The iPhone has attracted a notable number of Amiga game ports since the App Store went live. Worms, Pinball Dreams / Fantasies, Krypton Egg, Beneath a Steel Sky -- the list goes on. For those unaware, the Amiga was an extremely innovative platform, released in 1985 by Commodore, that saw rather limited success outside of Europe. It featured a lean yet powerful operating system and a great deal of custom hardware that made it the choice gaming platform of the day (for those that were aware of its existence). Despite Commodore's demise in 1994, a few stragglers still carry the Amiga torch.

In an App Store first, the iPhone is about to receive a port of a highly praised Amiga game...that never was.

babyloniantwins_tower_03

In 1993, Iraqi developer Rabah Shihab, part of the Mesopotamia Team, began work on the Amiga title Babylonian Twins (with basically no budget), inspired by what he saw of other games' depiction of Iraq. As he explained in an interview with Amiga Games That Weren't,

...My real dedication for this theme came during the early nineties after I saw a computer game in which you control a warplane with the goal of bombing Iraq. Putting the bombing aside (I was in Baghdad during the first gulf war and I saw the human suffering that resulted from the real bombing ), I didn't like the way they depicted Iraq in the game, as a primitive and uncivilized place. I wanted to build a game that counter that image, a game that shows the vibrant history of Mesopotamia. In Babylonian Twins, the game takes you to different historical places, from Babylon to Assyria. We relied on authentic history books to design many of the graphics in the game.

Shihab was impressed by the smooth scrolling of Team 17's Amiga title Superfrog and set out to deliver similar visual finesse in his title. Another inspiration was Konami's MSX release Maze of Galious. The team released a very well-liked demo version of the game, but no full Amiga release ever came. And although he, later, targeted the Xbox Live Arcade, it's the iPhone that will at long last receive the final release. And, befitting the game's history, the full Amiga release is also imminent.


The forthcoming game is a puzzle platformer with an authentic historic feel and unique two-character gameplay. It features the puzzle elements of Maze of Galious with the multi-character control of Lost Vikings, along with the glass-smooth animation of Superfrog. The author indicates that the iPhone version features an original soundtrack, excellent graphics, and over a dozen large levels.

See the developer's trailer video for a look at the updated version.


[ Full HD version | Low Bandwidth version ]

Videos of the original Amiga demo version can be seen herehere, and here. Amiga screenshots are also available.

UPDATE: In putting together this post, we sought further information from the developer, but he got back to us a bit after the post went live. Shihab wants to make sure readers are aware that the iPhone version of Babylonian Twins is an entirely new game that borrows no graphics or audio from the Amiga version. He assures us that all aspects of the game have been enhanced specifically for the iPhone by a dedicated team (and this time around on a healthy budget) over the course of the game's six-month development cycle.

We're quite anxious to get our hands on the final product and will bring further news of the iPhone release of Babylonian Twins as we get it. Stay tuned.

  • HelperMonkey

    17 years working to release this game?.. That's some dedication. I hope it all turns out well for this guy.

    (I hear there will be a great update available in 2027.)
    (Also, I'm a jerk.)

  • HelperMonkey

    17 years working to release this game?.. That's some dedication. I hope it all turns out well for this guy.

    (I hear there will be a great update available in 2027.)
    (Also, I'm a jerk.)

  • Jas

    Gives me hope that Duke Nukem 4Ever will finally be released - on the iPhone :P

  • Jas

    Gives me hope that Duke Nukem 4Ever will finally be released - on the iPhone :P

  • Dimitris

    This looks like one really boring game.
    I wouldn't download it even if it was free.

  • Dimitris

    This looks like one really boring game.
    I wouldn't download it even if it was free.

  • http://www.mooedia.co.uk Tomchap

    MSX game Maze Of Galious. That game rocked big time. Loads of worlds to explore. Wish it was released (along with a whole host of other MSX games on the iPhone) Those games really stand the test of time!

  • http://www.mooedia.co.uk Tomchap

    MSX game Maze Of Galious. That game rocked big time. Loads of worlds to explore. Wish it was released (along with a whole host of other MSX games on the iPhone) Those games really stand the test of time!

  • munkee

    Reminds me of Alex Kidd. It looks great but I wonder if it's playable without tactile feedback of physical buttons.

  • munkee

    Reminds me of Alex Kidd. It looks great but I wonder if it's playable without tactile feedback of physical buttons.

