(Screenshots do not do justice, especially when it is a vector game)

One may question why it took so long for me to review a classic like this game.  It is one of the most loved arcade games and the updated version on the Atari Jaguar, Saturn and Playstation kept the game alive in the hearts and minds of gamers the world over.  I will tell you why I never bothered to review this game before, I never had a controller that made the experience enjoyable.  Before I received my Devastator II, I had to play this with a mouse, joystick or worse a keyboard.  While it is still a great game, the experience was sorely lacking with the inadequate controllers.  But with the Devastator II and its frictionless spinner, Tempest is suddenly great fun again!  If I only could find a version of Tempest 2000 to play on it, I would be in heaven (I just love that voice "Super Zapper recharge").

This is one of those games that it is very easy to get into "The Zone".  Once you get past the first half dozen levels, things get pretty hectic and this is where pure reflexes takes over.  And when you have a smooth spinner, you can just fly around like a bat out of you know where.  And with rapid fire, it is easy to keep those things at bay. 

Probably the biggest challenge with this game is how to use your one super zapper you get per level.  On the early levels you will find that you do not need.  Too bad you cannot store them up.  When the later levels come, you will find that you could use a bunch of them.  This is where the problem comes.  Do you use it the first time things get hairy or do you try to rough it out and keep it for later.  This will keep you on your toes as the worst feeling is when you die and you know that you could have survived if you used the super zapper.  Of course it is pretty depressing when you use it early and wish you had it later when they throw everything at you.

One of my favorite aspects of the game is the amount of creative level designs they come up with.  As the levels increase, so does the uniqueness.  This keeps you going as you want to see what outlandish design is around the corner.  That and putting up a high score that is worthy of bragging about. 

Tempest is a true classic and a game that really needs the proper controller to get the most out of it.  Granted, getting a arcade controller that comes with a spinner is not cheap, but when you play a game like Tempest, it will be worth it.

This is just a review of the arcade machine.  If you are looking for the actual arcade machine, you may want to check out ebay.  Click below to see if you can find this game.


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Tomorrow's Heroes
Tom Zjaba 1997 - 2015      

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