Released: 1988 Published by: Melbourne House

Platforms: Sinclair Spectrum, Amstrad CPC, Commodore 64, Arcade, Atari ST, Amiga, MSX, Nintendo Playchoice, DOS PC

Credits: The Bitmap Brothers, Dave Whittaker (Music)
Description: "A strategic vertically scrolling shoot-em-up. You have the option of swapping between two very different craft, to suit the challenge facing you at the time; eighter a ground-based saucer or a well armed, and faster fighter aircraft. A fast moving thinking man's shoot-em-up"

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CPC Title
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When the Bitmap Brothers released their first ever game Xenon, it was a clear indication that they meant business.

Released back in January 1988, Xenon rocked the gaming world and showed people what they could expect from 16-bit technology. Gorgeous visuals, a quality soundtrack and sublime gameplay were the key factors in Xenon rocketing off the shelves and gave the game the distinction of being the first Amiga game to enter the top 40.

Xenon is a vertically scrolling shoot em up that, unlike most shoot em ups, takes a more relaxed approach. That doesnt mean that Xenon is easy, if fact its anything but, and does take considerable skill to get through the levels. There are multiple powerups to be had to help your progress but reaching (and keeping) these is a small challenge in itself.

An interesting feature of Xenon is the ability to change from a ground based tank into a flying craft. This introduces a certain degree of strategy into the gameplay as some of the oncoming waves of nasties can only be shot from the air, and the others only from the ground which means picking when to switch your vehicle is an important factor.

Graphically Xenon was superb looking in its day although it is looking a bit dated now. The levels are all done in that metallic look that anyone who has ever played any other Bitmaps game will instantly recognise and although
basic looking, still look nice and suit the game well. Theres even an appearance by one of the Bitmap Bros themselves in there to announce the start of the levels.

The sound and music in Xenon, like the graphics, are showing their age a little but the explosions and music are good throughout with even a little speech thrown in.

Overall I highly recommend this game if you are looking for a good old fashioned shoot em up, unforgiving and hard as nails. The deceptively relaxed appearance of Xenon will draw you in and the fiendish difficulty level and 'just one more go' factor will have you hooked in minutes.

Visitor Comments: last 3 out of 7 - Show all

posted on 09 Dec 2007, 09:54Mortal Shang by Scot
right on guys, this was the first game i ever owned as a kid. it's amazing to see how far we've gone in 20 years.

posted on 05 Mar 2007, 05:25 by kc
Thanks for the Xenon tribute!

posted on 10 Nov 2004, 21:45 by Hellhammer

Dastardly: Rom and/or Warez requests are forbidden here

kametyken: 1st: it's illegal without the permission of the copyright holders
2nd : it's not the purpose of this website to spread full games - no matter how old they are