Monday 2 January 2012

2011 C64 16KB Cartridge Game Development Competition Results

Although the results of the our 16KB Cartridge Development Compo were announced over at the Commodore Scene Database some time before Christmas, until now I've not had a chance to update this website. So, here at last are the long-awaited full results including feedback from the judging panel.

As already explained over on the competition page, the scores were calculated using mean averages with the highest achievable score being 44 points (if all judges had scored a game 11 points in all categories). I won't bore you with lists and tables of who scored each game what, instead I have listed the games below in order of placing with the final scores and comments.

Before continuing I'd like to say a massive 'thank you' to everyone involved - 2011 was one of the best years for C64 gaming in decades because of your work and dedication. I can only hope that 2012's competition will be as good.

Fairy Well (Wide Pixel Games)
1st Place (35.5556 Points)

"Lovely downbeat presentation (with the music working particularly well) with functional in game sound effects and lovely graphics. Three playable characters classes (and thus play-styles), and procedurally generated maps too. All in all very nice rogue-like-lite/platformer/explore-em-up. Excellent work." (Andy Jenkinson)

"Surprisingly complex for a modern game. Graphics are cute. Unique design and story. Finding keys and opening stuff is not my cup of tea but Fairy Well manages to motivate me to try harder to see whats next. Congratulations on this one!" (Enthusi)

"Although it initially doesn't blow you away like C64anabalt, there is a heck of a lot under the hood here which is revealed more and more as you play. Firstly there are around 200 odd randomized flick screens to fly around and explore (creating some unexpected longetivity/replay value), a shop to purchase items, a map showing your progress and some solid graphics and sound. There is also a character selection screen with three characters offering different skills to give you three unique ways to play the game. Plenty of depth and longitivity overall with some nice touches throughout. Technically very impressive for a 16KB cartridge, and yet another I'd love to see more done to beyond the 16KB cart limitation. My favourite game overall from the entire competition as a result of all the above." (Frank Gasking)

"Despite not being as instantly gratifying as some of the other arcade-style releases in the competition, Fairy Well is my overall favourite. It's a hugely ambitious game for a 16KB competition, beautifully presented and very replayable. I love the fact that there are three different game modes and the cute boss fights. Classic old-school adventuring, and well worth persisting with to see the ending." (Heavy Stylus)

"Knowing what a genius Mikael Tillander is I knew I was in for a treat with his game - and oh boy, I was NOT disappointed! It's great fun exploring this amazingly vast game and the atmospheric music gives it a pleasant laid-back vibe. I will definitely be playing this one some more in the future. Excellent stuff!" (Kenz)

"The scope of what the game achieves in 16KB is quite staggering. Sadly it's marred by being a bit too easy and slow-paced, but if it was further developed allowing for more memory, it would become an even better game. To this reviewer at least." (Mayhem)

"A search and rescue mission to find three crystals and rescue four princesses. A flick screen afair similar to Knight 'n' Grail, only this time the main character has the ability to fly. The maze like levels will demand a lot of time and effort to negotiate and mapping may be necessary - just like the good old days. Dangers lurk around every screen so it's a patient and methodolic approach needed. Great visuals and music throughout." (Nreive)

"A lovely, haunting soundtrack makes for surprisingly atmospheric gameplay in this sedate but tense floaty fey platformer. Three different playable characters keeps the experience fresh, but the randomised level design here hinders the game a little; one run through I found the first of the three crystals needed to complete the game on the second next to my start point, although this is a minor gripe at best." (Ruari O'Toole)

"Remarkably large play area considering the size of the cartridge." (T.M.R)

C64anabalt (Paul Koller)
2nd Place (35.1111 Points)

"Well... it is Canabalt. It looks like it, and feels like it. A one button classic, and as such a worthy addition to the Commodore canon of games. The music throughout is pleasant, and the 'frustration/one-more-go' factor is all present and correct. In lesser hands this would have been embarrassing, here it is pretty much perfect." (Andy Jenkinson)

"Close port of an existing game. Quite stylish! A bit repetitive though - ironically I still wish it was less random, at least after game over. I dont know the original well and my judgement is not at all based on 'closeness to original'. It looks very advanced and gives much joy in short time but not very long-lasting (to me). Very well suited for 16KB! Feels very well polished and not trimmed to limited memory range at all." (Enthusi)

