The console port of the hit arcade game, Area 51 is a 2D shooter in which an alien infection has been spread through Area 51.
The console port of the hit arcade game, Area 51 is a 2D shooter in which an alien infection has been spread through Area 51. You are a member of S.T.A.A.R., Strategic Tactical Advanced Alien Response Team. Your assignment is to eliminate all life forms who are located inside Area 51 as all of them are assumed to be infected. Gamers can use either a light gun or a gamepad. The gamepad requires the player to move crosshairs around the screen while the light gun simply requires users to aim before firing. While players are busy firing at the screen the game scrolls at its own pace. Visuals are provided by 3D full motion video characters who pop up on 2D rendered backgrounds to attack the player. By shooting these targets players gain points and/or special bonuses and power-up items, such as enhanced weaponry for example.
Naturally "the Bureau" has placed a high priority on this, and they are funding it entirely on their own. Indeed, Gert Staun's battle walker, called the "Slambird" is explicitly said to be custom-modified. In particular, the Slambird can not only survive either on land or underwater, but it can transition between the two -- it can move, fight, and safely control its vertical position in either environment. These abilities are portrayed as costly and not standard to such vehicles in the universe where Amok takes place. The transformation of the Slambird between an underwater vehicle and a land vehicle is automatically scripted, however. The player has no power to control this transformation or alter the time when it happens. Instead, the player must get to the point when Staun will automatically bring the Slambird ashore to continue his attacks.
The object of this arcade-type game is to meet a series of objectives, and to do so in such a way that each side will blame the other. The game has a linear structure, based on levels that present tasks of increasing difficulty, and all sorts of hazards and targets are encountered. These include military bases, power generators, land mines, infantry, tanks, submarines -- even sharks and huge, aggressive birds. Infantry elements are poorly armored, so they can be killed by being run over. In one mission, the only way that the player will be able to get enough time to escape is to open with a surprise attack, slowing pursuit by destroying a parking facility full of unattended troop transport vehicles. Power-ups are scattered throughout the levels. The Slambird carries a variety of explosive devices and line-of-sight weapons. Some of the explosive weapons can bounce in a parabolic trajectory, and in addition there are two laser cannons that can fire rapidly an unlimited number of times. These cannons are useful in case no other weapons remain, and they can be used to create complex ripple fire, which can be used to cover an area that is surprisingly wide. When underwater, propellers are used, while torpedoes are automatically used instead of missiles.
|Dimensions||9 × 5 × 2 in|
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