User review spotlight: Carmageddon (DOS). Released in 1997.

Starfighter 3000 (DOS)

64
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Description

3037. FedNet is now in control of the federation, and at an attempt to gain trust of the population following decades of corruption and warfare, the FedNet Space Corps were sent to the outermost planets to crush the small-time warlords still running the show there. After being "convinced" to join them in a tour of duty, he is assigned to an elite flight group with the only purpose of testing the most cutting edge technology.

A remake of the original game of the same title released a few years before for the Acorn Archimedes platform, Starfighter 3000 features more detailed graphics (now all surfaces are texture-mapped and a fogging filter reduces clipping). Featuring 15 levels in 4 worlds, the player controls the Predator Mark-IV, a fighter ship capable of space and atmospheric flight. However, other than the handy boost button, the player has no control over the throttle, (unless he uses a flight stick with thrust controls such as 3DO's CH Pro stick) and must keep moving at all times.

In post 3DO releases, only two points of view are available: behind (better for acrobatics and general flying) and cockpit (accurate aiming and NOE flight). The 3DO release contained several more, like a TV style fly-by-cam, weapon cameras, and enemy cams that could show a nearby enemies' POV.

By picking up crystals the player is able to upgrade his craft and obtain more ammo, and by combining colours, get more powerful weapons, some also obtainable from parachute drops sent by FedNet.

One of the defining features of the game is using the laser (basic weapon) to terraform the map. As the game map is composed by tiles, some with higher or lower vertexes, can be leveled by simply firing repeatedly at the same area. This allows players to strategically avoid heavy defense turrets by simply collapsing a hill, or destroy an heavier turret by simply burrowing the ground beneath it.

The player starts the game with three lives, and earns one every 250k points. Losing all lives means a game over, but as there isn't a profile for each pilot (like in Tie Fighter), the game can be resumed freely from the last savegame.

Screenshots

Starfighter 3000 DOS It's possible to attack a turret by destroying the ground beneath it
Starfighter 3000 DOS Climb high enough, and you can see the stars.
Starfighter 3000 DOS 10 rockets added to the inventory
Starfighter 3000 DOS Just starting...

Alternate Titles

  • "Star Fighter" -- 3DO title
  • "スターファイター3000" -- Japanese spelling

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The Press Says

PC Games (Germany) Jul, 1996 82 out of 100 82
High Score Oct, 1996 4 out of 5 80
Gamezilla 1996 70 out of 100 70
Power Play Jul, 1996 52 out of 100 52
PC Player (Germany) Aug, 1996 2 Stars2 Stars2 Stars2 Stars2 Stars 40

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Trivia

Mail order form

The game carried a mail order form for a special game-themed flight jacket for £39.99.

RISC OS versions

There were two releases for RISC OS (listed as Acorn 32-bit here). The original version (release one) was released in 1994 on two 3.5" floppy discs for the Acorn Archimedes and Risc PC. When the StrongARM processor upgrade was introduced for Risc PC in 1996, as with many other games several incompatibilities were discovered. Even more problems arose after the introduction of RISC OS 4 in 1999. In 2000 Christopher Bazley released SFpatch to resolve the incompatibilities. iSV Products re-released the game in 2001 (release two) with the changes as Starfighter 3000: Other Worlds. More patches were released and in November 2003 APDL, who had taken over publishing from iSV Products, released a 32-bit compatible version (release 3) that also ran natively on the then new Iyonix PC. It could also run in a window on the RISC OS desktop and introduced additional bug fixes for problems dating back to the first version of the game. Instead of buying the full release it was also possible to receive the third version for a lower price if you returned the disc of version two to APDL. In September 2005 a patch (version 3.14) was released for owners for any version of the game, also release one, to bring every version to the latest one and to make all previous patches obsolete. The game is now at version 3.17.

There was also a second version of the game, developed by FlaYmz (formerly Visions Of The Impossible), headed by Nathan Atkinson, called Starfighter 3000: Next Generation. FlaYmz were created from ex-VOTI members as the last involvement the VOTI team had in the RISC OS scene as the market was deteriorating rapidly. The new company name was created as it was felt necessary to keep Starfighter 3000: NG separate from the VOTI catalogue. The game is a port of the later released 1996 3DO version to bring over the graphical enhancements from that release. Code was sourced from one of the original coders Andrew P. Hutchings but the most problematic task was to deal with the many graphical routines which the 3DO used its hardware for. Documentation on the 3DO was difficult to find so the programming effort was massive, being entirely done by Lee Noar. Other people involved were Paul Thomson, Lee Johnston and Ramuh who were all involved in the bolt on introduction sequence.

Originally the game was designed for the new Microdigital Omega PC, to be sold in 2003, but the deal with Microdigital fell through when the company started having monetary issues. After five years this version of the game was released through the April 2008 RISCWorld DVD included with the magazine. Nathan Atkinson was also involved with orchestrating release two of the initial version of the game through iSV Products.
Luis Silva (13294) added Starfighter 3000 (DOS) on Jan 17, 2007
Other platforms contributed by Alaka (31146), Kabushi (126886) and Big John WV (25272)