It’s been a while since I’ve written an Amiga Amazing post but it’s not for the lack of games to talk about. I just fancied focusing on other topics for a bit. I’ve had this particular game in mind for quite a while now. It’s one I used to love and play quite often in the later years of the Amiga. The name of the game is one you should all recognise as it was a major player but it seemed to have a great divide between lovers and haters. We actually had this in the box with the proper disks and everything (for a change) so here’s a little preview of what it is I’m talking about 🙂
Yep the one and only, legendary Zool. Now I’m just going to put this out there – I really really really miss floppy disks. Mainly because they remind me of my Amiga days but I was still using them to back stuff up in my first year of university (2004-5) which really wasn’t THAT long ago if you think about it. It’s not that they were amazing or anything there’s just something very retro about them and the way they feel. Anyway I’m going off on a tangent; back to Zool.
Zool was a platform game in which you had to make your way through various differently stylised levels, defeating baddies, collecting points and making it to the end where you’d have your typical mini end boss. I realised recently that Zool is supposed to be an alien ninja. This does not make any sense to me at all. I mean look at him – he looks more like a ninja ant than an alien. I get that the in-game sounds are a bit alien-esque but the actual feel of the game does nothing to support the idea of aliens. Take the first level for instance – you’re pretty much in Chuppa Chup land (see below).
In what alien land are there THAT many sweets. Not your typical extra terrestrial planet that’s for sure. Then the second level goes into music land, the third fruit land, the fourth DIY land, the fifth some sort of toddler land with giant building blocks, Mechano and marbles and the sixth I think is a homage to a fairground? (watch the video below if you’re intrigued). In this level you bizarrely get a chance to use Zool to control another Zool by jumping around on a large arcade machine. I mean who the heck invented this – where is the alien theme coming in? Or even the ninja one for that matter. It’s just bizarre! I think the only part which kind of included aliens is the very end boss which is a sort of clown face with two large eyes protruding from it on sticks. If this game wasn’t all happy and colourful I think it’d be the stuff of nightmares. After you finally kill that guy/thing/obscenity you get a short cut scene in which Zool gets in his tiny little space-copter and flies away home back to his wife and two young alien children. So at least it’s all happily ever after even if the game does leave you feeling a bit messed up and confused from all the levels.
Anyway the fact is that I’ve only just figured this out – it didn’t even occur to me how strange this game was as a kid. I think I was too awestruck by the whole screen full of sweets that I just didn’t even care about the premise of the game. It was ridiculously hard to control Zool too – he bounced all over the place. I must have died about a hundred times, but it was fun too. It wasn’t too hard to actually get somewhere and just avoid the bad guys (as you can see in the longplay). It wasn’t my favourite game to play but I’d definitely say it was one of the good ones and I remember it better than others. Anyway that’s enough ranting from me today 😛