Contra and Gryzor (Amiga)

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (4 votes, average: 5.00 out of 5)
Loading...

This summary of yet another lost Amiga conversion comes from contributor, Termie Gen, who talks about the unreleased Gryzor and Contra conversions for the Amiga.

CONTRA:

Developed between 1987 and 1988, but never released it seems. Screenshots of an Amiga version found their way onto various print material, including the box art of other home computer versions of the game, shown below.

The September and October 1988 issues of Amiga World magazine make multiple mentions of Contra. They even provide 2 price points for the game, as part of a list of Amiga software that are available through phone or mail order.

Like the DOS and Commodore 64 versions of the game, a putative Amiga Contra would not be developed by Konami themselves, but another company. It could have been handled by a European developer, such as Ocean Software, given the Commodore 64 Contra is simply a North America regional release of Gryzor, also handled by Ocean. This is less likely, however. Interesting side note: Contra for DOS would in turn be released in Europe by Ocean, re-dubbed as Gryzor. Talk about a real mix-up with their conversions.

The fact that a smaller developer house, and not Konami, had likely worked on Amiga Contra means that getting a lead on this title will be much more daunting of a task. Judging by the screenshots, this looks to have been the definitive home computer conversion, graphically at least. It is one that definitely needs to be brought closure. Out of all the home computers that Contra was converted for, the Amiga could have handled Contra the best.

GRYZOR:

Less concrete information is available for this title than Contra. Most of the references to it are in magazines that advertise or cover the versions of the game from Ocean. It’s possible that this would have been the same case as the DOS version, where the North-American developed Contra was simply renamed to Gryzor when localized to Europe.

The following advertisement is present in many computer magazines, such as ACE and Amstrad Action:

aceissue11p65conami

Although focused on Ocean Software’s Gryzor releases, it also mentions that the title is available for PC and Amiga. The latter 2 are even interestingly grouped together and separated from the CPC, Spectrum and Commodore 64 releases.

In their article reviewing the DOS and Commodore 64 versions, German magazine Power Play lists Gryzor as being also available for Amiga (as well as Amstrad CPC and Spectrum):

gryzor4td

A less credible reference is/was on a few websites, where they claimed that there is a Gryzor game for Amiga that was developed by Ocean Software and published by Sega. A game such as Gryzor for the Amiga computer would not go unnoticed if Ocean Software was indeed the developer.

An Amiga version of Gryzor could have fared pretty well compared to the other 4 available ones. Perhaps more information about this game may be unearthed if its counterpart, Contra, is recovered first.

Here are some additional scans thanks to Ross Sillifant – suggesting that Gryzor was not going to be outsourced.

26 Responses to Contra and Gryzor (Amiga)

  1. What’s the story with Konami and home Micro conversions?

    Around time of 8-bit conversions of things like Jailbreak and Nemesis, they no longer handed out rights to others to convert, or so i’m told…instead they used:

    Nemesis Management Consultants (NMC), who were run by:

    Mike Daniels and Farah Jones of Global Software?

    Probably compelete wild card in terms of leads, but might be worth a shot trying to find these pair, see what they know, as they were supposedly tasked with finding the right coders and over seeing conversions, as Konami were apparently ‘concerned’ standards were met….

    Having seen C64 Jailbreak etc i find that hard to believe, but thought i’d throw these 2 names out..

    • Hi Ross Sillifant,

      I find this very hard to believe. Going by the 2 titles you mentioned, they predate Contra/Gryzor, and lots of other games of Konami that were converted to home Micros by various companies. Plus, the Ocean-based conversions were developed entirely in-house, with next to no direction from Konami (or any kind of external supervision for that matter). I think Konami placed NMC in charge of overlooking only a small subset of their games that were converted, if they were even actually involved at all; based on the end results, I’m sure they didn’t exactly do a good job there.

      • Yep, i’ve seen them listed on adverts for titles like Iron Horse on C64 (which wasn’t anything great), Jackal…which had Atari 800 version listed, but i doubt was ever started, etc.

        They do seem 8 bit era and more distrubution based than anything else.

        Trouble with UK Press coverage of Konami titles, you get so many mixed views on who did what at times.

  2. 🙂

    I can answer what became of U.S Gold’s Nightmare On Elm Street Game…

    According to Danielle Woodyatt, it was always something of an on/off project wirthin US Gold, by the time the licence had expired, she revealed the issue with basing a game on the film, was that the agr group of those old enough to see the film, differed from that of the age group the game was aimed at, so project was abandoned.

    Hope this clears this one up?.

  3. Never mind about Gryzor…. I’m more interested in seeing any remnants of the U.S. Gold version of A Nightmare On Elm Street! Does anyone have a screenshot or anything of this unknown attempt at a licensed game?

    • Why not do some research and see what you can pull up 🙂

      Incidentally, US Gold published a PC DOS compilation containing 4 Ocean Software developed/localized games including… Gryzor. This compilation is incredibly rare, just like the DOS version of Gryzor itself.

    • It’s believed the game would of been an arcade adventure with you avoiding Freddy in his many dreamworlds.

  4. While looking for information about the DOS version of Metal Gear, I came across a developer commentary from Charles Earnst, who converted the DOS version https://www.gamestm.co.uk/features/the-making-of-metal-gear-part-one/ (scroll down a bit). As you can see there, Earnst was under the employment of Banana Development Inc, the company that also made Contra for DOS. On top of that, he states in that commentary that was Banana Development was also given the responsibility of creating Metal Gear for Amiga, which ultimately ended up cancelled.

    I feel like this is another lead; could it be possible that, like Metal Gear, Banana Development was also responsible for Amiga Contra that never came to be?

  5. Hehehe, on the Spectrum I had a 8-in-1 compilation box called The In Crowd and hated how my Gryzor looked nothing like the one on the back of the box, which would usually be from an Amstrad!

    It would have looked pretty sweet on an Amiga.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*