Commando is one of the most enjoyable (and tough) vertical scrolling arcade shooters, originally released by Capcom for the arcades in Japan in 1985 as "Wolf of the Battlefield" (translated) and converted to the 16bit Amiga, Atari ST, PC (DOS) and almost to every 8bit home computers and gaming consoles by Elite Software by 1989.
STORY / GAMEPLAY Commando is a classic, vertical scrolling, arcade shooter in which you control a special ops soldier named Super Joe. Joe's mission is to infiltrate enemy bases and kill anyone that gets in his way. The available weapons are simple and effective: an M60 machine gun and some precious grenades. The grenades are limited though and must be collected on the way (via crates) since they are very effective when a bunch of enemies are coming towards Joe. Unfortunately, the grenades can only be thrown forward, which is rather frustrating. The enemies attack from all directions and they even hide in foxholes or behind sand bags, shooting like frenzy (but no worries, no surprise here, they are visible during gameplay (even when hiding behind sand bags). As Joe progresses through the six levels of the game, difficulty level gets tougher and tougher, with larger numbers of enemies, including military vehicles ready to crash the commando! Joe has to also rescue fellow soldiers captured by the enemy forces. Commando is a really addictive and a very tough game, that keeps you coming back for more even today!
GRAPHICS / SOUND Commando features good visuals for its age without having to fill the screen with impressive details. The coin op conversion from Elite Software is almost perfectly done on the 16bit home computers (while it’s great on the 8bits too), keeping most of the original level details. The Amiga and ST versions sport smooth and fast sprite animation and they are almost identical in terms of graphics, without having the need to use any extra power. The in-game sound is equally good, including the original music and sound effects (like gunfire and grenade explosions) but, we must admit that the 8bit intro and gameplay tunes sound better than the 16bit conversions! Namely, the Amiga and ST version play a small and repetitive tune while the Amstrad CPC, ZX Spectrum (128k) and C64 offer a full-length music during gameplay! Quite odd huh?
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