Atari Lynx Review: Rampage on Lynx Lounge
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By Brian Thomas Barnhart |
Hey everybody, welcome back to the Lynx Lounge! I’m your host BTB, and today we are talking about another great arcade port for the Atari Lynx. That is: Rampage!
Man, this game is absolutely fantastic. What a great, interesting port for the Atari Lynx! That’s right, we have another Atari Twist in this game! Are you ready to check out Rampage? I am. Let’s smash some buildings! Alright, let’s check it out:
“From the moment this game came out in 1986 to today, I’m still having fun with this game! What can I say? I’m a big monster at heart, and I love smashing things. I don’t really smash things at home or anything like that, but I like playing monsters.”
– Brian Thomas Barnhart
You have all the monsters at your disposal, plus one! WHAT? That’s crazy! FOUR monsters? Well, in the arcade there was George, there was Lizzy, there was Ralph. And what, who’s this? Rat? What’s the rat guy? Larry the Rat. I don’t remember that in the arcade, but that’s the Atari Twist! That’s what I’m talking about!
Four characters! Why? Because this is a 4-Player game! You can hook up four Atari Lynx together, and you can play Rampage sitting in a semi-circle, or sitting however four people playing a game would sit.
What do you do in Rampage? Well, you just blow up everything. You smash everything, you eat everything you can. Sometimes you can’t eat stuff because it will shock you, or it will hurt you. But for the most part, you are going to be doing a lot of bashing and eating in this game. If you love King Kong, you’ll love Rampage. I’ve got the King Kong poster behind me, I love King Kong, I love monster movies. This is a perfect game for me.
The graphics look great in this game. It sounds great as well. Everything is very, very good in this game! However, take a look at the screen, do you notice something interesting? …ah hah…
Do you remember when we did the episode for Xenophobe on Atari Lynx? What was up with that game? It was zoomed in on the action. Do you remember that? Here we have another Bally-Midway game for Atari Lynx that is zoomed in on the action. Now why would they do that? Well I have two theories:
1. The first theory is that I don’t know that the sprites are able to handle a small, small version of what this game would be. I don’t know if it would be clear enough, so I don’t know if the tech would allow it to be arcade perfect on this 16-Bit machine. That’s just speculation, I’m not a tech guru, but that’s just my thought.
2. The second theory is that it’s a small screen. So if I had a zoomed-out view of Rampage, it might not look as good as zooming in a little bit on the action. You’ve got a small screen, you wanna zoom in.
Now, if it were me designing the game, if it was a perfect world, I would like a happy medium between the arcade, and the Lynx zoom-in. I’d like to have something right in the middle. I’d like to have something right in that sweet spot there, and that would be perfect for me, I wouldn’t mind it so much. And obviously, I don’t really mind it at all because that’s what they had to do to make the game work.
The sound is fantastic on these games. You know, I just keep saying it over and over and over again, and maybe one of these days I’m going to get to a Lynx game where I’m like “You know what, the sound was baaaaad.” But for the most part, I’m very pleased with the way this game sounds, and I’m very pleased with the way this game looks. Look, it’s nice BIG sprites. Detailed graphics. It looks good.
“Rampage on Lynx was even better than Rampage in the arcade. If you like King Kong, Donkey Kong, Godzilla, and clobbering guys and stuff, you are going to love this game. Knock over buildings, rough people up, break glass, swat at copters, throw ladies out of the tub. You know, that kind of thing. It just rocks!”
– Atari Joe
Not only does Rampage look good, but what’s even more important folks? What do we always talk about? Control. Game control! This game has perfect game control. It’s really fantastic, and it plays very well.
Recently my son and I have been playing almost every version of Rampage that we can get our hands on. We’re playing the Atari 7800 version now. We’ve played the Nintendo NES version, and we’ve been playing the arcade version and the Lynx version. I gotta tell ya, this game still holds up no matter what platform it is on. The game still is fun, it’s such a fun game. You’re a giant monster destroying the city, I don’t think it gets much better than that.
Hey, if you want to collect a great, classic game, if you like monsters that destroy buildings, where else are you gonna get a game like that? It’s this game, this is the game you’re looking for. It’s a great game! I’ve had a lot of fun over the years with Rampage. This is a game that I keep playing, it seems to be one that just keeps on going and I don’t have any problem with that. Why? Because it’s a great game.
Check out Rampage for the Atari Lynx though, because it does have a little bit of a different spin than what you may be used to playing. It’s got a different view, and you can play four players at the same time. You can play a rat! A giant rat. Which is kind of cool.
That being said, I hope you’ll join me on the next episode of Lynx Lounge! If you want your Atari 7800 fix you can check me out at 7800 Avenue, or The Jag Bar, we’ve got a few more Atari Jaguar games to cover on that, and then that’s all she wrote for that show, folks. Anyway, stay tuned, and we will continue to play some great Atari games together! Alright, we will see you later! Peace be with you.
Rampage was developed by Bally-Midway and was released to arcades in 1986. It was ported to the Atari Lynx in 1990. Rampage Copyright 1986 Bally MFG. Corp. All Rights Reserved. Licensed through Midway MFG. Co. a Subsidiary of WMS Industries Inc. Licensed to Atari Corporation.
Brian Thomas Barnhart is a classic gaming aficionado, retro pop culture connoisseur, and a Senior Fellow at Atari I/O. He is host of The Jag Bar, Lynx Lounge, 7800 Avenue, and the Atari I/O After Hours Podcast. Brian is a Moderator in the Atari I/O Forums under the name btbfilms76. You can follow him on Instagram and at his YouTube channel.
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SUSAN G. MCBRIDE