"I still can't believe that we've been treated to two superb conversions in the space of a week or so! A simply amazing conversion, matching a good chunk of the Flash original. As a game, there is not much of an aim apart from getting as far as possible - but there is still plenty of fun to keep beating your distance and levels are randomly generated. Controls are responsive and tight as with the original. I would like to see a larger version done afterwards to see what Paul could additionally squeeze into the game as it seems some features have not been included due to the cartridge restriction. Just about edges the unofficial conversion, though would love to see the best bits from both games combined with all memory used :)" (Frank Gasking)

"What is there not to love about this? With it's grey-scale colour scheme the original Canabalt looks as though it was designed for the C64, and Paulko64's version (based on the original source code) is very true to Adam Atomic's one-button smash. It won't win any prizes for originality (as a port), but technically the game is outstanding. And the best news yet is that Paulko64 plans for further enhancements in the retail cartridge version!" (Heavy Stylus)

"This is just awesome - a superb 'twitch' game with really stylish graphics, clever graphical effects and tons of replayability (must... get... further!) How is this 16K? HOW?!?! It's fast, it's smooth, it's fun, and it got a whole load of votes from me. Good work!" (Kenz)

"A conversion, and therefore suffers the slings and arrows of its origin. Occasionally unfair, sometimes too random, it however retains a definite one-more-go hook and its simple control scheme and premise make it an instant winner." (Mayhem)

"Superb run-'em-up with a continued pressure to perform more outstanding well timed jumps. The visuals are fantastic with some superb scrolling and animation. The graphics may be small but they are clear enough with a well detailed main sprite. A suitable upbeat soundtrack plays throughout." (Nreive)

"This game is so addictive it should come with a warning sticker. A simple concept combined with challenging gameplay and cool, crisp black and white graphics, backed up with a driving chiptune soundtrack makes for a game with huge replay value. The randomised levels make for a new experience with each run and the use of distance ran as a score means the player is constantly challenged to do better next time." (Ruari O'Toole)

"An excellent conversion of the original, exciting and frustrating in equal measure." (T.M.R)

Panic Analogue (Goin' Sideways)
3rd Place (30.2222 Points)

"A great update on the paddle style of 'bomber' game - these style of games have replayability a-plenty, feeling like updates of game and watch games, and this one - with it's nice title music and graphics is no exception. Simple, yet compelling fun." (Andy Jenkinson)

"Nice idea and design. A bit unlucky choice to support paddles only but does indeed play very well with them. Wonderful animations and graphical setup. Plays fast, easy to grasp and nicely rising difficulty." (Enthusi)

"A Kaboom clone set in a cave - could be simply labelled as that, but you would be wrong. Panic Analogue is a very good clone of the Atari classic, but with a slight twist where you must alternate your character between someone who can catch fire and who can catch water (sort of like Ikaruga's ship switch mechanism). The game must be played with paddles, which seems like a bit of a bind - but is well worth digging out on the real hardware. Controls with the paddles are very tight and responsive, which the game requires with its twitch reflexes required later on. The "Panic" does indeed start to set in around level 6 and gradually increases until you turn into a frenzied mess. Not only will you lose a life if you die, but you are punished further by being pushed back a level - nice idea :) Presentation is simple, but effective overall, with solid music/effects and graphically the game is sound, with nice animations on the main character." (Frank Gasking)

"Being paddle controlled only will be off-putting for many, but really this is a game that deserves to be played. Panic Analogue is an amazing debut game release from a new group, with AAA quality presentation and music throughout. I love the random element of this well structured game, although I think that hiding the character behind the forground of the cave is a bit cheap. One of my favourites in the competition, maddeningly addictive, well designed and perfect for a bit of casual old-school fun. Analogue control for life!" (Heavy Stylus)

"This game is GREAT! I just love the main character, he literally is oozing with 'character'! The idea is really simple - drink the water or deflect the fireballs, but it's the amazingly responsive controls that make this a winner. I wonder if this game could be modified to work with a NEOS mouse? I'd love to play it on a real C64 using a mouse!! Simple but brilliant stuff." (Kenz)

"A cross between Kaboom and Ikaruga essentially. It's another simple concept that's been repeated many times since, but this one is more than competant, controls well, and has a good difficulty curve. And those are important factors for any successful game." (Mayhem)

