Shortly after this issue went to
print, I got an email from the author of Superstar Chefs with regard
to the allegations of plagiarism. I publish
the brief correspondence here in the interests of balance.
Just got the opportunity to read
your review of Superstar Chefs for PC Zone.
As the author of the game I'm
glad you liked it. I've put much time into it, and had a lot of
fun doing it. One of the primary goals was to get back the
spirit and feeling of the C64 / Amiga and retro coin-ops, the
kind of games I was grown up with and always loved.
After reading the review I felt a
bit disappointed about one thing though, that the game was
called a Qwak rip-off. I've played Qwak quite a bit myself, and
I'm always very carefull to never do rip-offs and to not take
everything from one game. Instead I take my inpiration from
loads of games and mix in my own way.
sure, why do you think the game is such a Qwak rip-off?
The game is
build up by loads of functions presented in early video games.
The control is much more like Super Mario then Qwak, jump on
enemies instead of shoot. The wrapping is like from the original
Mario Bros (single screen, not Super Mario), Bubble Bubble and
Snow Bros. To finish a level by collection all things on screen
is another classic element (Bomb Jack one of my favorites) Then
there is loads of those things that virtually every platformer
have like springs, water, stompers, conveyors (Gremlin classics
like Monty on the run comes to mind :)
There sure is similarities between
Qwak and Superstar Chefs, but Qwak is just as similar to other
games. Like for example FuzzBall (by System3, single screen,
cute and colorful japanese style graphics, collect everything on
screen, wrapping, shoot instead of jump etc.)
Thanks for the review anyway, just
wanted to share my feelings on it.
Hi Ola. Thanks
for the email - it's always good to get feedback when you've
said some harsh things about a game, that isn't just the author
To be honest, I feel I was probably a *little* hard on Superstar
regard to the Qwak comparisons, but only a little. I think if
had admitted that Qwak was part of the game's inspiration I
been so annoyed, but Qwak is *by far* the game it's most similar
to (while I
take your point about some of the different gameplay mechanics),
seems very unfair that games like SMB and Bubble Bobble, which
resembles at all, get credit while Qwak doesn't.
I know Fuzzball well - many years ago I worked on a magazine
Power - but I don't think Qwak owes it much. Fuzzball is much
more of a
puzzle/platform game, and it's really
jumping, pathfinding and so on, whereas Qwak and Chefs are both
fast-moving, reaction-based, arcade types of game. (I'm pretty
didn't have wraparound screens too, but I wouldn't like to swear
Anyway, hope the coverage brings you a few more sales - we just
this week that it was, accidentally, the second time Chefs has
in PC Zone in the last year - because it's a brilliant little
game, but I
really do think the website should acknowledge Qwak's influence
because I suspect even you might not know quite how much it may
(perhaps subconsciously) affected the design of Chefs. To
someone like me
who objectively analyses these sort of things professionally all
it's like they were twins separated at birth.
Thanks for your view of it.
I think the main difference when we 2 analyse the games is that
programmer I look very technical at it and you problaby look
more on the
overall feel of the game. That is why we only partly agree :)
Fuzzball had wrap around just like Bubble Bobble. If you think
of it both
Fuzzball and Qwak is pretty obviously Bubble Bobble clones. All
have a basic play mechanism were you move and 1 or 2 characters
on a single
screen that wraps, and fire bullets to take out enemies. All
super cute japaneese cartoon style gfx (that is otherwise not
that common in
Amiga games, although Galactic by Stavros Fasolous is another
featuring cute Icecreams and Teddybears :)
Superstar Chefs on the other hand has one important difference
games. How you battle you enemies. You don't shoot, but instead
you jump on
enemies to take them out (like Mario) or you take Super Pills
Jack or PacMan)
I think the biggest similarites between Superstar Chefs and Qwak
I can find
is that those games have a little more traditional "Amiga way"
tile based levels then for example Bubble Bobble. This might be
why you think the game feels so similar. Also both games wrap in
directions, unlike Bubble Bobble (only wraps vertical) and Mario
wraps horizontal) and as you say both games plays a little
faster then for
example Fuzzball as well.
The reason Bubble Bobble and Mario Bros is mentioned on our
webpage got 2
reasons. First of all, these 2 games are the originals, that all
games is based on ( note that Mario Bros isn't the same as Super
Mario Bros was the first single screen, 2 player simultaneously
platform-game I can think of ) Secondy, it's because everyone
Bubble Bobble and Mario Bros is, so more people will understand
what kind of
game we try to describe.
Original Mario Bros:
BTW: Have you tried any of our other games? Is Superstar Chefs
If you like to get the full version of any of our games, for a
just for fun, just ask.
What a nice