on 20 January 2010
In this common age of gaming it is mind-blowing seeing the number of classic game compilations released and ignored each year; with Capcom, Midway, Atari, Activision, Taito and more recently SNK delivering a number of re-releases of some of their old classics onto our modern day machines. So when System 3 comes along with Impossible Mission and sells their "adaptation" of the game at the same price of these compilations, it other begs the question as to why they even bother.
Impossible Mission was originally a C64 adventure title, in which you scoured an underground base uncovering clues and puzzles in order to stop a missile launch from destroying the world. Essentially you move about the various platforms and jumps avoiding as many robots as possible in the process. You can access terminals to make the platforms and robots perform in your favour though (I.e. by turning them off and reseting them).
Where the actual challenge of Impossible Mission came from though was beating the eight hour time limit put in place before the missiles are actually launched. While eight hours sounds like a long time, in reality, it isn't. On the contrary, you can very easily have time taken off with each slip up you make during the game - whether this means falling off the platform or being electrocuted by the robots. It means there is no life system however. This new version of Impossible Mission, despite hints of a different game, plays much the same to the original.
The box claims there are three separate versions: the C64 original (complete with the dated sounds and graphics of the time), a re-skinned version (old school graphics over new backgrounds and designs) and the "totally updated new version" - which in all honesty, plays the same to the prior two versions mentioned. Really, the only difference between each version of Impossible Mission lies in the graphics.
But don't let that rise your hopes as the updated graphics only make the looks of the game go from an 8 bit game to a high quality 16 bit one, and what I mean by this is that the game is still in 2D but with an enhanced level of detail, colour and animation. It is also possible to now choice from three characters, Alpha 1 (the guy), Gamma (the cyborg) and Delta (the gal) - unfortunately they all play no differently.
Which is a huge bummer because more variety and - more importantly - depth could've made the difference for Impossible Mission on PS2. Lets get our facts straight here after all, it is a 20 odd year old computer game and when you compare an adventure game of that era to this one it is clear that the world has moved on since then, end of. Impossible Mission on PS2 is poorly programmed with some awful collision detection problems and basic AI patterns. It hasn't aged well at all.
Although regardless, System 3 have tried to top over the rusty coating of Impossible Mission's chassis with an extra amount of sugar on top of the presentation. There are now (low budget) FMV sequences added into the main game itself and the menus have been vamped up to look a lot more secret agent inspired - if clichéd. But hey, you had probably of guessed the verdict of this review now anyway. With visuals that even a flash game could better, gameplay as shallow as your bathtub and effort to match that of a small doodle in your execrise book, you're better off ignoring Impossible Mission on PS2.
There are far greater video game retro-releases of your moneys worth and if nostalgic fans really want a piece of Impossible Mission to play - go find yourself one of the many plug n' play commodore devices now in circulation. Because by doing that, not only will you have Impossible Mission to play but Cybernoid 1 &2, Uridium, Paradroid, Eliminator, World Karate Champion A & B and whatever else you might've remembered back then.
on 4 April 2009
Back when I was a young lad, I spent many a character-building afternoon patiently waiting half an hour for a cassette-based game to load on my trusty Commodore 64, and Impossible Mission was one of my favourites.
When I first saw this title I was sceptical, assuming that it would be a completely different game with a loose conceptual tie to the original. Thanks to the magic of Love Film I was able to 'Try Before I Buy' and find out that this game IS the original version!
Now, the original version (like the majority of C64 titles) was of course dam-near impossible to complete (hence the name, I guess) basically down to the inability to save the game at any stage. This has been addressed in this long overdue reissue, as well as the addition of fancy new graphics. I should also note that purists can opt for the original C64 graphics for that authentic feel.
My only real disappointment was the updated speech samples - I actually WANTED to hear the almost illegible 'We Have a New Visitor' from the original. That's just me being picky though, I suppose.
Overall, this game is MADE for late-20's like myself who still get a lump in the throat thinking about the good ole' days of gameplay over graphics.
As for anyone else? If you want to see the 1984 inspiration for the likes of Prince of Persia and Flashback, and experience good old fashioned challenging gameplay that really requires some thought, you could do a lot worse than Impossible Mission