Retro Gamer

Retro Gamer is a British magazine, published worldwide, covering retro video games. It was the first commercial magazine to be devoted entirely to the subject. Launched in January 2004 as a quarterly publication, Retro Gamer soon became a monthly. In 2005, a general decline in gaming and computer magazine readership led to the closure of its publishers, Live Publishing,[1] and the rights to the magazine were later purchased by Imagine Publishing.[2] It was taken over by Future plc on 21 October 2016, following Future's acquisition of Imagine Publishing.

Retro Gamer
Retro Gamer Black logo
Retro Gamer 188 cover
Issue 188 of Retro Gamer
Editor
  • Martyn Carroll (2004–2005)
  • Darran Jones (2005–present)
CategoriesVideo game journalism
FrequencyMonthly
First issueJanuary 2004
Company
CountryUnited Kingdom
LanguageEnglish
Websitewww.retrogamer.net
ISSN1742-3155

History

The first 18 issues of the magazine came with a coverdisk. It usually contained freeware remakes of retro video games and emulators, but also videos and free commercial PC software such as The Games Factory and The Elder Scrolls: Arena. Some issues had themed CDs containing the entire back catalogue of a publisher such as Durell Llamasoft and Gremlin Graphics.

On 27 September 2005, the magazine's original publishing company, Live Publishing, went into bankruptcy.[1] The magazine's official online forums described the magazine as "finished" shortly before issue #19 was due for release. However, rights to Retro Gamer were purchased by Imagine Publishing in October 2005 and the magazine was re-launched on 8 December 2005.[2]

Retro Survival is a commercial CD retro games magazine put together by the freelance writers of Retro Gamer when Live Publishing collapsed. The CD was published in November 2005 and contains articles that would have appeared in Issue 19 of Retro Gamer, as well as several extras including a foreword by celebrity games journalist Mr Biffo.

In June 2004, a tribute to Zzap!64 was included, "The DEF Tribute to Zzap!64", celebrating the 20th anniversary of the Commodore 64 focused magazine.[3]

Includes interviews with leading 80s and 90s programmers such as David Crane, Matthew Smith and Archer MacLean. Regular columns also feature such as Back to the 80s and 90s, Desert Island Disks (what games would a gaming celebrity take to a desert island) and From the Archives (a profile of a particular game developer or publisher).

The 'Making Of's' is a recurring feature in which well-known developers are interviewed about the creation and design process behind their games. Classic titles covered in past issues have included Breakout (Steve Wozniak), Dungeon Master (Doug Bell), Smash TV (Eugene Jarvis), Starfox (Jez San), Rescue on Fractalus! (David Fox/Charlie Kellner), Prince of Persia (Jordan Mechner), Berzerk (Alan McNeil), The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (Steve Meretzky), Crystal Castles (Franz X. Lanzinger), Tetris (Alexey Pajitnov), Sheep in Space (Jeff Minter) Out Run (Yu Suzuki) and Splat! (Ian Andrew).

Issue 48 (February 2008) contained an exclusive interview with Manic Miner creator Matthew Smith, written by freelancer Paul Drury after a visit to Smith's family home in Liverpool.

March 2010 (issue 75) saw John Romero collaborating with Retro Gamer, taking on the role of 'Guest Editor', taking charge of the magazine's editorial and splashing his own unique style to a number of his favorite articles and subjects throughout the magazine.[4]

The magazine celebrated its 150th issue in January 2016 and as of November 2016, the staff consists of Editor Darran Jones, Production Editor Drew Sleep, Senior Staff Writer Nick Thorpe and Designer Sam Ribbits.

The magazine posts its own issue preview videos on its YouTube channel, featuring editor Darran Jones and Production Editor Drew Sleep as hosts. [5]

Digital version

Three DVDs with 25 to 30 issues each have been released over the years:

  • Retro Gamer eMag Load 1[6] (containing issues #1 to #30)
  • Retro Gamer eMag Load 2[7] (containing issues #31 to #55)
  • Retro Gamer eMag Load 3[8] (containing issues #56 to #80)

Retro Gamer is now available as an iOS app and can be downloaded onto iPhone and iPad.

