Too Much Free Time

Discussion and reviews of games for NES, Intellivision, DOS, and others.

Archive for the ‘1992’ Category

Patternia

Posted by Tracy Poff on June 2, 2012

Patternia is a 1992 Tower of Hanoi game published in Game On in December 1992, with programming by Henrik Holmdahl, graphics by Simon Leijnse, and music by Kaspar Dahlqvist and Jakob Hellander.


Patternia really can’t be compared to any of the previous games in terms of graphics–it leaves them all far behind. The difference, I presume, is that all of the games I’ve reviewed up to this point, except Pyramidon, were written in BASIC, and were often type-in games, which severely limits how nice the graphics can be.


Patternia is controlled with the joystick, like Die Türme von Hanoi. In contrast to that one, though, Patternia does not animate the movement of the discs. And it’s a good thing! There’s a timer in Patternia, and if you don’t complete the puzzle within the time limit, you lose. Even for me, it was a close thing, on each level, and I’ve played dozens of Tower of Hanoi puzzles in sixteen different Tower of Hanoi games prior to this, so the optimum strategy is quite well fixed in my mind.

You’re given points at the end of each level depending on how much time you had left, and how many moves you used, including a bonus if you solved the puzzle optimally. I gave up on the 7-disc puzzle, but it was actually pretty fun, racing the clock.

Patternia beats the earlier Tower of Hanoi games in music as well: first, because it has music; and second, because the music is pretty good. I won’t be adding it to my playlist (which contains more than enough video game music as it is), but it’s not bad at all for background music.

If you’ve an urge to play a Tower of Hanoi game for the Commodore 64, Patternia is absolutely the best choice.

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Posted in 1992, Commodore 64, Full Review, Good, Tower of Hanoi | Tagged: , , | Leave a Comment »

First Impressions: The Addams Family

Posted by Tracy Poff on December 8, 2006

This one is a platformer in which you play the part of Gomez Addams.

It’s actually a pretty standard platformer. Collect the treasures, avoid the enemies and spikes.



I’m not totally sure what the goal is, since I couldn’t quite work out how to exit the level, but I doubt it’s anything special. This game does seem to have rather uneven level designs. The above pictures show the usual screens: walk right and jump over the bad guys, or bounce off of their heads. On the other hand:


This is way too many spikes for a single screen. I couldn’t get through this part after a few tries, so I gave up and tried another screen.

In all, this is an average platformer with nothing special to set it off from the rest, as far as I can tell from playing the first level. Try it if you want to play every platformer ever, but otherwise the mario games are much more worthwhile.

Posted in 1992, Decent, First Impressions, NES, Platformer | Tagged: , | 2 Comments »

First Impressions: Tasac

Posted by Tracy Poff on September 24, 2006

Tasac is a vertical scrolling shooter by Sachen, and it sucks.

Tasac_01

The title screen looks pretty cool, so one might expect the game to have decent graphics, or something. Most of your in-game time is spent in a position like this one:

Tasac_04

There’s no real challenge in this part, except that the laser-like weapon you start with sucks, and the upgrades suck even more. When you get to the end, the boss appears.

Tasac_07

But you can’t kill it yet. In fact, you can fly right over it. Why is the boss there before you’re able to interact with it? I don’t know. But the game carries on just as if the boss weren’t there. In fact, it carries on the same way even once you can fight the boss–the random enemies keep appearing, there’s just a boss on the screen at the same time.

Tasac_09

Although the boss shoots a pretty large number of projectiles at you, they’re not hard to dodge. If the weapon weren’t so stupidly slow and hard to use, they boss wouldn’t be even slightly difficult. As it is, the boss just takes a little longer than it ought to.

The second level was just like the first. I think that the boss was slightly rounder, but I don’t really care to recall.

Verdict: Pointless. It’s just a below average vertical scroller.

Posted in 1992, Bad, First Impressions, NES, Vertical Scrolling Shooter | Tagged: , , , | 1 Comment »