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Critic Reviews

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Amiga Computing (Dec, 1988)
Pioneer Plague is an unusual and well thought out game that refuses to take itself too seriously. HAM mode graphics are used throughout, not just on the loading screens, which adds a touch of class. In play it's fast and challenging, but never too hard. Definitely one for the Christmas shopping list - every Amiga should have one.
Zzap! (Feb, 1989)
The main feature that Pioneer Plague boasted in all the press was its HAM graphics, allowing 4096 colours on screen. However, this isn’t the first thing that struck me about the game. What I noticed was the powerhouse intro music, with orchestra strikes galore. Even so, the HAM title page that followed was still very impressive! My first plays were rather a daunting experience, but once I had the navigation sussed I thoroughly enjoyed zooming about blasting the Skyhatches to bits. The action in the shoot ‘em up sections is incredibly frenetic, leaving you feeling quite drained after a long battle. Blasting fans should enjoy Pioneer Plague as it’s much more than a few pretty pictures.
Man kann behaupten, daß die Kombination unterschiedlicher Schauplätze durch einen roten Faden durchaus gelungen ist und daß unser Game aufgrund teilweise hervorragender Grafik und einem super Actionsound, verbunden mit sehr reizvollen Ladebildern und Zwischenspielen dem Action-Freak 'ne Menge Freude bereiten wird. Ich meine: Hitverdächtig!
In the end there just is not room to describe the sheer fun of this original shoot 'em-up. The multi-directional scrolling is well up to par and the HAM graphics very pleasing although the game is not any better for them. There is plenty of fast action for all arcade freaks with enough depth to hold the interest for some time. Great stuff. Highly recommended.
Info (Jan, 1989)
For being the first HAM game, and the first effort from Atari-ST convert Antic, Pioneer Plague deserves a chunk of your playtime.
Being able to program the flight path of the drones gives a sense of control, and the ability to save their patters effectively means you can customise the game. Sub-Euclidian space is an interesting design and the collapsar sequence makes interesting (and often frantic) use of packaging, which also includes cynical Douglas Adams-style instructions. An interesting and exciting shoot-'em-up, with a little strategy - worthy of attention.
ST/Amiga Format (Jan, 1989)
The Amiga's assets have definitely been pushed to the limits here. 4096 colours and true stereo sound doesn't crop up on too many games even in these hi-tech days, and an ST version would seem very unlikely. The gameplay doesn't really resemble the avowed plot too well but lots of good effects keep it interesting. Whether it will stand the test of time is debatable - for all its flashy graphics it lacks the addictive qualities of its less colourful ancestors.
Your Amiga (Feb, 1989)
Not a bad game, I suppose, although I can't honestly say it's one I'd come back to a lot. One problem many of the Christmas purchasers may encounter is that of definition on a television screen as many of you have bought A500s with the TV modulators. You guys will find yourselves with a few problems picking out red (active) silos on your scanner. Still, hats off to Mandarin for acquiring the rights to this game from Terrific Software. Let's hope there's more where this came from.
Pioneer has all the makings of a classic - its graphics are sexy and overall presentation very professional. The fractal sequences alone could make the basis for a game. But you're left with the nagging feeling that 4096 colours is probably 4000 more than you need when more depth in gameplay and involvement is called for.
Power Play (Dec, 1988)
4000 Farben allein machen noch keine Supergrafik: im HAM-Modus kann man nicht beliebig mit Farbpixeln um sich schmeißen, sondern muß Kompromisse bei der Aneinanderreihung von verschiedenen Farbtönen machen. Deshalb ist Pioneer Plague zwar schön bunt, reißt zeichnerisch aber keine Bäume aus. Ähnliches gilt fürs Spielprinzip: Hinter einem kinoreifen Vorspann mit rassiger Musik verbirgt sich eine in alle Richtungen munter scrollende Ballerei. Die wilden Gefechte mit den Roboter-Angreifern haben durchaus einen gewissen Unterhaltungswert. Der Einsatz von Dronen - jede mit einer anderen Taktik - würzt das Geschehen mit einer Prise Raffinesse. Von Planet zu Planet gibt‘s nicht allzuviel Unterschiede. Die langfristige Motivation läßt deshalb zu wünschen übrig. Pioneer Plague bringt viel Farbe ins Spiel, ist ansonsten aber ein eher lauwarmes Action-Süppchen.
The training manual is probably the most exciting thing about the game. Reading through it you learn of all the exciting things to be found, like Star Shar Fighters, Sub-Euclidian Space, Sky Hatches, but finding them is dull and boring. Nice graphics, shame about the game.