Awards

Retro Gamer won Best Magazine at the 2010 Games Media Awards.[9]

References

  1. ^ a b "Live Publishing set for administration". MCV. Intent Media. Archived from the original on 2007-04-12. Retrieved 2006-09-03.
  2. ^ a b "Imagine acquires Retro Gamer" (PDF). Imagine. Archived from the original (PDF) on 3 November 2005. Retrieved 3 September 2006.
  3. ^ "PRESS RELEASE: Retro Gamer Zzaps Back to the Future!". gamesindustry.biz. Eurogamer. Archived from the original on 30 September 2007. Retrieved 2006-09-02.
  4. ^ "Retro Gamer gains industry legend as guest Editor". Imagine Publishing. 2010-03-30.
  5. ^ "Retro Gamer Magazine". YouTube. Retrieved 2016-10-31.
  6. ^ Retro Gamer eMag Load 1 at imagineshop.co.uk
  7. ^ Retro Gamer eMag Load 2 at imagineshop.co.uk
  8. ^ Retro Gamer eMag Load 3 at imagineshop.co.uk
  9. ^ Stuart, Keith (15 October 2010). "Guardian triumphs at Games Media Awards". London: Guardian. Retrieved 2011-02-07.

External links

Alternative Software

Alternative Software is a British software developer and publisher founded in 1985.From the mid 1980s to the early 1990s, the company published well over a hundred games, primarily for the 8-bit computer formats in the budget (£1.99 to £3.99) market. These included both original titles (e.g. Pro Mountain Bike Simulator) as well as reissues of other developers' and publishers' software (e.g. Creative Sparks' River Rescue). The company also released a number of budget titles based on licensed characters (e.g. Count Duckula).

By late 1988, Commodore Computing International were noting Alternative's success, observing that they had topped Gallup's market share charts almost every week since June of that year, been the number one software house in 7 out of 8 Gallup charts and averaged a market share of 11.2% versus their nearest rival Mastertronic with 10.5%.In a 2015 interview, founder Roger Hulley claimed that by 1990 the company had a 17 percent share of the budget games sector.During the late 1990s, the company diversified into development of "paint studio", "print studio" and similar-type software. As of 2018, the company is still active, with publication Retro Gamer noting in their 30-year retrospective of Alternative that they had "constantly evolved in order to stay afloat in an increasingly tough industry".

Battletoads Arcade

Battletoads Arcade, also known as Super Battletoads or just Battletoads, is a 1994 scrolling beat 'em up arcade game in the Battletoads series developed by Rare and published by Electronic Arts. Up to three players, as the Battletoads, brawl aliens and mutant rodents through six levels to save the universe from the Dark Queen. The game also includes vertical and bonus levels. Each Toad has its own signature attack, and as customary for the series, players can knock enemies towards the screen, breaking the fourth wall.

Rare took greater liberties with violence and gore in Battletoads Arcade since the product was not destined for home consoles. It was Rare's first game to use the 3D graphics technology later popularized in Donkey Kong Country and Killer Instinct. Although the game playtested well and appeared to be financially viable, the publisher hesitated to release it. The game proved unsuccessful in the arcades and its in-production Super NES and Game Boy ports were canceled despite the latter being reportedly completed [1]. They were going to be rebranded as Super Battletoads [2]. Retrospective reviews were more positive--Retro Gamer even declared it the best of the series. Battletoads Arcade received its console debut when it was emulated in the 2015 Rare Replay, a compilation of games from Rare's history for the Xbox One. Rare Replay reviewers were surprised by the quality of the arcade game and some considered it a highlight of the package. Battletoads Arcade currently remains the last released entry in the Battletoads series.

Blast Corps

Blast Corps is a 1997 action video game for the Nintendo 64 in which the player uses vehicles to destroy buildings in the path of a runaway nuclear missile carrier. In the game's 57 levels, the player solves puzzles by transferring between vehicles to move objects and bridge gaps. It was developed by Rare, published by Nintendo, and released in March 1997 in Japan and North America. A wider release followed at the end of that year.

