The latest Amiga game news, reviews and opinions.


Thursday, 31 January 2013

Battling With Barbarian

Barbarian, by Psygnosis, was one of the first Amiga games I ever played, and I must admit that I didn't find it a particularly enjoyable experience. Sure, you could use a joystick to control your main character, but to access the full range of functions available (run, pick-up, jump, etc.) you really needed to use the bizarre mouse-controlled icon method if you expected to make any progress at all.

While the control method was certainly novel, it was also extremely difficult to use, due in most part to the terrible 'tank' mouse bundled with the Amiga 500. You'd either not get to the relevant action icon in time, or the mouse click would fail to register. Because of these control issues, Barbarian was a game I quickly gave up playing. Opting to play one of the many joystick controlled titles released for the system instead.

And so, Barbarian remained pretty much un-played on my Amigas until a week or so back, when for some reason I though "Now that I've got a nice optical mouse plugged into my 1200, I wonder if the game is now actually playable?", and so Barbarian once again got fired-up.

Upon loading the game I was greeted by the beautifully animated, but short, intro sequence, which sees your barbarian character raising a sword above his head, before slamming it down onto a chain, slicing it in half. With the chain broken, the Barbarian logo zooms out of the screen. It's all very nice, and the team behind the game must have really thought so, as you're forced to watch it twice!

The intro, which you WILL watch twice!

With the intro finally out of the way (for the second time!) the game begins, starting with the player standing in the middle of a dank swamp. The only option here is to walk right, and it's then that memories of the game's odd chug-scrolling flip-screen method come flooding back. When you get to the edge of the screen the action doesn't immediately flip to the next. Oh no. Instead, all action stops, as the screen 'chugs' to the next, before everything then resumes. It's not a brilliant method chosen by the programmers, as it brings with it pauses in gameplay. A bit of a shame they opted for this, to be honest.

It's probably at this point that I should mention how much more responsive your character is once you're armed with a decent mouse, as you'll no longer fail to get to the relevant icon in time or fail to have a click registered. Sure, the control method is still rather odd (although, it could work brilliantly on a tablet display, I bet!), but at least now you stand a bit more of a chance!

The second screen, and death is mere seconds away!

So, with the control method improved, what's the game like? Well, time's not been too kind to Barbarian, and if I'm honest, I'm not that sure if it played that well even back in 1987. The main problem is, that like the Rick Dangerous series of games, which appeared later in the Amiga's history, you have no chance of avoiding the majority of deaths your character will undoubtedly meet. Playing the game is a case of entering one screen, getting killed due to some hidden trap or charging creature, remembering how/why you died, conquering that screen on your next attempt, and then repeating.

It's clearly not just me who feels this way, as the below quote from the August 1987 issue of CU Amiga shows;
"...the only way to succeed is to play the game and gradually discover the tricks and pitfalls as you go along; for instance, there are various disappearing floors which no one could anticipate until you have been there once".
Grumblings aside, I must admit that once you're armed with a decent mouse, the game is actually quite fun to play. I can't ever see me actually completing it, but now that I've improved the control method greatly, it's not really a bad little title. CU Amiga gave it a 6 out of 10 in their review, and while I think that's a little harsh (I'd probably give it a 7), it's certainly not one of the greats released for our favourite computer.

The Recorded Amiga Games team have put together a nice walkthrough of Barbarian, which you can find below;

Give the game a go and see what you think. Happy clicking!

Monday, 28 January 2013

Vote For The Best Amiga Games of 2012

Following a number of extremely lean years, 2012 turned out to be a golden one for Amiga users, with a decent selection of playable and actually high quality, game releases appearing for our favourite computer.

Regular readers of the blog may recall that according to the latest batch of stats in from Deff's Amiga Game List, 2012 saw the most number of Amiga games released since 1998!

With 2012 now an ever fading memory, Deff has decided that now is the time for us to vote for our favourite Amiga games of 2012.

To cover all Amiga platforms and off-shoot operating systems, the top three games from each of the following will be tallied: AmigaOS 68k, AmigaOS 4.x, MorphOS and AROS. The results will be revealed on Wednesday, February 6th, 2012.

