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 Post subject: Ozma Wars (Arcade)
PostPosted: Fri Apr 06, 2007 8:40 pm 

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Joined: 27 Feb 2007
Posts: 210
Review for Ozma Wars by SNK


Video Games started out similar to TV. They both were only available in Black and White, didn't had expensive CGI or other fancy visual effects and were cheesy in plots, yet they entertained the audience. Though not all TV shows were great hits and so were video games. Ozma Wars is one of those games that weren't a big hit since it was created around the same time as Space Invaders. Ozma Wars is SNK's first arcade game but it didn't stand out but it does feature some things that are different from other shooters of this era.

I doubt there is a story since this game was made in the late '70's so the simple plot line is like any other shooter: ride your ship and battle against an infinite number of baddies in a place called "Space World". One thing that seperates this from others is your energy meter. You get like 30000 energy that depletes as long as your moving. Getting hit by something will suck away like 8000 energy. This may not seem like a bad idea but unlike Space Invaders, the enemies can sometimes hurl alot of ammo at you and since you can only slide left and right, you best be on your toes and move quickly about. After a mission has been done, a docking ship will come and replenish about 20000 energy so you can continue busting down ships.

The enemies in the game are something out of a Truxton game. Heck some UFO's look like the ship from Truxton. I don't know if that's what inspired it but it's a neat coincidence. Other ships include sphered shaped ships, disc enemies, and little aliens. The enemies in this game play differently from the Space Invader clones. They don't appear in a fix pattern but just like a modern shmup, the come from the top of the screen and from the far off distance, zooming in, ready to shoot you down. The ammo they shoot at you are two kinds. One is the standard 3 pixel laser beam and the other is the missile that follows you but is very slow. Some enemies shoot one at a time while others go bullet-hell on you. Very impressive for a game of it's time.

What about your starship? Don't know what it's called but it does have a cross on it so I call it the "White Cross". It has a decent speed but wish it was as fast as the Galaga fighter. The thing that sucks most though is it's ammo. One little laser beam at a time. What the heck? You got enemies pumping missiles at you and all you have is this little dinky laser that is best fitted for a Galaxia game. Even though this is all you need since the enemies only need one hit, it doesn't balance out the fact that some enemies already shot like 20 bullets by the time yours hit the top of the screen. Though you get extra score for hitting missiles.

Graphics are black and white with large pixels but SNK sure has produced some pretty looking ships, including the White Cross, which is nicely detailed. Some of the UFO's don't look bad either. The background scrolls slowly but who cares, it's just a bunch of white dots. Sounds suck though. It's a whirling sound throughout. Sometimes gets irritating. Wish they removed it and just added a bleep for shooting and bloop for crashing.

There is also a glitch. Don't know if it's MAME or the arcade but if you try to play a two player game and lose a ship, the game will not return the ship and resume playing. Not much of a feature.


SNK's first game doesn't stand out and your better off playing Space Invaders, but it is different since it is closer to a modern shmup than anything else in this era.


Alright, time for some pics.

The title screen. It ain't as infamous as the Super Marios Bros. title, but it's got the basic things you need to know: The name of the game, a clever slogan, score board, and if you even wondered what SNK stood for, there you go.

In the beginning of every wave, the White Base will come to refill your Gundam's energy so you can continue to fight off the evil Char's invasion from...wait, what am I talking about? Oh yeah, Ozma War. Sorry but the white graphics got me confused.

You don't need fancy colors or mega-pixels to make good graphics. The UFO's and the White Cross look fine here.

Okay, I don't understand this. Before the boss in the first wave, a comet passes you by. It travels slowly, you can avoid it easily, and nothing happens when you miss it. What exactly is this comet suppose to be?

The first boss. This screenshot doesn't show it but this thing will pump bullets at you like it was in a manic shmup. Well not the degree that it will cover the screen but compared to the White Cross, it is a challenge.

Unlike space invaders, there is no patterned base enemies and the enemies don't always look the same. Here we see a bunch of meteors. No, they don't always appear in this patter.


The second boss must be a transport ship. It will keep launching tiny aliens that shoot at you and this thing has many a alien to keep you busy.
Fan art by me, TKGB. New one every month. Click to enlarge and comment.

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