The game was among Rare's first for the Nintendo 64. Its development team ranged between four and seven members, many of whom were recent graduates. The team sought to find gameplay to fit Rare co-founder Chris Stamper's idea for a building destruction game. The puzzle game mechanics were inspired by those of Donkey Kong (1994).

Blast Corps was released to universal acclaim and received Metacritic's second highest Nintendo 64 ratings of 1997. The game sold one million copies—lower than the team's expectations—and received several editor's choice awards. Reviewers highly praised its originality, variety, and graphics, but some critiqued its controls and repetition. Reviewers of Rare's 2015 Rare Replay retrospective compilation noted Blast Corps as a standout title.

Imagine Publishing

Imagine Publishing was a UK-based magazine publisher, which published a number of video games, computing, creative and lifestyle magazines.

It was founded on 14 May 2005 with private funds by Damian Butt, Steven Boyd and Mark Kendrick, all were former directors of Paragon Publishing, and launched with a core set of six gaming and creative computing titles in the first 6 months of trading. It was taken over by Future plc on 21 October 2016.

In October 2005, it had acquired the only retro games magazine Retro Gamer, after its original publisher, Live Publishing went bankrupt. Early in 2006, it further acquired the rights to publish a considerable number of titles including gamesTM, Play, PowerStation, X360, Digital Photographer and iCreate, from the old Paragon Publishing stable of magazines when owner Highbury House Communications went into liquidation, following Future Publishing's withdrawal of its offer to buy the company, due to threats of a monopoly-investigation by the United Kingdom Competition Commission.In May 2006, Imagine launched its first bookazines, initially focusing on technology content for Photoshop and Mac. This portfolio would become one of Imagine's core strengths, with worldwide distribution, notably in the USA and Australia.

In 2007 Imagine launched SciFiNow, the Official Corel Painter Magazine,HD Review and Total PC Gaming.

Total 911 was acquired from 9 Publishing in 2008, and was purchased to demonstrate that Imagine's efficient publishing model could be applied to any market, not just technology.

2009 saw the company's most significant and successful new magazine launch - How It Works, which quickly became Imagine's flagship title and paved the way for the creation of a whole knowledge division. How It Works was the brainchild of MD Damian Butt, and CD Mark Kendrick, whose love of 70s Ladybird books spawned a desire to create a lavishly illustrated, simple-to-understand new educational magazine for families.

Linux User & Developer was acquired in 2009. 3D Artist was launched into the niche CGI magazine market. Imagine's main videogames website NowGamer.com went live in 2009 also.

In partnership with PixelMags, Imagine became the first publisher to migrate its entire portfolio as digital editions on the iPad/iPhone for the US launch in March 2010.

Imagine launched the world's first title for the Android OS - Android Magazine in 2011, following successful bookazine tests of this topic.

2011 also saw Imagine embrace digital publishing further by giving all employees a free iPad, or cash alternative.

In 2012 Imagine expanded its knowledge magazine division with new launch All About Space, followed in 2013 with All About History and World of Animals. A new digital editions publishing platform - Martini - went live in this year, with all Imagine titles migrating onto this bespoke platform, developed in partnership with Bournemouth-based tech company 3SidedCube.

Imagine was featured in the Sunday Times Profit Track 100 lists in 2013 and 2014; recognising the company's strong financial results, including a high net margin.

In 2015 the company moved into a new market, with Real Crime magazine. To celebrate its tenth year in publishing, free engraved iPad Mini were offered to all staff.

Imagine's final two magazine launches were in 2016, with History of Royals in April and Explore History in May.

At the point when it was acquired by Future plc, Imagine Publishing was a worldwide multimedia content producer and in October 2016 it had a portfolio of 20 regular print magazines, 25 websites, 30 mobile apps and a portfolio of over 1,200 bookazines - all published worldwide within the four key markets – technology, photography, knowledge/science and videogames.

