Ok ok, yes we know that Zamzara was infact released, but light was shed recently on a rather different game which was shaping up originally by Jukka Tapanimaki. I really love this game, first played on Commodore Format’s powerpack 9… The music, graphics, gameplay is awesome and holds fond memories from my gaming childhood. This would most likely be at least in my top 20 games.
Zamzara was originally going to be very “Impossible Mission” like, with the aim to collect Genes and built DNA. Hewson loved what they were seeing, but thought that the game was way too complex for people to play. As a result, Jukka reprogrammed the game from scratch and it became very adventure like. Hewson took another look at the game and felt that it was now a bit boring.
Following these final comments, Jukka dumbed it right down into a simple shoot-em-up, which Hewson eventually gave the thumbs up to. According to sources, they still said it didn’t have enough content, so Jukka added extra content to create the fantastic game that was eventually released.
But it asks the intriguing question about what happened to these other previews of the game, which played rather differently to the final version. It will be very interesting to see other versions of this game for us to check out. TNT/beyond force from the Lemon forums first brought to light about other versions of Zamzara, and we have quoted most of what he has said about the versions here.
In late December 2015, we added an updated version which now includes music to try and round off and complete the original early version of the game. Worth checking out, and you can now find this version under downloads, thanks to Esa Lyttinen!
He has also put out an earlier version of the game with rather different graphics, which you can download and check out. As you will see from the screenshots, there is a loading screen which Jukka originally did himself which was unused and later re-done by a well known loading screen artist. Recently some of the game’s code has been recovered thanks to a currently unknown preservationist – along with a demo showing a space ship feature which was not used in the game. The various demos added also shows a map feature which was not used in the final game.
It is possible that the game went straight onto the Rack-IT label after the the comment of “Not enough content” from Hewson… which is very sad, as the game is truly awesome, and one sorely missed on the C64DTV.
We are hoping to find more on this title, but sadly Jukka passed away in recent times. We don’t know much more than this, but it is a huge shame that a wonderful talent from the C64’s history has gone. Zamzara being a personal favorite game of mine brings much respect from myself to Jukka, and it is a huge shame that we will not get the chance to hear from him about his work.
We hope that in the future we will be able to host more of his lost/early work as a tribute..
Contributions: TNT/Beyond Force, Esa Lyttinen