Ah, Supremacy! An important game. An incredible one, even. But one whose existence is remembered by fans and staff of Commodore Format for one reason.
“ZZAP! 64 had been ripping us off since launch”, remembers editor Steve Jarratt. “But it was the Supremacy review when I knew we had them beaten. We couldn’t believe they’d copy us so blatantly. It showed a lack of respect for their readers.”
It wasn’t even their most blatant example of plagiarism, but certainly one that stood out. ZZAP! would deny it through their own pages, yet quietly edge away from its “new” design over the following months. “They didn’t do it by accident”, remembers CF writer Andy Roberts. “It’s not like they accidentally picked the same fonts.”
But anyway. The game!
Wow, the game.
Supremacy is a war strategy sort of thing set in the future. You fly into space and colonise planets, competing with another civilisation keen to inhabit and run more planets than you do. So you arrive on a planet, kick some arse and make money by taxing the inhabitants, growing crops and mining for minerals. Everything you do has an impact: if you tax your people highly the population will not grow as much. But you’ll be richer – and you can go off and try to fight for other planets. Make sure your army is trained up properly first, though…
Everything is driven on a smart, simple icon base at the bottom of the screen. The game has pace: populations grow and react to your decisions constantly, and random events give you a true sense of realism. If a planet is taken away from you, it’s quite easy to take it personally!
The Jereon Tel soundtrack is atmospheric; the graphics astounding. It’s a credit to the C64 that this sort of game was being pushed out as late as 1991. You will lose hours in the depths of Supremacy. CF
CF SAID: “The most exciting and advanced C64 strategy game in the world.”
WE SAY: It loads all in one go. The entire game. Witchcraft!
- Read Sean Masterson’s full review
- Go back to the CF’s Top Ten homepage
- Play Supremacy (requires C64 emulator)