Retro Game of the Week: Supaplex

For some reason, I woke up this morning thinking about that Supaplex game from a long, long time ago. It’s funny because while I remember enjoying Supaplex, there was also something quite stressful about it, and I did play it quite a bit. That kind of dredges up some pretty conflicting emotions about this game, so let’s revisit it and see if it triggers any kind of emotional response.

Supaplex was a clone of 1984’s Boulder Dash that, instead of playing in a cave environment (with said boulders), puts your Pac-Man-esque character in a digital circuit board world where you chomp on electronic components and computer chips on your way to solve each maze. Indeed, the whole Boulder Dash vibe can then be traced back to Dig Dug, with  Supaplex resulting in a bit of a Pac-Man/Boulder Dash mash up. But instead of focusing on which elements came from with games first, let’s get back to Supaplex.

After re-playing some Supaplex, I remember now how challenging the levels were to solve, which is great feature in any game. I remember having trying to solve these seeming-less endless levels that had very complex solutions in some cases. And then…the music!

Yes, the music…that one song that does not….change…ever.  Each level starts with that same 80’s beat laid under that synth melody with the anxiety inducing bass line. I think at some point while playing Supaplex for many hours (instead of doing my homework) I may have actually gone insane, all while trying to avoid getting killed by a Zonk. Yes, after further analysis, the Supaplex song may just have been the source of this morning’s anxiety. Turns out that the only cure…is to play some more Supaplex!

Note: Just found out that there is now a Supaplex Online, so you can now play Supaplex in your browser.

Also: Watch over 7 hours of Supaplex gameplay. Yes. 7 hours.



Year
: 1991
Developer: Think!Ware Development
Publisher: Dream Factory
Designers: Philip Jespersen, Michael Stopp
Platform:Amiga, MS-DOS
Genre: Scrolling tile-based puzzle game

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