Lost Treasures

June 28, 2015

Sopwith

Lost Treasures

In the era of classic video games, some of the best games come out of the need to exploit or demonstrate some sort of technology.  ID Programming wizard John Carmack wanted to prove that smooth scrolling was possible on a PC, something he handily accomplished.  And here in Canada, a young programmer named David L. Clark was tasked with demonstrating how BMB Compusciences Imaginet networking hardware worked. What better way, he thought, than to create a multiplayer video game? And thus, Sopwith was born.

Sopwith was initially created in 1984 to demonstrate networking hardware and has since developed a cult following. It has spawned sequels such as Sopwith 2 and remakes such as Triplane Turmoil and Altitude. You can even find a remake on iOS and Android called Sopwith Barons.

It turned out that the Imaginet hardware never really took off, but the game included a single player mode that made it as popular as it is today. You control a plane that needs to attack all targets.
You get a machine gun and a supply of bombs to take on everyone and everything in this kill or be killed flying frenzy.

It is quite amazing how good the graphics were at the time considering the limitations of the CGA mode of the PC that afforded a mere 4 colors and a speaker with a single voice. It just goes to show you that gameplay always trumps everything – even the best graphics and sound. This is just one of the reasons why Sopwith is such a great Lost Treasure. With lots of modern remakes available, there is no excuse to find out what the fuss was over 30 years ago.

Until next time, I’m Syd Bolton your gaming archaeologist digging up the lost treasures for you, right here on OMG! Nexus and The OMG! Hour.



About the Author

Syd Bolton

Syd Bolton surrounds himself in thousands of classic video games as Canada’s top video game collector at the Personal Computer Museum in Brantford, Ontario, Canada. He plays all of the latest games on his 80″ Sharp TV and provides the “Lost Treasures” segment during The OMG! Hour. Follow Syd on Twitter @sydbolton.






 
 

 

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