Amalthea

Game


Steven Pick


Colin Piggot


1995

Amalthea.zip (not yet approved)

From the Sam Coupé Scrapbook

Top-down and side-on gauntlet-ish game, played in an alien infested base.


Review by Steven Pick from the Sam Coupé Scrapbook

Hooray!! Scream from the highest mountain, and relish in a NON-PUZZLE (in massive capital letters) game from the non-puzzley lads at Jupiter Software. Now you have the chance to power-up on weaponry, shoot the living daylights out of assorted alien foe and basically enjoy yourself!

Amalthea is a seven (SEVEN!) multi-load game involving two different game styles - a top-down style game, which has a certain “Alien Breed” about it, and a much-polished (erm, thanks to my graphics, ahem) side-on viewed section, but cleverly involving the same elements of the top-down game, but in a different layout. The game kicks in with a Alien Breed-style “mission printout” telling you about each of the seven zones. In all cases, you have to collect power crystals dotted around each of the zones and then find the exit (a skull and crossbones before you’ve collected all the power crystals) to escape. Along the way, you can collect a multitude of various odds and ends including multi-coloured (and multi-valued) credits which can be used at a computer terminal in each zone to buy weapon power-ups, first aid, etc.

First aid icons can be found to increase your health, while ammo is for.. go on, guess. Various sections of the complex can be accessed with the help of keys, key icons of which can be found around the game zone, and generously allow you to open five doors. Alternatively, you can always blast a door open with your weapon (no sexual innuendo intended, you dirty minded person). Weaponry, by the way, can be upgraded to include more powerful shots, and even two guns for the price of one - at a price of more ammunition needed!

The aliens aren’t as feriocious as Alien Breed, as they mostly move in set patterns. Some aliens are “triggered” to attack you when you collect a certain icon in that room, and all aliens take a fair amount of shots to destroy. The side-on viewed level certainly throws the player, though the gist of it is very simple to get into, and the boys at Jupiter have definetly giving the side-on view a new buzz from this game, with the advent of several dangers including vertical lifts, lifts that can only be activated when you have destroyed a main “switch”, barrels of toxic waste which eat at your health, plus all the usual add-ons from the top-down levels.

Each zone alternates from one game style to the next, and as you progress through the complex, you’re treated to even more dangers to face, including attacks from gun cannons (when the defence system has been activated), and much more. By the way, as the levels progress, each game zone gets larger and larger, and in many cases, there are even secret entrances to be found!

So then, the verdict. Absolutely bloody brilliant! From the start, you are engrossed in getting to the end of each level intact, shooting aliens when you need to (in the case of aliens which block your way) and exploring each part of the complex. There is definetly an engrossing feature in this game, especially with the variety of the two game styles which sort of gives you two games for the price of one! Graphics in both sections are well-drawn and very atmospheric, along with a continuous droning sound in the background. The shop section also increases the lastability of the title, and puzzlers won’t know what’s hit them with this title! Even better is that you get sampled voices if you have a Quazar Surround connected, though sound without this is a little duff to say the least…

One minor gripe is that once a level is completed, your health, ammo and anything else you have, is “kept” for the next level, so if you had just scraped through a particulary dangerous level then you’ll find that your health of 3% won’t last long in a particularly dangerous part of the zone. But saying this, the game does prevent over-use of the multi-load feature by keeping you on the game zone you last died on, and taking off a few hundred credits - top marks for Jupiter there!

In short, if you want a bargain of a buy with tons to do, a lastability you won’t believe, eye-popping graphics and a totally engrossing atmosphere, then get this! Puzzle games - your days are numbered…!

AreaScore
Graphics94%
Sound88%
Playability97%
Lastability96%
Overall94%


Amalthea was the first Sam game to feature support for the Quazar Surround soundcard, with well over a megabyte of samples in the introduction and spot sound effects throughout the game.

A small playable demo of Amalthea appears on issue 1 of Soundbyte.



