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Food Fight - April 6, 2000 by Dorsola
Game:Food FightCompany:Atari
Type:PlatformPlayers:1/2

Yum! Pie in the face! Not to mention tomatoes, lettuce, bananas, watermelons... the whole nine yards, all for a single ice-cream cone. Mix that in with four mad chefs, and you've got yourself Food Fight, a game of delectable mayhem. Food Fight, designed and produced by Atari in 1982, lets you play out what for many of us is a favorite fantasy - to throw all kinds of food at the people who would otherwise be preparing it for us. You play Charley Chuck, a little boy who's made it his mission in life to eat ice cream cones. He will stop at nothing, even raiding a large kitchen full of holes, food, and chefs who are out to stop him. Along the way, you can pick up tomatoes, pies, pieces of lettuce, etc. and fling them at the chefs, or you can lure the chefs to fall back into the holes that they came out of. But be careful! They don't just chase you - they can throw food at you too! And if they hit you, well... let's just say you'll be the favorite dessert of the evening.
For a game that came out only 2 years after Asteroids Deluxe, Food Fight was quite an accomplishment graphically. This game features some highly detailed and even anti-aliased (smoothed-out) graphics, along with absolutely fluid motion for the cute, large-headed boy. There's lots of food to go around, and much attention was paid to the ice-cream cones - single scoops, double-scoops and even triple-scoops if you can make it to the triple-digit levels. Sound-wise, the game is very nice as well - there are a number of fun sounds to accompany the game action, music is sparse but pleasant, and occasionally you'll get to listen to a fun little tune that accompanies the game's Instant Replay feature.
Ah yes, the Instant Replay. I believe Food Fight was the first game to do something like this - in selected rounds, your movements and those of your enemies are recorded and then played back if you succeed. It's a lot of fun to watch - you can see all the places where you narrowly dodged a tomato being thrown at you, or just tiptoed around a hole... you get the idea. For little things like this and the fact that it is NEVER the same game twice, I give this game the ultimate rating for Replay Value. And it's difficult, too - a good challenge for the reflexes, with some decent strategy built in to keep you thinking.
Unfortunately, what this game lacks is an intuitive control system. The original machine featured an analog joystick that, when pushed only a certain distance, would cause Charley to just look in that direction. Past that distance, he'd start running. This is, by its very nature, difficult to emulate, and unless you have a good analog joystick, you'll find the game is very hard to play in MAME. (I don't, so I'm docking a couple of points for control.)
But, all that aside, I think I'm ready for another round. Waiter? I'll take some lemon meringue... wait, no! ACK! *splut*
Graphics
9
7
Sound
Play Control
7
8
Challenge
Replay Value
10
10
Performance

Screen Shots

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2000 EmuViews