This week’s Vectrex game of the week is the intense space shooter, Bedlam. Another Vectrex space shooter? Well, if your wheelhouse (vector graphics) allows you to create shooters as crisp and slow down free as the Vectrex does, then there’s no reason to fix something that isn’t broke.
Bedlam is a sort of inside out Tempest where your ship is sits in the middle of a vector-like world or sector with multiple corners that alien enemies pour out of to attack. You must be able to spin your ship 360 degrees to blast these enemies and if things get a little too intense using your normal spin speed, you can spin around faster using the controller buttons. When all hope seems lost, use your smart bomb to clear the screen of enemies. This can only be used once per sector/level so use it judiciously.
Bedlam is a frantic shooter with personality. The different types of enemies have different attack methods which you must also take into account when determining who to blast first. In later levels, the number of sector corners where aliens come out of increase. Also, the sectors begin to pulse and creep closer to you, which means that the aliens will have a shorter distance to reach your ship. Your defense in these levels is to blast at the corners or sector entries and keep them from shrinking further but this must be carefully attended to along with increased number of aliens coming at you from other sides. A very difficult but original title for the Vectrex and a must own.
Currently in my collection: game only
Wish List: manual, overlay and box.