If, like this writer, you were lucky enough to own one of the several Commodore Amiga home computers released in the early 1990s, the name Zool might sound familiar. It was essentially the platform’s take on Sonic the Hedgehog. Now, the ninja gremlin (not an ant, apparently) from the Nth dimension is making a comeback.
Released in 1992 by Gremlin Graphics, which was behind retro classics HeroQuest and the Lotus series, Zool did little to hide the fact it was a Sonic clone. Viewed through my rose-tinted nostalgia glasses, I vaguely recall it being a pretty good Amiga title at the time, though not a patch on Sega’s blue mascot. It was also very, very hard.
For those who missed out the first time around, Sumo Digital is bringing the original Zool back to life through Zool Redimensioned, which it says has been “rebuilt from the ground up for modern audiences” with guidance from the developers of the original at Gremlin Graphics.
“Zool’s old school platforming action will challenge the most hardcore gamers, with modern enhancements that bring the game into the 21st century,” states the game’s Steam page.
It’s noted that there’s a more accessible “Redimensioned” mode and an “Ultimate Ninja” hardcore challenge. You can also play the original Mega Drive (Sega Genisis in the US) version, which is a bit strange, seeing as it was produced for the Amiga before being ported to other platforms.
Some welcome additions to the new version include a level select screen and checkpoints. There are also new secrets, challenges, and over 25 achievements to unlock, and the music is a reworking of the original tunes.
As you might imagine, Zool Redimensioned will run on the most potato-like of PCs, requiring only integrated graphics and a 4th-gen Core i3 as minimum specs. It arrives on Steam sometime this month.