Xenon 2: Megablast

  • Bitmap Brothers

  • FormatVideo and Arcade
  • TypeShoot em up
  • SystemMicrocomputer

 Xenon 2 is a space shooter where enemies are blasted and currency is collected from their ruined carcases and exchanged for serious weaponry.

The most memorable part of the game is easily the soundtrack. Supplied in calibration with Bomb The Base, back in 1998                       Andy Pryer

Top scrolling shooters were nothing new, even back in 1989 and true to type this is not a game over-burdened by story, but leave it to the ever reliable Bitmap Brothers to come up with a unique spin. Unlike most space shooters where wave upon wave of enemy craft are destroyed, here we declare war on wildlife.

A whole manner of creatures are blasted, that is until the later levels when craft do make an appearance. These later craft's construction is classic Bitmap Bros in their over engineering: Rusting steel and heavy duty rivets which will be familiar to any Bitmap fan. Huge and spectacular boss battles are also present and correct as is traditional in the type of game. To aid your fight, credits are dropped by vanquished enemies.

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These can be exchanged for beefy weapons with the hip-hop loving merchant. Everything from drones to colossal laser blasters can be added to your arsenal and you'll need every scrap of firepower as the going gets tougher. Bolting these procured armaments to your ship certainly creates an impressive sight. Due to the reliance on upgrades there is a bug to be aware of which has potential to make the game unbeatable.

If you collect too many credits, which is possible in the later levels, the counter rolls over back to zero, losing your hard-earned and leaving you a short at the shop so you become seriously outgunned. Another new addition to the genre was that the ship the player pilots can be reversed, also reversing the direction of the screen too. This is useful when the ship hits a dead end and you need to retrace your path to escape.

But the most memorable part of the game is easily the soundtrack. Supplied in calibration with Bomb The Base, back in 1998, the Megablast was one of the coolest tracks around, lifted from the Enter the Dragon album albeit in a slightly simplified form, it's difficult to imagine just how great this track was back in the day.

It's fortunate that it is such a great tune as it's the only one you'll get across the five large levels, but it never got dull or repetitive for me. Maybe there was just so much going on elsewhere with the slick visuals and hectic fighting for me to care. As you'd expect for the Bitmaps, the game is a more than competent shooter with great design and graphics, although it does get pretty tough towards the end. What raises this game from being merely 'good' is the Megablast soundtrack and that's what this game is most remembered for. I didn't play for the graphics or even for the gameplay, like the tune says: I played for the hip-hop.

Review by Andy Pryer - @clammylizard

Amiga Longplay Xenon 2 - Megablast CLICK the carousel below to see the gaming pics and videos:

Xenon 2: Amiga Intro

  • Bitmap Brothers

  • FormatVideo and Arcade
  • TypeShoot em up
  • SystemMicrocomputer

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