29 Apr 2016

Elevator Action
1983 - Arcade

You can jump and shoot! That’s cool.

Sometimes whether you jump or shoot — or even crouch! — is vital to your survival. Sometimes you jump over a bullet, then shoot the guy that put the bullet there in the first place. Or kick him, if he’s close, which is a little bit faster as you don’t have to stop moving, but riskier.

I’m not being facetious — was there any other action game in 1983 that gave you all these options?

But!: how does it stack up to the competition? There is only one type of enemy, and only one long level that repeats, and between shooting guys you just walk, keeping an eye out for the next randomly appearing guy to shoot, or even just wait for an elevator, through level and level, far less interesting than Donkey Kong where some careful calculation of what is going on around you is always necessary (so even the waiting was active), or Pac-Man, where you could even influence what was going on around you when you were half a screen away from any danger, or Space Invaders where every invader shot down changed the properties of the fleet as a whole.

Donkey Kong also had nicer visuals too, bright reds and blues bold against black. Elevators Action’s grey character against various blue and pink and grey walls doesn’t do anything for me. The background music is kiddy and repetitive. Not horrible, just sounds like something a funfair machine might play.

So, that's why we remember those other games and maybe even play them for a diversion. This one got my hopes up initially, but soon descended in my estimation.

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