Knight Lore

Knight Lore is a 1984 action-adventure game known for popularising isometric graphics in video games. The game was developed and published by Ultimate Play the Game and written by company founders Chris and Tim Stamper. In Knight Lore, the player character Sabreman has forty days to collect objects throughout a castle and brew a cure to his werewolf curse. Each castle room is depicted in monochrome on its own screen and consists of blocks to climb, obstacles to avoid, and puzzles to solve.

Ultimate released Knight Lore third in the Sabreman series despite having completed it first. The Stamper brothers withheld its release for a year to position the company advantageously in anticipation of the game's effect on the market. Knight Lore's novel image masking technique, Filmation, let images appear to pass atop and behind each other without their contents colliding. This created the illusion of depth priority, which the computer did not natively support. By delaying Knight Lore's release, Ultimate protected sales of their upcoming Sabre Wulf and created another Filmation game before other developers could copy the style. Ultimate released the original Sabreman trilogy in quick succession in 1984 for the ZX Spectrum. Knight Lore came last, in November. Ports followed for the BBC Micro, Amstrad CPC, MSX, and Famicom Disk System. The game was later included in compilations including Rare's 2015 Xbox One retrospective compilation, Rare Replay.

Knight Lore is regarded as a seminal work in British gaming history and has been included in multiple lists of top Spectrum games. Critics considered its technical solutions and isometric 3D style a harbinger of future game design. They praised the game's controls and atmosphere of mystery, but noted its difficult gameplay and criticised its sound and occasional graphical slowdown. Knight Lore was the best-selling game of January 1985 and was named 1984 game of the year by the Golden Joystick Awards and Popular Computing Weekly readers. Though it was not the first isometric 3D video game, Knight Lore popularised the format. When the isometric, flip-screen style fell out of fashion, Knight Lore's influence persisted in computer role-playing games. Retrospective reviewers remember the game as the first to offer an exploratory "world" rather than a flat surface, but consider its controls outdated and frustrating in the thirty years since its release.

List of Sega video game consoles

Sega is a video game developer, publisher, and hardware development company headquartered in Tokyo, Japan, with multiple offices around the world. The company has produced home video game consoles and handheld consoles since 1983; these systems were released from the third console generation to the sixth. Sega was formed from the merger of slot machine developer Service Games and arcade game manufacturer Rosen Enterprises in 1964, and it produced arcade games for the next two decades. After a downturn in the arcade game industry in the 1980s, the company transitioned to developing and publishing video games and consoles. The first Sega console was the Japan-only SG-1000, released in 1983. Sega released several variations of this console in Japan, the third of which, the Sega Mark III, was rebranded as the Master System and released worldwide in 1985. They went on to produce the Genesis—known as the Mega Drive outside of North America—and its add-ons beginning in 1988, the Game Gear handheld console in 1990, the Sega Saturn in 1994, and the Dreamcast in 1998.

Sega was one of the primary competitors to Nintendo in the video game console industry. A few of Sega's early consoles outsold their competitors in specific markets, such as the Master System in Europe. Several of the company's later consoles were commercial failures, however, and the financial losses incurred from the Dreamcast console caused the company to restructure itself in 2001. As a result, Sega ceased to manufacture consoles and became a third-party video game developer. The only console that Sega has produced since is the educational toy console Advanced Pico Beena in 2005. Third-party variants of Sega consoles have been produced by licensed manufacturers, even after production of the original consoles had ended. Many of these variants have been produced in Brazil, where versions of the Master System and Genesis are still sold and games for them are still developed.

Maniac Mansion

Maniac Mansion is a 1987 graphic adventure video game developed and published by Lucasfilm Games. It follows teenage protagonist Dave Miller as he attempts to rescue his girlfriend from a mad scientist, whose mind has been enslaved by a sentient meteor. The player uses a point-and-click interface to guide Dave and two of his six playable friends through the scientist's mansion while solving puzzles and avoiding dangers. Gameplay is non-linear, and the game must be completed in different ways based on the player's choice of characters. Initially released for the Commodore 64 and Apple II, Maniac Mansion was Lucasfilm Games' first self-published product.