"After getting to grips with the paddle controles - how long has it been since I've used a paddle? - I really enjoyed this neat little puzzle/arcade game. Neat little gameplay, great visuals, sound and addictive gameplay. One of the better games." (Nreive)

"With a brilliantly spooky theme tune that echoed in my head after I put down the controller, Panic Analogue is an absorbing paddle game that kept dragging me back for replays. The graphics are wonderfully atmospheric, with the player peering into the cave inhabited by our hero Redhead and watching as he strives to not accidentally swallow fireballs." (Ruari O'Toole)

"A decent Kaboom! variant, although I feel it would've been better with more control options." (T.M.R)

Space Lords (
4th Place (27.7778 Points)

"Warlords was fun on the 2600 - and it's more fun here, as it's prettier by far. Initially unimpressive as it's just a reworking of such an old concept - but paddle support, 4-players and good AI and mulitiplayer and multiball shenanigans make this a really fun diversion." (Andy Jenkinson)

"C64 port of a classic. Cute graphics, nice gameplay. Could use >16KB maybe but its quite enjoyable. Could be faster maybe, would make a perfect party-game then. Very detailed considering its simple idea and 16KB limit." (Enthusi)

"A Warlords clone/conversion for the C64 has been well overdue, and Space Lords was a huge surprise when released. It is brilliant, with many features from the original and some good AI built in too. Actually, some credit is well due for the AI that has been included, as it means that many can play the game compared to the original Warlords if you don't have any friends. Presentation is simple, but does the job - with name entry for each player. Graphically functional, the game features some cartoony creatures to defend. Sound wise, it is a little bit quiet - with no music, and minor effects in the game. Overall a welcome surprise at the end of the competition, which means yet another Atari classic has made the transition :)" (Frank Gasking)

"Submitted just minutes before the deadline, Space Lords is a great conversion of Atari's Warlords that (like the original coin-op) supports up to four players. Graphically it's gorgeous and as a party game it totally rocks, but sadly the compo version lacks music. A great effort and debut game release nonetheless!" (Heavy Stylus)

"Another fun game here! A simple idea - defend the walls of your googly alien's base in a corner of a screen using a breakout bat - and try to deflect the ball/comets into the walls of your enemy. Nice graphics, functional sfx, great playablility, smooth movement (and it gets nice and hectic once more balls come into play). Like this!" (Kenz)

"The C64 hasn't had many Warlords style games, so I was pleased to see one here. Bonus points for supporting the four player adapter. However not being able to catch the fireballs is a major flaw, along with the wide-reaching arc of the bats themselves, making it hard to attack other players." (Mayhem)

"Excellent puzzle game where the player is tasked to defend their little monster by moving the paddle across the defensive wall deflecting oncoming balls. With several balls flying around, things can get pretty hectic and soon requires super fast reflexes. Some great visuals and multiplayer option round things off nicely." (Nreive)

"Space Lords is a surprisingly tricky bat and ball/base defence game with colourful alien antagonists reminiscent of the metropolitan clientele of the Amiga's Shufflepuck Café. Multiball bonuses toughen the game up, and it's quite easy to knacker your own base if you aren't too careful." (Ruari O'Toole)

"Visually beefed up Warlords on the C64 and it even manages a good single player game." (T.M.R)

"Theme tune was pretty nice... And it plays like the 2600 'classic' Yar's Revenge. Executed very nicely executed, although the slightly arbitrary play style may be off putting for some." (Andy Jenkinson)

"Technically most impressive take on an all time classic. Very clean style and fully polished. Well presented. Instant need-to-play-more factor. Great game. Thank you for this one!" (Enthusi)

"I was a bit sceptical when I saw that a Yars Revenge conversion was being done after previous attempts in the past. I am a *huge* fan of the original 30 year old VCS game, and I knew it would be tough for some parts to be faithfully replicated. Well, the developers have done a very solid job! .. It looks and feels great, with as much of the raster effects from the VCS copied as possible, with a touch of SID awesomeness yet again from Linus. It is very very close to the original, and plays out in the same way, getting faster and faster - a classic high score based game. My only niggle was that the main character was a little too slow and needs speeding up a notch, plus the death sound effect misses a little explosion sound to finish off :) Finally, presentation is great, with an amazing hi-res logo and hi-score features. A welcome surprise for me overall :)" (Frank Gasking)

