Operation: GAMMA VELORUM by Quantum P.Title Screen
The very first MadTom's Pick was a difficult decision between two games ... Adventure: The Lost Gems by a certain Snika, and Operation: GAMMA VELORUM (Part One) by Quantum P. The former was substantially longer and had decent graphics in places; but the enjoyable gameplay and superior graphics of the latter superceded its competitor and Operation: GAMMA VELORUM is this month's MadTom's Pick.Opening Inside Main Module
Operation: GAMMA VELORUM's success lies chiefly in its gameplay. You are a boy named Cor, one quarter Martian, living on Mars because, as it explains, of the problems Earth has had. Your friend is Meagan, a pure-bred human.
The story begins by dramatising a supernova during the night. The next morning, you proceed to Allied headquarters for an explanation. What follows is a recruitment to the Allied airforce (admittedly one of the story's weaker spots) and a mission to Gamma Velorum, a nearby star-system, to destroy a reactor.
You are both sent off together in an X-5 ship by Arcturus (whether this name was intentionally drawn from the black metal band I am unaware), the Allied leader, previously supposed dead. An interesting space-action game ensues, with a particularly impressive 'bombing' scene.RPG Battle The Reactor
There are a couple of RPG-battles which more clearly define the very RPGish feel to the game. While RPGs can be executed very poorly, Quantum P. has here done it very well. The story is not completely revealed right at the start, in order to keep the player intrigued.
The graphics used are very effective; in particular, shadow effects are very well done. Another noticeable part of the game is the excellent way animation is used, using #change and #char commands, for example in scenes involving the movement of spaceships.
The game has no music. This is not a vital aspect of ZZT games. However, some techno-music or dramatic war-type melodies would have helped the mood of the story quite a lot.In the Elevator
The game is rather short. The conclusion is effective (not to give it away) and sums up this first part of the saga very well, leaving one wanting more.
All in all, a very good ZZT game. It has an involving plot, interesting characters, neat graphics, and an effective conclusion. I strongly recommend it to even the most seasoned ZZT game-players.
8 / 10