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"Games of the Week!"

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Welcome to Game of the Week! Each week there will be a new featured game on this page. The game may be good, average or diabolically bad, it really doesn't matter! Just look at the pics, read the text and enjoy the nostalgia! :-) Game of the Week! is open to contributions so if you would like to contribute a game article for this page you're more than welcome to! Every article we receive will be considered!
Blue Max 2001
1984 Synapse Software
Programmed by Bob Polin
Most text of the present article comes from the feature on American imports by Julian Rignall, as published in the fourth issue of the British C64 magazine ZZAP!64 (August 1985).



The follow up to Blue Max must be one of the most disappointing sequels of all time. Blue Max, for the few who haven't seen it, puts you in control of a WW I biplane with a mission to destroy enemy bridges, factories and airfields.

You start on an airfield and have to take off and fly over the diagonally scrolling landscape. Although it's a bit like Zaxxon, Blue Max appeared long before the aforementioned made its way to the 64. The graphics on Blue Max aren't too bad and as a game it's highly enjoyable.

Its follow up, Blue Max 2001, looks very similar from the word go. This time, though, you have a flying saucer (that resembles a jelly mould) under your control. You start on an airfield, or should I say saucerfield, and have to fly over a barren landscape bombing buildings, bridges and factories. Now where have I heard that before? The landscape still scrolls diagonally, but instead of scrolling from the right like in Blue Max, it now scrolls from the left making it quite difficult to play. There are other saucers trundling about the screen which you're supposed to shoot, but there's not much point in doing so as they offer little threat.

Control is very fiddly indeed and it took me quite a while to get going: joystick diagonals play an important part in the control and this always makes precision extremely difficult. The graphics are very poor, the craters on the landscape look ridiculously flat as if they are stuck on! The buildings and other constructions are poorly defined with the perspective all wonky. The sound is bad too, a feeble title screen tune and pathetic whistles and booms during the game.

It's a shame Synapse couldn't have made this a lot better, there was great potential for a follow up to Blue Max and they've totally muffed it. Highly disappointing and a game that won't even convince the Blue Max fanatics.



Htmlized by Dimitris Kiminas (7 May 2002)

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