rauserZ.jpgIs it a bird? Is it a plane? Is it a remake or a demake? And anyway, what sinister programming magic is this? These questions might run through your head when you see LuftrauserZ, Paul Kollers's C64 port of Vlambeer's dogfighting arcade shooter Luftrausers.

Contrary to popular belief, the C64 is not quite dead yet. Developers like Koller and small publishers like RGCD keep the old bread box from dying by still putting out games for the home computer that was discontinued 24 years ago.

So-called demakes, interpretations of how a game might have looked and played like on older hardware, lend themselves well to publication on the C64. Paul Koller released other C64 demakes, such as C64anabalt, Micro Hexagon, and Super Bread Box, so tackling another Vlambeer game next seemed like a good fit.

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Besides, Luftrausers feels just perfect for porting with its limited palette and nice, chunky sprites. And yes, I imagine that this plays all kinds of wonderful with a proper joystick. (Personally, I prefer the Quickshot II, but if you have to whip out that Competition Pro, well... whatever works, right?)

The game can actually be played on original hardware, but loading it up in an emulator and having fun on your machine of choice is also an option. In any case, it certainly feels like the authentic Luftrausers experience (which our very own Anthony Swinnich wrote about here, back in the day).

You can purchase LuftrauserZ from itch.io or directly from RGCD. The rom (emulator included) will set you back $4.99, while an original C64 cartridge can be ordered for £40.00. For more information on the game and the porting process, visit publisher RGCD's website. You can also follow Paul Koller on Twitter.