"The 2600 classic finally gets ported to the C64 - and what a conversion! Full screen gameplay (all borders), awesome music and effects - there is nothing to fault here at all. Awesome on every level." (Heavy Stylus)

"I must confess I *never* played the original game on the Atari so I had no clue as to what was going on. I figured out I was controlling a little insect type thingy that could move all over the screen - but couldn't fire when I was in that statickey mess in the middle. There seemed to be a slow-moving rolling pin following me around the screen that I avoided - and the idea of the game seemed to be to remove the blocky forcefield around the evil 'Jar', tag him, and, then let the ROD OF DOOM that appears when Jar has been tagged, smash him to smithereens. An odd game. Love the retro sound effects tho'!" (Kenz)

"The 2600 game was always a little old, a homage to Star Castle with new gameplay features. It is pleasing to say this retains all the playability of the original. However the ramping up of difficulty is too spaced out and needs to be lower, as it's far too easy and boring early on before you can reach 70,000 points." (Mayhem)

"A single screen shooter with minimal visuals and sound along with some decent gameplay." (Nreive)

"A slickly done Yar's Revenge port, Jar's Revenge has fast and smooth gameplay and preserve's the original's sense of tension as the player guides their superweapon after devouring (or shooting) the shields defending the objective. A great SID chip soundtrack backs the gameplay up with panache." (Ruari O'Toole)

"A close to spot on version of Yar's Revenge... "Atari" should be taking notes!" (T.M.R)

Woolly Jumper (The New Dimension)
6th Place (23.7778 Points)

"A forced scrolling platformer, with lovely graphics and nice music - although the very strange 'jump' arc, and very short levels make this less satisfying than it could have been. The colour themes work really well in the levels, creating different 'feels' very effectively." (Andy Jenkinson)

"A nice surprise here. Strange theme but smooth gameplay which is easy to pick up. Level of difficulty motivates to play. A nice plug-n-play." (Enthusi)

"There isn't anyone more prolific at game development for the C64 than Richard Bayliss at the moment. However, Richard has been criticised of sometimes rushing out the same ideas rather than spending time creating something different. Shaun Pearson has teamed up brilliantly with Richard to produce a game which is not only gorgeously presented, but is plenty of fun too and feeling like a classic Codemasters game from 1992. Presentation is simple and effective, with a great "sheepy" title tune and logo - the sheep's death sequence is pretty cool too. The in-game tune does grate quickly though, and the jumping is a bit quirky - also it wasn't always clear which parts of a level would kill you. I'd like to see this one expanded a bit outside of the compo and see what else could be added - the levels in particular could do with being lengthened. A great solid effort from Richard, and probably one of the best games he has produced." (Frank Gasking)

"Shaun Pearson's graphics take this cute and challenging little platformer to the next level. Woolly Jumper is certainly one of Richard's better games to date, but it would have scored higher from me if the levels were built with some sort of procedural algorithim instead of being fixed - after you've beaten it there is little replay value here. I'm looking forward to seeing the enhanced 64KB version in the future." (Heavy Stylus)

"Graphically, this game is SUPERB - the backgrounds and sprites look awesome and I love the little Sheepie you control. So cute! Unfortunately, the inertia feels all wrong. It's really tricky trying to accurately blast baddies and the jumping just feels too "gluey". It's also too easy to die when the scrolling suddenly stops at the end of the level while you are in mid-jump! This is a great shame as with tighter controls this could have been a cracking little game - it still gets top marks for visuals and music tho'!" (Kenz)

"It isn't immediately obvious what each power-up does, or which bits of the scenery will kill you, so there's a learning curve in place. As you restart a level when you die, then having them not so long that it becomes frustrating is a good design idea. Another game that might benefit from expansion with more memory available to it." (Mayhem)

"As expected, aesthetics are top notch. Gameplay is good, but let down by some suspect ledge detection when jumping onto them. Pretty hard gameplay with lots of enemies oncoming while negotiating levetated ledges." (Nreive)

"Ensuring The Mollusk isn't the only animal-centric game in the running, Woolly Jumper is a sheep-oriented platformer with forced scrolling, a similarly heart rending (but this time also a bit funny) death animation with the sheepy leading man gazing wide eyed at the player as he falls to his death, and sharp graphics. Some death defying jumps are thrown in the player's path, and as with many of the other games in the show the soundtrack is pure SID chip fun.
" (Ruari O'Toole)

