2018/11/28: Commodore 64: The Dam Busters

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ThePixelatedGenocide
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RE: The Dam Busters C64 Review.

Postby ThePixelatedGenocide » November 29th, 2018, 3:12 am

https://youtu.be/qjFDb4kPMsU?t=21

There's multiple instrument panel screens.

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VideoGameCritic
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2018/11/28: Commodore 64: The Dam Busters

Postby VideoGameCritic » November 29th, 2018, 4:39 am

Here's the latest from the C64 Critic. Comments?

ThePixelatedGenocide
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Re: 2018/11/28: Commodore 64: The Dam Busters

Postby ThePixelatedGenocide » November 29th, 2018, 11:35 am

I normally love his reviews, and it's clear he tried to give this game a fair shake. But despite that, he missed too much of the game to really review it fairly, and he ended his experience in confusion.

Apparently, the instruction book knows what its talking about - the only question are why it didn't give him enough information to know it too? And whether a bad instruction book should affect the grade of the game itself?

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scotland
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Re: 2018/11/28: Commodore 64: The Dam Busters

Postby scotland » November 30th, 2018, 9:37 am

An unopened shrinkwrapped copy sacrificed its pristine grade for this review!

Accolade made Hardball! I was never a big baseball fan, but Hardball is light years beyond any baseball game I ever played (we won't dive too deeply in comparing Hardball! to Odyssey 2 Baseball! except that they each have an exclamation point and are nominally about baseball, the comparison ends there).

Dam Busters, like Psi-5 Trading Company, seems another Accolade attempt at being ambitious, but the gameplay not paying off. Its like there really was a fan of B-17 Bomber for the Intellivision who wanted an update for the C64. Psi-5 is another game of toggling through different jobs on a plane or spaceship, but at least you get to be that person here and not just give orders.

The 1955 movie The Dam Busters is one of the inspirations of the famous Death Star trench run in Star Wars.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lNdb03Hw18M is a video comparing the bombing run in The Dam Busters to Star Wars. Well, except for the disembodied voice of your dead mentor telling you to use the Force, its really really close - basically a scifi veneer. I recall discussing the Dam Busters and Star Wars back in the day, so maybe that's another reason Accolade made this game.

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C64_Critic
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Re: 2018/11/28: Commodore 64: The Dam Busters

Postby C64_Critic » December 2nd, 2018, 4:58 pm

ThePixelatedGenocide wrote:I normally love his reviews, and it's clear he tried to give this game a fair shake. But despite that, he missed too much of the game to really review it fairly, and he ended his experience in confusion.


Thanks Pixel. I did know about the various screens (or 'stations') that you cycle through, and I mentioned them in an earlier/longer version of the review but I didn't notice they got removed in the edit-down process. I did try to get the game a fair shake, and my younger self might have been able to salvage more from this game, but I'm not longer willing to put in more two or so hours trying to "figure out" how to play a game if either the instructions or game play is unclear. I'm not sure that I "missed" much of the game though, I just had a hard time correlating the instrumentation into meaningful data to help me reach the goal of bombing the dam. I did, at least once, actually successfully release the bomb - as far as I could tell based on the 'quick start' I had everything correct (altitude, speed, heading) yet it apparently didn't hit the dam.

I dunno, I'm sure there are a lot of people who put a ton of time into this game learning it's little quirks and eventually making a successful bombing run, but for me the presentation and lack of feedback killed it for me.

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Re: 2018/11/28: Commodore 64: The Dam Busters

Postby ThePixelatedGenocide » December 2nd, 2018, 9:57 pm

That's fair, and thank you for both the explanation, and assuming good faith. Few critics are kind to their critics.

In that case, I'd still have to give your final review a C-, compared to your usual standard, for the same reason the instruction book suffered. You both struggled to communicate the gameplay to someone who isn't already familiar with the title.

And I know it can be done in the space provided, because you just did it now.

At the same time, you managed to get me interested in flight sims. You got me interested in an Intellivision flight sim. None of that should be possible. I've played approximately 7 minutes of 80's flight sims in my entire life, just to watch the crashes and marvel at how desperate some coders were to avoid working within the system limitations.

I was never able to tell one from the other until now.

If you don't mind me asking, what would you consider the best flight sim experience on the C64? Just so I have a rough idea of what what was realistically achievable when a good coder had to struggle with an actual physics engine instead of just showing off how to port the Thunderblade experience. (Although you've got to admit, that was pretty damn impressive too.)

GameOfThrones
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Re: 2018/11/28: Commodore 64: The Dam Busters

Postby GameOfThrones » December 4th, 2018, 10:19 am

Blowing up the three dams and the resulting movie and two books about the subject are a triumph of being British and destroying targets deep within the enemy territory.
I played the game on spectrum it is excellent.

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C64_Critic
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Re: 2018/11/28: Commodore 64: The Dam Busters

Postby C64_Critic » December 5th, 2018, 9:18 pm

ThePixelatedGenocide wrote:If you don't mind me asking, what would you consider the best flight sim experience on the C64? Just so I have a rough idea of what what was realistically achievable when a good coder had to struggle with an actual physics engine instead of just showing off how to port the Thunderblade experience. (Although you've got to admit, that was pretty damn impressive too.)


I have to admit, I didn't really get into flight sims until I started playing more PC games on my 286 IBM clone, but off the top of my head I'd have to say that Gunship was actually my favorite "flight sim" on the Commodore, if you can count a helicopter game. I didn't realize it but apparently F-19 Stealth Fighter was released for the C64, which I played and enjoyed on the PC, so I may try to pick that one up off Ebay and take it for a spin to see how it does on the ol' breadbox!

thrust26
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Re: 2018/11/28: Commodore 64: The Dam Busters

Postby thrust26 » December 9th, 2018, 12:38 pm

I got the game as pirated copy back then. And I still managed (with a lot of trial and error) to bomb that dam.

Today I probably wouldn't have that stamina anymore. Times have changed, maybe for the reviewer too?


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