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Archon - The Atari Times


Chess for a new age crowd
by Randy Femrite

May 9, 2001
At first glance Archon looks like just another chessboard like video game, complete with two sides, Light vs Dark, both vying for board position using characters of varying powers and strengths. The difference here is when the two sides meet on the same square the board explodes into a magical, medieval battlefield. The Light side is represented by, in order of power; Wizard, Unicorn, Archer, Golem, Valkyrie, Djinni and Phoenix.. Representing the powers of the Dark with icons of equal strengths; Sorceress, Basilisk, Manticore, Troll, Shapeshifter, Dragon, Banshee and Goblin.

The game can be won in two ways; by capturing the five "power points" marked on the board, or plain and simply by eliminating the other side. Not only is it important to decide who to fight on the board but also where to fight. The Light icons are stronger on light squares as are the dark icons on dark squares, neutral ground not effecting either. The board changes the shading of squares with the flow of time (which can also be manipulated by the Wizard and Sorceress) adding the importance of luck as well as strategy.

This is one well thought out game, either against the intimidating computer, or, if you're lucky enough, against another player. Although all sixteen icons have different strengths and powers, the gameplay is such that a lowly sword wielding Knight can defeat the all powerful lightning bolt hurdling, spell casting Sorceress, if the conditions are just right. Hopefully though, after getting your goblet handed to you enough times by the computer early on, you'll have learned enough not to ever be in this position ;)

Archon is one of the most well known classics.
The main playfield.
Chess with action? That's the theme!
System: 8-Bit
Publisher: Frefall
Genre: Action
Graphics Score: %
Sound & Music Score: %
Gameplay Score: %
Control Score: %

Final Score: 90%

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