The game was conceived in 1985 by Ron Gilbert and Gary Winnick, who sought to tell a comedic story based on horror film and B-movie clichés. They mapped out the project as a paper-and-pencil game before coding commenced. While earlier adventure titles had relied on command lines, Gilbert disliked such systems, and he developed Maniac Mansion's simpler point-and-click interface as a replacement. To speed up production, he created a game engine called SCUMM, which was used in many later LucasArts titles. After its release, Maniac Mansion was ported to several platforms. A port for the Nintendo Entertainment System had to be reworked heavily, in response to complaints by Nintendo of America that the game was inappropriate for children.Maniac Mansion was critically acclaimed: reviewers lauded its graphics, cutscenes, animation, and humor. Writer Orson Scott Card praised it as a step toward "computer games [becoming] a valid storytelling art". It influenced numerous graphic adventure titles, and its point-and-click interface became a standard feature in the genre. The game's success solidified Lucasfilm as a serious rival to adventure game studios such as Sierra On-Line. In 1990, Maniac Mansion was adapted into a three-season television series of the same name, written by Eugene Levy and starring Joe Flaherty. A sequel to the game, entitled Day of the Tentacle, was released in 1993.

Master System

The Sega Master System (SMS) is a third-generation home video game console manufactured by Sega. It was originally a remodeled export version of the Sega Mark III, the third iteration of the SG-1000 series of consoles, which was released in Japan in 1985 and featured enhanced graphical capabilities over its predecessors. The Master System launched in North America in 1986, followed by Europe in 1987, and Brazil in 1989. A Japanese version of the Master System was also launched in 1987, which has additional features over the Mark III and other regional variants of the console, namely a built-in FM audio chip, a rapid-fire switch and a dedicated port for the 3D glasses. A cost-reduced model known as the Master System II was released in 1990 in North America and Europe.

The original Master System models uses both cartridges and a credit card-sized format known as Sega Cards. Accessories for the consoles were also released such as a light gun and 3D glasses designed to work with a range of specially coded games, which were sold separately or available in certain bundles. The later Master System II redesign removed the card slot, turning it into a strictly cartridge-only system and was incompatible with the 3D glasses by proxy.

The Master System was released in competition with the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES). It had fewer well-reviewed games than the NES, and a smaller library, due to Nintendo licensing policies requiring platform exclusivity. Despite the Master System's newer hardware, it failed to overturn Nintendo's significant market share advantage in Japan and North America. However, it attained significantly more success in Europe and Brazil.

The Master System is estimated to have sold at 13 million units, excluding recent Brazil sales. Retrospective criticism has recognized its role in the development of the Sega Genesis, and a number of well-received games, particularly in PAL regions, but is critical of its limited library in the NTSC regions, which were mainly dominated by Nintendo's NES. As of 2015, the Master System was still in production in Brazil by Tectoy, making it the world's longest-lived console.

Matthew Smith (games programmer)

Matthew Smith (born 1966) is a British computer game programmer. He created the games Manic Miner and Jet Set Willy for the ZX Spectrum, released in 1983 and 1984 respectively.

Sabre Wulf

Sabre Wulf is an action-adventure game by Ultimate Play the Game, initially released for the ZX Spectrum home computer in 1984. The player navigates the pith-helmeted Sabreman through a 2D jungle maze while collecting amulet pieces to bypass the guardian at its exit. The player does not receive explicit guidance on how to play and is left to decipher the game's objectives through trial and error. Sabreman moves between the maze's 256 connected screens by touching the border where one screen ends and another begins. Each screen is filled with colourful flora, enemies that spawn at random, and occasional collectibles.

