I love pixel art, so I’m going to do a sequence of quick posts with examples of impressive art on the 8 bits. I’m starting with the Amstrad, in my opinion the Amstrad often had the most vibrant colours.
One of the most frequent criticisms I hear of the C64 is that the games were mainly arcade games. While its true that the hardware sprites and scrolling on the C64 lent its self to arcade conversions, there were many other genres of games available.
I’m going to take this opportunity to list 25 here. These aren’t necessarily the best of the best, there is plenty of games I haven’t played, although they are all good games in their own right. I am trying to include different genres, excluding text adventures and I’m not including Elite as it’s too obvious. Finally the list isn’t in order of greatness.
There’s probably loads of games I’ve missed, so please comment if you think a game needs including and I’ll see what I can do. I’ll try and keep this updated.
2) Bards Tale
4) Football Manager
5) Maniac Mansion
7) North & South
8) Laser Squad
9) Zak McKracken
10) Ultima V
11) Eternal Dagger
12) Might and Magic 2
13) Law of The West
14) Defender of the Crown
15) Little Computer People
16) Black Gold
17) Times of Lore
19) Crearures 2
20) Space Rogue
21) Prince of Persia
22) Last Ninja
23) Psi 5 Trading Company
25) Forbidden Forest
Don’t worry there is going to be some love for the Spectrum soon, I’m working on a best of list…
I’ve had a few comments from people on my last list pointing out some glaring omissions. A few of these like Lemmings and Secret of Monkey Island I didn’t include because I associate them more with the Amiga. Which is probably not the best way to do a To 10, so I’ve decided to to a quick updated Top 10.
Secret of Monkey Island
Mega Lo Mania
Prince of Persia
Honourable mentions to Blood Money, Indiana Jones and The Last Crusade, Sim City, Substation, Starball (PD), Gods and Defender of The Crown
The Acorn Electron was my first computer. When thinking about games for this list I had to make sure I wasn’t getting confused with games I played on the C64.
It’s also worth noting this isn’t the best Electron games of all time, just the games I played most, although some are rightly considered to be the best.
So here goes, buckle up…
Zorak the Conqueror
So a slightly obscure game to start but one I probably played the most. I have a bit of soft spot for strategy games, and this was one of the first strategy games I played. You moved around a map recruiting soldiers and fighting other armies.
This game needs no introduction, a space trading game, the scope of this was amazing considering the technological limitations.
The Electrons version of classic game Pacman.
Bears a remarkable resemblance to Galaxians.
Classic platform game, aged better than many of its contemporaries.
Probably my most played game after Zorak. Repton is moved around an underground cavern, collecting diamonds while avoiding getting trapped or flattened by falling rocks. Very much a puzzle game with similarities to Boulder dash, but in my opinion a better experience.
Twin Kingdom Valley
Big fan of the text adventure genre, this was the first one I played that also had graphics, which seemed amazing at the time
Never really understood what was going on in this game, but I enjoyed playing it.
Confession time, I never played this game on my real Electron. Some one reccomended this game to me recently and I love it. Reminds me a little of Lost Vikings, it’s a puzzle strategy, in which the protagonist can change into creatures each with a unique special ability. Each level poses a puzzle that will require combining abilities to complete.
I’ve always had a soft spot for Atari, even the much maligned Atari Jaguar. Think my fondness originates from childhood, my first gaming system was an Atari 2600. I missed out on the Atari 8 bit computers, mainly because in the UK they didn’t have the same impact as they did in other countries, like the US.
My next Atari system was the Atari ST, and I loved it. A proper computer not just a gaming system, I got nearly as much joy programming in GFA basic and STOS as I did playing games like Blood Money, IK+, Lotus Turbo Cballenge (3 of the first games I got).
Most of my friends had Amigas, so eventually I did get an Amiga, but I loved my ST just as much as my A500.
Everthing oozed class with this game, from the cinematic intro to the enthralling gameplay. Who could forget the set piece in the first level with the lion type monster. It was a great Sci-Fi action adventure game with platform elements.
Maybe it’s because I played it first on the Atari but I always thought the gameplay seemed a bit slicker when compared to the Amiga. It probably wasn’t.
I loved this game, a strategy game with good graphics. Gather resources, research weapons (from rocks to missiles) and finally defeat your opponents for control of the area.
A classic point and click adventure based on the film of the same name. Came with a physical copy of the grail diary which contained hints.
Strategy action game. Great fun.
I really enjoyed this game, maybe there was better shmups on the Atari but this was a very good game and the first game I played on the ST
I’ve loved Prince of Persia on every format I’ve played it. A tricky platform game with brilliant animation.
Fast futuristic sports game with good graphics and sound. You would expect nothing else from the Bitmap Brothers.
Ever since I played Bards Tale on c64 I loved RPG games, this was fueled by the occasional games of Dungeons and Dragons I played as a child. This had impressive graphics and solid gameplay.
This is blew me away when I first played it, ran smoothly with a large view area on my stock STe. Very impressive, although not very colourful the graphics looked really smooth in gameplay.
Classic city building strategy game.
What were your favourite Atari ST games? Disagree with my top 10, please comment.