Did you know...
Behind the scenes, we have started a Herculean task some time ago: reviewing all the contents we have produced in the last 20+ years. Trying to see what we still consider good and what could be improved by today's standards. As it turns out, we produced some really nice write-ups over the years, but some others have become rather dated or they're in some other way not really in line with our own expectations anymore.
One such case was Battle Bugs. This game was one of the four initially covered at the day of the website's opening. Reading my old review, I found that it really deserved a fresh look. Don't worry, the "historical" one remains there for those who still want to read it, but the one posted today is now considered "default". Enjoy!Mr Creosote
As if 3DO and CD-i weren't obscure enough, LostInSpace adds the Atari XEGS to our list of generally unknown and unsuccessful game console coverage. The obvious first choice to introduce a system being its bundled launch title: Bug Hunt. This one being special in another way as well, with regards to its controller. Good thing that our hero can discuss first-hand impressions.Mr Creosote
As I'm writing these lines, my daughter is watching a cartoon where a kid Marco Polo travels into the far east in search of his father. It's actually not too bad. Although there is absolutely no relation to this Marco Polo game, I will probably not always associate the cartoon's title tune with the game. Anyway… indeed, trying to construct any parallel, one could argue that this game also falls within the area of family entertainment. For sure, it was intended as a communal experience sitting on the couch in front of a TV.Mr Creosote
Do you remember Kai's Power Goo? Yup, that tool which made photos look exactly like this? Leading to thirty seconds of chuckle before realizing that it was utterly useless? No, this is not what you will find on our website now.
Instead, my latest 3DO pick is Psychic Detective, an interactive movie from the mid-1990s. Interactive movie? Yes, I know, but please believe me when I say that this one is different. Far from perfect for sure, but full of smart ideas. The manual hinted at sequels (labellling this one the protagonist's "first case") which never appeared. Too bad!Mr Creosote
If you were leading a conscious life in the early 1980s, you will certainly remember Richard Chamberlain in the role of John Blackthorne. Learning basic Japanese and bowing a lot, but switching to annoying "olde English" with a lot of "thys" and "thees" when wooing his sweetheart Yoko Shimada, while Toshiro Mifune attempted to become Shōgun. In 1989, players already had their second chance to do better. No, that's not right. They had the chance to do exactly as well as Blackthorne, or worse and fail.
On an interesting sidenote, this was one of the last games made and released by Infocom, long past their market leadership in adventure games.Mr Creosote
Whoops, what is this? An Ultima Underworld sequel made by SSI? Not a bad guess. With Slayer, released only on the 3DO console, SSI took the plunge into 360° free movement dungeon adventuring. Turned out this was among the last few releases they could squeeze out of their D&D licence.Mr Creosote
LostInSpace dives into another area of obscurity. Not the least bit less obscure, but just different. Wizard of Wasd for sure is the newest game on our website. Brand new, just released this year! Nevertheless, it fits perfectly into our website theme, as it has not only been made for a 40-year-old system, but also under other severe resource restrictions. Unbelievable what some people can squeeze out of so little!Mr Creosote
What better way to celebrate our relaunch than by diversifying our contents as well? Celebrating my penchant for "underdog" systems, the 3DO Interactive Multiplayer seemed like the perfect choice.
The decentralized nature of 3DO development, with no single, strong corporate backer, lead to a not so nice situation for the system. At launch, there were few games available. Crash 'n Burn is said to be the only third party title available at the time, and some sources claim it was bundled with the first Panasonic hardware. As we all know, the 3DO flopped. How much of the blame has to go to this game?Mr Creosote
Looks like our constant recording of what's going on in our neighbour's house is finally going to pay off! Let's hope we will not run out of battery prematurely. Now that would be inconvenient after all this waiting.
Waiting being the key word here. A couple of years passed between the first part and this sequel. Those years had made the death of the original game's home platform plainly obvious. So obvious that Voyeur II wasn't even released on the CD-i anymore, but rather only for the IBM platform. Friends of cheesy 1980s soap operas could therefore rejoice – finally some fresh material!Mr Creosote
Uh, yes, those graphics aren't very good. This is what they thought could compete with the lush art of Magnetic Scrolls? Dream on!
Turns out they couldn't, as sales for Level 9 never picked up to former greatness again. Though looking beyond the cover, Knight Orc is worth a second look. Or a third one. Or even a larger discussion. Because it could have given a whole new direction to a by that time aging genre.Mr Creosote