Updated: Mar 27, 2020
Over the next few weeks, each Friday will see new games drop into Antstream Arcade. So if you’re still on the fence about signing up, or simply looking for fresh challenges, this is the place to start as we begin our weekly roundup of the new titles you can play.
Acrobatic Dog Fight
If shoot-‘em-ups are your thing then this jovial Technos game from 1984 is a must-play. Taking its cue from the 1982 Konami classic Time Pilot, the player jumps into an antiquated plane and must fly to the right towards the enemy base. In their way are copious amounts of enemies such as planes and mischievous pigs hovering aloft in mini-helicopters (don’t ask), all of whom can be shot which, in the time-honoured fashion, bestows the player with extra fuel. Acrobatic Dog Fight is immense fun, with the player’s aeroplane certainly living up to its energetic description. It’s no easy task to reach the enemy’s base, but we guarantee fantastic fun trying, so jump into that bird and take to the skies!
Ant-Fact: It’s not just Time Pilot that Acrobatic Dog Fight evokes. Shoot-‘em-up fans will note a certain element of fellow arcade games Defender and Scramble, as well as the ZX Spectrum legend, Harrier Attack.
Ant-Tactic: Your plane loses fuel very quickly, so a fine balance between progress towards the base and taking down enemies is required should you wish to succeed.
Thalamus was a publisher of particular note on the Commodore 64, and this dinky and cute platform game is one of its finest. Forced to emigrate from their planet (due to its embarrassing name), the Blotians rename themselves before crash landing on Earth as the Fuzzy Wuzzies In Search Of Real Hipness. Happily constructing their village on a remote Pacific island, the Fuzzy Wuzzies are soon perturbed to discover not all is as it seems with their friendly neighbours. Having been duped into attending a loopy disco, only one of them remains, and he must now cross the island and rescue all of his pals. Humorous, colourful and remarkably fun to play, Creatures exudes quality from start to finish. A great game for 8-bit platform fans and beyond.
Ant-Fact: The game’s title is actually an acronym of a phrase that succinctly outlines its hero’s quest: Clyde Radcliff Exterminates All The Unfriendly, Repulsive Earth-ridden Slime.
Ant-Tactic: Beware of some nasties who will transform from apparently weak opponents to large monsters when attacked.
Generals Of The Yang Family
This scrolling brawler is the first of several Piko Interactive games that will appear soon on Antstream Arcade, and it’s a perfect start to show off the fun that the Mega Drive can offer. Based on ancient Chinese legends, Generals Of The Yang Family is a spiritual successor to Piko’s earlier Water Margin – The Tales Of Clouds And Winds, and is also a western translation of a previously China-only game. Starring as one of four warriors, the player (or two players) must defend their land from foreign invaders using razor sharp blades and some stylish attacking moves. Any fans of famous Mega Drive games such as Streets Of Rage 2, Golden Axe and The Punisher should check out this eastern-infused fighting game.
Ant-Fact: Piko didn’t just translate Generals Of The Yang Family – this version also has many of the original’s bugs and flaws ironed out.
Ant-Tactic: As in the Streets Of Rage games, opponents can be picked up and hurled at their pals, a useful room-clearing tactic.
Nodes Of Yesod
The star of this flick-screen ZX Spectrum is the unfathomably brave Rt Hon Charlemagne ‘Charlie’ Fotheringham, spaceman, adventurer and downright good egg. Summoned by the International Commission for Universal Problem Solving (or ICUPS for short, also the title of another game in the series), Fotheringham is soon ensconced within a moon shuttle, charged with discovering just who – or what – is behind the coded signals from the satellite that are revealing all sorts of secrets regarding the Earth’s defences. Our hero soon discovers the source of the signal is a mysterious monolith, and he sets about locating the shadowy item via a series of monster-laden screens; yet even with a faithful mole to assist him (no, it’s not Monty), this is going to be a considerable test for the upper class star. Upon release back in the Eighties, Nodes Of Yesod drew favourable comparisons with the output of Ultimate, so fans of that particularly renowned publisher, and arcade adventures in general should explore Nodes Of Yesod post-haste. Tally-ho!
Ant-Fact: While sequel Arc Of Yesod trod a similar arcade-adventure path, spin-off game I.C.U.P.S. is a vertically scrolling shoot-‘em-up.
Ant-Tactic: The moles aren’t just good for digging; they can also dispose of enemies, making them invaluable companions.
The Great Escape
The ZX Spectrum is flush with quality isometric games, and Antstream Arcade is delighted to bring you one of the very finest examples of the genre on the Sinclair computer. Originally published by Ocean Software back in 1987, The Great Escape thrusts the player into a grim World War II prison camp, with the objective simply to escape by any means. Throughout each day, the prisoners must obey a strict timetable of roll call, dinner time and exercise, slipping away whenever they can to pilfer items that will aid their breakout. With its stark black and white graphics and immersive, open-world gameplay, The Great Escape is a definitive arcade adventure for the Spectrum.
Ant-Fact: It’s a common misconception that The Great Escape is licensed from the 1963 movie of the same name. Actually it’s based on the actual wartime event with no official connection to the Steve McQueen film bar its theme and title.
Ant-Tactic: The door closest to where roll call takes place leads to a small room where the vital Red Cross parcel is left each day.
Also new to Antstream Arcade this week
There’s plenty more to dive into this week on Antstream Arcade, with another five action-packed games ready for streaming. Pilot an armed vessel down a dangerous river in shoot-‘em-up Gunboat; step into a furry loincloth and hunt down precious gemstones as that famous king of the swingers, Tarzan; or assume an entirely different role as the humble and bespectacled ex-accountant Mr. Weems, as he bravely takes on a horde of She Vampires armed only with his trusty rapid-fire garlic gun. And if that’s not enough, there’s superhero hijinks in the form of isometric maze game, erm, Superhero, and Super Scramble Simulator, the 16-bit update of eminent Commodore 64 biking game, Kikstart.
We’ll be back with another dectet of marvellous games next Friday!
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