Archive for March, 2004

“Freelance Police” Previewed in GamePro

Posted on March 28th, 2004 by Frank Cifaldi

For those Sam & Max fans who are gluttons for punishment, be sure to check out this month’s GamePro, which features a very positive preview for the recently-deceased title, Sam & Max: Freelance Police.

The preview, beyond its encouraging words, features four screenshots not seen anywhere else.

Thanks to The International House of Mojo for the update.

More Odyssey2 Stuff

Posted on March 28th, 2004 by Frank Cifaldi

Brazilian site Odyssey 2000, first linked from here back in December, has an exclusive look at two more recently-discovered Odyssey2 prototypes. Neither are particularly exciting but, hey, never let it be said that Lost Levels is a biased resource.

The first program, which isn’t a game at all, is titled Spaans (Dutch for “Spanish”), a small utility that translates words from Spanish to Dutch and vice-versa.

The second is a logic game that involves arranging a numeric pattern sequentially. I know I’m excited. The title of this one is unknown, though the EPROM window cover contains the word Melrep, which is as good a title as any I suppose.

Get the full details, including screenshots, here. Thanks to The Odyssey2 Homepage for the heads-up!

Save Sam & Max!

Posted on March 26th, 2004 by Frank Cifaldi

No doubt some of our readers are more than a little irked at Lucasarts’ recent cancellation of Sam & Max: Freelance Police and, frankly, so am I.

“LucasArts’ sudden decision to stop production on Sam & Max is mystifying,” said Sam & Max creator Steve Purcell in a recent letter to The International House of Mojo. “I couldn’t have been more pleased with the quality of the writing, gameplay, hilarious animation and the gorgeous 3D world that Mike Stemmle’s team has created.”

“It was the first cancellation I’ve ever seen that wasn’t due to poor performance on the part of the team,” an anonymous Lucasarts employee told us. “I just don’t get it.”

According to the official press release, the plug was pulled because the company felt that “this was not the appropriate time to launch a graphic adventure on the PC.” In other words, as one editorialist put it, “Uh, we don’t know how to, um, sell this game.”

While the situation seems grim for those who were looking forward to it, all hope is not lost. Check out for the low-down on what you can do to help reverse this decision. We personally recommend hand-written letters, as these are met with more respect than those of the electronic variety.

Thanks to every video game message board and news resource that I visit for the tip-off.

Blaster for the Atari 5200

Posted on March 26th, 2004 by Frank Cifaldi

The “mystery prototype” at AtariAge has been revealed as Blaster.

Blaster was a relatively obscure 1983 arcade game by Eugene Jarvis designed as a direct descendent to another of Jarvis’ efforts, Robotron: 2084. Relatively unknown, however, is that Blaster was originally designed for both the Atari 5200 and its 8-bit computer bretheren.

Thanks to Jarvis and Matt Reichert, the game is now freely downloadable on the internet, albeit with the specific demand that no one profit from homemade cartridges of this game.

Download the game from its official page at, and read Reichert’s full report here.

Mystery Atari 5200 Game

Posted on March 16th, 2004 by Frank Cifaldi

An unreleased and previously unknown game for the Atari 5200 will be unveiled at this year’s Philly Classic, and one lucky person may win an exclusive reproduction cart!

The game, unearthed by Matt Reichert, will remain unnamed until its unveiling this Friday at the AtariAge booth. In the interim, AtariAge is holding a contest to award the first person to correctly guess the title of the game a one-of-a-kind cartridge. The clues are as follows:

  • It’s a “fast paced action game,” according to AtariAge Content Editor Albert Yarusso, that “demonstrates the power of the 5200 and formed the basis of an arcade game of the same name.”

  • According to Reichert, the game “isn’t on ANY list of possible games I’ve seen and I don’t think anyone other than the programmers knew it was being programmed.”
  • Also according to Reichert, the game is NOT an arcade conversion.
  • The game does NOT exist for any Atari computer system.

The contest is open only to existing members of the AtariAge Forums. I’m going for Mad Planets myself. Check out the contest thread here.

Fireteam Rogue EXPOSED

Posted on March 16th, 2004 by Frank Cifaldi

Esteemed SNES scholar Evan Gowan has published a brief article on Fireteam Rogue over at his website, SNES Central.

Fireteam Rogue was a very ambitious title by Accolade, which promised over one-hundred hours of game play incorporated into its mixture of platform action and arcade flying segments.

The article contains insight by engineer Russell Borogove, along with concept art and links to outside resources. Thanks to Evan himself for the tip!


Block Out for the NES

In which the guys who made Double Dragon and River City Ransom almost published a 3D puzzle game.

Hard Drivin' for the NES

A Q&A with the author of Tengen's surprisingly impressive attempt at putting the 3D racer on the underpowered NES.

Spotlight: Bio Force Ape

The legendary lost game from Seta has finally been found! But is this the end of Lost Levels?!

Spotlight: Star Trek V

It should come as no surprise that the worst Star Trek movie would have made the worst Star Trek game.

Review: Colors

In this exclusive Lost Levels review, we take a thorough, introspective look at Colors, the GTA-alike that would have saved the Gizmondo. SPECIAL BONUS: Sodomy inside!

Elusions: Thunder Force VI

A brief retrospective of the butt-rockingest series of shooters that ever was, and the Dreamcast sequel that wasn't.

Spotlight: Pescatore

A glitchy puzzle game with multi-colored seafood that bears more than a striking similarity to PuyoPuyo? Not very fresh.

Elusions: Final Fantasy 64

Is it possible that yet another title from this popular series has eluded fans for over a decade?

Spotlight: Bashi Bazook

We promise this is the last unreleased Jaleco game we'll ever talk about. Maybe.

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