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Game info

Snow Bros.

Snow Bros.
GenreArcade Platform
DeveloperOcean Software (FR)
PublisherOcean Software (FR)
Reviewed byndial
Snow Bros. is a 1990 platform arcade video game originally developed by Toaplan first published in Japan, then to the rest of the world. Ocean Software had plans to convert it on various microcomputer and console platforms such as the Amstrad GX4000, Amiga, Atari ST, Commodore 64 and ZX Spectrum in 1991 but none of these conversions were officially released. The game was only converted an officially released for the Sega Megadrive\Genesis and Nintendo NES systems. Eventually only at 2006, the game was finished and leaked online (to download and load) for the Amiga.
The evil King Scorch freezes Prince Nick and Tom and kidnaps the Princesses Puripuri and Puchipuchi. The two little icy heroes are now tasked with travelling through 50 stages, throwing and building snowballs, jumping on and off platforms to navigate level obstacles while dodging and defeating monsters in order to rescue the princesses from captivity. Note that the Amiga version lacks multiplayer functionality, so you only play in single-player mode (either Nick or Tom, who knows!). The basic gameplay is akin to that of Taito's aforementioned Bubble Bobble, in so much that the game involves clearing 50 separate screens from the deadly occupants. You’re armed with a magic power which enables you to turn the attacking creatures into massive balls of snow. Each monster requires four direct hits before it’s completely covered in snow and effectively disabled, and it can then be killed simply by pushing it across the screen, killing anything in its path. To your advantage though, are a number of bonus goodies and potions which, when collected, endow the little snowman with a variety of super powers. After 10 screens, a massive mid-game boss will be needed to taken out.
Sno Bros. is a great platformer, and it’s a pity it did not released official back in 1991 for the Commodore Amiga and the Atari ST. As said, it only founds an unofficially release in 2006, and still you can give it a try as it’s great fun to play even in single-player (only) mode.

Snow Bros. for the Amiga was created by the French division of publisher Ocean Software that previously worked on other conversions such as Pang and Rainbow Islands. Ocean Software acquired the license after the European Computer Entertainment Show in September 1990 while work on the port immediately began as soon as they finished task of converting Pang. But despite Ocean received almost no support from Toaplan, they wanted it to be as close as possible to the arcade original, so programmers kept playing the coin-op machine from start to finish while using it as reference when taking notes about certain elements such as animations, graphic techniques and enemy AI!!! They next used a simple ST set-up for the maps and sprite editors, and managed to recreate the entire 32-color palette to make the game's screens look virtually identical to those of the coin-op. In addition, by creating each of the game's 50 stages in almost jigsaw fashion, a lot of memory was saved, allowing them to add all of the original's neat little touches, mimic the arcade game in virtually every way, including its speed. But only the 75% of the game was finished just before Christmas (which was the milestone to be packed and released), while the two-players option was not included. This would probably be the reason cancelling its publishing back in the days.
The sound is also good, offering the original music scores and sound effects to the best matching way.
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Gameplay sample
Hardware information

Amiga 500/500+

Amiga 500/500+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
The Amiga 500/500+ (default) color palette
12bit RGB 4096-colors palette
(32 to 4096 colors on screen)
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