Ultimate released the game for the ZX Spectrum at an above-average price to combat piracy. Its premium product packaging became a company standard. The developers had finished Sabre Wulf's sequels in advance of its release but—in keeping with their penchant for secrecy—chose to withhold them for marketing purposes. The sequels were swiftly released later that year. Ultimate hired outside developers to port Sabre Wulf to other computing platforms: the BBC Micro, Commodore 64, and Amstrad CPC. The game was later featured in compilations including the 2015 retrospective of games by Ultimate and its successor, Rare.

Several gaming publications recommended the game, and Crash magazine readers named it the "Best Maze Game" of 1984. Sabre Wulf was a bestseller and a financial success. Though its labyrinthine gameplay was similar to that of Ultimate's previous release, reviewers preferred Sabre Wulf. They further noted its difficult gameplay and lauded its graphics. Game journalists remember Sabre Wulf among the Spectrum's best releases, and for starting the Sabreman series.

Sega Technical Institute

Sega Technical Institute (STI) was an American development division of Sega. Founded by Atari veteran Mark Cerny in 1991, the studio sought to combine elite Japanese developers, including Sonic Team programmer Yuji Naka and his team, with new American talent. STI developed a number of Sonic the Hedgehog games, as well as other games for the Sega Genesis, before it was closed at the end of 1996.

After working in Japan for Sega on games for the Master System, Cerny proposed the creation of a development studio in America, which was approved. When Naka quit Sega after the release of Sonic the Hedgehog, Cerny convinced him and Sonic level designer Hirokazu Yasuhara to join him at STI. After completing Sonic the Hedgehog 2 in 1992, STI was divided in two due to friction between the Japanese and American developers: the Japanese developers developed Sonic the Hedgehog 3 and Sonic & Knuckles before leaving in 1994, while the American team developed games including Sonic Spinball. The failed development of Sonic X-treme for the Sega Saturn became representative of a culture shift at Sega, and STI closed at the end of 1996.

Games developed by STI are considered significant in the history of the Genesis, and many were well-received or sold well. Developers have described STI as a unique workplace that did not fit into Sega's corporate structure, and have fond memories of the environment.

Sonic Spinball

Sonic the Hedgehog Spinball, commonly abbreviated to Sonic Spinball, is a 1993 pinball video game developed by Sega Technical Institute and published by Sega. It is a spinoff to the Sonic the Hedgehog series that is set in the universe of the animated series Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog. In the game, players control Sonic the Hedgehog, who must stop series antagonist Doctor Robotnik from enslaving the population in a giant pinball-like mechanism. The game is set in a series of pinball machine-like environments, and Sonic acts as a pinball for the majority of the game.

The game was developed by the American staff of Sega Technical Institute, as the Japanese staff was occupied with developing Sonic the Hedgehog 3 and Sonic & Knuckles. When Sega management realized that Sonic 3 would not be completed in time for the 1993 holiday shopping season, they commissioned another Sonic game that would be. The game was hastily designed amid time constraints, with most work taking place over two months. Sonic Spinball was released for the Sega Genesis in November 1993, and for the Game Gear and Master System in 1994 and 1995, respectively.

Sonic Spinball received mixed reviews, with critics praising the game's novelty and graphics, although its controls were criticized. A second pinball game, Sonic Pinball Party, was released in 2003, and a spinning rollercoaster of the same name opened in the Alton Towers theme park in 2010. Spinball has been rereleased on 11 consoles, including appearances in Genesis-related compilations.

Spindizzy (video game)

Spindizzy is an isometric computer game released for several 8-bit home computer formats in 1986 by Electric Dreams Software. It features action and puzzle game elements. Players must navigate a series of screens to explore a landscape suspended in a dimensional space. Development was headed by Paul Shirley, who drew inspiration from Ultimate Play the Game games that feature an isometric projection.

The game was successful in the United Kingdom and was well received by the video game press. Reviewers praised its visuals and design, but criticized its audio. Similarities were drawn to Marble Madness, which was released in arcades two years earlier. Spindizzy was followed by a 1990s sequel titled Spindizzy Worlds.

Super Play

Super Play was a British Super Nintendo Entertainment System (SNES) magazine which ran from October 1, 1992 to September 1996.

