Back in the early 1980s, Atari's Tempest was one of the best-selling games on both home systems and in the arcades. Given the current prettier-means-better thinking in the computer games industry, it's no small wonder that Tempest 2000 has not followed the overly ambitious, let's-make-the-game-in-3D trend of some other recent video-game comebacks. Instead, Tempest 2000 tries to preserve the addictive fun while upping the "kinetic ante" of the original. In other words, it tries to compound on the original Tempest's specialty, which is fast-paced, in-your-face noise and action. |
To that end, Tempest 2000 succeeds-perhaps far too well. As the original, the game allows players to manipulate a 3D vortex while avoiding missiles and spikes. There are 3D enemies, awesome weapons and many visual effects. The game is much, much harder than the original: webs don't just sit there, they bob up and down and move around, which sometimes means that one side of the web is not always visible on the screen. All the original enemies in Tempest are here, plus you now get Mutant Flippers, Demon Heads, and UFO's, all much more aggressive and elusive than the old enemies. To complicate things, power-ups are now sometimes fired at you, and if you catch them, you can get extra points, extra guys, laser beams, and the power to jump in the air and fire down on your enemies. You can even get an AI-controlled robot buddy.
Tempest was already fast-paced, but it's arguable that Tempest 2000 is just overly so. The game is definitely much more difficult and noisier too. In the end, it's similar enough in gameplay to the original that it brings back a huge dose of nostalgia. You can even play with or against friends. Two thumbs up!Reviewed by: Underdogs