"The jumping is a little odd but this is a reasonable scrolling shoot 'em up." (T.M.R)

"Great vector based shoot combining a dose of space invaders with a pinch of crazy golf. Music and sound effects work excellently. Very impressive indeed - and unlike anything else in the competition presentation wise. Very well done." (Andy Jenkinson)

"Port of a well known evergreen. Technically impressive, though a bit on the slow side. Stylish but slightly boring steel-grey-theme. Feels VERY polished (docs, style, highscore). Gameplay is simple and fun but the lack of AI reduces replay-motivation a bit (I know this is a very clean conversion but I'm judging the (very good) final product here)." (Enthusi)

"A wonderful conversion from the Vectrex of the pong/space invaders styled blaster. Looks great, sounds great and plays great too. The music is breathtaking from Linus and gives the game some extra punch from the original. There are also some clever gameplay aspects crammed in, and as well as the multiple screens of play there is also some impressive presentation to wrap things up. If you didn't play the original years back, then you may find the game a little simplistic, but the game does what it sets out to achieve. Only thing missing is the screen overlay! ;)" (Frank Gasking)

"It may be an oldie, but it's still a goldie :) TRSI's port of the Vectrex shmup makes a welcome addition to the C64 cartridge library (and this competition). Great stuff." (Heavy Stylus)

"This is interesting - a conversion of a Vectrex game on the C64... Not quite as 'glowey' as the original version (unless I set my TV contrast to self-destruct-hyper-radiation levels) and is lacking the cool vector explodey effects of the original - but it IS 16K after all! I rate this game 'quite neat' (and I've found I'm very good at blowing myself up - oo-er, matron!)" (Kenz)

"It is certainly very much like the Vectrex game, one that was never an especial favourite of mine though in the vector canon. Having said that, it plays well enough, is challenging, and a worthy alternative if you can't play the original." (Mayhem)

"The black and white visuals make it very hard to spot incoming missiles, which in turn can bring the game to an abrupt ending. Yes, possibly an accurate conversion of the 1980s classic game, but it still doesn't make it a great game at the end of the day." (Nreive)

"In my student loan, free money from nowhere days I was engaged in a fierce eBay bidding war over a Vectrex which I thankfully lost, so Fortress of Narzod had me excited instantly. The Veccy experience, minus coloured overlays, is transported over to the C64 quite well, although to be fair I've only ever played emulator Vectrexes (Vectrices?). While probably not stretching the breadbin's processing muscles very far the gameplay is consistently fun and satisfying, and there's something iconic about the stark linear graphics." (Ruari O'Toole)

"A solid shoot 'em up, having to dodge rebounding bullets is a nice touch." (T.M.R)

The Mollusk (Achim Volkers)
8th Place (22.6667 Points)

"An unashamed arcade game, with a quite unusual control mechanism. The difficulty in the game in increased by the acclimatisation to these control (much as in Defender in the arcade). The game eases you in somewhat more gently though, and jaunty presentation (tune and GFX) help draw in the casual player." (Andy Jenkinson)

"Beautiful idea and design. Plays fast and smooth though the gameplay itself is too limited. I enjoy watching everything and swimming along but long-time-motivation lacks a bit." (Enthusi)

"Achim has recently produced some cute little games, and The Mollusk is another to add to the list. I'd say this is his best yet, and is a very original and clever concept. Graphically looks great (animation on the Mollusk is superb!), though needs a bit of parallax and presentation is a little simple compared to the other games. Controls take a little getting used to at first, but give it time and you'll make a good investment. Gameplay doesn't vary too much between levels, but the addition of jelly fish, eels and sharks make progression harder and pose a good challenge when combined with the controls. The music is yet another new set of tunes from Sean Connolly, who had to really cut down his player to get the tunes in around 2k in total - he did very well. Great unique idea, plenty of fun to play." (Frank Gasking)

"One of the strongest games in the competition (in my opinion) and very original in concept. The controls take some getting used to, but there is a lot of game on offer here and the presentation is superb. I would have liked to have seen the levels wrapped horizontally (like Defender) - hitting walls on the sides of the ocean is a bit odd. Achim's best game to date, and one to be proud of." (Heavy Stylus)

