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SCORES EXPLAINED:

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


Funkmaster V Reviews


7800 Rank: Not Ranked

Genre: Vertical Shooting


Who Says Pink Countries Can't Be Evil??? Pros: Educates us on the Dangers of Marshmallow-y Goodness
Cons: A Lazy and Ugly Stab at a Vertical Shooter
Barbie Has it in for Your Freedom Loving Ass.


Overview: Tank Command is the most difficult first run game to obtain for the Prosystem. So hard, in fact, that when I first reviewed this game for the old website, I didn't even have a copy. Mitch Orman from Atari7800.org had to lend me his copy for the review. What a guy, am I right?
I have one now, and I have mixed feeling about it. Game publisher Froggo released two games for the Atari 7800, and both are pretty simple, ugly, seemingly lazy releases. Water Ski and Tank Command are consistently regarded as two of the worst games in the library, and that's saying something: our beloved 7800 has some stinkers, for sure. Tank Command looks pretty good if you like the color pink (or sherbert orange... depending on your television's tint), but the game can't hold a candle to the system's Commando or Ikari Warriors.

Graphics: This game is ugly with a capital UG. I wonder what made the artists decide to place this wartime tank game in a fluffy pink wonderland. I mean, are we invading Barbie's evil empire or what? There is not much to see in Tank Command, either. Tanks, mesas, pillboxes, a bomb, and a running idiot who charges your tank is all you have to gawk at. No sprites are rendered particularly well, but they make up for that for being gaudy colors.

Sound: When I was thinking on what to write for this category, all I could come up with is this: Evil Mud. There you go. You decide what that means for yourself. Sorry to be so vague, but that's all I got.

Gameplay: Like Commando and Ikari Warriors, Tank Command is a vertically scrolling war game, but the tank is more difficult to control than our typical Rambo-man. A unique aspect of the gameplay is that you can control the angle of your gun turret, which can shorten up or lengthen your cannon range. For some reason, Froggo calls this "Energy". Yup. That's weird, man. This feature actually makes the game worse for a reason that is hard to explain, but it basically comes down to the fact that diagonal shots have much longer range than shooting up, down, left or right does. This is nonsensical and very difficult to judge. It gets annoying fast. I found that it is best just to set a distance in the middle and stick with. Levels are long and rambling, with enemies thrown here and there thoughtlessly. Levels have no personality or memorable obstacles to over come. Damage to pillboxes are difficult to judge. And to add to the mindless difficulty of the game, Tank Command has included the fact that your tank needs constant fuel to continue to move. This is not new or particularly annoying on its own, but considering the fact that fuel power ups are so sparsely placed that there is no way to obtain one before your tank becomes immobile adds to the poop fest experience.

Originality: Tank Command is a lazy copy-cat of Commando with no soul. It's a ginger.

Value: Like Water Ski, the first level is a chore to get through. But after about 5 to 8 minutes of trudging through the fluffy evil of this forsaken countryside, a funny noise blurps and the Level counter reaches two with no other fanfare or graphical cue. Then, the enemy tanks randomly move around at a greater speed, making it impossible to defend yourself on this small of a playing field with this awkward tank. I would like to find the man (or woman) who could last past level 2 and shake his hand. Then I would slap him/ her in the face for wasting his life. Tank Command is just too hard and not rewarding enough to enjoy. For crying out loud, you are given 7 lives at the beginning! What game starts you off with 7 lives??? This is apparently how the programmers tried to fix the difficulty curve. Given the exorbitant cost of obtaining this title, the already low "Value" score plummets to zero.

Overall: I was not expecting much from Tank Command, and I was shocked to realize that is a lot worse than I thought it would be. If you are reading this and you have never played it, you are probably thinking "Yeah... but I bet its pretty good." IT'S NOT. RESIST. FORGET. BURN. PLUCK OUT AN EYE. The programmers didn't give two craps about this game. Considering this game is now pulling down 400-500-600 dollars on ebay, Tank Command could be one of these worst purchases of your life. And I saw those slacks that you wore to your boss's thing on your Facebook page. Dude... what were you thinking?





I would like to thank Atari Age for the use of the screenshots in this review.