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Speedball2 Logo

Die Bitmap Brothers haben von jeher ein glückliches Händchen bei ihren Fortsetzungen, man denke nur an “Xenon II”. Und die Neuauflage des Brutalo-Sports hat ja schon am ST recht gut ausgesehen, mit der brandneuen Amigaversion haben sich die Jungs aber mal wieder selbst übertroffen!

Speedball2 Und das war bestimmt nicht einfach, den schließlich ging es darum, einen Meilenstein der Softwaregeschichte nochmals zu verbessern: Als „Speedball“ vor ca. zwei Jahren herauskam, war so gut wie jeder von dem futuristischen Sportspektakel begeistert – das Game war nicht nur unheimlich schnell, sondern auch genial einfach zu handhaben. Regeln gab es praktisch keine, man musste einfach den „Ball“ (eine Stahlkugel) irgendwie ins gegnerische Tor bugsieren – ohne Rücksicht auf Verluste!

Amiga Joker Hit Daran hat sich auch bei der Fortsetzung nichts geändert, es sind aber einige Features hinzugekommen: Torwiederholungen (mit Speichermöglichkeit), auf dem vergrößerten Spielfeld liegen nun massenhaft Extras, wie Tor-Multiplikatoren, Prelikuppeln, Warp-Felder und diverse Bonus Gegenstände herum, Sanitätsroboter tragen verletzte Spieler vom Platz, wichtige Ereignisse (z.B. das „Ableben“ eines Teilnehmers) werden eingeblendet und so weiter und so fort. Aber vor allem darf man sich nun auch als Manager betätigen, also neue Leute kaufen, ausrüsten und trainieren. Jeder Spieler hat acht verschiedene Werte, von der völlig unwichtigen Intelligenz bis zur alles entscheidenden Aggressivität. Mit Fitnessdrinks erhöht man die Ausdauer, mit „Bitmap Shades“ steigert man die Aggressivität – sofern da überhaupt noch etwas zu steigern ist… Es gibt jetzt Knockout, Liga-, Cup- und Übungsmodi, und der Schwierigkeitsgrad ist ungefähr auf das Doppelte angewachsen (von den zwei Ligen ist ein Schwer, die andere noch viel schwerer!) .Was sich nicht geändert hat, ist die gelungene Steuerung und die Spieldauer: zweimal 90 Sekunden, dann ist alles vorbei.

Grafisch und soundmäßig haben die Bitmaps so ziemlich alles aus dem Rechner herausgeholt, was in diesem Genre überhaupt machbar ist: 32 Farben (im Gegensatz zur ST-Version, die mit 16 auskommen muss), eingeblendete Siegerfotos, fetzige Titelmusik, irre Effekte und eine knackige Sprachausgabe. Leider ist nicht alles nur besser geworden, so ist der Screen jetzt nicht mehr im PAL – sondern im NTSC-Format, und das Scrolling ruckelt etwas stärker als im ersten Teil. Besonders betrüblich ist, dass es nur einen Zwei-Spieler-, aber keinen Vier-Spieler-Modus gibt: Wer weiß, wieviel Spaß z.B. „Kick Off 2“ zu viert macht, ärgert sich schon darüber dass die Bitmaps hier nichts Vergleichbares eingebaut haben.

Schwamm drüber, trotz der kleinen Mängel zählt Speedball 2 schon jetzt zu den besten Sportspielen des Jahres – wer den ersten Teil mochte, wird absolut hingerissen sein. Nachahmer wie „Future Basketball“ oder das grauenhafte „Prosoccer 2150“ könnt Ihr ab sofort vergessen, jetzt heißt es wiede: Möge der Härtere gewinnen! (mm)

Amiga Joker, March 1991, P.?

Amiga Joker
Der Amiga Joker meint:
"Kein Zweifel: Speedball 2 ist der Sport der Zukunft!"

Speedball 2
Grafik: 84%
Sound: 89%
Handhabung: 90%
Spielidee: 81%
Dauerspass: 92%
Preis/Leistung: 85%

Red. Urteil:
Für Experten
90%
Preis: ca 79,- DM
Hersteller: Imageworks
Genre: Korona Soft

Spezialität: Sehr gute deutsche Anleitung, zum Speichern ist eine Extradisk erforderlich.



Speedball2 Logo Gold Medal Award

Imageworks, Amiga £24.99
Speedball2 One of the advantages of computerizing a fictionalized game is that you can completely change it for the sequel, doubling the size of the pitch and throwing in loads of new features. Try doing that with footie!
Speedball 2 is played over two halves of 90 seconds each, with teams swapping ends at half time. You control your team member closest the ball with a letter flashing up to indicate whether the player is a centre forward, midfielder, defender, winger or goalkeeper. Each team member can throw the ball in eight directions and, by holding down fire, at varying heights. You can even put on a bit of aftertouch to bend the ball. If you don't have the ball, pressing fire results in the player leaping into the air or gliding to grab the ball, or alternatively making a tackle.

