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Nomen ist nicht immer Omen!


Stormball logo

Rein namensmäßig wandelt Millenniums futuristisches Sportspektakel auf den Spuren von „Speedball 2" – ansonsten hat es leider nicht viel mit dem Meisterwerk der Bitmap Brothers gemein...

Stormball Zwar wird auch hier um eine Stahlkugel gerangelt, aber von der Regeln her muß man sich Stormball eher wie eine Mischung aus Flippern und Frisbeewerfen vorstellen: In 40 verschiedenen Arenen treffen je zwei Athleten aufeinander und mühen sich redlich, das Bällchen so zu schleudern, daß es diverse Punkt- und Bonusfelder berührt. Dabei bekommt man es mal mit hinderlichen Mauern und Tor-öffnungen zu tun, dann sind wieder die Extra-Felder anders angeordet. Da gibt es welche, die den Gegner betäuben oder die eigene Energie steigern, manche schleudern die Kugel in die Höhe oder lassen sie abprallen, und wieder andere lösen eine Explosion aus, die Mann und Maus in unmittelbarer Umgebung bedroht. Der Punktereigen ist freilich zu Ende, sobald der Kontrahent die Kugel aufgefangen hat. Und das können die zehn Computergegner recht gut, schließlich geht's hier um Kohle – nur Sieger haben genügend Bares, um den nächsten Recken zu fordern.

Das Gameplay ist flott, verliert aber auf flott an Reiz! Und das trotz Zwei-Spieler-Modus (Split-Screen), Data-Link-Option und Turnier- bzw. Trainingsmodus. Ja, selbst die hurtig zoomende und stets um das Spielersprite rotierende 3D-Grafik kann nicht verhindern, daß die Motivation binnen kurzem im Keller ist. Denn: Was nützt die schönste Ausstattung, wenn das Konzept den Unterhaltungswert einer Kinderrassel hat? So gesehen ist der monotone Soundtrack auch schon egal...

Amiga Joker, September 1991, p.60

amiga joker
Stormball
Grafik: 70%
Sound: 38%
Handhabung: 72%
Spielidee: 23%
Dauerspass: 35%
Preis/Leistung: 40%

Red. Urteil:
Für Fortgeschrittene
38%
Preis: ca 79,- dm
Hersteller: Millennium
Genre: Sport

Spezialität: Deutsche Anleitung, Codeabfrage, Spielfeld-Editor, Poster, Highscores/Spielstände nicht speicherbar.


Stormball logo

Stormball Following in the pixel pathway of such futuristic games as Speedball 2, M.U.D.S., Cyberball and Disc, Stormball's been programmed by Paul Caruthers, the brains behind such hits as Archipelagos, and 3D shoot 'em up, Resolution 101. The scenario is woefully familiar: In the near future Stormball has literally taken the sporting world by storm and is watched by millions of fanatical fans. It's a deadly sport, played with superfast hardened metallic balls capable of shearing off the odd arm or two - and that's if you're lucky!

The pitch is made up of a number of coloured tiles in an enclosed arena. There are over 40 such pitches to choose from, each with a different layout and combination of high and low-scoring tiles. There's also an editor option with which you can create up to 60 new ones.

Stormball isn't a team game, but involves two players in a race to accumulate the most points in a four quarter match. Points are won by slamming the ball across an opponent's half of the pitch - each tile the ball passes over scores a number of points depending on the tile's worth. Various tiles act as blockers or ramps and some can boost the speed of the ball or wipe out your score for that particular throw. Additionally, there are bonus symbols which appear at random and, when hit, can bestow greater speed on a particular player, incapacitate your opponent for a limited time, add 500 points to your score or 100 credits to your bank balance, and send shards of energy in all directions picking up masses of points into the bargain.

There are some nice touches such as a stats breakdown after each quarter, a practice droid to hone your skills before taking on players from the professional league, and being able to place a bet on the out- come of each match. Unfortunately, the game fails in the playability stakes. The players move awkwardly, it's hard to distinguish the different coloured tiles, and the scrolling is far too jerky for my liking. The 2D sprites superimposed on a 3D playing field only highlights the lack of animation in the players' movements and points are practically scored at random in many cases. It's also incredibly slow.

Obviously, comparisons will be drawn to the Bitmaps' Speedball, if only because the game is widely held to be the best of its type. Perhaps if Stormball had adopted that game's overhead view, the gameplay would have been more accessible. As it stands, Millenium's new release is nothing more than a glorified 3D version of Arkanoid, and a very slow one at that.
Dan Slingsby

CU Amiga, July 1991, p.107

MILLENIUM £25.99
One of the weakest futuresports yet...
GRAPHICS
SOUND
LASTABILITY
PLAYABILITY
70%
40%
70%
58%
OVERALL 60%