To place your votes you'll need to point your web browsers over to:

Results for 2011 and 2010 were as follows:


For AmigaOS 68k :

1. Mr Beanbag (Jigsaw Lounge)
2. Bermuda Syndrome (Century Interactive)
3. Barrage (Michael Speck)

For AmigaOS 4.x

1. 1941 Extreme Deluxe Dual Players 2.0 (Badblocks, Hugues Nouvel)
2. Swamp Defense (EntwicklerX)
3. River Pirate (EntwicklerX)

For MorphOS

1. Return To Castle Wolfenstein (ID Software, Gray Matter Interactive)
2. 1941 Extreme Deluxe Dual Players 2.0 (Badblocks, Hugues Nouvel)
3. Simutrans (Hansjoerg Malthaner, Simutrans Team)


1. UFO: Alien Invasion (UFO: Alien Invasion Team)
2. Assault Cube (Rabid Viper Productions)
3. Cube 2: Sauerbraten (Wouter Van Oortmerssen)


For AmigaOS 68k :

1. Tracker Hero (GUS Entertainment)
2. Zelda Time To Triumph (Vincent Jouillat)
3. Looking for Xmas (Joerg Renker)

For AmigaOS 4.x

1. Aquaria (Bit Blot)
2. Descent Freespace 2 (Volition / Interplay)
3. Warzone 2100 (Pumpkin Studios, Warzone Resurection Project)

For MorphOS

1. Fortis (Encore Games)
2. Aquaria (Bit Blot)
3. UFO Alien Invasion (UFO Alien Invasion Team)


1. Aquaria (Bit Blot)
2. Quake 3 Arena (ID Software)
3. 1941 Extreme Deluxe (Badblocks, Hugues Nouvel)

Sunday, 20 January 2013

Amiga Puzzler "Szalter", Released!

Here's something that may interest all you puzzle fans out there, a new Polish Amiga game entitled "Szalter" (which means "switch", in English).

Coded in AMOS, this looks to be one of those games that will really get the old grey matter going, and one of those games that's simple to pick up put hard to master.

With lightbulbs being one of the main themes to this, it brought back memories of many happy hours spent in front of Bug Byte's 1982 Spectrum title "Spectres", even though they're completely different types of game.

Here's English Amiga Board member mailman, with further details;
"Benedykt Dziubałtowski and Czesław Mnich have a great pleasure to present their first game called Szalter. It is a logic game in which you move around the maze trying to light all the bulbs. Walking near the bulb you may activate or deactivate it, depending on the state it was in.

The game was created as some sort of a milestone in Benedykt's experience in learning how to program on Amiga. Czesław is responsible for all the graphics part while XTD gave the permission to use one of his tunes.

The authors are aware that the game, due to its simplicity, is far from being perfect but they would like it to be their cornerstone in Amiga game development. If you like this game, use the PayPal button and show them your support so it could give them motivation to create more games.

The game was tested on 68000, 68030 and 68060. It requires 1 MB RAM. The game runs from floppy as well as from hard disk. The latter requires to copy all the files to a place of your choice. Important is not to forget about amos.library required in LIBS directory of SYS partition".
Footage of the pre-release version of the game can be found below...

For more information, and to download the game, go to:

Friday, 18 January 2013

Amivania - Beta Preview Footage Released!

I originally gave Amiten's Amivania project a brief mention in the run-up to Christmas, when I took a look at a number of projects he was currently working on.

Back then the game looked like a hybrid of NES and Super Nintendo graphics, giving the game an unusual, but eye catching mix of 8 and 16-bit graphic styles.

Since then Amiten has been hard at work on his project, and it's safe to say that it's really starting to take shape, as this clip below shows;

Here's Amiten with a few words;
"This is a remake of the famous saga, [Castlevania], [by] Konami.

This time Richter is once again embroiled in a battle with the forces of evil where you have to fight demons, ghosts and other creatures sent to derail our vampire hunter ...

Technical Details:

The game is designed from sprites and backgrounds of several titles, from the legendary saga from Super Nintendo versions to stuff [from] the Last Lord of Shadows or Mirror of Fate, so fun is guaranteed as far as visuals are concerned.

The game features a screen resolution [which] in this first level has a background of 1000 pixels wide by 256 high, all with the lowres [...] resolution mode that offers more colors on screen or mode super EHB 32 + 32 Opaque Bright Colors, [making] the game look very copper above normal to 32 games or 16 colours that are very abundant in Amiga. This coupled with [...] fluid [...] hardware scrolling, 50fps in which we can go [along] the map from right to left and back again so that we have [enough] space [...] to kill all the enemies.

In the sound section we have a remake of one of the themes of the series in question Castlevania: Dracula X, for [the] Super Nintendo. The music [uses two sound channels] with effects sampled by the two remaining channels. [This gives us] 4 channels of sound [...].

As for the gameplay, I tried everything I could [to]] debug the fluidity of movement and [improve the] collision detection, so the answer is the best and fastest way. This is one of the most difficult [aspects] to program in almost any game[...]. The dynamics of the game [are to] eliminate a certain number of enemies [before] we can confront the Dragon who is [at] the [end] of this first level.

