Ork is among Psygnosis' typical platform shooter games with good visuals but high difficulty level and rather flat gameplay. This game was released only for the Commodore Amiga and Atari ST/E home computers.
STORY / GAMEPLAY You control a Heyadahl named Ku-Kubal. Heyadahls are a breed of peaceful, genetic engineering chaps that can be remotely controlled via a computer. You are a captain and, controlling Ku-Kubal, you need to take the final test to make sure that you are cool and prove yourself worthy of Leadership. Ku-Kubal is pinned down on a planet called Ixion to test numerous puzzles and fight its way through levels inhabited by mutant and strange alien species. Well that's the odd story. The game is quite similar to the Shadow Of The Beast series and it features many types of enemies and a lot of simple puzzles to solve in order to proceed to the next levels. The basic walking mode for Ku-Kubal follows the usual 8-direction action platform moves: You can walk, jump onto platforms or even fly using built-in jet packs but of limited fuel. You main weapon is a rapid firing twin laser. Many of the targets that Ku-Kubal has to neutralize, will be controlled by an extensive computer complex. You can access parts of that computer by finding terminals and then upgrading your infiltration capabilities by deactivating security systems and bypassing enemy defenses. The gameplay, apart from killing everything that moves, includes some simple puzzles of the same manner: Find the key(s), open guarded doors, get gold and pay tolls (!) in certain spots. Ork is one of those games that looks nice and plays well. However, it lacks last-ability as its gameplay is rather boring and too difficult (much like the Shadow of The Beast series, but those were by far better in graphics, sound and puzzle complexity).
GRAPHICS / SOUND Ork has nice graphics. The Amiga version has up to 64 colors on-screen along with smooth sprite animations and a 3-layer parallax background scrolling (reminds me of Shadow of The Beast 2 and 3). One thing to complain about is the lack of extra colors for the enemy sprites, which almost share the same color palette with the backgrounds! The game's sound has some great sampled sound effects but no-in game music. The introductory tune is an excellent piece followed by a scrolling screen showing the game's credits.
GAMEPLAY SAMPLE VIDEO
On our video below you may watch both the Atari ST and Amiga OCS versions of the game.
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