Every Atari 7800 Game Reviewed
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The List of Lists


5.0 Perfect
4.5 Excellent
4.0 Very Good
3.5 Good
3.0 Fair
2.5 Weak
2.0 Poor
1.5 Bad
1.0 Terrible
0.5 Atrocious
0.0 Your Mom

Crossbow Reviews

7800 Rank: Unranked

Genre: Light Gun Game/ First Person Shooter

Awards: None
I'm Hot For You Mama...Hot Lava, Hot Lava! Pros: Tons of levels/ Solid challenge/ Option to use the light gun or joystick
Cons: According to Crossbow's review... not much!
Holy Grail? He's Already Got One! Now Go Away!
Overview: So you and a band of your fellow friends decide that enough is enough! You set out to trek on a perilous journey across all terrains and ultimate danger to seek out and destroy an evil wizard who has taken control of the land. Of course picking up some cool treasure along the way never hurts right? So our story begins. You play the role of sniper on a hill whom must keep the enemies at large
away from your friends as they walk across the screen facing all sorts of dangers for the ultimate goal of reaching the Evil Magician and defeat him. This is not tall task.

Graphics: This is a direct port of the Arcade classic released in 83 from Exidy. Folks...this is what the 7800 was designed for. The 7800 version is about as dead on as you can get to having the arcade game whilst not actually having it. The graphics are a tad on the blocky side and are missing some details from that of the arcade. However, once you begin playing it that will all come to pass. Graphically this is one of the best titles for the 7800. Although not listed as such, this is a Super Cart class game and it does show. All the animations are present in each character. Each separate level is also present from the arcade and is easily recognizable. Some of the more outstanding levels are the Volcano section and the River bridge scene. Even the Evil Magician himself at the end looks better on the 7800 then it did in the original arcade. The Title screen for this game alone will tell you before you begin play just what a masterpiece this game is on the 7800.

Sound: The sound as usual isn't anything awesome, but what is there is put to some very good use. Crossbow doesn't feature an extra pokey chip for the sound but it doesn't really need it. All the creatures have a separate sound when the come onscreen so you know what danger is forthcoming. Atari even included as best they could the sounds for the wizard laugh when his evil eye shows up and even a sort of screaming effect when your friends sadly perish. So while Atari still used the old reliable 2600 class Tia to process the sound, they used it to its fullest. High marks here for completeness not so much for quality.

Gameplay: The game plays on the basic principle that you are protector for your friends. Basically as they walk across each screen various enemies will come to accost and try and kill them. Your job is that you sit back in the shadows and protect them with your trusty crossbow (hence the name). The original arcade was a classic in that it was one of the first to feature the use of Light gun technology in a game. Only instead of a gun you actually held onto and fired a mock crossbow. The 7800 version allows the use of either a light gun or joystick control. Most will find themselves using the joystick. While this isn't quite the way it was meant to be played, Atari did a great job in getting the game to work well. With a joystick you control a crosshair on the screen and simply press the fire buttons to shoot off a crossbow bolt. You have to be accurate as many of the enemies move rather quickly, are rather small, and also you can shoot your friends. Also on many of the screens you have to shoot obstacles in order for your friends to successfully navigate to the other side. The control in Crossbow is both simple and accurate. No complaints.

Interpretation: This is a direct port of the arcade classic done on the 7800. Did Atari succeed in this? Absolutely! I haven't played a version this well done on any console to date. The 7800 version features the same map routes, the same friends, the same enemies, and even the same game play. Atari left it all intact. his is one of the best conversions done on the 7800 ever.

Value: Once you complete Ceossbow, it will start over with more difficult enemies. Also there is no 2 player mode which makes sense in a game like this but still the ole round robin method of two player gaming could have been done for some competition. Also the map route doesn't change. Once you know which colors to shoot for the most direct route you will always know it. The game doesn't randomize this as I feel it should. Randomizing the map routes would add to the difficulty tremendously and really make for a different game each time.

Overall: I love this game and play it quite a bit still. How do you think I got my nickname, after all? Atari did a great job in porting this arcade classic to the venerable 7800. If you like the arcade version or like any game of this type of genre, my advice is that you own a 7800 and you don't have this game...then you don't really own a 7800. This is my favorite arcade conversion done on the 7800 and Atari really studied their Ps and Qs on this one. Excellent says I...

Other Reviews:
CV's Atari 7800 Panoramic Froo-Froo: 4.5 out of 5.0 (Excellent)
Video Game Critic: B-
The Atari Times: 5 out of 10

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