[There is] still work to do. I want to say that [there is] only one person [...] behind all this development. [I will use] all my knowledge and [free] time, [but] always bear in mind that one person [is working on everything in this production]. I do not pretend that this game [will be] a blockbuster."
The original and full post can be found at the following location over on the English Amiga Board:

Elsewhere, you can check out the Amivania blog, over at:

Wednesday, 16 January 2013

Update 42 of "Daff's" Amiga Games List Released

News in from David 'Daff' Brunet reveals that update 42 of his Amiga Games List has just been released.

Founded in April 1991, the goals of the project are to list every Amiga game, level editor, expansion disk and interpreter released for the platform. This latest update brings the total number of entries to a whopping 11,894!

The entries are broken down as follows:

10802 Games
912 Extensions or data discs
134 Game/level editors
46 Interpreters

Because the web site holds so much data it's a wealth of fascinating stats, facts and figures. For example, did you know that in 2012 the Amiga received the most number of game related releases since 1998, that there have been almost 1000 AGA releases, or that 1992 was the biggest year for Amiga games?

Check out the site for yourself at:

Those of you on Twitter may want to follow the site updates at: @Obligement

Thursday, 10 January 2013

Codetapper Interviews Programmer Dave Semmens

The man responsible for tracking down many an Amiga programmer has done it again.

In his first question and answer session of 2013, Codetapper interviews ex-Amiga programmer Dave Semmens. Dave worked on a number of Amiga games, programming them all himself except for the game Rainbow Warriors which had a team of 3 programmers.

In the interview Dave explains how he got into programming back in the early 1980s, and how this amateur interest developed into a career.

Dave's Amiga softography consists of the following titles:

* Rainbow Warriors (1989)
* SAS Combat Simulator (1990)
* Spellfire The Sorceror (1990)
* Kid Gloves 2: The Journey Back (1992)
* The Incredible Crash Dummies (1994)
* The Lion King (1995)

(Spellfire the Sorcerer)

The full interview with Dave can be found by pointing your web browser at:

To view the full list of interviews currently online at Codetapper's site, go to:

Wednesday, 9 January 2013

The EAB Top 100 Amiga Games 2012 - Results!

Way back in October, English Amiga Board forumite Graham Humphrey, asked forum members to nominate their top 10 Amiga games, with the idea that those titles selected would be used to produce an EAB Top 100 Amiga Games 2012 chart.

Now, with the nominations all in and the results tallied-up, Graham has been able to reveal the results.

Below you'll find the top 20 titles, listed in order of popularity. For details of where you can find the full list as well as discover the least popular game, please read further down this blog post.

1. Speedball 2
2. Cannon Fodder
3. Turrican 2
4. Sensible World Of Soccer
5. Lemmings
6. Frontier
7. The Secret Of Monkey Island
8. The Settlers
9. The Chaos Engine
10. Slam Tilt
11. Dune 2
12. Stunt Car Racer
13. Battle Squadron
14. Wings
15. Monkey Island 2
16. Flashback
17. Lotus 2
18. Sensible Soccer
19. Another World
20. Turrican

The above by no means gives the full picture. For the complete list of results, please point your web browser over to:

Here's hoping a the EAB members set up something similar for 2013, as it'll be interesting to see how the results change over the course of 12 months.

Thanks go to EAB forumite Graham Humprey, for organising the 2012 nominations and collating the results. A special mention should also go to forumite Chat Rob 1, for his initial compiling of the results in an effort to take some of the workload off Graham.

Tuesday, 8 January 2013

It's The Amiga Screenshot Challenge

Think you know your Championship Manager from your Kick Off, or your Hired Guns from your Eye of The Beholder? If so, you may want to test your Amiga gaming knowledge with Starfield Software's Amiga Screenshot Challenge.

Spanning 100 photos across multiple decades of the Amiga's reign, this "name the picture" challenge is sure to push even the most hardened Amiga gamer.

Each question presents you with a game screenshot, and below that are four choices of game titles. Naturally, only one of these is the correct one. Select the right answer and your score goes up. Select one of the three incorrect ones and you're simply moved on to the next question.

Once the quiz is complete you even get the option to tweet your final score to your Twitter followers. Mine was a lowly 81 out of 100. Don't laugh. It's pretty hard!

Looking through my Twitter feed at others who had also taken part in the quiz, one complaint seemed to be that there were too many football games featured, and I have to agree.

Still, the above is a small criticism for what's an enjoyable 5 minute diversion.

Check it out at:

Rick Dangerous Style Game in Development

It may be sneered at by some, but the AMOS based game development environment "Backbone", seems to be gaining a bit of a following.

A number of projects are currently in development using the package, (see last Wednesday's blog post, for example) and yesterday (7th Jan) yet another title was announced.

Here's English Amiga Board member and game developer amiman99 with some details and footage of his creation in action;

"Here is a preview of my game made with Backbone, Cammy's textures are heavily modified for the game and music is taken from Sound Terrific MOD compilation (author is unknown).

