user avatar

Tom White @Heisanevilgenius

Reviews

Knuckle Busters (Commodore 64)

By Tom White on February 27, 2020

Animated Strip Poker (Commodore 64)

No.

The Good
The sound effects are decent. Some okay digitized voice, and although the sound of cards being shuffled and dealt are rather generic, they mostly work. But you will also get really weary of them really fast, especially "PRESS ANY KEY TO DEAL THE CARDS" after every single hand.

The Bad
The graphics are primitive, and only "animated" for a couple of seconds out of hours of gameplay.

The game is definitely challenging, and borderline frustrating. Its slow pace will make you increasingly impatient, and that impatience will make you worse and worse at playing the game. If you can fight that impatience and keep at it, you can win, but you're not having fun.

The Bottom Line
Having no joystick control, this game requires you to use non-intuitive keyboard commands. Options such as "Call, raise, fold" can only be picked by slowly cycling through them by pressing the up/down key and hitting return. If you accidentally hit a return a second time, it will often go into effect later in the game when you don't want it to, and force you to bet. There is no way to cancel your bet.

Unlike other poker games where you can always see your own hand, your cards disappear frequently, and are completely invisible when your opponent shows you hers. This can be a problem because in one case I swore I had a royal straight but I lost to a regular pair. I'm pretty sure the game is so crappy it couldn't tell that I even had a straight but because I couldn't see the hands side by side I ended up doubting myself and now I'll never know.

Aside from a few fleeting moments when you actually win enough money, the girl is very much not animated, despite that being the name of the game. In fact, it's the entire point of the game. After a horrendous slog through frustrating controls, an AI that you'll swear is cheating sometimes, and occasionally maybe not even crediting you for the hand you actually have? That's when you discover: The payoff is no payoff at all.

By Tom White on November 4, 2016

Final Fantasy (NES)

By Tom White on December 3, 2010

Space Taxi (Commodore 64)

By Tom White on September 14, 2010

Bazooka Bill (Commodore 64)

By Tom White on September 14, 2010

Law of the West (Commodore 64)

Sort of fun until you realize you can just cheat.

The Good
The game definitely has its moments. The graphics are quite detailed and well-animated. Even to the point of great little touches like the distant characters running off screen when you draw your gun. It's fairly open-ended and fairly fun the first few times you play. The music ranges from average to better-than-average. The Honky Tonk version of Oh Suzanna is well done, and the title music is pretty cool. Overall it's a nice little package.

The Bad
After a few play-throughs, you start to realize the game's limitations. There are only so many ways you can steer your conversations. You can make a game out of trying to figure out who you have to talk to and what you have to say to allow you to stop all six robberies, but eventually you either get bored and stop, or you decide to just shoot everyone. There's also almost no way to lose. All you have to do is survive the first three characters and then be nice to the doctor and you're home free. You can survive the first three by being nice to them, or by shooting them. You can shoot the doctor too, although he's one of the few characters that don't have weapons so doing so would purely be for sadistic purposes. If you want to go down that path, it really is impossible to lose. None of the townsfolk will attack you unless you provoke them. If you draw a gun on them, they'll just stand there patiently and wait for you to blow their brains out. Just do this for every character and you win. Sure, the game berates you for shooting innocent people, but as long as you survive, it ends with a congratulations.

If you don't just shoot everyone, and you're nice to the doctor, any time you get shot thereafter the doctor will patch you up and it will just be a flesh wound every time. There's no way you can die.

The Bottom Line
The game has you playing the part of the sheriff in a small town in the wild west. Being able to interact with characters in different ways makes it quite ahead of its time, but unfortunately it gets boring fast and it actually becomes more fun to just walk around blasting everyone than to try to play the game the way it's meant to be played.

By Tom White on April 3, 2010

The Evil Dead (Commodore 64)

By Tom White on April 3, 2010

James Bond 007 (Commodore 64)

By Tom White on April 3, 2010

Bandits (Commodore 64)

By Tom White on April 3, 2010

Forbidden Forest (Commodore 64)

The scariest game of its time

The Good
This game has incredible atmosphere, haunting music, and amazing sound effects, especially for a system with such limitations.

You play the part of a man armed with a bow and lots of arrows in an endless forest of horrible monsters. Each stage is a different enemy to face, starting with giant spiders (if they grab you they cocoon you and spill your blood all over the forest) and including dragons, a huge snake, and an army of skeletons. Giant toads, which don't sound scary, actually leap at you from the horizon and flatten you if you don't get out of the way, giving you panic-inducing seconds to fire a killing shot before getting out of the way of the huge corpse.

All throughout the game, the sky slowly changes from day to night. The background becomes more alien and mysterious and your eyes play tricks on you.