Superman (Atari 2600)

Superman is an action adventure game for the Atari 2600 designed by John Dunn and published by Atari, Inc. in 1979. It was one of the first single-player games for the system and one of the earliest licensed video games. Superman was built using the prototype code for Warren Robinett's Adventure, and ended up being published before Adventure was finished. Retro Gamer credits it among action-adventure games as the "first to utilize multiple screens as playing area".

Ultimate Play the Game

Ashby Computers and Graphics Limited, trading as Ultimate Play the Game, was a British video game developer and publisher, founded in 1982, by ex-arcade game developers Tim and Chris Stamper. Ultimate released a series of successful games for the Sinclair ZX Spectrum, Amstrad CPC, BBC Micro, MSX and Commodore 64 computers from 1983 until its closure in 1988. Ultimate are perhaps best remembered for the big-selling titles Jetpac and Sabre Wulf, each of which sold over 300,000 copies in 1983 and 1984 respectively, and their groundbreaking series of isometric arcade adventures using a technique termed Filmation. Knight Lore, the first of the Filmation games, has been retrospectively described in the press as "seminal ... revolutionary" (GamesTM), "one of the most successful and influential games of all time" (X360), and "probably ... the greatest single advance in the history of computer games" (Edge).By the time of the label's last use in 1988 on a retrospective compilation, Ultimate had evolved into Rare, and moved on to developing titles for Nintendo consoles. Rare was purchased by Microsoft in 2002 for US$377 million, a record price for a video game developer, and now develops exclusively for Microsoft's Xbox One console. In 2006, Rare revived the "Ultimate Play the Game" name for an Xbox Live Arcade remake of Jetpac named Jetpac Refuelled.

Wizball

Wizball is a computer game written by Jon Hare and Chris Yates (who together formed the company Sensible Software) and released in 1987 originally for the Commodore 64 and later in the year for the ZX Spectrum and Amstrad CPC. Versions for the Amiga and Atari ST were also released in the following year. Wizball was also released for PC compatibles (CGA) and the French Thomson MO5 8 bit computer.

The music in the Commodore 64 version was composed by Martin Galway, with input from Jon Hare and Chris Yates.Wizball's more comical sequel, Wizkid, was released in 1992 for the Amiga, Atari ST and IBM PC.

Yu Yu Hakusho Makyō Tōitsusen

Yu Yu Hakusho Makyō Tōitsusen (幽☆遊☆白書 魔強統一戦) is a 1994 fighting game developed by Treasure and published by Sega for the Mega Drive. It is based on the manga series Yu Yu Hakusho by Yoshihiro Togashi. The plot follows the protagonist Yusuke Urameshi, who is tasked by the ruler of the afterlife with solving detective-style cases involving both humans and demons threatening the living world. The story begins to focus heavily on martial arts battles as it progresses.

The game features 11 playable characters from the manga and traditional 2D fighting gameplay. Opponents compete in rounds, attempting to deplete each other's health by utilizing short and long-range attacks and special combos. It also integrates other mechanics, such as allowing up to four players to compete simultaneously and letting fighters alternate between horizontal planes in the foreground and background. A number of multiplayer options are available that include battle royales, tag team matches, and tournament modes.

Makyō Tōitsusen was produced at the height of a global fighting game boom for home consoles in the early 1990s, brought on by hits like Street Fighter II. After the company made its debut on the system with Gunstar Heroes, Treasure began development on Makyō Tōitsusen as one of a quartet of Mega Drive games to be published by Sega. Unlike the rest of these titles, Makyō Tōitsusen was never localized in North America or Europe. The game's only other official release was in Brazil via Tectoy in 1999 where it was titled Yu Yu Hakusho: Sunset Fighters. Despite its limited availability, the game has been assessed by several English language publications and enjoyed a mostly positive response from critics. The gameplay and four-player options were praised by many reviewers, several of which have even considered it among the best fighting games of the 16-bit generation, although its graphics and sound received criticism.

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