The StarSoldier


Artist touch: : 8/10
Month it won: Jan 2007

(Activision, 1983)
Special note: !
Introduction and Story:
Another popular Activision legend on the Atari 2600 also comes to the Atari 5200 as well. Was this intense shooter improved for the upgraded system or is it another lack luster Activision translation?

In this overhead shooter you must pilot an jet fighter to push back a terrorist attack. It's your mission to blast away anything that gets in the way like enemy boats, planes, helicopters, and even bridges while you try to survive a strike down a long river bank.

Controls and Game Play:  
Not only to you need to watch out for terrorists trying to take you down but you also have to be careful of your fuel supply here as well. Just like Sega's classic Zaxxon game shattered through out the game are fuel tanks needed to continue on and if you don't you're done for. It's up to you to balance both speed and precision flying to survive the narrow canyon passage ways and that's easier said then that. Usually the loose 5200 controllers are a pain in the neck for some 5200 shooters like Gorf and Galaxian this shooter still plays very well and Activision did a great job in that area.
Graphics and Sounds:
Unfortunately, this fun game only comes to the Atari 5200 with some very minor graphical enhancements compared to 2600 game. The river in River Raid is still just a boring solid blue colour and all the enemies and fuel tanks are just as bland and blocky. There are a few touch ups on the mountains but that's about it here. I would love to talk about the sound but other then a few jet engine noises and explosions there just isn't much River Raid as to offer.
The Bottomline:
If you were looking a great game from the Atari era River Raid was always a sure bet and 5200 owners also get a chance to play this intense action game. Although the graphics and sounds are very plain and could have been way better for the 5200 (c'mon I know the system can do more then this), the game still controls and plays very well. River Raid is an excellent arcade-like shooter with brains.
overall rating: 75/100
Look for RIVER RAID on eBay here!

For 1 player only
graphics: 5/10
sound: 4/10
gameplay: 5/10
replay: 7/10

(Ryan Genno) 2007

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