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Retro Vault - An Amiga Special

Cannon Fodder, Pushover, Chaos Engine and Soccer Kid

Retro Vault is our regular weekly feature in which we dive into gaming's past and share five classic nuggets of retro nostalgia. If you want to catch up on previous Retro Vaults, check out the CVG Retro Vault archive.

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Spring 1993 - The Chaos Engine box art

Kicking off our special Amiga version of the Retro Vault is The Chaos Engine, the cult top-down shooter from the Bitmap Brothers.

Based in Wapping, the Bitmap Brothers had already enjoyed success on the Amiga with a number of games, including vertical-scrolling shooter Xenon II: Megablast, futuristic sports title Speedball 2 and Magic Pockets, which oddly had a regular spot on a Saturday morning children's TV show Motormouth in which viewers called in to play it live over the phone.

The Chaos Engine was the studio's ninth title, and was a steampunk shooter in which players chose two of six characters - Navvie, Thug, Brigand, Mercenary, Gentleman and Preacher - and attempted to stop the evil Baron Fortesque and his Chaos Engine, a construction that could change the nature of space and time.

All this was just an excuse to run around a series of gloriously grim locations, filling numerous enemies and creatures with varying sizes of bullets.

The Chaos Engine was well-received by critics, with Amiga Power declaring it the 11th best Amiga game ever and Mega magazine calling the Mega Drive version the 15th best Mega Drive game ever. If you're curious to play it, a remastered version is currently available on Steam.

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