Amalthea

This is one game I’ve been after for ages - sorry to say but decent Sam titles are very few and far between, when you get a shit hot game like this the chances are youve not a cat ‘n’ hells chance of getting hold of it…..if anyone out there can get hold of Amalthea please contact me at PaulLX1@Yahoo.com, please please - I’ll pay a decent price for it.

Only one disk image? When I

Only one disk image? When I bought this, it came on three floppies…

Hmm

That’s all I’ve got - could be an iffy copy though.

Amalthea

Please can someone add some decent screenshots to the article! A decent game like this deserves a few decent shots, how’s anyone suppose to appreciate the qualitys of the game if thy dont what it looks like? Lets face it, very few have probably ever seen it in action, I for one would like to see what this games all about!!

Hooray…..a non-puzzle game…phew! Never thought I’d ever see the day……

Amalthea

Best game on the Sam? (Apart from Stratosphere) It looks very bare….if its soooo good why is it 1)no one can get hold of it ANYWHERE and 2)only the programmers/software producers are the only ones who’ve played it?? The rest of us get to play puzzle games - hooray…

Amalthea

Average - No votes - What does this tell you? The game was put to total waste! No one (that I know anyway apart from the programmer community) has ever heard of it let alone played it….bring on the puzzlers!!!zzzzzzz……..

This was one of the best

This was one of the best games on SAM - 3 disks of a decent top-down alien breed clone, with around 2mb of high-quality sampled sound.

The reason you can’t get it? Perhaps as it’s a copyright title, and protected from pirates?

A title I worked on...

As this is a title I worked on (with the sound code and samples still being my copyrighted property, and I also did the machine code menu as an extra - just remembered that!) i’m in the middle of trying to obtain permission to republish this title - most likely for Sam Revival coverdisks, or perhaps give it a general revamp to give it some extras for when it’s being run with the Mayhem Accelerator.

Colin
=====
Quazar : Hardware, Software, Spares and Repairs for the Sam Coupe
April 1995-2006 - Celebrating 11 Years of developing for the Sam Coupe
Website: http://www.samcoupe.com/

Amalthea revamp

BRING IT ON!!!!!! CANT WAIT……..

Revamp

All depends of course on getting permission, but it’s something I would really like to do.

I’ve a few other revamps on the way though, the first being ‘Conquest’ (A strategy game originally released briefly in 1996 or so) which i’m just about finishing giving a graphical makeover, as well as adding a fantastic SAA1099 soundtrack that I’ve had made especially for it.

Just need to get the Mayhem Accelerator finished off 100% and into it’s production version, then i’ll have a bit more time to work more on software for a change!

Colin
=====
Quazar : Hardware, Software, Spares and Repairs for the Sam Coupe
April 1995-2006 - Celebrating 11 Years of developing for the Sam Coupe
Website: http://www.samcoupe.com/

I played a demo of this game

I played a demo of this game which the Jupiter boys sent me and it looked like it was going to be a cracker. Never got the full version though, and never had a Quazar, so can’t comment on the sound.

Jupiter were knocking out some good games towards the end of their tenure, and their version of Invaders was one of those ‘must play’ games that always kept you coming back for one more go!

Amalthea

It would certainly be a total waste of a good game if permission wasnt granted for this game to be released again, there are very few games on the Sam that are actualy enjoyable (I know coz I’ve got about 90% of them) and what with all the new users out there the computer could do with all the decent titles it can get. I realy wouldnt make any sense to me whatsoever it it wasnt allowed - its too good.

Perhaps as part of the

Perhaps as part of the rights belong to Quazar - there is a chance that Colin may be able to release it with the excellent soundcard.

Invaders by Phoenix systems

Anyone out there have any screenshots or reviews of this Invaders game? I’ve heard some good stories about it, but like Amalthea the realy good titles never seem to come into the limelight for some weird reason (with the exception of Invasion 2 - why isnt this reviewd?!) - good games deserve lots of press - too many bad games give the Sam a bad name but for some weird reason tend to receive a lot of press….sorry - just something I noticed……bring on the FRED freebie games! They put games like Boing, Vegetable Vacation & Paralax to shame. Lets see some stuff about Invaders it sounds cool

Amalthea

I one of of the authors of Amalthea and I am very happy for it to be made available for download.

