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SCORES EXPLAINED:

5.0 Perfect
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4.0 Very Good
3.5 Good
3.0 Fair
2.5 Weak
2.0 Poor
1.5 Bad
1.0 Terrible
0.5 Atrocious
0.0 Your Mom


Funkmaster V Reviews


7800 Rank: Not Ranked

Genre: Shooter

Awards: None
Who Ordered Their Classic Arcade Game in Pea Soup Color? Pros: Shields Are Hilarious/ Great 2 Player Modes
Cons: Faux Vector Graphics Are Ugly
Wait! Someone Brought Thier D&D Die to the Game


Overview: Asteroids Deluxe not only sounds like it comes with all the veggies, cheese and possibly bacon, its probably the best game in the space rock family.
AD is a sneaky one, because she's not the prettiest princess at the ball, but she's got the goods where it counts. Sorry- that sounded dirtier than I intended. This is a 3rd person space shooter, extremely similar to the 7800 version of Asteroids, where your task is to spin in circles blowing up the space rocks and UFOs, avoiding death and utilizing your defensive mechanism when needed.

Graphics: Asteroids Deluxe tries to pull off faux vector graphics, and this may fool little kids and your pet rocks, but something is amiss here. First of all, the white vector graphics are replaced with kind of an ugly yellow. Do you remember art class, when you mixed yellow and black and it came up with baby poo green? Yeah, that kind of jive. Also, the explosions of the rocks and your ships turn into dots, unlike the nifty sticks that fly all over the screen in the arcade version. With all that negativity out of the way, the other graphics are spot on. Especially the main ship. But hey... any version of Asteroids was never about looks.

Sound: The main cannon laser sounds and the crunch of the rocks is on point. The UFO's retain the arcade like jams, and even the new clump of spaceships feature fresh sounds. The 7800 version of Asteroids featured unique little weird "space riffs" that fill up the void of space and that's missing here, and I'm OK with that. This games flexes that "less is more" muscle in the audio department.

Gameplay: This is probably my favorite version of Asteroids for a number of reasons. The main reason... I'll tell you in a sec, but another great attribute is the fact that rapid fire is available FOR FREE, YO! No more button mashing, just let your fat thumb rest on the fire button and go to town, son. Mowing down Asteroids is the most satisfying in Asteroid Deluxe, and you are not killing your decades old joystick by jamming buttons repeatedly. There's a new type of enemy introduced in AD, as well. Heat seeking little pointy ship things, which are tenacious but thankfully slow. They start off at the end of levels, clumped together and they form amazing shapes... OK, one shape... a giant hexagon. Blowing the sections of ships up breaks them down into harder to hit enemies, much like the asteroids themselves. The most fun comes from your defensive weapon; "THA' SHIELD". In Asteroids, a clunky hyperspace used at the last desperate moment of your ship crew's eminent demise could save you or throw you into an asteroid or ship... or you could just explode. This version of the space ship has been vastly improved... both gameplay wise and also for comedic effect. You see, while you are safe in your bubble, you become a space soccer ball, and colliding with Asteroids or certain ships careen your azz like a galactic pinball ball through space. This will amuse your small children and pet rocks. But, you better get control of your ship and fly it to space fast, captain... those shields run out, and from what I can tell... they do not recharge until you lose a ship.

Interpretation: I'm not gonna lie, since I bought that Ultimate Atari joystick, I'm playing the hell out of everything, but I have fallen in love with vector graphics. Asteroids, Tempest, Battlezone... are you kidding me? So cool. Bob Decrescenzo and his gang (mysteriously titled Atari Interactive in this game?) tried their hardest to replicate vector graphics here. Not a bad effort, but I feel like they did better later on with Space Duel and Rip-Off. I kinda miss the breakfast cereal asteroids of the 7800 version, but the player controlled ships are definitely an upgrade visually. But gameplay wise? This is amazing. It's a simple game, but as we've seen 1000 other times, video game companies dork up simple games ALL THE TIME. Our boys here held the line.

Value: Just like the 7800 version of the original Asteroids, AD features all of the ballyhooed two player options here in glorious fashion. Two player Alternating, Team Play, and Competitive Mode are all here, with the 2nd player ship, oddly enough, looking like the arcade style pure white vector graphics. If you have friends (you lucky bastard) lots of fun can be had with these caveats. Four difficulty modes exist, and because of the improved defensive capabilities of your ship, long innings can be had even on the higher difficulty modes. Your score more points in this game, as well. That's more fun and higher scores lead to more bonus ships.

Overall: First of all, Deluxe is a great word and should be used A LOT. Do you have Covid-18, man? No dude, I've got COVID DELUXE!!! Anyways... This game is great, and it's a perfect example of an Atari game: simple and tough. Like Lenny from "Of Mice and Men!" But instead of killing it, let's play it. It's time to feed the rabbits... IN SPACE.

Seriously, this game is even more fun than the very solid 7800 version of Asteroids. If you think its worth the upgrade, the game is available at Atariage.com

Additional Info: I would like to take this time to thank Atari Age for allowing the use of his screenshots for this review.