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Game info


GenreAction Strategy
Reviewed byndial
Transarctica is a great action strategy game developed by the French house Silmarils in 1993 for the Amiga OCS/AGA and later ported to the DOS, Atari ST, MAC and Atari Falcon.
TransarcticaSTORY / GAMEPLAY
The story is based on a post-apocalyptic science fiction saga called "La Compagnie des Glaces" (The Ice Company), written by Georges-Jean Arnaud. You are in command of a huge train engine that you navigate through a world frozen due to a new ice age. The engine can pull hundreds of railway wagons, that can carry items you deal with, including mammoths and slaves, military wagons that house soldiers, or a gigantic gun in rails. You can act as a merchant, visiting various cities to obtain the precious coal needed to fuel your iron behemoth or buy new wagons that will improve your trading and your defense power since sometimes you will be attacked by enemy trains. You will encounter a herd of wild mammoths (free trading goods if you have the slaves or soldiers to catch them, and the livestock wagons to transport them) or nomads who will sell you some rare goods at low prices. During your adventure, you will also seek information about the reasons caused this new ice age. The game is divided into two modes; exploration and combat. In Exploration mode, you roam Eurasia using your various facilities and tools, gathering coal for currency and fuel, visiting towns to trade and enhance the train and searching for clues. In Combat mode, the Viking Union is out for blood and meeting with another train triggers a simple battle mode in real-time.

The Amiga OCS version has up to 27 colors on-screen, with some neat drawings. The arctic landscapes look awesome, giving a "cool" atmosphere to the game. To be honest, we would expect a much better effort on the Amiga version as the hardware could handle way more simultaneous colors (the game looks like a direct port from the ST). The sound is good, featuring a nice intro theme, several sampled sound effects and some brief in-game tunes. Transarctica is another well designed game from Silmarils.
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Intro/Menu music:  In-game music sample:
Gameplay sample
Comparable platforms

27 colors
Commodore Amiga OCS/ECS

253 colors
Commodore Amiga AGA

27 colors
Atari ST

253 colors
Atari Falcon
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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