The Dam Busters by U.S. Gold


dam_busters_01Publisher: U.S. Gold
Developer: Sydney Dev.
Release Date: 1985
Code: J. Stuart Easterbrook
GFX: Grant Campbell
Music: Paul Butler
ZZAP64 Game Rating: 81%
Our Game Rating: 83%
Completed & Reviewed by Neil Collins

> CLICK HERE to Download emu file
> CLICK HERE to view the YouTube ending video
Even as I type this I am singing the theme tune in my head. This game was one that a friend of mine owned when we were kids but I showed no interest in it at all. I found war related games, films and history very dull at that age. The game itself I suppose is a decent enough simulation of the historic event given the C64 limitations. You have to take off, dogfight across Europe and then blow up the dam with your magnificent bouncing bomb. It’s very tricky as there are lots of dials to watch and levers to pull while at the same time navigating and shooting enemy planes. I did actually enjoy this once I got into it, but it takes a while to do so and will require you to read all of the manual and learn every inch of your plane. Normally this isn’t my cup of tea, but top marks to the makers and of course to Barnes Wallis for his inspirational genius…
dambusters1
“There she goes…”
dambusters2
# SPLOSH! #
dambusters3
# KA-BOOOOOOM! #
dambusters4
# Glug, glug, glug… # The End.
HOW WAS IT COMPLETED?: I played this on and off for months, creeping slowly across Europe and saving my progress. The bombing run took numerous attempts but I finally got all the parameters right and dropped the bomb at the right moment.
SO WHAT HAPPENS?:  If you fail, there’s an animated sequence which shows the bomb missing the target and you are given information on why it failed. If you succeed, the sequence is the same at first, showing the bomb bouncing along the waters surface. This time though, you see an explosion at the dam and the water pours out through the hole you have made. A message at the bottom of the screen reads ‘JOLLY GOOD SHOW, SQUADRON LEADER’. There are also suitable sound effects followed by a thunderous boom.
COMMENTS:
Neil: A decent ending to a decent game.
I felt quite proud to beat this one as it took a lot of fiddling with various switches and controls. I’m not into flight sims, but this one wasn’t so bad so I stuck with it. Great feeling to see the dam finally crack.
Lucky I wasn’t the real pilot during the war… The dam would still be in one piece, but someone fifty miles south would no longer have a house…
Tally ho.
Vinny: I’ve never had the pleasure of playing this game because, like Neil, I wasn’t really interested in war games or anything associated with war (except Beach Head, Raid Over Moscow, Commando, and Who Dares Wins). But I do remember my school mates spending HOURS trying to complete this game but failing every time.
As for the ending… it’s rather cool. Simple maybe, but still very good; and I suspect that my school mates would have cheered with delight having completed the game and seen this ending. 6/10 from me too.
Andy Vaisey: That’s an ending that *should* have been expected! Pretty cool!
Andrew Fisher: I’ve never managed to hit the dam myself, so great to finally see this nice little sequence.
Brendan Phoenix: Not half bad at all. Fitting end sequence, nice little animation of the bouncing bomb with ok spot fx.
FINAL SAY: Bravo. I think that’s rather spiffing old fella.

G.E. RATING: 6 / 10

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