Tuesday, June 07, 2016

Midi Maze

FPS - long before Doom!

Midi Maze hit the shelves in 1987 thanks to Xanth FX and was an early taste of multiplayer first-person gaming. It takes place inside a labyrinth of weird smilies who roam looking for blood. So ignore their happy faces because they're anything but nice and need killing. You could say, the last sphere "standing" wins!

The controls are rather straightforward and very easy to master. You can use either the joystick or mouse - but I personally think the joystick works the best. Those without midi cables can play in Solo mode which allows up to 15 computer-controlled bots with three levels of AI. Those with midi cables and other Atari STs can invite friends over with the potential to link 2-16 computers, which is quite staggering for an 80s deathmatch!!

The walls might be paper-thin and without any texture or ambient lighting, but do remember just how old this is. Frame-rates are fast, exceptionally smooth movement and I was impressed to see the baddies have a shadow, thus adding to the 3D perspective. Sound effects aren't going to win any awards but they do their job.

There is nothing I enjoy more than a good first-person shooter and Midi Maze certainly packs its own punch. Single-player is welcome and works well but Midi Maze comes into its own when linked with other Atari computers. Midi Maze is one of the best games I have featured on AtariCrypt and is easily a true Atari ST gaming legend.

Cool links...

Check out this Midi Maze fanzine (It's in German but Google Translate will help!
Here is a PDF document of the original game manual
Atarimania has all three games listed in their Atari ST database.
Floppy disk images are available from Old Games Finder.

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