Super Six: System 3
It’s a name that conjures up images of remarkably evocative 8 and 16-bit gaming, especially on the Commodore 64 computer. Formed in 1982 by industry veteran Mark Cale, System 3 has produced ground-breaking and cutting-edge videogames since its very inception, and with many of its titles available on our service we thought it was about time this famous London developer received the Antstream Arcade Super Six treatment. How many of these classics have YOU played?
We kick off this Super Six with this high-kickin’ and hard-punchin’ beat-‘em-up from legendary developer Archer MacLean. Taking place in front of a variety of renowned locations from throughout the world (including Sydney Harbour, The Statue Of Liberty and The Parthenon), International Karate is a gentleman’s battle to win a series of tougher bouts by landing point-scoring hits on your opponent. Mastering all the jumps, kicks and punches is vital, as is working out how to flip your fighter around when you find yourself on the wrong side!
Originally released in 1989, Myth is available on three platforms on Antstream Arcade and, unusually, is quite different on each. Recognising the differences between the ZX Spectrum and Commodore 64 in particular, System 3 engaged specific programmers to come up with their own interpretation of the concept, a modern day joe normal send back through time to battle an evil demon and its minions. It worked, because although Myth on the Spectrum is substantially different, it is still a brilliant game and just as playable as the C64 original. And if you’re after something a bit smarter graphically, give the Commodore Amiga version a whirl. Wiggly lines ahoy!
If you’re a fan of Indiana Jones or rip-roaring adventures in general, then System 3’s Tusker is an escapade made for you. In the game’s enigmatic backstory, the player takes on the role of a young man looking to find redemption following the death of his father. The treacherous path you must follow is your father’s dream of discovering the fabled Elephant’s Graveyard, a journey that will take you to the very worst depths of the darkest continent. Rash and foolhardy? Most probably – but that is the adventurer’s spirit that will inspire you in Tusker. Grab that Fedora and get exploring!
Last Ninja 2
Subtitled Back With A Vengeance, Last Ninja 2 is System 3’s brilliant follow up to the equally-fantastic Last Ninja. Released just one year later, the game skilfully blends the existing mix of action, puzzle solving and the exploration of its many glorious locations. Dropped by the Gods into Central Park, New York to battle an evil Shogun that threatens to engulf the world, Last Ninja 2 boasts another huge stack of screens to explore and enemies to despatch. Presented in a clean and beautiful isometric display, it’s without doubt one of the finest 8-bit games of all time.
The devilishly mischievous professor Fransz Dandruff has spent his life perfecting a life extension machine. While this might sound a noble quest, the machine needs to drain the life from a poor innocent in order to function, lending the professor’s endeavour a significantly more sinister air. Having identified the young and healthy Pearly as his ideal victim, Dandruff has reckoned without her loyal boyfriend and local hero Flimbo. Throughout the colourful yet dangerous Dewdropland, Flimbo must bravely combat Dandruff’s Genetically Undesirable Mutants (GUMs) and rescue his one true love, the winsome Pearly. A cute and vibrant platformer, Flimbo’s Quest is available on Commodore 64 and Amiga on Antstream Arcade.
We stick with the platform genre for our final System 3 Super Six game, and this squishy and blobby game from 1992. An evil wizard (why is it always evil wizards, or evil professors…) has taken over Putty’s world of Putty Moon. Laden with metallic platforms to negotiate, Putty may initially appear similar to games such as Flimbo’s Quest; but with its star’s moves dictated by its own elasticity, straddling gaps by stretching its body out or, in the most memorable move, over-inflating and ‘smart-bombing’ any nearby enemies, this is a retro game with a soft and spongy heart for anyone looking for some platform action with a twist.
Also from System 3 on Antstream Arcade: beat-‘em-up Bangkok Knights; avenge-‘em-up Vendetta; shooter Dominator; and of course, the original Last Ninja!
Stay tuned for another Super Six soon!