Steve Ekins

Amalthea

Recently acquired this game, dosent exactly live up to all the hype I’ve heard about it in my opinion - very samey, basic levels, very few enemies - this game would’ve been much better if it scrolled instead of the basic flip-screen. Not a bad game, but I thought it would’ve been much better. Personaly, I thought Exodus & Defender were the two best Sam titles ever written.

Amalthea

I got this game a couple of months ago and although its an okay game the graphics and jittery controls on the platform levels are very poor in my opinion. The aliens move like theyve been programmed in basic and the controls are realy dodgy especialy when jumping of the moving platforms. The graphics are very basic and the sound is pretty naff too - apart from that the birds eye view levels are good, if a little too trickey and basic looking, the levels sort of make up for the poor factors of the game which let it down. I dont mean to demean the game in any way - it is okay - but personaly I wouldnt have given it such a high score rating as given in this review - more like 70% would have been realistic. If this game was released back in 1990 it would have been good, but it is one of the more recent titles which shouldve given it more of a chance for quality, I appreciate it involved only a few people in the mkaing of the game but when you look at Defenders of the Earth from 1990 it doesnt even compare to the quality of this game - sorry, just my personal opionion

Top 10 games: Lemmings, Prince of Persia, Stratosphere, Defender (freeware), Exodus, TnT, Invasion 2, Captain Comic (Fred disk magazine title), Defenders of the Earth, Sam Strikes Out

Top of the Flop games: Vegatable Vacation, Boing, Famous Five, Paralax, Futureball, Witching Hour, Mindgames 1 & 2, Football Director 2

Best 10 Average games (worth getting but not the cocaine of the Sam world)
Splat, Manic Miner, Elite (no advance of the spectrum version but an all time classic to play on the Sam all the same!) Amalthea, Legend of Esham, Klax, Fade(Fred disk magazine), Escape from Robot Monsters, Football League Manager, Dyzonium


Amalthea - Missed it!

For some reason I completely missed this game back in the old days. Only heard about it here, a few years ago. It’s one of those games I’d love to get hold of and try out. Here’s hoping Colin still manages to get permission to use it some time in the future!

It’s quite spooky though, as the graphics for those overhead ‘room-by-room’ levels look (quite coincidentally) almost the same as the first Macromedia Director game I designed/programmed many years ago at Uni… Wish I could find a copy of that too!

Re: Amalthea - Missed it!

As I’ve permission to use Jupiter stuff (with quite a few of their titles already featuring on SAM Revival so far!) Amalthea will be one of the first titles up on SAMonline when that goes live for the Trinity Ethernet Interface!

I need to patch it for B-DOS loading too as it was 3 disks!

Colin
=====
Quazar : Hardware, Software, Magazines and more for the SAM Coupe
1995-2012 - Celebrating 18 Years of developing for the SAM Coupe
Website: http://www.samcoupe.com/
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/QuazarSamCoupe

Re: Re: Amalthea - Missed it!

Superb news!! can’t wait for SAMonline to get going. It’ll make for a great (exclusive?) for Trinity owners. :-)

Re: Amalthea - Missed It!

I’ve got a (slowly) growing list of disks that’ll be on SAMonline for download - a few games, old disk mags etc.

I’m going to check what disk space I have left on the coverdisk for SAM Revival 24 and I might pop on the small TCP/IP test program - so I can get some feedback from Trinity users to check that it works for everybody.

Colin
=====
Quazar : Hardware, Software, Magazines and more for the SAM Coupe
1995-2012 - Celebrating 18 Years of developing for the SAM Coupe
Website: http://www.samcoupe.com/
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/QuazarSamCoupe

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