WELCOME TO THE WORLD OF OBLITERATOR by Stefan Posthuma
When I read the review of Obliterator richard gave me to publish
in this issue of ST NEWS, (superb review, do NOT forget to read
it) my interest in this program grew. When I visited him the next
Saturday and played the game, I was very exited. I spent the
following Sunday sitting in my room with my brains focused on one
thing...exploring the wonderful world of Obliterator.
Obliterator is one of these games that really gives you the
feeling that you have a great computer on your desk. Just take a
look at the fanstastic graphics and you'll know what I mean. The
world of Obliterator consists of more that 100 rooms. Each room
is drawn in such great detail that I sometimes get slaughtered
while admiring the picture. The variety of graphics is astoun-
ding. There are rooms with large windows, revealing the endless
voids of space. There are rooms ('reums' Clouseau would say)
crammed full with computers and other impressive looking
equipment that will fill you with awe. There are endless
corridors with elevators, doors and passages. Sometimes, when you
enter a new sector, the disk drive starts whirring, the color
palette changes and you are presented with a new set of beautiful
graphics. Just like the 'Barbarian' game, but much, much better.
This game really gives you the impression that you are wandering
around a huge, high-tech spaceship.
Then there is the Obliterator (Drak is his name) himself. Just
watch him run and beautifully dodge a laserbolt coming from an
over-active droid carrying an even more active and very mean
looking gun. When he stands up, he assumes firing position and
blasts the creep to bits. Or he will stop and simply step aside
to avoid the oncoming evil in one of its many forms. Or maybe
select a heavier weapon, assume firing position and do some
sharpshooting at the aliens above or under him. Or jump over one
of these nasty little creatures that seem to have great appetite
for his legs.
There are more aliens in this game than I have ever seen in any
other program. They come in many forms, from big walking robots
(kinda like those two-legged walkers from the epic 'Return of the
Jedi') to little crabs hopping around. Each and every one of them
(I have played Obliterator for quite a few hours now and
encountered at least 30 different aliens) are superbly animated.
The big creatures (seen the film Aliens?) walk around, clutching
paws and snapping jaws very realisticly. The graphics people at
Psychnosis really exhausted their imagination this time. What
about those spider like things that run around the ceiling
carrying a buig laser gun and making life difficult for Drak? Or
about those little guys in their hoovering scooters blasting
away? Or these monsters that fly around and drop eggs from which
these nasty crabs hatch? Or try dealing with one of these flying
things from which jumping worms emerge.
Then there are traps. I mean you just wander around a room, all
peace and quiet (after blasting two mean looking guards carrying
bazookas), collecting some ammo lying on the floor when suddenly
sirens scream and a panel opens revealing an extremely dangerous
looking laser-turret which starts taking pot-shots at you. Your
first impulse is to fire back, but your weapon is too weak for
this heavy-duty stuff. So run for it and dodge these bolts.
Select a heavy weapon (you will start with a simple hand-gun.
Soon you will find a larger one and eventually you will come
across a heavy pulsrifle and a very powerful bazooka-like
weapon), turn around, aim up and blast the thing. Yeah! This is
The size of the spaceship you have to exploit is enormous. There
are many elevators, doors and corridors. Normally I don't like
these hugely complex games, because you'll never be able to
finish them, and you are bound to get lost. But I never got lost
in Obliterator thanks to the great variety in graphics. Every
section has its own characteristics, certain aliens or machinery.
Also there are a few special booths where you can save the game
and replenish your energy. You have to collect certain items
(like a computer datapack, a shield component and an engine
component). When you find one of these, collect it and you'll be
given the opportunity to save the game. You will also find
various ammo lying around for your different weapons. Then there
are also some special barrierd like a wall in the middle of a
corridor. Blast it with the bazooka. (The bazooka is guarded by
an extremely nasty humanoid riding a very ugly monster). Or there
is the tunnel through which you have to fly using a rocket-pack
on your back. Here are mines drifting around and you cannot use
your gun to blast them away. It is very difficult to get up again
so make sure you have everyting collected before you enter this
If you add all these qualities of the game plus the fact that
there is some nice music, it is very playable without being too
easy and that the game is superbly packed with a poster, a
(short) novelette and an instruction leaflet, I suggest you go
out and buy it at once (No, Psychnosis is not paying me to write
this. Just buy it and you will become as enthousiastic as I am).
To conclude this, I will give you some playing tricks. There are
many ways to control Drak, but I have one way I find very useful:
Keep your left hand on the keys 'A S D'. These are the three
basic functions of Drak (Action, Shoot and Defend). Use your
right hand to move Drak with the cursor keys. When you enter
action, try shooting the suckers with 'S'. When this fails, take
the mouse with your right hand and do some precise-shooting. You
can also move Drak with the mouse, but I find it a little hard.
When you enter a new room, and there is an alien right in front
of you, shoot immediately. When the bullet has no effect, select
a heavier weapon and try it again. (Or select one immediately if
you already know the alien). When it starts shooting, run for it
and dodge the bullets. Now remember: you can type in advance. So
when you are running for a door while dodging bullets, try to end
up in front of the door, and press Return (or arrow up/down when
you want to use an elevator) while you are rolling, and you will
enter the door or elevator immeditately. Once you are entering
something, nothing can harm you. When you enter a room and there
is an alien under you or above you, don't forget that you can
fire up and down, so you don't have to confront it. Don't worry
about being a coward, the alien probably won't tell after you
have pumped it full of whatever comes out of your weapon (it's
lethal, that's for sure!). Also, stay alert when a room is empty
and looks peaceful. Keep your finger on the 'D' key so you can
dodge immediately when some panel opens revealing a laser gun.
Save whenever you can, but remember, you cannot keep multiple
saves. So when your energy is very low when you find a special
object and you save the game, the next time you play your energy
will be low again and it might be very hard to get to the next
You must keep some sort of map. Just to make sure you cover all
rooms and don't forget something important like the computer
I hope you got exited enough to play the game and I wish you lots
of fun doing it!
And remember: Blessed are the NoiseMakers.....
All this talk about Obliterator has inspired me to have another
go at it. So better save this doc, hook up the color monitor and
The text of the articles is identical to the originals like they appeared in old ST NEWS issues. Please take into consideration that the author(s) was (were) a lot younger and less responsible back then. So bad jokes, bad English, youthful arrogance, insults, bravura, over-crediting and tastelessness should be taken with at least a grain of salt. Any contact and/or payment information, as well as deadlines/release dates of any kind should be regarded as outdated. Due to the fact that these pages are not actually contained in an Atari executable here, references to scroll texts, featured demo screens and hidden articles may also be irrelevant.