Ok, so not quite finished for 2020 yet – I fibbed a bit!
Many of you will have played the wonderful Barbarian 2 by Rob Stevens, and maybe even read the excellent feature with him in FREEZE64 about the game.
Whilst talking to Rob, Vinny Mainolfi of FREEZE64 discovered that Rob was sitting on a complete game that never saw the light of day called Trooper. This was Rob’s first proper C64 development when he was around 17/18 years old and likely what he showed to Palace to get his position at the company and the gig on Barbarian 2.
Rob kindly dug out a copy of the game and sent to Vinny to try and get up and running again and preserve. After several attempts, it finally backed up. Vinny would release the game as part of a special Christmas Eve release to FREEZE64 subscribers. He has also very kindly allowed GTW to release the game a few hours later on the site for non-subscribers, so here it is!
Everything in the game was done by Rob, and you control a robot soldier caught behind enemy lines and trying to escape. There is a huge mothership that chases you, and if it catches up, then you’re dead. So keep moving forward and don’t hand around too long.
For a first development, Trooper is impressive, and its great to see Rob’s work preserved so it can shared with you. We will add more details soon over time about the game and get Rob’s input, but for now check out a wonderful game thanks to the brilliant efforts of Vinny Mainolfi at FREEZE64.
In early 2021, it was discovered that a second copy had sneaked out too and was picked up in December 2020 by a Daniel Ratcliff. Attempts were made to preserve the game by scener Icon, but unfortunately the tape was corrupted. We’ve added new photos and the damaged archive attempt to the download section here for posterity. Dan plans to sell the game sometime in the future.
Contributions: Vinny Mainolfi, Daniel Ratcliff, Icon