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Alive 7
                           Even more stuff from Dbug!

The Dbug  empire strikes  back with  four new  compilations, 175-178.  This time
there  is  lots  of  new  stuff, including  the  latest  releases  of  the hyper
productive Reservoir Gods, as well  as older, previously unreleased games.  Good
to see that, coz I'm such a nostalgic guy ;)

This is  actually my first review for the great  Alive diskmag, so take it easy,
in  case this is not the  best/most entertaining/whatever review you ever  read!

Dbug 175
* GodPey >O:-)
* Walls of Illusion

As the intro starts, we are informed that the crew who refuses to die, the  crew
who keeps the  old school days  alive, is back!  Indeed, this is  the case. Hmm,
let's see what we have here... First  of all, there  is a nice  background music
which,  I think,  I haven't  heard before.  The tune  by Animal  Mine is  called
"Infinity" and, as the name indicates, it goes on and on and on... :) The pic by
Pursy is  also nice,  although I  have no  idea what  it's supposed to be. Kinda
looks like a heavily armed, giant cyber-bug to me. The rest is nothing  special,
the usual (fast!) scroller in the lower  border. All this was coded by Showaddy-

Now for the games.  Probably all of you know "GodPey", so I won't go into detail
here. It is probably the most addictive game by Reservoir Gods so far. Your goal
is to  connect tiles  of different  shapes to  make them  form a line across the
screen. Sounds easy, huh? But it isn't,  coz the tiles are moving while you  try
to  connect  them! Aaargl!  Well,  there is  even  much more  to  do, there  are
different stages and it is possible to gain experience points. As you gain  more
experience points, you will receive all kinds of vegetables as a kind of trophy,
which your alter ego in  the game decides to wear  on his head :) Cool  idea and
definitely a cool game! Music and Gfx are both well done.

The second game in this compilation is called "Walls of Illusion". Cool, a  role
playing game! I love RPGs, but unfortunately they are very time consuming, so  I
can't tell you much about it. Looks  VERY much like the good old Dungeon  Master
to me. It also includes sampled sound  fx, which is a plus, considering it  once
was a shareware game. Might be worth a closer look.

Conclusion: Leech this compilation and enjoy. Both games are of high quality.

Dbug 176
* Under Pressure
* Hero
* Pacific Assault

The intro seems to  be a one man  effort, everything was put  together by famous
music hacker Grazey. Not much more to say about it, the intro consists of a very
basic plasma effect and some mediocre music.

The first game, "Under Pressure", was obviously inspired by the old C=64 classic
"Mechwalker". It's  very similar and, to  be honest,  extremely dull and boring.
Yes! Running sideways,  in front of  a more or  less black background,  combined
with bad scrolling  isn't that interesting!  Positive aspects: Controlling  your
mech is  easy and all  sprites are so  huge that you can't miss  them. Next game

"Hero", again a  RPG. Battled a  monster. Died. Baaad  graphics and no  sound at
all. Next!

"Pacific Assault", a World War II scenario shoot'em up, coded with the  Shoot'em
up Construction Kit. Graphics,  scrolling and sound fx  are ok for an  SCK game.
The enemy logic effectively simulates Japanese pilots trying to commit suicide.

Conclusion: This compilation isn't exactly worth its diskspace.

Dbug 177 a+b
* Premier Manager II
* Double Juggle Vegetabobble

This one has a cool intro by Cyrano Jones. Nice rasters and good music. And it's
a fat release, consisting of TWO disks. Nice!

"Premier Manager II", a  soccer manager by Gremlin,  is perhaps one of  the last
commercial games  that was  released for  our beloved  ST. I  usually don't like
games like this, but it seems to be well made. Good graphics and apparently lots
of options. Probably one of the better games of its genre.

"Double Juggle Vegetabobble", another fun game by Reservoir Gods. Hmm...makes me
wonder why they love vegetables so much? You control the bionic arms of Charlie,
a poor guy who has to juggle  with vegetables to make a living, while  suffering
under his  cruel boss  Doctor Helmut  "Bumpkins" Hasselhof.  Needless to say I'm
terribly bad at it!  (I think I reached  about 30 points.) This  game is nothing
special but it was fun for a few minutes.

Conclusion: Get this compil if you like to play with...balls ;)

Dbug 178
* Trash Heap
* Starball

DBug's latest release provides us with the coolest intro so far, put together by
Showaddywaddy  and  coded  by  Hari  Seldon.  We  see  some  sort  of futuristic
"landscape", scrolling upwards, with two frantically moving spaceships in  front
of it. Looks a  bit like an enhanced  version of "Goldrunner". Hey  guys, make a
game out of it, it looks cool! Plus, there is a Dbug logo, some dot curves,  two
scrollers and a very old Big Alec tune.

"Trash Heap": I really have no clue what this game is about. Apart from the good
intro music and  the cool 3D  effect (it supports  3D glasses) I  tend to say it
deserves its name. It's also very ooold stuff, coded in 1987. Your mission is to
control some sort of ??? battling other ??? in space(???). At least I think so..
Hmm...better read the readme file next time, eh?

"Starball": Aaah! I'm sure you know this game! If not, what are you waiting for?
This is simply the best pinball game  for the Atari STfm. I even prefer  it over
"Obsession", although it  has only one  table. It's great!  Tons of cool  ideas,
very smooth scrolling, more than 16 colours, sound is also ok...

Conclusion: If you don't know Starball yet, get it now!

Final words
The mixture of new and old games is a good idea. I just wish the quality of  the
older games would be  better. Stuff like "Hero"  or "Trash Heap" is  hardly more
than a diskfiller. All in all, I liked these compilations, with the exception of
--------------------------------------------------------------------- ST Michael

Alive 7