Snipes is an arcade style action game. You are in a large maze along with a number of generators. The generators create the enemy Snipes, and to win the game you need to shoot all of the generators and all of the Snipes they create. The game is played using two sets of four keys, one set to move and one to fire; this allows you to both move and fire in eight different directions, and you aren't limited to firing in the same direction you are facing (similar to the controls in games such as Robotron: 2084). The Snipes are armed as well, and will be firing back at you! If you lose all of your lives, the game ends and the Snipes win. There are numerous skill levels available; in the higher levels the snipes are more numerous, more aggressive, and the maze walls become deadly to touch.
Introduction...Snipes is a basic top-down shooter.
Tell me a story...For any reason you, a nice eyebrow-winking guy, are caught in a maze together with some hives and the creatures, called snipes, swarming out of them. The snipes have arrows, and the only purpose of arrows is to shoot them at someone, at you! Fortunately you always have your reliable gun with you...
The same procedure as every year?...When you start the game, you are thrown into a match with difficulty level A1. You have to quit or finish it (dead or alive) to change the settings. They reach from the mentioned A1 (easy, nothing special, 3 hives, a maximum of 10 snipes at a time and five lives) up to Z9 (hard, wall-destroying/reflecting bullets, electric walls, ghosts, 10 hives, a maximum of 150 snipes at a time and two lives), whereas the letter stands for the types of snipes and things involving the walls and the number stands for the initial number of hives and for the maximum number of snipes at a time. Ghosts, the second form of the snipes, are created when killing a first form snipe. They cannot attack you, but they are annoying followers and you shouldn't move against them. When you are surrounded by them, best thing is to stand still and decimate them. The walls can be lethal at contact, reflecting for your diagonal shots and destroyable by your straight bullets. The snipes also shot diagonally, of course. The mazes are randomly generated and self-contained, so don't shoot yourself from behind with a burst through all walls. But the most important rule is: You should concentrate on the hives, so that you cut off the enemy\'s supplies (or, in this case, supply of enemies). To keep track of your enemies you have a statistics sheet at the top. Time and score do not serve a real purpose - there is no time limit and no highscore table.
Eyes and ears...The graphics is white ASCII on black background. No sounds except some internal speaker blips when you kill an enemy, and when they kill you.
After output now the input...move - Arrow keys (combine for diagonal movement)move faster - hold Spacebar-shoot:left - Aright - Dup - Wdown - S/Xdiagonally - combine keys above-sound off/on - F1pause - Breakquit match/game - Ctrl+Break (or Ctrl+Scroll Lock)
Transduction...A funny, action-packed classic, that gets boring quite quickly. A good and surprising point is, that it doesn't take long to find the last few snipes. THREE points! Recommended for enthusiasts, not recommended for graphics maniacs.
It's possible to activate the multiplayer mode in this original version, but the game would have to be on a network drive (or be a shared file in some other way) etc., so I decided to credit no multiplayer option.
Back to the old days. Where (a small) size was more important than the graphics. The glory days of ASCII games. Addictiveness was the trump card. How do you achieve addictiveness fast? By keeping the game simple, remember Tetris? Sokoban? Boulderdash? Pac-man? Snipes is of the same caliber.
Imagine yourself a big maze. You're alone, completely alone. The only thing you now is that you must conquer the maze by killing all your enemies, the snipes. And not only the snipes, but also their hives. Strategy, fast thinking and sharp reflexes are the key to victory. The only key.
The game is, as mentioned earlier, pretty simple. You control your creature with the arrow keys and shoot with A, W, D and S in the appropriate directions. And when you panic, press the spacebar for some extra velocity. How much easier can it get?
But not only simplicity is an important aspect of a game. Replayability is another great thing. In Snipes this is achieved by letting the computer generate a new maze every time. You specify the amount of snipes, hives and difficulty before you start and of you go. Because you can configure everything there are a total of 26x9 difficulty levels. Ranging from A1 (easy, nothing special, 3 hives, a maximum of 10 snipes and five lives) to Z9 (hard, reflecting bullets, electric walls, ghosts, 10 hives, a maximum of 150 snipes and two lives). What more do you want? In addition to being an excellent game, Snipes must also be recognized for its place in history as one of the first network games ever written. In fact, the Superset Software designers later became Novell, one of the largest and most successful network software companies.
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