A game promoted heavily in Denmark, a blatant Rampage clone that sadly would never get a proper release. Is it because Activision stepped in and stopped them, or did Kele Line go under before they could get the game out?
Luckily a preview somehow sneaked out, which is likely a glimpse of how far the game had got. Although buggy with test code on the screen, it plays very well and has some neat presentation effects throughout. This could well have bettered the UK version of Rampage. Thanks to Ole Mogensen, we found out the developer names, which are those from previous Kele Line games.
Although it seemed likely that Activision stepped in and put a stop to the game, this wasn’t the case. Carsten Holløse from World Games confirmed to us that Activision never went after them, and that it probably never even got onto their radar. Carsten informs us that they even did a launch party for the game based on the demo (that we are now hosting), and Carsten is the guy dressed in the monkey suit in the scans we have below.
We also got hold of Torben Bakager Larsen, who was a producer at Kele Line, and he believed that the coder had to dump the project to finish his school work. Torben wasn’t sure if there was more to the game, but it is believed that this could well be it. Torben did however dig out the original artwork intended for the game’s cover, and has very kindly provided us with a scan to put on the site, which you can now see within the gallery.
In recent years, it was found via a SOFT magazine article in 1987, that the development team left Kele Line and went to World Games to get their game made. There was also a credit listed to the late Johannes Bjerregaard for the music.
An article in IC-RUN 1988 confirms that Viet signed a contract with World Games to finish the game there, but there was no release date. German-based Ariolasoft were to release the game too. When Viet went to finish his education, World Games tried to get another young programmer to finish it off (name cannot be recalled unfortunately), but it was never to be and little progress was ever made beyond the demo we have here.
The crack of the preview was released in 1989, by Rooze – who may have been friends with Viet at the time. Hopefully we might be able to contact Viet in the future to find out more.
Contributions: Ole Mogensen, Mads
Torben Bakager Larsen talks about Go Ape!:
“Go Ape looked really promising, such a nice.. ahem clone of rampage for C64 lol :P :) Not sure excactly what happened but the coder just dump the project and started to do more school work! A shame.. could have been Viet’s first great Commodore 64 game :) Almost forgot about it but remember that Viet was doing tricky sprite coding to enhance the “look” and feel.
As far as I recall the project just got sidetracked due to viet and school work. Perhaps there is more to it :P No question about it that the game would have been a great commodore 64 game if it would have been completed ;)”
12/04/23 – A full tidy up of the text.