This is dedicated to ZEN who loves Berzerk and HATES the O2. You are missing NOTHING not owning this homebrew.
John Dodzilla is one of the most prolific homebrewers ever. He has made games for the O2, 2600, Colecovision and Vectrex! But his output is mixed. Some games like Vectorvaders and Patriots are (I hear) GREAT. Some like Spike Hopping and Amok need HELP.
LOTS OF HELP!
God, Berzerk was such a simple game you think the O2 would be able to do it well..and using the voice module it could be as perfect as TURTLES! But AMOK is the worst Berzerk clone ever.
First the graphics. John drew a perfect BERZERK Green Humanoid and Evil Otto and used the O2's generic man figure for robots. That would be fine but NOTHING IS ANIMATED! Half the fun of Berzerk is watching the robots and stuff walk around...and the O2 has eight frames built in of "man" animation! You would think on this machine the animation would be strong, but Noooo.. we just get tokens sliding around like a type in BASIC game!
Second, the game is IMPOSSIBLE. Colin, can you get past maze four? I can't and I'll explain. In the "real" berzerk, Otto should always appear where your man started and depending on the number of robots, he should take 15-35 seconds to appear. But John decided to put otto DIRECTLY OPPOSITE YOUR MAN, and even if there are eight robots he always appears in exactly FOUR SECONDS!
That is INSANE! And he Blocks your escape route!
Adding insult to injury, because NOTHING ANIMATES, the game moves at WARP SPEED! It is like the "tokens" are sliding on a greased floor! So instead of trying to shoot as many robots as possible, you TRY...TRYYYYY....to make it to the exit as fast as your butt can move. On the fourth maze that means moving up, right, shoot two robots, down, lef....too late! By now four seconds is up and Otto fries your sorry butt! Oh, and he doesn't destroy the robots here either.
If this was an attempt to make an O2 DRAGONS LAIR or something I would go easy on it, but C'mon, Berzerk is one of the simplest coin-op games ever! And the O2 has the power to make a perfect conversion!
If you want to play Berzerk, you need another system. The Atari 5200 has the very best version (complete with voices and random mazes), but both the original 2600 and the "voice enhanced" 2600 homebrew beat Amok by light years. AMOK! LOOKS like Berzerk, but it plays awful. I get the distinct impression that John Dodzilla got tired of writing it and said "thats good enough". Note to the great John D: Don't start what you can't properly finish!
He should retitle this UNFINISHED BERZERK CLONE!
Before the Atariage store vanished, I bought a hack of Berserk called "Berserk Voice Enhanced". You get all the speech of the arcade game, a flashy title screen, Evil Otto is now green and DOESN'T flicker, and your man is green and slightly taller.
If you love Berserk like I do, and you're into homebrews, THIS is the Berserk to own
[QUOTE]Some games like Vectorvaders and Patriots are (I hear) GREAT. Some like Spike Hopping and Amok need HELP.[/QUOTE]
It might depend on a person's opinions: I wouldn't say Vector Vaders is "great", and neither did the Video Game Critic. It's not bad, More Invaders! off the All Good Things Cartridge is better (it's based on Space Invaders Part II actually), and Vector Vaders 2 on Vecmania runs the fastest of them all.
Spike Hoppin' is a bit fun and doesn't need a lot of 'help', in my opinion. Control could be a tad improved but then that's usually hard to do with Q*Bert clones in general when you don't have a diagonal-only joystick, but you can (or at least I recommend) putting your controller on a flat surface, turning it about 45 degrees (to simulate diagonal movement/controls) and changing the kind of stick you want on the onscreen menu; that usually helps. And I played the absolute HELL out of that game over the years