Starray Download (1988 Amiga Game)

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If I was to tell you that the first Defender clone had appeared on the Amiga some of you might groan. But think back to the early days of the 64. Two of the best shoot 'em ups ever have to be Guardian and Dropzone, both homages to the coin-op classic. StarRay is as good as either given that it runs on a far superior machine.

The plot is complicated but the gameplay, as you'd expect, is straightforward, uncomplicated blasting. You control a nifty little star fighter through a number of different assignments which take you from one planet to another in your star system. The purpose of each mission is simply to clear three waves of unpleasantness which clutter up each particular level. Each planet is effectively a new, pretty backdrop. For example Level 1, or Gorbaxa is a lunar-type landscape, Sirion is a dense jungle which is growing at an incredible rate and has to be kept in check by sort of timberbots. Level 3 is Sharlon, replete with arctic scenery and a fragile ozone layer.

The nasties that populate the various planets are equally as pretty as the backdrops. The jungle has dancing flies and quavering bees, whilst the arctic conditions of Sharlon are populated by unpleasant whirling hexagons and aerial stations, which if hit will spin wildly on their axis disturbing your crucial radar screen.

Naturally you're not expected to wade through the lot without a bit of extra weaponry. This comes in the form of italicised letters left behind when you take out the alien landers, metal eggs which are slow but have an unpleasant habit of landing on your ground installations and cacking on them until they're useless. A nasty fizzing accompanies the hideous process. Extra shield power (essential) can be found by shooting air buses which come along carrying shield and bonus pods. These look the same on the radar though they behave somewhat less erratically than the Blue Hunters which ram you and drain a large chunk of your shield power. Save your vapourisers {smart bombs) for them, accessed by a rather fiddly dive for the right mouse button.

Although control of your ship isn't truly inertial StarRay feels very nice to play. Its scrolling is as smooth as a baby's bum and the action unrelenting. Sound and graphics are consistently entertaining. This all goes to make StarRay one of the few good blasts available on the Amiga after nearly two years. A sad state of affairs, and one in desperate need of resolution. This is definitely a start.

How to run this game on modern Windows PC?

This game has been set up to work on modern Windows (10/8/7/Vista/XP 64/32-bit) computers without problems. Please choose Download - Easy Setup (3.59 MB).


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