"Very nicely presented game but I didn't quite get the controls... Am I meant to I eat the fishies with my butt and kill baddies with inky farts while swimming backwards? Life as a Mollusk is too complex for me! I do like the underwatery graphics and had some fun swimming with the fishies tho'!" (Kenz)

"The controls take a little getting used to, it almost reminds me of Defender in a way. Reverse, turning around, making sure you move in the correct direction to attack rather than release ink. Once past that, it transforms into a fairly entertaining little game." (Mayhem)

"For some reason, The Mollusk reminds me of Sub Hunter. Nice aesthetics, but gameplay is a little lacking in excitement." (Nreive)

"The Mollusk is a side scrolling eat-em-up, casting the player as the titular, tentacled, hungry creature in a hunt for food of the live and swimming variety. It also boasts a heartbreaking death animation, where our heroic squid-thing floats pathetically up to the surface on being hit by one too many anchors. It's a creative idea and earns The Mollusk a respectable score in the concept category." (Ruari O'Toole)

"Slightly confusing to begin with, but a solid action game after that." (T.M.R)

Get 'Em (Endurion)
9th Place (19.1111 Points)

"The presentation here makes no concession to the last 30 years! A fairly simple concept - yet a quite hard pac-man-'em-up with shooting and procedurally generated mazes. Overall it's far too hard, it is sometimes unfair, and nearly impossible to put down. Brilliant." (Andy Jenkinson)

"Technically simple but clean game. Not a complete port but based on known concept. Fun to play and coming with some surprising extras (bombs etc). Doesnt feel too polished but it is enjoyable." (Enthusi)

"Don't let looks deceive! What originally looks to be a very simplistic Pacman clone, evolves very quickly into a fun Pacman/Robotron style game (best way I can describe its gameplay) which is based heavily on 'Forget Me Not'. It is quite comparable and does a good job of replicating the addictiveness of the original and has plenty to keep you playing for a good length of time. Overall it felt like a classic Synapse game from 1984, who produced some great titles in the C64's early years. Although fun to play, presentation does let the game down pretty badly compared to the other entries, with very simplistic graphics and sounds throughout. Do not let that put you off though, and be sure to have a good game of it!" (Frank Gasking)

"I absolutely love this port of Forget Me Not and wish that I could have placed it higher on my votesheet, but sadly the presentation lets it down a little. Hopefully Endurion will continue work on this for a retail version - a game like this is just asking for a competitive two player mode!" (Heavy Stylus)

"This is sort of like Pac-Man - with a bunch of other stuff going on! It reminds me a bit of Hungry Horace on the Speccy - well, kinda. It starts of simply enough - move around the maze and eat the crosses - but things get real busy, real quick! I like the way it adds to the Pac-Man concept by having bombs that distort the maze, enemies that leave goodies to snaffle - and there's even a cameo from a snake/centipede type dude!" (Kenz)

"Reminds me of Venture with that large, smiling face. Winky definitely could have done with the power-ups on offer here to boot. Random mazes make it more a game of skill, although sometimes it is a little too hard for its own good. Definitely a keeper though." (Mayhem)

"A puzzle - gather crosses and key to unlock exit. Power ups and extras along the way. Although at first glance, a Pac-Man clone, this is much harder, with the task of gathering crosses and a key before progressing onto the next level. Difficulty is set very high with frequent spawning enemy on speed." (Nreive)

"Get 'Em is heavily inspired by a game I gave a great review to earlier in the year, so this was a tough one for me. A slower, less gonzo take on Forget Me Not, Get 'Em does a solid job of evoking the iOS pac-man-esque shooter/chomper in a more C64 friendly format." (Ruari O'Toole)

"A challenging and unusual twist on maze games." (T.M.R)

Blok Copy (Cosine)
10th Place (13.3750 Points)

"As a puzzle lover I was looking forward to this - but, like a sliding block puzzle (or Rubick's cube) success becomes a rote series of movements designed to swap particular arrangements of blocks - or trying to 'undo' the visible movements at the start (Like playing 'Simon' in reverse). Nice music in game, and clean presentation though - although the front end is a tad utilitarian." (Andy Jenkinson)

"Very colorful (a bit too colorful for my taste) cute puzzle game. Overall seems pretty polished. If you like this kind of game, this one might be just right." (Enthusi)

