Review: Safari Guns (Amiga 500) (1989)

Safari Guns for the Amiga 500 - This is the intro picture (snapshot by Old School Game Blog)
Safari Guns for the Amiga 500 – This is the intro picture (snapshot by Old School Game Blog)

Review of Safari Guns for the Amiga 500

Introduction

Safari Guns was developed by New-Deal Productions and published by Infogrames back in 1989. The game works on a standard Amiga 500 with 512KB of RAM and it comes on one floppy disk. The box-art looks both nice and inviting, which is not uncommon for older games.

The Game

If you’ve played games like Operation Wolf and Take’Em Out, you will already be familiar with Safari Guns. The concept is mostly the same. The screen moves from left to right and you are in control of a cross hair on the screen. You can move the cross-hair freely around with your mouse and you have to push the left mouse button to fire.

Take photographs of wild animals in Africa (snapshot by Old School Game Blog)
Take photographs of wild animals in Africa (snapshot by Old School Game Blog)

Even though the game-engine is similar to other shooters, the idea behind Safari Guns is a bit different. The main goal of the game is to take photographs of wild animals. This is not as easy as it sounds though, as there are enemies lurking in the wild ready to take you out. These poachers are apparently afraid that you’ll expose them and turn them in to the authorities. Fortunately you’re not only equipped with a nice camera, but also with a rifle. You can switch between these by clicking on their respective icons at the bottom of the screen. This works OK enough, but when there is a lot of action on the screen, moving the cross hair up and down the screen takes away focus and leaves you vulnerable to attacks from the poachers. It would, in my opinion, be better if you could switch between the camera and the rifle by clicking on the right mouse button.

Nice graphics (snapshot by Old School Game Blog)
Nice graphics. The screen is divided into layers and creates a nice sort of parallax-effect (snapshot by Old School Game Blog)

The graphics in Safari Guns are impressive, I must say that. The first thing you’ll notice when you start playing is the nice scenery. It looks splendid and exotic. The animations of both people and animals are also very good considering that this game was released in 1989. The background differs from level to level, which counts for the animals (and humans) as well. It is my impression that the developers put a lot of effort into the visuals of Safari Guns, which I think was a clever move at the time.

Gallery of the photos you've taken in Safari Guns - my gallery is not very impressive.. (snapshot by Old School Game Blog)
Gallery of the photos you’ve taken in Safari Guns – my gallery is not very impressive.. (snapshot by Old School Game Blog)

We must lend an ear to the in-game music as well. My first thought was that it was very 80’s and that you can tell it by the rhymes and the different instrument samples being used. It works, but I didn’t find it very catchy to be honest. The sound effects works well with the game and there is a decent variety of them included. Not bad, but not top-notch either.

Safari Guns is not a long game though. You’ll probably be able to finish it quicker than similar games. I watched a longplay of it on YouTube and the guy that completed it spent under ten minutes doing it.. It’s safe to say that lastability is probably not Safari Guns strongest side.

Conclusion

Even though the game-engine of Safari Guns is similar to other cross hair shooters, like Operation Wolf, the idea behind the game is quite different. Taking photographs of animals in the wild is a good idea and it is well enough executed in this game. Safari Guns truly shines when it comes to graphics, but suffers a bit when it comes to the controls (switching between camera and rifle is a bit of a struggle in the heat of the moment). I also find it a bit negative that the game can be finished by a skilled player in less than ten minutes, especially because the game is not that hard to learn.

All in all, Safari Guns is an OK Amiga game and one that should be remembered for trying something different. “Is it any fun?”, I hear you ask.. it is sure is for a while, but it is not the kind of game you invest hours upon hours into. Safari Guns can be picked up and played in a matter of minutes and is a good contender for your Sunday evening Amiga sessions.

Downloads

Download Safari Guns (Amiga 500) from The Game Archives.

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10 comments

  1. Wow! Another Amiga game that I never tried before! I’m a big fan of shooting games like Cabal and P.O.W., so I’ll definitely give this a go. It may actually be something for the wife and kids, too! 🙂

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    • Hi Mads! Cool that you haven’t tried it before – hope you’ll enjoy it. The graphics are very good for a game from 1989. Please let me know if your family liked Safari Guns. Do your kids play Amiga games?

      Like

  2. I remember a Turbo Grafx game that was sort of like this, except you had to control some kid on a skateboard (I think) and try to take pictures as certain things happen in the background behind the character.

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