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The Chaos Engine

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Bitmap Brothers
1993
Genre:
Action
Theme:
Science Fiction / Multiplayer
Language:
English
Licence:
Commercial
System:
PC
Views:
37677

Rating [?]

Tapuak:
4/6
Overall:
4/6
Popular Vote:
4.5/6
Please log in to rate this game!

Screenshots

chaos06.png chaos04.png
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Review(s) Please log in to review this game!

Local Reviews

Tapuak (2000-02-26) [hide]

Avatar Like in most games the story of "Chaos Engine" is not really original: A "Baron" invents a machine in his experiments that "although primitive" becomes more and more powerful and finally changes all creatures in its surroundings to evil monsters.

The Player gets the task to build a team consisting of two mercenaries (one is alternatively controlled by the computer) that should destroy the machine and its offsprings. The six choosable "characters" differ in intelligence, skill, speed and energy. Furthermore they have different guns and two special powers, e.g. healing, throwing dynamite or reading maps.

The games' basic concept is quite simple: Firing all the time you navigate your mercenary through four worlds (each subdivided in four relatively complex levels) and erase with the help of your (computer-controlled) partner an unlimited number of monsters which attack from the front or back. The levels are a bit more complex like in most other action games: From time to time there are small puzzles that admittedly only consist of finding switches in most cases. Often there are even several ways and exits to complete a level. That was maybe supposed to raise motivation.

Money plays an important part in "Chaos Engine". It either lies around visible or hidden or can be found as a bonus for killed monsters. After each two levels there is the possibility to upgrade or to buy lives and weapons. Another important point are the passwords that at least partly replace the lacking saving option.

"Chaos Engine"'s well done level design and good controls make it an action game above average. The variety of enemies/worlds and the possibility to (in limitations) develop your team also contribute to the positive overall impression. The graphics may be worse than on the Amiga but they are more than adequate.

The disadvantages of "Chaos Engine" are typical of action games: a few unfair events and an incredibly high difficulty level in the later game. At the end of the game when fighting the "Chaos Engine" a few ideas would not have been bad.

On the whole it is a recommendable game that surpasses many new action games by far. It shows that a good game is no problem without much technical fuss.

Local Reviews of Other Versions

Contemporary Reviews [hide]

Other Versions

Game Groups

  1. The Chaos Engine (Amiga / OCS/ECS)
  2. The Chaos Engine
  3. The Chaos Engine 2 (Amiga / OCS/ECS)

Similar Games

Videos

Longplay (Amiga/AGA)

World of Longplays (SNES)

Longplay (Amiga/OCS)

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Comments (12) [hide] [Post comment]

Mr Creosote (2014-01-12):

Although it may not appear like it, the Preacher actually turned out to be the best character to choose for me. He is fast, i.e. he can easily outrun enemy fire and he can acquire the "shield" skill which just has to be the most useful one by a huge margin.

Herr M. (2014-01-12):

Congratulations! Any hints and pointers, except being persistent? ;)

Mr Creosote (2014-01-11):

Update to the review: I've continued playing the game and I can now proudly announced that I have now managed to actually beat it without cheating :D Though, of course, not in one sitting, but rather by replaying each world again and again patiently.

Mr Creosote (2014-01-06):

Originally posted by Herr M. at 10:50 on January 6th, 2014:
Originally posted by Mr Creosote at 21:30 on January 5th, 2014:
It really depends on what kind of game it is, doesn't it?

Yes, to some degree. But every system has its distinct style. If you are used to a certain palette, the colours are more relative and you might not notice such subtleties, as long as you don't look at other systems. Retro City Rampage uses this to a great effect, and might even teach you how to tell the different colour palettes appart.

That muted palette is not a necessity on the Amiga. The reason I mentioned James Pond is just that – it's running on the same system, but it uses a completely different palette. That lollipop Chaos Engine was actually ported back to the Amiga in the 'AA' version. It's really a pity that the Bitmap Brothers lost their touch there. So that current re-release is based on that one, too :(

The music is another difference between the different releases, by the way.

Mr Creosote (2014-01-06):

Originally posted by Herr M. at 10:57 on January 6th, 2014:
Did you know that (according to Mobygames and Wikipedia) this game was on the infamous German 'Index', i.e. it wasn't freely available? Any ideas why? Because it has a lightning shooting priest in it? Or are there blood drops in it?
The preacher just struck a nerve with Nintendo and Sega, so he was renamed for those versions. Most games of this commando variety were on the index, though, weren't they? Dogs of War, Green Beret, Cannon Fodder… they were all said to be glorifying war.

Herr M. (2014-01-06):

Did you know that (according to Mobygames and Wikipedia) this game was on the infamous German 'Index', i.e. it wasn't freely available? Any ideas why? Because it has a lightning shooting priest in it? Or are there blood drops in it?

Herr M. (2014-01-06):

Originally posted by Mr Creosote at 21:30 on January 5th, 2014:
It really depends on what kind of game it is, doesn't it?

Yes, to some degree. But every system has its distinct style. If you are used to a certain palette, the colours are more relative and you might not notice such subtleties, as long as you don't look at other systems. Retro City Rampage uses this to a great effect, and might even teach you how to tell the different colour palettes appart.

Mr Creosote (2014-01-05):

Originally posted by Herr M. at 20:47 on January 5th, 2014:
Originally posted by Mr Creosote at 08:54 on January 5th, 2014:
Though I'm not sure why anyone would want to play the version with the lollipop colours ;)

Well, if you grew up with similar graphics, you might say, that the Amiga ones are somewhat drab. ;)

It really depends on what kind of game it is, doesn't it? With Steampunk/industrialisation, I really connect toned down, grey-ish colours. That, of course, would not be appropriate at all in James Pond, on the other hand.

Herr M. (2014-01-05):

Originally posted by Mr Creosote at 08:54 on January 5th, 2014:
I'm not sure why anyone would want to play the version with the lollipop colours ;)

Well, if you grew up with similar graphics, you might say, that the Amiga ones are somewhat drab. ;)

Mr Creosote (2014-01-05):

Re. the news of 2014-01-05: I'm not sure why anyone would want to play the version with the lollipop colours ;)

Mr Creosote (2014-01-04):

Quote:
The Chaos Engine – a steampunk take on the Gauntlet concept. Let's say it's not that far fetched to assume there were fans of William Gibson's The Difference Engine among the Bitmap Brothers at the time. Though where said novel, although imaginative, is still well grounded into an alternate reality which does not sound all that far fetched, this game presents a scenario more akin to an apocalyptic horror movie: A Victorian scientist has built a machine able to influence the very fabric of time and space. That being fairly shaky anyway, what he unwittingly causes is the world turning into a surreal, monster-infected mess.

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ze (2000-02-26):

very good
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