user avatar

Andrew Jenner @AJ


Sopwith (DOS)

I liked this game so much I decided to resurrect it

The Good
Sopwith is just a really fun game to play. The "easy" (single player) mode gives a gentle introduction to the plane's controls (far simpler than any 3D flight simulator). Once those skills are mastered, you can play against the computer with enemy planes. The enemy plane logic is extremely good - there's no easy technique to defeat them, but you can have really engrossing dogfights trying. The greatest thing is when you have two enemy planes on your tail and you get them to collide.

The Bad
Sopwith could have done with more than one level. The single player mode was a bit too easy, but the single player vs computer mode was too hard. The networking feature could never be made to work (I believe it needed some special proprietory networking hardware - Sopwith may even have originally been written in order to demonstrate this hardware). Finally, the game seemed a bit unpolished - it dumped you back to DOS when you completed it or lost all your lives.

The Bottom Line
Sopwith is a good, fast, fun action game. When playing it, you may well spend more time trying to do great stunts than actually finishing it. The fact that you can do all these great stunts (which aren't "built in" to the game, they just emerge from the way you can manouvre your plane) is probably the best thing about it.

By Andrew Jenner on April 29, 2000

Willy the Worm (DOS)

An inspiring game

The Good
The main thing I like about this game is the speed of the action. Although that makes it very difficult at first, it's one of those games you can really get into "the zone" with. The way you could change direction mid-jump was an excellent feature. Another great thing about it was the humour - it could easy have been a quite sensible game with a little man running and jumping about, but a worm - that's really unique!

The Bad
The randomness of the cannonballs made it more a game of luck than of skill. The graphics weren't spectacular (although Alan Farmer's technique of redefining the CGA character set was technically quite interesting) and the flashing effect when you died probably induced many an epileptic fit.

The Bottom Line
It's a 2D running, jumping and climbing platform game. Simple to learn but difficult to master, and the speed of the action made it really addictive. Classic.

By Andrew Jenner on April 23, 2000