If you can remember some time ago, Epic was launched onto the Amiga, with eager punters queuing up for days and days to get themselves a copy! (Well... not quite, maybe, but it still sold very well.) Many disappointed owners complained about all the present bugs in the game, and how easy it was to complete and stuff.
"So why should Inferno be any better?"
Well... The obvious reason is because DID (Digital Image Design) have learnt from their mistakes. The big news, however, is that Inferno is being developed exclusively for the Amiga 1200.
When the A1200 first came out, I loaded up a couple of old flight sims, and saw a slight increase in speed. I thought "Hmm.. that's the '020 that's making that run faster, that is. Not bad..." and carried on playing. A bit later I hummed to myself "Maybe the '020 isn't really that fast, and the next crop of simulators may have 256-colour graphics, but that'll be it, and the games will certainly run dead slow." Oh, how wrong I was!
Inferno (previously titled Odyssey) will feature gouraud-shading (smooths off all the vectors, for a nice subtle look), texture-mapping (adds detailed
polygons to the vectors), 128 colours (minimum), and a fair lick of speed. Not bad, but I'd like to try out the game on an A4000 - which'd run at 50 FPS.
After Epic, will this be an Epic, 2?
DID are wondering whether or not to market Inferno as the sequel to Epic (after all, Epic received mixed receptions); but this won't affect the game in the slightest.
Inferno looks incredibly colourful, manic and detailed. The game also promises excellent music and digitised, modelled faces; and the brilliant subtle shading will certainly turn this into a game into a classic, which is not to be played after you've just bought StarWing!
It's TerriFiX stuff!
It's not just Inferno that Digital Image have got up their sleeves either, TFX (previously titled Inferno. Confused? Good.) is also planned (and is amongst a range of games DID have given to Ocean in return for the relatively cheap (a-a-ahem), bargain-tastic price of (please stay calm while you're reading this)... over £1,000,000 - that could get you 500,000 copies of this mag!).
TFX is another flight simulation, but will take place here on Earth, rather than beyond it. It's just like any other flight sim, really...
No it isn't!
... No, sorry, TFX is also being developed for the Amiga 1200 (and PC, incidentally), so owners can look forward to something special. Again, you get gouraud-shading, texture-mapping, and loads of colours (128 to be precise).
There are other neat features, too -
like missions held in night, dawn, sunset, and daytime. (And there'll even be in infra-red night-sight to help matters, when 'faffing about' at night.)
Can't you see my view on this subject?
According to DID: "You can zoom wherever you want, even right into the cockpit!" Now that's what I call taking full advantage of the power of vectors.
A neat feature is the 'blur effect', which means that the further away the horizon is, the more blurry it will become. At first, this effect makes you think that the fog effect is just added for realism, but the blur will also cover the old problem of 'things jumping onto the screen' (as seen in StarWing), and increase the frame-rate significantly.
TFX has such brilliant graphics and so much data, that it will be coming on 9 (nine!) disks. Obviously this is going to mean quite an amount of swapping for A1200 owners without a hard-drive (even though there're a whole 2 Megs. of RAM locked inside the machine), but hard-drive owners will be in games-playing heaven. (And if they own a truck-load of RAM and a 68040 processor, then, um... send them to me! No, sorry, I mean, they'll be enjoying themselves quite a bit.)
Oh yes, a CD≥≤ version is in development, which means no swapping, possibly a larger game, and better sound. Can't be bad...
Inferno and TFX should be out by Christmas via Ocean, with price not yet confirmed.
I first played Populous on the MegaDrive quite some time ago. I don't read manuals, so it took a couple of hours to find out exactly what was going on, where to put my 'Papal magnet' and so on. After I'd worked out what to do, however, I found myself completely hooked on the game.
After some time, and a couple of worlds completed, I found my enjoyment had slightly faded - the joypad was uncontrollable, and the game ran quite slowly. Imagine my joy, then, when the sequel came along a couple of years later. An increase in speed, mouse control, and a whole host of new powerful effects were at my disposal - fantastic.
When Populous 2 was released at
at Chrimbo '91, I found that my Christmas holiday went far too quickly. I was so trapped inside this 'ultimate quest for power' simulation that the days went flying past.
Now MegaDrive owners can join in the fun!
Yes, that's quite right, Populous 2 is coming to the Mega; but best of all - it'll be mouse-compatible, so send off for those rodents today!
The idea of Populous 2 is to become the most powerful leader, and beat all your enemies. After a rival has been conquered, a new challenger faces you. The game is played on an isometric viewpoint, with your people displayed in a different colour to your rivals'. All this takes place over 1000 levels, which means there'll be more lastability in this than something like Sonic.
If you work quick enough, you can gain trust (AKA 'mana') from your people. More mana means more
power; and your power can be emitted onto the enemy - great stuff! Some effects, like the volcano - which is devastating - require more mana. You'll also be able to build up knights, and other horrid leaders - these immediately march straight towards the opponent's people, and crushes/set fire on all their houses!
"Cor! I'm interested, tell me more!"
Later levels decrease your power, and give you disabilities - things like not being able to raise land (only lower it) when your opponent can - grr!
You can even customise your own face and direct your people.
Some of the levels take place on marsh land, whilst others take place on green, snow and desert - all of which affect how your people work.
Populous 2 is coming on very well for the MegaDrive version - the graphics look identical. The only major downfall we can see is the lack of a 2-player link up, but who cares?
Populous 2 is on sale now/soon for app. £40