59 Helicopter Rescue
Rarity in the UK 10/10 Guideline Price £100 Helicopter Rescue never saw a UK release as the game is only compatible with the Videopac+ and Jopac consoles, which also never saw a UK release. Saying that even in Europe where the consoles were available Helicopter rescue is up there with the rarest of all commercial releases. you can expect 1-3 on eBay PER YEAR. and when it is have plenty of pennies because this will NOT be cheap.
That in mind nor was this game released anywhere else in the world that never got a + console such as USA, Canada & Brazil.
The known variants which I wouldn't usually mention but since this is so limited for your collections, there was a French only version as there was with most carts, until now there wasn't much point listing it as the European carts cover this. We also know of a version with Spanish wording on the rear yellow section and a blacked out lapel (see below courtesy of Rene), although all else remains the same.
Not to be confused with the Magnavox AK9419 Out of This World / Helicopter Rescue game which is completely different and quite common....by comparison.
is also working on a non plus version of Heleicopter rescue he says "In
this game, high resolution graphics are not really used for the playing objects,
just for the numbers at the bottom of the screen and a static background.
At the desert and sea screens, the real action is done with normal graphics, the only action of the high-res gfx is the movement of the mountains in the background. Updating the Plus-gfx can't be done quickly by the processor, so for fast action the sprites of the standard video chip are used. I've been experimenting with Helicopter Rescue, I've replaced the numbers at the bottom of the screen by numbers generated with the normal videochip, and this version can be played without Plus-gfx. It's difficult to do experiments with this game, since it is 16k. The cartridge doesn't contain just one ROM chip, but also additional logic for bank-switching.
There is one way to raise the 8k limit to 12k, by using an
address line that's never used in commercial carts. Soeren Gust has used it for
KTAA. The disadvantage is that 12k ROM's/EPROM's don't exist, so you have to use
a 16k ROM chip, of which only 12k can be used.
Regarding Helicopter Rescue, of course it looks better with the Plus-gfx than my experiment with normal gfx.
PLAYING by (Dieter Koenig)
This is in my
opinion the most interesting game in the Videopac range besides Trans
American Rally, at least technically. Both games run only on the G7400 or the
Jopac machines. as they use high resolution graphics not only as background, but
also for the playing objects.
The object of the game is to rescue as many stranded pilots from the desert and the sea as possible with your helicopter. Enemy tanks and patrol boats will try to prevent you from picking up the pilots and will themselves try to capture them.
Nice story, but the game play is not well balanced und somehow "unfinished" in my opinion. If you fly left from your base, you enter the desert. If you fly right from your base, you enter the sea. But that has no strategical effect. It makes no difference if you fly to the desert or sea. The enemies get faster and more dangerous in each new wave, but they should have added some strategic elements or missions. I think that should have been possible, even with the limited space they had. For example the first two or three rounds in the desert, then the next two rounds (harder) over the sea. Then add a feature (like the missiles) and start over again in the desert ...
Oh, and the radar screen is pretty useless, as you can see the objects also in the main window, at the same time they appear on the radar ... Both games (59 and 60) are 3D games, both play very "rough", so it would be no surprise for me if they have been programmed by the same person or team.
In both games the objects move very rough where in "normal" Videopac games the objects move very very smooth. I wonder if the reason is the hardware of the G7400 or if the programmers just couldn't do better at that time, because those were in fact the first steps of Plus-programming.
Somehow I feel that GST Video did the Plus-programming better with Norseman, but then: this is a completely different type of game where you play on a static playfield. In Videopac 59 and 60 the playfield "scrolls".
|Description||PHILIPS Standard Plastic Variation||PHILIPS Standard Card Version||
Spanish or French Variation
|Brazilian Standard Variation||Magnavox
US Card Box Variant
|Rarity||Not Available||Not Available||VERY RARE||VERY RARE||Not Available||Not Available||Not Available||Not Available|
|UK £ Guide||NA||NA||£100+||£100+||NA||NA||NA||NA|