(Movie Trailer Guy Voice:) In 1995, Akira Higuchi directed... a masterpiece. (Flash of xkobo readme header) This year, David Olofson takes you... further. (Flash of Kobo Deluxe logo)


Kobo Deluxe (formerly called "skobo") is an updated version of XKOBO. There are numerous improvements, most important of them can be summarized thus:

  • The game uses Simple DirectMedia Layer (SDL) so it's capable of doing more and can be easily ported to non-X platforms. (There is a Windows port, for example.)
  • User interface is more like arcade game experience. (The game already was pretty arcade-like in feel...) The game has a menu screen with top-ten lists and all, and the screen has very good surrounding graphics, too.
  • Resolution can be changed, image can be smoothly scaled, and there's a full screen support.
  • OpenGL support.
  • Joystick and mouse support.
  • Music and sound effects are added, and the music uses internal MIDI soft synthesis, or hardware MIDI synthesis if supported.

The game itself couldn't be more more like the original. The idea of the game is simple, and straight out of "The Best Discarded Ideas Of Japanese Arcade Game Developers Of The 1980s" book. You control a little ship that can fly in 8 different directions. If you push the fire button down, the ship fires tons and tons of missiles forward and backward. There are strange pipe structures called "bases" floating in the space. The dangerous part of them are the spheres that shoot stuff at you. If you shoot the spheres, they explode, and the pipes that connect them to the structure explode too. In the center of each pipe formation there's a bigger sphere - shooting it will destroy the entire structure. Your idea is to destroy all of these pipe structures to advance to the next level. You have five ships. Please don't ask me more about the plot!

Overall, the original game was pure, simple, perfect crystalline arcade game that was the retro dream come true. Kobo Deluxe is just polishing. It does not make the game any more or less interesting, just adds some features. Now, if only I had a MAME cabinet or something, I'd stick this one in it...

Home page: http://olofson.net/skobo/

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