Sunday, April 22, 2018


When I first loaded up Zaptastic, I immediately assumed a cheap Robotron ripoff but it's actually based on an old Jeff Minter game called Ancipital. Lee Burrows not only coded this conversion but did all the graphics and sounds and runs on both models of ST but was for the Atari STe because it uses the Blitter for the sprites and DMA for all the crazy effects. Sadly, I couldn't get it to work on my STFM without getting two nasty bombs popping up!

We're in control of a Dolph Lundgren dude with spiky hair and cool shades who must frantically clear 64 rooms infested by an incredible array of nasties. He gets around using the screen's four sides and can escape the hoard by leaping across to the opposite side - but be careful because your shield won't last forever! Firing is constant and in the direction last used but can be temporally frozen by holding down the fire button <cough> Llamatron.

Visually, things are quite amateur but it works great with lots of silly sprites filling up the screen. Audio is insane thanks to the DMA coprocessor pushing out funky samples to keep everything very loud and exciting. Overall, this is one incredibly addictive and psychedelic shoot 'em up and I loved every zany minute of it!!

Zaptastic can be downloaded of ST Format (disk #81)

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