Succesful tackling depends on the attack/ defence attributes of the two players involved. You can tackle a player whether he has the ball or not and each tackle reduces his (or her) attributes. If energy falls to zero the player is stretchered off and a sub sent on, this earns the team responsible bonus points!
Unlike the original game it's not simply a case of scoring goals -winning is by earning points which can scored in a variety of ways. Besides sending a player off (10 points), hitting a bounce dome (2 points), stars on the walls (there are fives for each team with two points per star turned on -hit all five for a 10- point bonus, or hit enemy stars to turn them off and substract two points from his score). There's also a Score Multiplier, activated by throwing the ball up its spiral ramp -hit it twice and it doubles any points you then score until deactivated by the enemy. Other special features include four Electrobounces (electrifying the ball causing it to tackle the next player it hits) and four Warp Gates which zap the ball between them.

There are also various tokens which appear on screen, which can be collected for a wide variety of effects including freezing opposing players, reversing opponent's joystick, automatically gain possesion of ball, etc. There's also plenty of temporary hardware to pick up including speed boots, powergloves, and Bitmap shades for extra aggression! Collected cash can also be used to buy these in the gym (between matches) to upgrade eight attributes.

There are several ways of playing Speedball beside two player matches (best of one, three or five matches with each match consisting of two legs). in Knockout you keep playing until you lose, whereas with Practice there's no opposing team. For a real challenge you can enter the League or Cup, playing for Brutal Deluxe -despite the name, a rather weak team. The League has two divisions of eight teams and a 14-week season, while the Cup is a Four-round knockout. Both allow you to save the game between matches. In addition, goals scored in any match can be saved to disk.
Should the on-pitch brutality become too much you can just manage the team, training and trading players which the computer will control during matches.

Zzap! Issue 71 March 1991, pp.70-71

Phil King This must be the greatest 'futuresport' game ever, almost as good as footy! Whereas the original Speedball was really just a brutal (but fun!) form of handball, the sequel has a feature-packed pitch that's more like a hugh pinball table! As well as adding variety, the many different ways of scoring introduce a tactical element -do you head straight for goal, go for the bonus stars, or brutally try to injure an opposing player!? And even if you're losing a match heavily, you always got a chance of coming back as the score multiplier (an ingenious inclusion) allows you to get double points. I also like the idea of the two-leg matches for two players: picking up plenty of coins in the first leg will give your team the edge in the second. Spending money on the right attributes for the right players really does make a noticeable difference during the match and in one-player games there's the additional managerial aspect of using subs and trading players. A superb mix of tactics and outright violence, Speedball 2 really is the sport of the future!

Robin Hogg Yeah! Violence Extreme! And I thought Speedball was the ultimate trip into designer sport thuggery. For the first few games I waded into everyone with little regard for tactics but quickly came to grief on the goal front. It's not until you the realise the significance of the score multiplier and the Goal Stars that the game really opens up and the violence with a purpose begins! Although the concept remains the same and (in my mind) the gameplay similar to the first Speedball, what makes this a massive leap over the original is the importance and potential of the team improvement facility. Redefinable stats offer the ability for each side to have unique tactics: one time my speedy team was pitted against the brutality of the CRASH team and it paid off with a brilliant 180-point victory -I love this game!!

Stuart Wynne While I liked the original, I can't say I was crazy about it. The rapid action and lightning deflections made for some superb two-player games but the league got a bit repetitive. With II there should no such problems with a comprehensive management option and, most importantly, a much more sophisticated game. Reactions and sheer aggression are no longer enough (although this is a terrifically violent game); the bonus features are critical for winning matches. If your opponent's dumb enough to only bother about the goals, you can easily dummy him into defending the wrong direction while you rock up the points off the walls. The bigger pitch -which seems a lot larger than simply twice the size of the original -gives a roomy feel which makes passing essential. My only real disappointment is the lack of a radar scanner and multi-player league, but this apart, Speedball 2 is a magnificent game. It plays superbly, generating more aggression and excitement than half a dozen wars and the presentation is excellent. For once a game's graphics, in this case a kind of neo-fascist brutalism, generate exactly the right atmosphere -ominous and realistic, they completely outclass the set-designs for the Rollerball movie. Without doubt the best two-player game since Kick Off II, packed with violence and spedd this can't fail to be a hit.

PRESENTATION 94%
Comprehensive manual, informative souvenir programme, replay goals, good intro and demo plus superb pics for when you score, win, lose etc.
GRAPHICS 92%
A massive, nicely detailed pitch, well-animated players and great player pics add up to a visual treat.
SOUND 86%
Off-beat title tune, excellent in-game spot-FX including samples for 'replay' and 'ice cream'!
HOOKABILITY 97%
Couldn't be easier to get into, all-out violence and high scoring action.
LASTABILITY 96%
The Knockout Cup and League offer a good long-term challenge, especially with the excellent management aspect.
OVERALL
96%
Ideal for neo-fascist brutes!