"Another great game from Jason Kelk, sort of comparable to a flat Rubik's Cube type of affair. Well presented, with superb music by Sean Connolly and a simple but addictive game with responsive controls. It isn't a very complex concept overall however compared to other entries, but is still fun to play if you like your puzzlers. Only slight criticism is that the blocks/numbers are a bit hard to make out. I'm looking forward to the VIC 20 edition of this one too! :)" (Frank Gasking)

"The first game submitted for our compo, and the only puzzle game in the line up. Blok Copy isn't a game that everyone will love, but it is well designed and each screen is randomly shuffled (providing a fresh challenge every time). It's a good and solid release, and the only reason it doesn't place higher on my votesheet is because of the superior quality and gameplay of some of the other releases. Better luck next year Cosine!" (Heavy Stylus)

"I must confess I struggled with this game. I was initially impressed with the presentation (the front-end looks great) and the music was cheery enough. The main problem I have with this game is the in-game graphics. I found the bloks too indistinct and spent more time squinting atthe screen than actually unscrambling the patterns - which is a great shame. It's a bit like playing with a rubiks cube where each side is made up of a different magic eye picture... Well, okay, it's not that bad! ;)" (Kenz)

"Slow, relaxing, a game you can chill out to. However, given that the "solution" is rather presented to you at the start of each round, means it is almost a memory contest instead to remember the reverse of the moves needed to solve the puzzle. Somewhat defeating the object of the game." (Mayhem)

"A fairly decent enough puzzle game with okay aesthetics and gameplay." (Nreive)

"I've never been a big fan of puzzle games, and Blok Copy was up against some storming contenders, but despite my lack of enthusiasm for puzzlers something about Blok Copy kept drawing me back to playing it. It's a sharply, smartly built game, difficult but rewarding." (Ruari O'Toole)

Rong - Ron's Pong (Software of Sweden)
11th Place (5.1111 Points)

"Simple game, nice presentation - but in honesty it looks like a demo scene release rather than a game (which I suspect it should be viewed as). As a proof of concept... yes. As a game... less so." (Andy Jenkinson)

"A bit strange Pong variant. Colorful, nicely presented but gameplay itself is a bit slow/boring." (Enthusi)

"Good presentation and sound, and a solid representation of Pong. Unfortunately there is not too much else to say, as at the end of the day it is just another Pong clone. Additionally the game is only two player, with no AI of any shape or form to play against. It sounds all pretty negative so far, but actually - if you manage to find someone to play against, it is a good Pong clone and one of the better ones out there. Unfortunately the competition in comparison just blows it away." (Frank Gasking)

"Pong without paddles - now that's just 'rong'. ;) On it's own, Rong isn't a bad game (the music and presentation is pretty decent actually). However, unfortunately it pales against the other high-quality competition entries, and Kribust's Paddlepong is still the ultimate C64 Pong as far as I'm concerned. Still, a great effort and first game. Well done Ron and Wolk! :)" (Heavy Stylus)

"This didn't really float my boat I'm afraid - mainly because it's a two player game and there was only one of me available to test the game at the time of writing this review - and it was no fun playing with myself (erm, so to speak!) It's nicely presented and all that, but it's still a two player only PONG at the end of the day, so the appeal was a tad limited." (Kenz)

"It's Pong. To be honest, there's not a lot more that can be said there. No paddle support and a lack of AI weigh heavily against it though." (Mayhem)

"Nothing too much wrong with Ron's Pong, but the C64 hardware is hardly stretched here." (Nreive)

"There's not much to say about Pong that hasn't already been said a million times! Ron's Pong is Pong, and it's a lot of fun as a two player game. Maybe it's an unintended gameplay factor but I found myself constantly distracted by the text scrolling along the bottom of the screen, and made a single-player game out of taking control of both paddles in an attempt to keep the ball bouncing long enough to read what Software of Sweden had to say about themselves.
" (Ruari O'Toole)

"An average implementation of Pong..." (T.M.R)


  1. Great to finally read all the review comments!

    P.s. most of the links are broken...

  2. Whoops... Ok, I'm fixing it now.

  3. Funny to see a web address on the splash page for these type of games. :P Very nice job everyone.

  4. There was no requirement for a web address or anything - but yeah, it is funny seeing them on an 8-bit game :)