More levels are coming up.
Naturally, I'll be blogging about the progress of this title on the blog, as and when updates surface. However, if you'd like to follow this yourself, you can find the relevant EAB thread here:

Monday, 7 January 2013

The Official EAB Top 100 Amiga Games 2012 - Results Delayed

Way back on the 1st of October last year English Amiga Board moderator Graham Humphrey, began collating votes for the Official EAB Top 100 Amiga Games of 2012.

The rules stated that you could only nominate a maximum of 10 games, with your first place title receiving 10 points, and the one in tenth place receiving just 1. Voting would close at 23:59 UK time on 31st October, with any votes sent in after that date being discarded.

With the date for nominations passed things have been rather quiet in the thread. That was until EAB member lifeschool, posted the following message as a gentle prod;

I know it's a mammoth task to make this list Graham, so no problem if this has been put on hold, but I'm certainly still interested to find out the top games, and the worst games".
Graham has been quick to respond, and gave the following update;
"[I'm] still writing it... I've bitten off more than I can chew with various projects but it is being written. I will definitely finish this off but no timescales. Glad someone is waiting for it though!"
Looks like you'll have to wait that bit longer. Once the 2012 results are posted I'll give you a heads-up on this very blog, so don't panic.

Sunday, 6 January 2013

Lemon Amiga's Top 10 Amiga Games You've Probably Never Heard of - Pt 3/3

(I must apologise for the delay in getting this blog post completed. I thought I'd set it to perform a scheduled submit, but it looks like I didn't. Whoops!)

Over the past couple of weeks the Lemon Amiga team have submitted a number of videos to Google's YouTube, highlighting some of the best Amiga games you've probably never heard of.

I've found the hour long videos to be excellent resources in helping to showcase numerous classic Amiga titles that, for one reason or another, have completely passed me by.

If you've missed out on the first two videos, you can find Amiga Gamer blog posts, along with links to them, below:

Part One
Part Two

The third and final part in the series has recently been released, bringing this current Amiga archaeological journey to an end.

Here's what the Lemon Amiga team have to say about this last segment;
"In this bumper edition, we check out the final three categories in our compendium of the Top 10 Amiga Games you've hopefully never even heard about.

I know most Amiga users will get a kick out of these, although there are still a few games (Foundation?) that are still common enough to recognise.

Each of our top 5 categories play for 30mins, and at the end of each section we'll see the game I think deserves the award for the virtually unknown gem in the pack. I've saved a few good games (and a few bags of tripe) for last.

Thanks for watching these films, and I hope you get as much enjoyment out of these as I do watching them back".

So, what made the Lemon Amiga team decide to put these videos together in the first place? Well, wonder now more, as here's the explanation;
"In the middle of July, 2012, I decided to run my own competition on the Lemon forum. I chose F1GP - and the whole thing (after a few hickups) went well.

A few weeks later I got to wondering if F1GP was the only polygon 3D F1 racer on the Amiga? I'd seen Grand Prix Circuit from my C64 days, and Revs, Indy 500 of course on the Amiga, and well.. not much else. In my search I found out about a mythical 'Alien' Grand Prix. I then discovered the full game was known as Virtual Grand Prix, and found it as a CD on the internet. The game was a B#STARD to get going; an absolute PIG! I wanted to love it but the game was just not giving.

A week later I discovered the patch and gladly upgraded it to 1.0D - where the handling of the vehicle, plus the workability of the Monza track, made me think WOW - I need to get this out to people.

Weeks later I started my long trawl through archives in seach of things I'd never heard about before. Yes, you guessed it, ALL of the games in these videos were all games I'd never even heard about before (except Virtual Ball Fighters, Generic Species and Foundation - which I'd seem in mags). Now just the simple matter of installing them all (Shadow Of The Third Moon was another PIG!), and having a go at them one by one.

These are my very first goes you can see in these videos. Nowt taken out. ;)

Then I put them all into groups and did all this 'Top 10' stuff. So now you get it.

These games were all brand new to me - so if I'm not playing so well, it's because I've thrown myself in at the deep end".
I've really enjoyed the three videos produced by the Lemon Amiga team, and I hope that my blogging has at least encouraged a few more people to hop over to their YouTube channel and check the clips out.

Here's hoping the team decide to put something else together before too long.

Wednesday, 2 January 2013

WIP - Action Adventure created with Backbone

In my first blog post of 2013 I bring news of a new Zelda-like game currently in development.

Designed by English Amiga Board moderator, viddi, this Backbone created project is already showing much promise, and looks to be one title worth keeping an eye on.

At present, only a German language version is in the works, so those unable to speak the lingo will need to fire up Google translate.

A work in progress video of the game in its current form can be found below.

To follow the progress and join in with the discussion of this currently un-named title, point your web browser over to: