Torvak the Warrior

Title           Torvak the Warrior
Game Type       Platform
Publisher       Core
Players         1
Compatibility   OCS
HD Installable  No
Submission      Eric Haines (

    The 1987 Taito arcade game Rastan is one of my all-time favorites. You
controlled a barbarian warrior-type who hacked and slashed his way through
six side-scrolling levels. The gameplay was about perfect; I kept playing
until I managed to win first on one quarter, then on one life. Naturally I
wanted an Amiga version, but if there ever was one (Taito did advertise
one as "forthcoming" at one point), I missed it. So, I kept buying
Rastan-esque games in hopes of the next-best-thing. Three of them come to
mind: Torvak the Warrior, Risky Woods, and Leander.

    Sadly, Torvak the Warrior doesn't cut it (pardon the pun). I read one
of those "work in progress" reports in an Amiga magazine and was quite
interested, so I bought it immediately when it came out. Of the three I
mentioned above, Torvak is most like Rastan in concept, but least in
execution. (Also, it apparently only runs on an A500, so I'll have to go
on memory alone here.)

    The graphics are a little on the dull side, and the animation isn't
anything special. No fancy parallax scrolling here. At least each level
has a varied theme (village, swamp, etc.). There are a bunch of different
monsters, too, although none of them stand out, not even the end-of-level

    The sound seems to have fallen victim to the old 512K Chip RAM limit.
You can either have sound effects, or music, but not both. I hate that.
With only sound effects, the game feels kind of empty, but with only music
(and not particularly inspiring music at that), none of your actions have
any "weight" behind them.

    None of this would be of any overwhelming importance if the gameplay
was good (the A500's hardware can't quite compare to a Rastan machine,
after all), but this area seems to have suffered from a lack of
play-testing. Everything works OK from a programming perspective, but I
couldn't shake the feeling that the makers said "It's done, it works, ship
it!" without really trying to refine the play. A good example is the
end-of-level bosses, who can be dispatched with not much effort or
technique. All the elements are there - the jumping, the monsters, the
sword-wielding, and you can pick up extra weapons too - but there's a slow,
lumbering quality to the whole affair. The movement isn't the typical 50
or 60 fps arcade-smooth scrolling that one would expect, either.

    So, overall, I'd have to call Torvak the Warrior a disappointment.
With more refining, it could have been a decent Rastan clone.

Category list.

Alphabetical list.