In the early 90's I had fun playing this retro style Intergalactic tournament

User Rating: 8 | Purple Saturn Day AMI

I had quite a bit of fun playing Purple Saturn Day(PPD) back in the early 90's when I was a kid.The setting for this game is some time in the future when humans and various alien races compete against each other in a series of games.

One of the games involves steering a fast moving vehicle around a maze-like circuit and searching for/shooting balls of energy and trying to collect more fragments than your competitor.

Another game involves collecting energy from stars and using the energy to use gravity to make you jump through space and the further you jump the more you'll score.

Another game involves using an electro ball to guide energy to certain places within a brain so they can power up certain parts of the brain and you can collect energy from the parts of the brain that get powered up and use them to plant eletrical pins on your side of the brain and then try to guide the electical currents towards the pins you've planted and it puts a sealing over your pins and to defeat your opponent you'll need to put pins over each designated area on your side of the brain and have them all sealed.

And there's also a game that's a race around Saturn where you'll travel through Saturn's rings that are cluttered with debris and I honestly can't remember how to win this game(I remember you need to score more points than your opponent but I can't remember if winning depends on coming first or if points are only related to travelling faster than your opponent or dodging debris).

Keep in mind,this game was released in the late 80's and the 4 mini games that make up much of PPD's gameplay were quite creative and fun for their time.Especially the brain game,which is quite original even by today's standards.

However,even though these mini games have creative ideas and might sound fun,in execution,some of them could have been a bit better.For example,the game that involves maneuvering around the circuit and shooting energy and collecting energy fragments is hampered by horrible control(using a mouse/joystick and pressing the mouse/joystick in certain directions or pressing certain buttons to instantly appear somewhere else on the circuit makes winning become based more on luck than skill because it takes away much of the skill from maneuvering around the circuit and winning will become also become heavily dependant on how fast you can react/shoot when you see the energy balls and hoping you'll guess the right areas as to where the energy balls will be when you use the teleportation.

The brain game is the most fun and balanced of all the games,and a match of the brain game can last quite a while as you and your opponent will be trying to guide energy currents to the right places and destroying eachother's energy pins and you and your opponent can your electro ball to bump eachother's ball out of the way in order to protect your pin for long enough so it can get covered by an electric current or when your fighting for the power up that allows you to place a pin or sabotaging eachother's circuits that lead where the energy currents flow.

The games have a knoch out tournament style set up and winners and losers are decided by the total score of the competitor over the 4 games(brain game,race around saturn,shooting energy balls and the space jump game)and it's possible to lose a majority of the 4 games to your opponent but still win if you can heavily outscore your opponent in a particular game,and it's an idea I like because even if you've lost 3 games against your opponent by a narrow margin,you can still win the final remaining game by a big margin and defeat your opponent overall(it adds to the suspense).

Also,different aliens and the human are more/less skilled at various games(and this is represented in a stats screen).For example,a particular alien might be good at the race around saturn game but will not be very good at the brain game.I like this kind of realism(especially for a game released back in the 1980's)because it makes the results of who will win/lose more unpredictable because if a certain character is very good at let's say the race around saturn game and they're tough to beat at it and you lose to them but put up a good fight,the points you earned from that race will come in very valuable to you and let's say that same character is very bad at the brain game and you can beat them by a big margain at the brain game,you'll increase your total points lead over that opponent by a lot and I liked how this game could give me the feeling ''oh no,I have to play this alien in the shooting energy ball game'' knowing that alien would be very good at it,I guess it gave a sense of realism.

As for presentation,the game has a nice retro style presentation.You'll see loading screens that indicate your character getting ready to race around saturn or near many stars in the place where the space jump game is or in some sort of spaceship travelling towards the giant brain for the brain game etc.Also,when a competitor wins the tournament,a pretty human lady wearing revealing clothing will kiss the new champion and she'll put her arms around him and you'll see baby versions of that alien/human to indicate she and them had sex and created babies and I thought for it's time it was a charming sexual joke and you'll also hear deep kissing sounds when the pretty lady kisses the new champion.

When you play each of the games,the screen will be presented in a way so you can see what's happening in the game environment but you'll also see people/humanoid/robots(I don't know what)sitting in the bottom corners of the screen reacting to your mouse/joystick/key presses to try to make it feel like you're really in control of them.

The other loading screens show nice glimpses of Saturn and the artstyle for this game is nice in a retro way and uses the color purple a lot in a way to give some sort of an alien atmosphere/Sci Fi affect.

The various aliens look kinda cool and look like their races have evolved in a numerous interesting ways(some aliens have faces like dogs,elephants,or might have the body of a Gorilla and carry a gun with them and the race with a humanoid body but elephant face seem to like to wear earrings in their giant ears and I like this little bit of extra detail).Some aliens look like they're suited to aquatic environments and some aliens look like they have a head made from a diamond shaped object and it looks like maybe they use it to collect energy or something.

The tournament ceremony environments use pyramids in the background to give a nice alien feel.

Overall,I think this was a creative and fun game for it's time and even now I still like it's retro,nice 1980's artstyle and the way it uses shades of the color purple in many places.