Monday, May 7, 2012

Spike Hoppin' (Vectrex Game)

Spike Hoppin' is another John Dondzila creation (did I or did I not tell you that he was the man?). In keeping with a tradition for homebrew programmers to try and find other things the Vectrex can do, Spike Hoppin' is an attempt to bring Q-Bert to the Vectrex.

One again, this is a homebrew game that provides a level of redemption for the Spike, the poor old mascot of the Vectrex. Let me say that this game has a certain learning curve. I didn't like it at first because I couldn't tell where Spike was going to jump. It was much like my first attempt at playing Q-Bert in which I kept jumping off the top of the pyramid on accident. Anyway, once you get the hang of the controls, Spike Hoppin' is a very fun game.

As if the gameplay wasn't enough, John Dondzila added voice synthesis. Whereas Spike's voice sounded like a chain smoker in Spike, his voice is higher and cuter in Spike Hoppin'. There are a few glitches, but this is generally a very fun and very well-written game.

There's also an easter egg in this game. If you press buttons 1 and 3 at startup, and then press button 4, you'll be taken to a hidden Centipede clone, which is actually more playable than John lets on with his intro to the game. It's a very nice surprise.

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