| Vortex Software
|One of the few 8-bit games
to feature voice synthesis
Originally developed by Gremlin Graphicsin 1987, Deflektor is a unique strategy
game in which you must direct a laser to destroy light blocking cells.
Sounds easy right? Well the game isn't called Deflektor for
nothing, instead of directly pointing the laser at the cells you must
reflect (or deflect) it off a series of mirrors. Oh did I forget
to mention the gremlins?
Each board is a complex series of mirrors, teleporters,
rotators, diffusers, and energy mines. Hidden in this mess are a
handful of light cells, and its up to you to figure out a way to destroy
them all. You can manipulate some of the objects by highlighting
them with the cursor and pressing the fire button. As the laser
hits each object it will react in some way; sometimes good, sometimes
bad. Most objects are there to help move the laser to its destination,
but some like the energy mines will actually overload your laser. Of
course there are always several objects that do not need to be used, and
are there just to throw you off. After destroying all the light
cells you must finally point the laser to the end terminal to complete
Besides energy mines, there are several other dangers for
your little laser. If you take too long to complete the level your
laser will eventually run out of power, so time is of the essence. Bouncing
your laser back at itself will make it start to overheat, if the heat
gauge reaches critical your laser will blow. Also making your life
miserable are gremlins. These little guys will dart around the screen
changing the direction of your mirror. Thankfully you can kill them
by highlighting them with the cursor and pressing the button.
The XE version of Deflektor has monochrome graphics, but
they are very high resolution. Thankfully Deflektor isn't the kind
of game that requires a bunch of flashy colors, so monochrome works just
fine (some say they're an improvement). There aren't any sound effects,
but there is background music. The music is somewhat catchy at first,
but quickly gets on your nerves as the game wears on (especially when
you're running out of time to finish a level). As an added treat,
the game starts with a great voice sample that says "Deflektor!".
Sadly this is the only voice in the game...
Deflektor is an amazing game that deserved to see release.
Sadly Atari decided to kill off its 8-bit line right around the
time that the game was completed. It's doubtful that games even
as high quality as Deflektor could have saved the dying system, but they
would have made for a fitting swan song for a great line of computers.
Thankfully now avid 8-bit gamers can finally enjoy Deflektor in
all its monochrome glory, even if it is 15 years late...
to 8-Bit Software