Starfighter 3000

Starfighter 3000
Platforms: PC, Mac, Acorn 32-bit, PlayStation, SEGA Saturn
Publisher: Studio 3DO
Developer: The World Federation
Genres: Arcade / Shoot 'Em Up
Release Date: 1996
Game Modes: Singleplayer

4_1A remake of the original game of the same title released a few years before for the Acorn Archimedes platform, Starfighter 3000 features more detailed graphics (now all surfaces are texture-mapped and a fogging filter reduces clipping). Featuring 15 levels in 4 worlds, the player controls the Predator Mark-IV, a fighter ship capable of space and atmospheric flight. However, other than the handy boost button, the player has no control over the throttle, and must keep moving at all times.

In post 3DO releases, only two points of view are available: behind (better for acrobatics and general flying) and cockpit (accurate aiming and NOE flight). The 3DO release contained several more, like a TV style fly-by-cam, weapon cameras, and enemy cams that could show a nearby enemies’ POV. By picking up crystals the player is able to upgrade his craft and obtain more ammo, and by combining colors, get more powerful weapons, some also obtainable from parachute drops sent by FedNet.

One of the defining features of the game is using the laser (basic weapon) to terraform the map. As the game map is composed by tiles, some with higher or lower vertexes, can be leveled by simply firing repeatedly at the same area. This allows players to strategically avoid heavy defense turrets by simply collapsing a hill, or destroy an heavier turret by simply burrowing the ground beneath it.

System Requirements: Pentium 90 MHz, 16 MB RAM, Win95

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One Comment

  1. chromax says:

    Very innovative game for the time. Everything is destructable, even the ground. You can destroy a whole mountain with autofire. Also the mothership is a great idea, it circles around the battlefield and helps with fire, sometimes get shoot by enemies. You can always land (can be a little tricky, but thats fun) and repair yourself.

    Also the powerup system. Powerups have a form and color and you must collect them in the right combination, like on a slotmachine. You sometimes discovery new combinations and weapons randomly. Great idea…

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