ashamed to show it to your friends. 3D without any sense of depth, no levels, sole purpose consists in shooting endlessly oval sparkling shaped missiles at mostly indistinguishable aliens.

Last edited by SquawkBox; 08 October 2019 at 18:46.
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Old 08 October 2019, 17:24   #11
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Games have moved on a lot over the years but going back to classics you realise that some of the good elements back then are sadly disappearing from modern titles.
Creativity and variety seem diluted with AAA titles as everything now is made on a recycled game engine. Its good that we're seeing development in this area mainly First/Third person shooters & driving/flight sims. But other than that the only choice outside of those seem to be found in the Indy section that rarely get a looking.

Got back into my Amiga about a year ago. I play it more often than the PS4 now.
Also Were games harder back then? Seems to me they were.

Also Completely disagree about Another World. Game is still mint, even today.
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Old 08 October 2019, 17:38   #12
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Well way back then i was in my twenty something many happy memories of the amiga, loved all the games i played back then and all the games i could get my hands on friends in low places thanks to them ( unnamed people ) for keeping me well supplied back in the day with game, apps and the such.

I couldnt really say what was my all time favorite game i just loved all the games i played but there are a handful of games that did stick out from the rest and i will do myu best to keep it as short as possible but long enough so you know where i am comeing from. So with out further ado hear is my list of amiga games i played the most... and in no particular order...

Gods, Magic pockets, Cannon Fodder, Civilization , The Adams , Family , Cool Spot , Armour-Geddon , Ledgend , A-Train , Beneath a Steel Sky , Carrier Command , Flashback , Another World , The Chaos Engine , Chuckie Egg , Chuckie Egg 2 , Dark Seed , Donk! , Dune , DuneII , Gunship 2000 , Fire & Ice , Galaga 89 , Galaga 92 , Galaga 94 , Gauntlet , Gauntlet II , Humans , Jimmy White's 'Whirlwind' Snooker , Knights Of The Sky , Monkey Island , Mr. Nutz , No Second Prize , Out Run , Populous , Populous II , Mega Lo Mania , Pinball Dreams , Pinball Fantasies , Pinball Illusions , Pirates , Putty , Scorched Tanks , Worms , The Settlers , Skid Marks , Silkworm.

Going to have to stop my self got carried away kinda... but there are so many classic games and them listed above are the ones with the most time played and loved.

Happy Amiga Days.
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Old 08 October 2019, 19:40   #13
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Dreamweb - atmospheric, tiny in-game screen though
F-117A - even though it was technically better than F-19 I still prefer F-19
Superfrog - used to play this all the time, now it's just annoying
Dragon's Lair series - impressive graphics, still impossible gameplay
Lotus 1 - if only it was full screen with a single player like Lotus 2
Soccer Kid - annoying ball control and nowadays football is just about big money rather than the World Cup (shame).
Days of Thunder - thought it was slow when I played 1991, now it's like watching grass grow. Horrible.
Back to the Future II - what were they thinking.

The only games I still play/enjoy are: Cannon Fodder, Yo! Joe!, Arabian Nights, Wiz n' Liz, F-19, Lotus 2.
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Old 08 October 2019, 20:37   #14
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Turrican: I played it a ton back in the day but can't stand it now because of the irritating "walk to the edge of the screen to scroll, get hit by something that suddenly appears right in front of you" thing.

F-18 Interceptor: "I don't remember the frame rate being this low... I must have something set wrong on the emulator." Nope, it really does run that slow! Game's still fine, it just doesn't feel nearly as impressive as I remember it.

Captive: Played it a lot back then but never beat it, mainly because we got tired of navigating around the bizarre maps which defied any logical explanation. Now that I know precisely how the maps are generated ( http://captive.atari.org/ ) I can see why they were so confusing: it uses a procedural generation system that generates the rooms and halls essentially randomly.

Last edited by Rotareneg; 08 October 2019 at 21:39.
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Old 08 October 2019, 21:01   #15
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I was hesitant to participate to this topic as I partly feel like it's shooting fish in a barrel; almost every Amiga game out there has multiple flaws that I'd like to fix in hindsight.

