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Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back

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Critic Reviews 73% add missing review

Micro User, The (9 out of 10) (90%)

The Empire Strikes Back is an all-action, zap and blast arcade game and even better than Star Wars.

Dec 1988 · BBC Micro

Crash! (90 out of 100) (90%)

Domark go from strength to strength. The Empire Strikes Back has all the speed, playability and graphics of the arcade machine. A must for all fans of the trilogy.

Jul 1988 · ZX Spectrum · read review

Games Machine, The (UK) (89 out of 100) (89%)

Though the game itself is an old one, the ST conversion is great and remains highly addictive.

Sep 1988 · Atari ST · read review

Games Machine, The (UK) (89 out of 100) (89%)

A rather dated arcade machine has been replicated almost perfectly on the Amiga and all Star Wars fans should love it. While the repetitive and limited nature of the action might ultimately disappoint, this is certainly an extremely accurate conversion which is both very playable and enjoyable.

Nov 1988 · Amiga · read review

Sinclair User (88 out of 100) (88%)

Empire, whilst remarkably simple and maybe even a little bit tired as a formula, is simply the best of its ilk. It's fast, easy to play and doesn't require a great deal of thought. In short, it's just a great deal of fun.

Aug 1988 · ZX Spectrum · read review

Games Machine, The (UK) (87 out of 100) (87%)

The vector graphics features in Star Wars are very much in evidence, their standard competes against the best of the genre: 3-D Starstrike and Starglider. Fast moving and colourful sprites scroll smoothly around the screen. Animation is good, especially of the AT-ATs.

Aug 1988 · ZX Spectrum · read review

Zzap! (82 out of 100) (82%)

An excellent conversion - atmospheric, addictive and faithful to the coin-op.

Nov 1988 · Amiga · read review

Your Sinclair (8 out of 10) (80%)

In the words of the immortal Yoda: "Adventure, excitement - a Jedi craves not these things" but he or she is certainly going to get them from this blaster. However. If i have one reservation about The Empire Strikes Back it's about the game's lastability. The problem is that the gameplay is just a touch too easy and therefore most experienced gamesplayers will lose interest relatively quickly (or maybe I've just learned to use the force but I doubt it). It's good. But a little more work and it may have been a classic.

Sep 1988 · ZX Spectrum · read review

Atari ST User (8 out of 10) (80%)

Fans of the original game will welcome this with open arms, and if you haven't seen it before, then why on earth not? It's a brilliant game, so buy it.

Oct 1988 · Atari ST · read review

Computer and Video Games (CVG) (8 out of 10) (80%)

The only thing that lets it down is it occasionally slow screen update, but other than that the game is excellent and well worth looking up.

Aug 1988 · ZX Spectrum · read review

Crash! (78 out of 100) (78%)

[Budget re-release] Empire Strikes Back is one of the best of the 'Star Wars' games. The vector graphics give an excellent feeling of being out in deep space. The Darth Vader graphics used between levels aren't up to much though. A great game for all fans of 'Star Wars' and blasting games, if a bit easy.

Jan 1991 · ZX Spectrum · read review

Your Sinclair (76 out of 100) (76%)

[Budget re-release] The graphics are pretty smooth and fast, but the main problem lies with the difficulty – there simply isn't any. I don't like to boast or anything but I quite happily completed the thing on my second go ever (in easy mode, of course), so goodness knows how much of a pushover you guys'll find it. Still, it's fun 'til the novelty wears off.

Jan 1991 · ZX Spectrum · read review

ST Action (75 out of 100) (75%)

The well presented vector graphics, combined with the zappy effects all helped to give Empire that polished feel. I thoroughly enjoyed this game, in spite of the asteroid level. My only gripe is that the game's ending is a little bland. The first incarnation, Star Wars, at least saw you accomplishing something with the destruction of the Death Star. The Empire Strikes Back, unfortunately, ends rather abruptly.

Oct 1988 · Atari ST · read review

ACE (Advanced Computer Entertainment) (665 out of 1000) (66%)

The Empire Strikes Back captures all the flavour and all the fun of the original coin-op. Unfortunately, the lack of variety and challenge means it doesn't take long to master the game.

Oct 1988 · Atari ST · read review

Commodore User (6 out of 10) (60%)

The Empire Strikes back provides little in the way of a long term challenge except for increasing your score. Fine for fans of the arcade, but not so hot for everyone else.

Sep 1988 · Commodore 64 · read review

ST/Amiga Format (60 out of 100) (60%)

And, ye, there's the odd burst of sampled sound from the film between levels. But difficulty and lasting interest there ain't.

Sep 1988 · Atari ST · read review

All Game Guide ( ) (60%)

Sounds and music from the movie have also been updated, but The Empire Strikes Back is mostly a straightforward conversion of Star Wars.

1998 · Arcade · read review

Amstrad Action (51 out of 100) (51%)

A couple of years ago this would have been a good game, but it looks dated badly. It's an improvement on Star Wars, but the lack of speed lets it down considerably, because fast reactions is what the Star Wars games are all about. What will they do with Return of the Jedi?

Nov 1988 · Amstrad CPC · read review

Power Play (48 out of 100) (48%)

Eine merkwürdige Mischung: Drei kindisch einfache Levels und eine teuflisch schwere Asteroiden-Sequenz, die kaum ein Mensch schaffen kann, die mit einem billigen Trick aber ganz einfach überlistet werden kann. Spielspaß kommt da nur für wenige Minuten auf und mit dem spannenden Automaten ist kein Vergleich zu ziehen. Dazu kommt, daß die 3D-Grafik von „The Empire Strikes Back“ auf dem ST langsamer ist als die von „Star Wars“. Wieso hat Domark für das neue Spiel andere, anscheinend schlechtere Programmierer verpflichtet? Lobenswert ist nur die schöne Umsetzung der Star-Wars-Musik, die Soundeffekte sind hingegen von der müden Art.

Sep 1988 · Atari ST · read review

Computer and Video Games (CVG) (42 out of 100) (42%)

The problem with this game is three-fold: firstly, it's too similar to Star Wars; secondly, it's far too simplistic and repetitive and finally, the whole thing plays like a snail in treacle. Quite frankly, even if you're a Star Wars nut, you'd be better off splashing out three quid on something else.

Jan 1991 · Commodore 64 · read review

Computer and Video Games (CVG) N/A

At last, Atari has launched The Empire Strikes Back, the middle section to the Star Wars trilogy where the forces of good and evil battle for supremacy. (...) The ultimate aim is to help Luke gain full Jedi status and to do this you have to destroy a given number of targets. Each time the targets are destroyed you will earn the letters J-E-D-I. The series is now complete.

Mar 1985 · Arcade · read review

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Contributors to this Entry

Critic reviews added by Erik Gordon, S Olafsson, Jo ST, lights out party, piltdown_man, Scaryfun, Patrick Bregger, Hello X), Tim Janssen.