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Overview

Stardust a critically acclaimed space shooter game released originally in 1993 for the Amiga 500 by developer Bloodhouse. Later ports of the game were also released for the PC and Atari STE but lacked the quality of the original release. Stardust came about when Finnish programmer Harri Tikkanen began early work on a pinball game, he would later discover that Swedish developer Digital Illusions was about to release a very similar game called Pinball Dreams and so he was forced to come up with a brand new concept which would become Stardust.

The gameplay is heavily inspired by the arcade hit, Asteroids. Stardust expands on this formula by allowing the player to collect numerous weapons throughout the game's 30 levels and then to power them up over time. Certain bosses and enemies are weak against particular weapons. Some of the levels change up the formula by having the spaceship fly through a tunnel while shooting enemies and avoiding oncoming debris.

Another of the game's distinguishing features is its sense of humor. The story features a mad professor, secret agents disguised as meteorites, a final level named after a Finnish town, and a princess named after a brand of margarine.

Reception

On release, the game received positive reviews from many outlets, Amiga Computing and Amiga Force gave the game 93 and 92 percent receptively. The main criticism of the game was the steep learning curve which made it prohibitively difficult for a lot of players. The team took this into account and decided to revamp Stardust by improving the game and adding new content. This lead to the creation of Super Stardust released for the Amiga 1200 in 1994.

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