They took his memory. Now he wants it back
Later on, the game transports you to the aliens' home turf to face off against the eeevil mastermind behind all the unpleasantness, and !!SPOILERS!! gives us one of the most ballsy, downbeat endings in a game since Gryzor's slap-in-the-face ending sequence which read: "Well Done. However, the planet blew up and you died."
Welcome to the jungle
Each level is bookended by a cinematic full-motion polygonal clip which sheds further light on the sci-noir plot. On most 16-bit consoles this was practically unheard of, as most games of the era were static anime pixel art of guys in purple capes informing us that all our base were belong to them.
Delphine, the clever Gallic guys behind Flashback's spiritual predecessor, Another World, instituted a more advanced, stylised rotoscoping to bring Conrad and his foes to life. Think Prince of Persia with jetpacks replacing turbans. These were arguably some of the best graphics of the early nineties. It's crying out for a hi-def remake, a la Another World, which recently received just that.
The music is unobtrusive, and only plays when a particularly tense or dramatic sequence occurs. Most times though you have the ambient sounds of jungle life, or the splodgy, squelchy sounds of aliens squidging about their home planet.
I remember receiving the game as a youngling for my birthday on the Sega Mega Drive - merely two days after playing and completing the cinematic masterpiece that was Another World - and it still holds up even after almost two decades. ®
Publisher US Gold
Platforms Amiga, Mega Drive, MS-DOS, SNES, Mac
Year of release 1992
More Info Flashback in the iTunes App Store (£1.49)
Flashback: The Quest for Identity
That was me!
Acorn port? That was me! I was sent Amiga 68000 source code (with variable names and comments [such as they were] in French) and very little else! The whole thing had to be recoded into ARM. I was really on my own for much of the work trying to decipher strange routines and opaque data structures. I remember it being quite a challenge in places to fit it all in to the sparse memory of the time. The only thing I didn't like doing was the music and I ran out of time before getting it /just right/ (you can tell that the timings with some of the cinematics is a little off!).
Thanks for the memories......
I spent many an hour playing this on my Amiga 500, when I should have been completing coursework for my degree. Bearing in mind it is really just a fancy 2d platform game, it is nevertheless one of the most absorbing games I've ever played (perhaps even more absorbing than Mercenary).
Me too. Alas I don't think I ever got anywhere near completing it. It was way too tough for my 10-year old gaming brain...
I seem to remember this was also available on the 3DO. I had it on that platform.
It was excellent, though I do remember having some complaints about laggy controls.
And yet another Acorn user ;-)
I think games like this ought to be used as a benchmark for how to design a lasting game. It's not necessarily about fancy graphics (though I do enjoy Liberty City's sunsets), it is about a story you can be immersed in. In this, Flashback succeeds wonderfully.