Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Crash Time Plumber

New game alert!

Crash Time Plumber is a conversion of the Gamopat original which was released at Silly Venture demo party. The Atari game was developed by none other than Sebastien Lucas of Cerebral Vortex and it will work on any Atari computer with a Blitter Chip: check the Options screen in GEM but all late models of STfm, Mega ST, Atari STe, and Falcon should be a-ok. Many STfm computers have an empty socket just waiting to be used:
Many newer STFMs have an empty Blitter Chip socket so head over to the EXXOS webSTore.
At first, I wasn't sure how this was gonna go as we've been burnt by so-called 8-bit conversions before. However, this booted up great with a neat intro and looks the business! Based on Donkey Kong with a dollop of Popeye, it's set in 1983 as the gaming industry crashed (which I was completely unaware of being a Spectrum kid then!)

Anyhow, an Italian plumber has teamed up with an angry-looking monkey and kidnapped ten gaming heroes: Pac-Man, Pitfall Harry, Q-Bert, Frogger, and others. They are all preparing for a hideous death at the hands of these criminals from the East so go and rescue them all to foil Mario's plan and stop this invasion.

Sounds cool, right? It is and so is the intro too which begins in Alamogordo (I've been here!)...

The intro is sweet and tells a good story. Also, I've been to Alamogordo, NM. #tidbit

Hang on, this looks familiar?

Taking place on the donkey kong construction site, we run along girders collecting love hearts given away by a damsel in distress. She floats by in her hot air balloon and, when enough are collected, we begin a steroid-jumping rescue to the top of the screen and save a trapped hero. Once he's free, we can move on to the next level.

This isn't easy because, not only is Mario rolling barrels downhill, but King Kong is hanging about throwing deadly killer bananas at us with annoying accuracy! Some levels have weather conditions affecting your movement and there's even a harsh 120 seconds time limit. This makes things quite difficult after a few levels!

The game ends once each and every gaming hero has been rescued. Easier said than done...

Watch out for angry monkeys throwing their killer bananas or you're DEAD!!

One smooth looker!

The graphics are fantastic! A gorgeous 80s retro theme with cute sprites and the Blitter delivers a smooth 50fps display. Heck, the Atari STe even adds enhanced colour fading and Falcon owners get to witness a huge Zeppelin flying by - which I cannot help but wonder why that's missing on the STe? Ignoring that moan, this game is ace!!

The audio is also superb with lovely sound effects and a simple chiptune that is also totally suited to the ye olde style. A lot of effort has gone into both the visuals and sounds and I dare that jingle not to stay in your head all day!

Everything is just dandy and perfect in with a retro and comical design...

Beautiful girl blowing kisses? Come back, my love!

The CryptO'pinion?

Don't be fooled by the humble 8-bit appearance. From the start, you're tricked into thinking this is going to be easy but the combination of fantastic controls and tough mechanics will catch you out. I'm sick of being smacked in the face by a killer banana... but I keep on being dragged back for more of this torment... Am I insane, no this game is!!

Crash Time Plumber is extremely hard but it manages to drag you back for more - kicking and screaming.

Download for FLOPPY / HARD DISK