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Gorf (VIC-20)

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4.1
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Written by  :  David Ledgard (63)
Written on  :  Jul 16, 2006
Platform  :  VIC-20
Rating  :  3.25 Stars3.25 Stars3.25 Stars3.25 Stars3.25 Stars

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Summary

"Long Live Gorf!" 4 Levels including: Space Invaders, Galaxians, and Mothership.

The Good

It was very advanced for it time and much like games in the Arcades, and Motorway Service Station Games areas. I spent many hours of my childhood playing it on my 3.5 kByte RAM VIC 20 Computer. It actually came as an 8 kByte ROM Plug-in VIC 20 Cartridge [Code: Vic-1923] so loaded instantly. No waiting for ages for the tape cassette drive to load it.

Gorf was one of the first video games to have more than 1 level. There are 4 different levels in this classic space shooter. Play was controlled with a center mounted joystick ("flight stick") type controller that plugged into a 9-way D-type connector (UP, DOWN, LEFT, RIGHT, FIRE, and COMMON GROUND lines). It was fun controlling the game this way. PC's seem to have lost Joystick attachments for some reason. Perhaps the PC designers regarded them as too Nerdy.

The Bad

It got a bit repetitive after a while repeating the same 4 levels over and over again.

It you took the Cartridge out while the Computer was still on it blow it up!!!!!! This happened with my Galaxian Cartridge and my VIC NEVER worked again :-( I even ordered an expensive chip to fix it, but that didn't help.

The Commodore VIC 20 originally cost £300 [GBP]. A lot of money in 1982. The Commodore 64 came out 6 months later for the SAME price with a whopping 64 kByte of RAM as opposed to the VIC's 3.5 kByte! It was largely based on the Colour VIC but also had 40 chars./line instead of 22. Luckily the Cartridge added 8 kbyte of extra ROM. Both used TV's as monitors.

The Bottom Line

Produced by: Commodore Electrics Ltd. Year of Release: 1982

Gorf had the following four levels:

ASTRO-BATTLES: The first level was a Space Invaders clone with a few minor differences. You had a full curving force field instead of the four shields used in classic Space Invaders. You can also move all around the lower half of the screen, instead of being confined to the very bottom.

LASER ATTACK: You are up against 2 ships armed with deadly lasers, which are defended by several Galaxian style escort ships. This is a quick and easy level, although you may find yourself zapped if you aren't careful. The laser ships regenerate every few seconds as long as other ships remain on screen. But there are so few ships that a good player can beat this level in seconds.

SPACE WARP: A whirlpool like vortex fills the center of the screen. Enemy ships spiral out from the middle growing larger as the get closer. They only attack one at a time. So this level isn't very difficult (at least not the first time around). FLAG SHIP: Avoid the rockets of the Mothership while you try and score a hit on its only weak spot (the internal power reactor vent). Once that is hit the ship explodes and you start the game over at a higher difficulty setting. From the manual: MESSAGE FROM INTERSTELLAR SPACE FORCE COMMAND. “Space Cadet: By the time you read this communiqué, we of the Interstellar Space Force Command will have been destroyed. The evil Gorfian Empire has launched an all-out attack. You are Earth's last hope! Your assignment is to repel the invasion and launch a counterattack. You will engage various hostile spacecraft as you journey toward a dramatic confrontation with the enemy Flag Ship! You will be rewarded for your success with promotions in rank and praise from a grateful planet. But you must act quickly, Space Cadet! Brief yourself on the Gorfian Robot Armada and then attack before it's...TOO LATE!!”