Some of these issues were inherited from the worst practises of the 8-bit consoles and arcades (levels you have to memorise with surprises one really can't anticipate, level timers, having to access keyboard while using joystick, trial and error approach to gameplay and game design that requires you to read an actual manual to play) then coupled with multiple Amiga specific issues (constant disk swapping, dodgy frame rates and games that with flashy art and sound, but no gameplay to speak of).

I find myself often positively surprised how smooth and genuinely playable many C64 and NES classics are when revisiting them after a long period of time – something I really can't say for many of the Amiga games of the same era.
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Old 08 October 2019, 21:11   #16
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For a short while, I had an Atari ST before I even had my A500, and I bought more ST games than Amiga games, although there were lots of Amiga game demos on the countless Amiga magazines I bought.

I wasn't that impressed with Amiga games, but I was won over by the Amiga Demoscene right from the beginning, since my local computer shop (where I got the A500 from) had a box full of demo disks, and once I'd devoured those, I continuously asked many times if they had any more - then I discovered the joys of mail order.

I played some Amiga games like E-Motion and Vaxine and loved their 3D shaded look, early 3D games like Battle Command which I nearly completed, Lemmings (although it sucks, to be honest) and the Shadow of the Beast trilogy (great games, real Amiga showcases and exclusives). Team 17 had some great-looking and musically-sounding games created by sceners, but the gameplay was always dull - I mean, what's the point of playing a game like Alien Breed where you can see where all the aliens are at the same time? It worked better as a Doom clone.

I will say, however, that whilst I don't care much for Amiga games' playability, most of the time, the music soundtracks are AWESOME, and a lot of the time, I will run the games just to hear the theme tunes!
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Old 08 October 2019, 21:30   #17
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Remembering the great times you had with friends or alone is 10 times better than trying to play today: not that much time to train, frustrating because of what's being said: memorize patterns and all...

I often try to play "new" games (games I didn't try at the time) and end up rebooting instead. Even Desert Strike I can't stand the slow pace and get some fuel every 5 minutes and all when I completed the 2 first levels in 1994... Yeah. Same thing for Superfrog. Super-tedious. I completed it. Will never play again probably...

Even Chaos Engine I never seem to be able to play properly (I completed at least 5 times in the past)... Only casual games still interest me (IK+, Shanghai, Lotus 2, Gravity Force, Supercars 2, Arcade pool) and games where you can levelskip to test all levels. I still love a lot of games (specially Bitmap Bros titles), but find me more often fondly remembering them that actually playing them.

Last edited by jotd; 08 October 2019 at 22:46.
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Old 08 October 2019, 22:34   #18
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I think the fact that us old 'uns don't like to revisit old games now that we played some 30-odd years ago was because back then, we had to be PATIENT for a lot of them, as they were so slow-paced. Not to mention that a lot of 8-bit tape games took a long time to just LOAD, as well.

These days, everything is in such a rush and humans of all ages have had to adapt to the faster pace of 21st century society, so now everything that we used to take time over in the past now feels far too slow. That's what I think, anyway.
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Old 09 October 2019, 00:40   #19
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I recall spending so much time and spending days on end trying to finish Future Wars & Operation Stealth. It was myself at an early age of childhood Vs Amiga 500. The difficulty of those adventure games in that era, with no internet was certainly a huge challenge... Eventually I pulled through and figured things out due to my patience levels not being destroyed or distracted by other things..

Nowdays, I dare say no one will play those old skool adventure games and or without the help of a guide or walkthrough just to speed things up if you get stuck. Like what Foebane mentions we live in a fast pace 21st Century where you can do whatever & whenever you want from a phone..

Unfortunately this fast paced method ruins the whole experience of the games themselves and Amiga games were designed to draw you in and experience and feel the whole experience at a steady pace.
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Old 09 October 2019, 00:46   #20
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Back in the day, I played games like Carrier Command (completed it!), Mercenary and Damocles for days on end and mapped as much as I could on pieces of grid paper, but going back to them in the last few years, I really don't feel like going through all that again as I'd feel like I'm wasting my time, which I would be as I'm playing them again and what amazing memories I had of those games might be ruined by seeing them years later.

I find this with most retro games, like I don't really feel like completing them again, at least the big ones that require hours of effort and practice.
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