Agony is a state-of-the-art side scrolling shoot 'em up game, developed for the Amiga in 1992 by Art & Magic. Agony is a shooter that showcased The Amiga's graphics and sound capabilities.
STORY / GAMEPLAY Agony is a fantastic shoot 'em up in every way. The story is typical, as in most games of its genre. Your world has been attacked by an army of vicious monsters lead by Mentor. Mentor and you, have been fellow-students of the Sun Magician Acanthropsis who recently discovered "Cosmic Power" a very powerful weapon! Some hours before Acanthropsis dies, he teaches his students everything about the "Cosmic Power" and now Mentor is after it, unleashing hordes of demonic creatures against you. Using your own magic powers you transform into an...owl and start your difficult quest to eliminate Mentor before he gets his hands on the Cosmic Power! Quite original I guess! Your main mission is to fly and fight your way through six levels of hard gameplay against all the aforementioned hordes of flying creatures of various sizes and potential, with your main cause being the Cosmic Power! On your task you will be able to gather various upgrades that will enhance your projectile weapon and you will also gain two extra blades that will protect your character from the attackers. Your mission is tough enough, so this game requires patience and good skills (as most of Psygnosis' games do). So grab a joystick (or a compatible joypad) and...unleash hell!
GRAPHICS / SOUND Agony is one of the most technically advanced games of its time. Amiga (OCS) shows once more what its custom chips can do since this game can easily compare to some of the much more powerful arcade machines of the early 90s. The color scaling is done with raster lines and Half-Bright graphics mode (EHB) and using Copper-effects (the chip that can change register values at a given time); also, two sets of gradient 16 colors are used and swapped every other frame, each being slightly offset from the other. This technique, when running at 50 frames per second, is giving the illusion of a smoother gradient! Some elements are created with Deluxe Paint 3 which was the standard drawing tool back in the 90s! During next level loading, you see a different screen of a static image that carries up to 64 colors. The worlds of the game feature a very artistic touch and the sprite animations (especially the ones used for the owl) are extremely smooth, offering a 3-layered parallax scrolling.
The sound -as expected- couldn't be less than impressive. The intro score is a classical piano sequence composed by Tim Wright and the in-game sound is composed with strong sound FX and powerful stereophonic music scores. This...sonorous masterpiece prompts you from the very start to connect your Amiga with a Hi-Fi system and enjoy its musical prowess. Agony is an exclusive game for the Amiga and one of the best shooters ever created for the 16bits genre.
In-game music sample:
CPU: Motorola MC68000 7.16 MHz MEMORY: 512KB of Chip RAM (OCS chipset - A500), 512 KB of Slow RAM or Trapdoor RAM can be added via the trapdoor expansion, up to 8 MB of Fast RAM or a Hard drive can be added via the side expansion slot. The ECS chipset (A500+) offered 1MB on board to 2MB (extended) of Chip RAM. GRAPHICS: The OCS chipset (Amiga 500) features planar graphics (codename Denise custom chip), with up to 5 bit-planes (4 in hires), allowing 2, 4, 8, 16 and 32 color screens, from a 12bit RGB palette of 4096 colors. Resolutions varied from 320x256 (PAL, non-interlaced, up to 4096 colors) to 640x512 (interlace, up to 4 colors). Two special graphics modes where also included: Extra Half Bright with 64 colors and HAM with all 4096 colors on-screen. The ECS chipset models (Amiga 500+) offered same features but also extra high resolution screens up to 1280x512 pixels (4 colors at once). SOUND: (Paula) 4 hardware-mixed channels of 8-bit sound at up to 28 kHz. The hardware channels had independent volumes (65 levels) and sampling rates, and mixed down to two fully left and fully right stereo outputs
12bit RGB 4096-colors palette (32 to 4096 colors on screen)
comment on 2012-03-16 12:57:26
Join Date: 2012-03-16
A fantastic game. My argue is on the Sound grade. I'd give it a perfect 10! My stereo monitor almost burnt by its musical glory!
comment on 2013-11-30 02:06:57
Join Date: 2009-06-03
I agree, the sound is one of the best ever released on a video-game. But honestly, a 9.5 score herein is pretty close to perfection. But is there a perfect game in terms of sound or graphics or gameplay? I haven t found one yet
comment on 2017-04-21 23:17:17
Join Date: 2009-08-30
An absolute stunner! Technically it shows what the Amiga is capable of! Great stuff guys!
comment on 2019-03-11 08:56:36
Join Date: 2017-03-19
Καλά τι να γράψει κανείς για αυτό το ψηφιακό έργο τέχνης.