Friday, 18 September 2009

Commodore Amiga - Pinball Dreams

Commodore Amiga
Pinball Dreams

When I first got my Amiga, I got the "Wild, Weird and Wicked" pack for Christmas. Included in the offer was an extra four pack of titles, including this title... It wasn't the first game I loaded up, though. That title went to Zool.

To be honest, I regret that in a way. Zool wasn't a bad game, by any stretch of the imagination, but the moment I loaded up Pinball Dreams that was it. This game was going to get some serious play. Well, until I bought Pinball Fantasies, of course.

The moment the music started and the 21st Century Entertainment logo appeared, I just knew this was going to be a special experience. In fact, this would be my introduction to the wonders of "MOD" music, as you can find the soundtracks for the Pinball Dreams/Fantasies series for download in MOD format.

Bearing in mind, I've never been really into Pinball machines in the arcades, I very rarely left the realms of video games, but occasionally I have been tempted to give them a go. But this game showed me a little of what I was missing... Of course, when you load a game like this up, and you see the four tables available, you invariably start with number 1.

Table number 1 is a sci-fi themed table called "Ignition". Possibly the weakest moment of the entire series, I still haven't played this table much. I think the main problem with it is the big open space in the middle, all the targets and ramps are at the side, but the ball physics and the gameplay remained solid, and the competition between me, my father, and all the rest of my family began.

The table that would ultimately begin the true obsession with beating each other's scores would be table 4, "Nightmare". The combination of superb table design, multiple features and bonuses, superb music and perfectly placed targets resulted in a tussle for the number 1 spot in the high score table. Stupidly high scores were possible given luck and skill, but every single score you could set is theoretically beatable!

Tables 2 and 3, "Steel Wheel" and "Beat Box" were good tables too, plenty of features, great sound, and, particularly for Steel Wheel, high scores a-plenty.

This is a game everybody should play at least once, twice in the case of the superior sequel.

I guess that's it, though, I'm seeing new features even now on these tables.

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