Mission 3,000 A.D.

Atari 2600

Review by Jess Ragan

BIT Corp


Graphics: 6

Sound: 5

Gameplay: 4

Overall: 4

Everyone who wanted a 2600 version of Bosconian probably won't be too thrilled about the idea after they play Mission 3,000 A.D.  You can tell that this is supposed to be a translation of Namco's search and destroy shooter, but there's about three thousand things missin' when you compare it to Atari's high-quality conversions of Galaxian and Dig Dug.  The space stations crumble after a single hit, and you'll never experience the thrill of sighting a spy ship or the aggravation of getting caught in a mine explosion.

What really makes this mission a failure are the enemies.  They're blocky, flickery, and worst of all, stupidy.  Wait, "stupidy" isn't a word!  Anyway, what I'm TRYING to say is that the bad guys just change direction randomly, rather than hunting you down or flying past.  It's impossible to predict what they'll do next, and since there are so many of them onscreen, you can't avoid crashing into them.  A good designer understands that it's just not much of a game if the player doesn't feel like they're in control of their own destiny.  Namco definitely knew this- you can look at any of their arcade games for proof- but clearly, the designers of this rough conversion of Bosconian didn't care.  As a result, you'll lose so many ships to circumstances beyond your control that you'll wonder why you even bother to pick up the controller.

But hey, you don't have to put down that joystick!  Just replace Mission 3,000 A.D. with a less disappointing arcade conversion, like Time Pilot or Sinistar.  The gameplay's close enough in these games that you won't mind too much that Bosconian was botched on its way to the 2600.


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Last updated: Tuesday, September 16, 2008 05:41 PM