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Meteors!

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Released: 1982

Genre: Shoot-’em-up

Format reviewed: BBC Micro

Publisher: Acornsoft

Developer: Acornsoft

Submitted by: Alex Reeves

Everyone will be aware of Asteroids, one of the earliest wire-frame vector graphics games released in the arcades, and for many their first taste of gaming.

Many conversions have appeared over the years, always challenged by the fact that nearly all home computers and consoles produce raster (pixelated) graphics through a TV or monitor, as opposed to the "straight line" graphics produced by a dedicated Vector display tube.  The one exception to this was the Vectrex machine, the only dedicated Vector console ever produced.

As such the conversions varied in quality, with various attempts looking block by comparison.  Even the very basic Atari 2600 managed quite a good conversion, this time with solid asteroids rather than attempting to replicate the Vector graphics.

Acornsoft made a fairly good fist of the conversion with Meteors!, assisted by the relatively high resolution of the BBC, which produced vector-like graphics, and even managed a couple of extra colours to brighten up the gameplay.

Everything was there, the thrust of the ship, the destructable asteroids and the bonus alien ships.  They even replicated the 3 letter player names of the original on the high score screens.

Probably one of the best conversions on the early consoles and computers, and another great effort from Acornsoft, who ruled the arcade game genre on the BBC.