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? Atomic Flash

Sexcuse me
But whatta good is all ze violence in ze world
Unless it is templed
With limitless sex
Bring on the limitless sex objects
And now please Sexecutioner
Genius to sexplain
The seriousness of the subjects
And now if you will attend my Word
You'll see
I am a naughty fellow
In fact I'm certainly not
Too very mellow
I've come to this place
To rearrange your face
Sexcuse me
So if you think you're very smart
That you know many words
All you need to know
For the rest of your life
I'm sexecuting you
Sexcuse me
Now after me
"I am from France"
- He is from France
"And when you are in France you pull down your pants"
- You pull down your pants
"And when you're on your knees you'll do as I please"
- When you're on your knees
- You do as he pleases
Bend over!
Bend over!
Give to me the genital warts
Give to me the golden shower
Give to me the spiked dead doggy terror
Give to me the doggy do smell card
Nothing sexceeds
Now what is my name?
I'm sexecuting you
Sexcuse me

"Sexecutioner" Gwar song lyrics analysed
with considerable assistance of Spaz


by Richard Karsmakers

Approximately two years ago, don't ask me why, some kind of
really ridiculous rumour was getting known throughout the ST
society (at least the part I happened to roam in). The rumour was
the following: The American company Brøderbund was supposed to be
doing some of their highly popular 8-bit games on 16-bit
machines. Titles included "Karateka", "Raid on Bungeling Bay",
"Spelunker", "Whistler's Brothers", "Stealth" and...."Lode
Runner". They were also doing a game called "Typhoon Thompson",
done by the rather infamous author of the early 8-bit hit
"Choplifter" (aah....1984...those were the days, weren't they?).
Apart from "Typhoon Thompson", a nice game indeed, nothing
turned out to have been true about this rumour. So I miserably
whined away in some kind of dark and silent corner, sad because
of the fact that the best 8-bit game ever ("Lode Runner", that
is) would never be done on 16-bit computers.

Then it suddenly happened.
Just like that.
Completely out of the blue, as it were (which it was).

A screenshot of an ST version of "Lode Runner" appeared in a
French magazine.
And an advertisement claiming that it would be for sale soon
(though we all know what 'soon' means in the world of software)
on Atari ST, Amiga (bwaarghhh) and MS-DOS (even more bwaarrgghh).
I stood for about ten seconds (maybe more), totally and
braingrindingly flummoxed.
This could not be true.
I pinched myself.
It ached.
I wasn't dreaming, apparently.
"Lode Runner" was now really going to be done on the ST.
Somewhat later, a review of "Lode Runner" appeared in another
French magazine. That was it. Drooling, and desperate brushing up
the couple of French words I knew, I started calling like I was
being haunted by the Telephone Service itself.

About a month later, I actually got it. I still couldn't really
believe it.
"Lode Runner" on the ST.
The good thing about it was that it would not be done on Amiga
and PC after all. The bad thing was that it was only sold in
France and therefore entirely conceived in French. As it turned
out, Brøderbund was not satisfied with the way the French company
Loriciels had converted it, and had therefore decided to restrict
the launch to the French ST version, and only sell the thing in
So far the story. What about a review?

First, I'd like to tell you what "Lode Runner" is (for those
among you who are so mindnumbingly pathetic not to know).
It's a platform game with floors and ladders, and you have to
collect treasures whilst avoiding to be touched by the enemies
that walk over the platforms, too. There can be one to four
enemies, and they are all the same: Simply copies of yourself in
a different colour.
To defend yourself against them, you had the possibility to make
holes in the platforms directly to the left or the right of you.
The enemies would drop in it (climbing out after a while), and
you could drop through it.
Once all items were collected, you could proceed to the next
level. The original "Lode Runner" had 150 levels. Its follow-up
on 8-bit, "Championship Lode Runner", had only 50 levels but
these were extremely hard and you could win an award if you
completed them.

Many people - even most people I know - think the ST version of
"Lode Runner" is either 'shit', 'crap', 'bad', or another couple
of words along this line.
I entirely disagree.
Though not perfect, "Lode Runner" is very close to the 8-bit
original, and is almost infinitely close to the original
But something has gone slightly wrong during the process of what
could have been the most brilliant game on the ST, too.
These things were, in order of importance:
A: Lousy programming. It's rather difficult to make a maximum of
5 shapes of 8 by 8 pixels move in THREE Vertical Blanks, but the
Loriciels programmers did it. Wow.
B: All sound effects are digital. Only slows down and eats
processor time.
C: Lousy graphics. Instead of just walls, ladders and treasure
chests, they have the weirdest kind of walls and the strangest
things you have to collect (dollar signs even, and bloody
Christmas trees!). They should have stuck to the original thing.
D: Not quite perfect joystick command interception. Sometimes,
you simply can't make a hole quickly enough whereas the 8-bit
versions were more responsive there.

You see. Not quite an excellent curriculum vitae of the 16-bit
version of a game that was to be the first to be afterwards
converted to an arcade hall machine (usually, it is the other way
around - due to which fact U.S. Gold and Ocean grew terrifyingly
rich and powerful).
Yet I still say that it's pretty brilliant. So there must be
reasons for that as well. And there are:
A: The opponent strategy is, as far as I have been able to see,
100% identical to that of the 8-bit versions. Bloody ingenious!
B: The joystick response is good enough for the game to be very
playable. It could have been better, but it's close enough to
being good enough (if you know what I mean).
C: It's still got the good old 'magic ingredient' that made the
old version a hit. I couldn't possible start to explain what I
think it may be, as I totally don't.
D: It saves hiscores. I simply lllllove that.

So I still think "Lode Runner" is a classic, also on the ST.
It's a grave pity, however, that it might just as well have been
a mega-giga-zillio-classic if the programmer's would have been
only slightly more capable (I almost start to cry at the thought
of what it could have been like when programmed e.g. by the
people at Thalion), and if they would have limited themselves to
just making a somewhat better version of the original.
Still, you should go and buy it. You will only be slightly
disappointed if you were a real 8-bit "Lode Runner" freak.

Oh. I almost forgot to mention that the 16-bit version also
includes the editor of the old one. It is, as could have been
expected, mouse-driven and this is probably the only thing that
has been improved.

Game rating:

Name: Lode Runner
Company: Brøderbund
Graphics: 4
Sound: 5
Playability: 9
Hookability: 9+
Overall rating: 9-
Hardware: Colour monitor required
Remark: Whorra pity. It's infinitely good,
but could have been infinitely

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.