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 Post subject: Snoopy and the Red Baron (Atari 2600)
PostPosted: Sun Jun 14, 2020 11:44 pm 

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Joined: 11 Oct 2008
Posts: 334
Location: Autobot City, Sugiura Base
Well, I hope you enjoyed the review of Rigid Force Alpha/Redux. I'm really running out of shmups to review here, so once again here's another Atari 2600 shooter to review (also, this forum lacks of Atari shmup reviews).

So, with no more things to say, here's the review of Snoopy and the Red Baron. Once again don't expect me to write a whole bible about this game 'cos Atari 2600 games doesn't have too much to talk about.

Kid-friendly dogfight in the Atari's skies.

Snoopy and the Red Baron is an horizontal scrolling shoot em' up which focuses on one single thing: Help Charlie Brown's pet beagle to shoot down Manfred von Richthofen, better known as the Red Baron. Based on this premise, this game is a 1 VS 1 shmup. The idea is to take down the Red Baron and recover the treats he stole from your allies: Ice cream, Dog food, Popcorn, Popsicles, a bone for dogs, Pizza slices, Beer and Hamburgers. Everytime he's shot down, he will drop a treat that you'll have to pick up to get extra points, but also he will occasionally drop Skulls and Crossbones, picking those will undo your progress of picked treats.
Unlike you, the Red Baron can hide among the clouds for a while, having a small advantage that makes the game challenging but not unfair. Sometimes we will have to chase our opponent. To do that you'll have to move either left or right to accelerate the screen scrolling. Like Defender, the screen loops infinitely so you can go to the left and catch the Red Baron when he was flying to the right.

Your WWI flying doghouse only has one weapon: A frontal shot, while tapping the button once fires the bullet at a long distance, holding the button will shoot a machine gun autofire, but with a short range, making more difficult to hit the Red Baron. Fortunately, you'll only have to hit the Red Baron 8 times, but also he can hit you 8 times. The only problem with this game is that most of the times you won't see the Baron's bullets, and you'll only notice he hitted you when you see a hole in Snoopy's doghouse. Shooting down 50 Red Barons will award the player with a Gold Baron.

Like any other Atari 2600 game, this game features multiple variations to improve the original gameplay, in this game's case it has four of them.

In the Audivisual department, we can appreciate that the graphics favor Snoopy more than the Red Baron as we can perfectly recognize the beagle in his flying doghouse, and even we can notice bullet holes when it takes a hit or Snoopy's scarf waving in the wind, something quite surprising for Atari's standards. The scenery was also an improvement as if Atari was taking notes from Activision's Chopper Command, as we can see different tones of brown in the mountains like geological layers of some sort or the slight shadowing of the clouds. As for the music, the game only has a few songs: the main theme when the game is turned on, the excerpt of "Ride of the Valkyries" (the Apocalypse Now theme) before starting the fight, the life lost music when Snoopy goes down and is forced to land, the stage clear tune and the treat bonus. The rest of the game is this "RRRRRrrrAAAhhmmm-BRRARRARRArrrmm" sound that varies on its pitch along with the "PCHA-CHA-CHA-CHAM!" of our shots.

- This game was the lone Peanuts/Charlie Brown licensed title on the Atari 2600, since the planned Good Luck, Charlie Brown was cancelled.
- Don't confuse this game with Snoopy VS The Red Baron for the PC, PlayStation 2 and PlayStation Portable.
- Snoopy's "World War I Ace" is one of the most famous alter egos of the character.

If you are looking for some Atari 2600 and Charlie Brown nostalgia or you simply want to show some retro-gaming to the kids, then Snoopy and the Red Baron is a good option.
This game contains a good amount of family friendly air combat that will put a smile on your children and on those SJW's who can't see a shooter with girls on swimsuit-like outfits.
Fan of Transformers, Shmups and Anime-styled Girls. You're teamed up with the right pilot!
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