Finally, the last stage makes the transition to a time of night so dark that you actually can't see the single enemy that slowly gets closer and closer. The only way to catch a glimpse is to wander around and catch sight of his silhouette against the leaves in the background, or wait for lightning to strike and light up the forest, which gives you brief glimpses of the horrific creature to show you that indeed he's gotten much closer than last time you saw him.

Not to mention that for a commodore game, the sound of thunder is very jarring and unsettling. A very challenging and scary game.

The Bad
I only have two major complaints.

  1. The only real difference in difficulty levels is the number of enemies you must defeat in each stage to pass on. This doesn't really add to the challenge so much as make you take longer to play. Killing 16 giant spiders rather than 4 isn't really any more difficult, just a lot less fun.

  2. Some of the shots you have to make require a ridiculous amount of precision. The ghost that commands the skeleton army is very hard to hit in the right spot, though that's forgivable since it stays still and the whole challenge is lining up the perfect shot while you have to deal with the skeletons that continually pop out at you. However, the dragons are much more unforgiving. You need to be pixel perfect with your shots while they fly very fast at you and a missed shot means instant death. Somehow a shot in the head doesn't count unless you hit it in the exact spot the author wanted you to hit. I think this is totally unfair and frustrating.

    The Bottom Line
    These days, the graphics and sound quality would probably be a turn off to most people, but I have to say that despite this, it creates a very eerie atmosphere and intense gameplay that's highly entertaining.

By Tom White on March 31, 2010

Buzz Bombers (Intellivision)

Simple, annoying, little replay value.

The Good
The game's cute and the graphics are nice and inviting. The bees and the spray can are easy to identify and the hummingbirds are nicely animated. It's easy to figure out what to do and the levels are pretty easy to beat.

The Bad
The music is very repetitive and hard to listen to, and the controls are very hard on you. Whenever I fire a shot from the spray can I often feel like I'm frozen in place until the projectile is off the screen, which can get frustrating and makes it very hard to aim. Once you play through one stage, you've pretty much seen all the game has to offer. After three stages, I had no desire to play it ever again.

The Bottom Line
Buzz bombers is somewhat of a strange game and has a sort of charm to it that makes it a little amusing to watch, but it's irritating to play for more than a minute. I don't recommend it.

By Tom White on March 26, 2010

Ghostbusters (Commodore 64)

By Tom White on March 21, 2010

Rush'n Attack (Commodore 64)

Fun, but extremely difficult

The Good
This game is fast-paced, exciting, challenging, and has some great music and sound effects to keep your energy level up while playing. The graphics are great, particularly the level design. All throughout the game, there are well-defined girders, weapons, stopped vehicles, and other easy to identify and realistic-looking objects. The flamethrower is fun to use and the death animations add to the game's fun factor. Although it's very difficult, the game setup is extremely user friendly compared to certain other Commodore games, with quick death sequences and a simple start screen so that you don't waste a lot of time waiting between game overs.

The Bad
It's hard! You have to take on an entire army armed only with a knife and the occasional weapon you find along the way which only allow a maximum of three shots. Almost every enemy you encounter is armed with a rifle and can shoot without warning giving you almost no time to duck. It also kills you to touch any opponent, meaning your timing has to be very good, especially since your main method of attack is stabbing.

The Bottom Line
Your mission is to rescue hostages from a huge army. It's a fun, intense action game. It takes a lot of care to survive the large waves of enemy troops, but you don't want to take your time either because the longer you take, the harder the enemies that come at you. This is very difficult, but not overly frustrating and the background drum rolls play a great part in informing you when harder enemies are on the way. Very fun game, but takes a lot of skill to master.

By Tom White on March 21, 2010

Rambo: First Blood Part II (Commodore 64)

By Tom White on March 20, 2010

Racing Destruction Set (Commodore 64)

By Tom White on March 20, 2010

BC's Quest for Tires (Commodore 64)

By Tom White on March 20, 2010

B.C. II: Grog's Revenge (Commodore 64)

By Tom White on March 20, 2010

Beach-Head (Commodore 64)

By Tom White on March 20, 2010

Predator (Commodore 64)

By Tom White on March 20, 2010

Popeye (Commodore 64)

By Tom White on March 20, 2010

Pooyan (Commodore 64)

By Tom White on March 20, 2010

Park Patrol (Commodore 64)

By Tom White on March 20, 2010

Oil's Well (Commodore 64)

By Tom White on March 20, 2010

Nemesis the Warlock (Commodore 64)

By Tom White on March 20, 2010

Nellan is Thirsty (Commodore 64)

By Tom White on March 20, 2010

[ Page 1 ] [ Next ]