Memory is a strange thing (or is it just the effects of interplanetary travel?)

I finally got bored of Snood the other day, so I downloaded Deimos Rising from Ambrosia Software. I’ve been playing it for a few days, and just now finally cleared enough levels to get to the point where I need to give them money to keep playing. This is the point at which I stopped playing Mars Rising when it came out years ago. In a nostalgic moment, I downloaded Mars Rising and fired it up (I don’t use the Classic environment much, but when I want it, I’m always glad it’s there, and always impressed at how well it works).

I discovered something strange: When I first started up Deimos Rising the other day, my first thought was how similar it was to Mars Rising. In fact, it seemed nearly identical. The only differences appeared to be that they’d made some new levels, added some new baddies, and made it run native on Mac OS X. Otherwise, the games seemed pretty much identical. When I actually ran Mars Rising, I realized how much memories can be affected by a few years of misuse. While the gameplay was very similar—similar enough that the Deimos Rising skills I’ve been honing the past few days got me all the way to level 4 of Mars Rising—the graphics were entirely different, so much so as to be almost a different game. Compare the screenshots of Mars Rising to those of Deimos Rising

Deimos Rising feels modern and “3D”, where Mars Rising feels old and “2D”. I suspect that they both seemed cutting-edge for their day, and that’s why my memories of Mars Rising fit so well into the Deimos Rising experience. But it’s amazing how clunky and outdated the Mars Rising graphics feel today.