  • khoosh

    Video teaser for the iPhone version is here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DZTHOy87Fkw

  • khoosh

    Video teaser for the iPhone version is here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DZTHOy87Fkw

  • Jason

    Beneath a Steel Sky was a day-and-date PC/Amiga release, so to describe it as an Amiga port isn't particularly correct, Blake!

    Likewise Worms was released (briefly) first on the Amiga, but other versions that came out on other platforms where far more definitive and the iPhone version is most obviously not an Amiga port.

    • Thaurin

      Yes, that bothered me as well... I always wanted an Amiga (had a C64 before moving on to PC), but I remember those from PC. I guess Blake's fanatism for the platform is showing. :)

      • spiffyone

        He's not the only one around here. :) It was one of those platforms that was far ahead of its time.

        Imagine, if you will, a platform that felt like it combined the good parts of what Windows came to be known for (games, for one) and what Mac has come to be known for (usage in art due to "ease of use" and program support)...all with a sort of openness that one feels with the Linux and BSD communities. Had it's own little quirks (Guru Meditation) but just felt...faster than Windows PCs at the time, and even Macs which ran on the same hardware.

        *sighs

        I wonder what the platform could've been had the mismanagement not killed it off in such a way. I know it's still kinda/sorta around now...but it ain't the same.

    • http://www.yourpersonalrobot.com your personal robot

      It was released for PC one year AFTER the Amiga release...
      1993 - Amiga
      1994 - PC

      • Yen

        A year is somehow a long time? Ooooookay!

      • http://www.yourpersonalrobot.com your personal robot

        In the world of computers it is, indeed.

  • Jason

    Beneath a Steel Sky was a day-and-date PC/Amiga release, so to describe it as an Amiga port isn't particularly correct, Blake!

    Likewise Worms was released (briefly) first on the Amiga, but other versions that came out on other platforms where far more definitive and the iPhone version is most obviously not an Amiga port.

    • Thaurin

      Yes, that bothered me as well... I always wanted an Amiga (had a C64 before moving on to PC), but I remember those from PC. I guess Blake's fanatism for the platform is showing. :)

      • spiffyone

        He's not the only one around here. :) It was one of those platforms that was far ahead of its time.

        Imagine, if you will, a platform that felt like it combined the good parts of what Windows came to be known for (games, for one) and what Mac has come to be known for (usage in art due to "ease of use" and program support)...all with a sort of openness that one feels with the Linux and BSD communities. Had it's own little quirks (Guru Meditation) but just felt...faster than Windows PCs at the time, and even Macs which ran on the same hardware.

        *sighs

        I wonder what the platform could've been had the mismanagement not killed it off in such a way. I know it's still kinda/sorta around now...but it ain't the same.

    • http://www.yourpersonalrobot.com your personal robot

      It was released for PC one year AFTER the Amiga release...
      1993 - Amiga
      1994 - PC

      • Yen

        A year is somehow a long time? Ooooookay!

      • http://www.yourpersonalrobot.com your personal robot

        In the world of computers it is, indeed.

  • Anmar Tawfik

    Great and good luck!

    • http://www.madmonkeymilitia.com Randy Greenback

      Wow, looks like some good retro platforming fun! It sounds like it was a labor of love. If this is like most other classic Amiga titles, it will be very challenging. I'll definitely be picking this up.

  • Anmar Tawfik

    Great and good luck!

    • http://www.madmonkeymilitia.com Randy Greenback

      Wow, looks like some good retro platforming fun! It sounds like it was a labor of love. If this is like most other classic Amiga titles, it will be very challenging. I'll definitely be picking this up.

  • chris

    yeah, this looks fun. but then i grew up with these. i love history, double bonus.; cant wait.:)

    chris.

  • chris

    yeah, this looks fun. but then i grew up with these. i love history, double bonus.; cant wait.:)

    chris.

  • http://www.babykeepsakebox.co.uk Baby Keepsake Box

    I had a few Amiga's years ago, A500, A500+ and A1200. I don't remember this game though - it reminds me of the original Prince of Persia. Might check it out for the iPhone though.

  • http://www.babykeepsakebox.co.uk Baby Keepsake Box

    I had a few Amiga's years ago, A500, A500+ and A1200. I don't remember this game though - it reminds me of the original Prince of Persia. Might check it out for the iPhone though.

  • kevin

    ANY game even remotely related to PERSIA interests me. cant WAIT for this game!!

  • kevin

    ANY game even remotely related to PERSIA interests me. cant WAIT for this game!!

  • Sheridan

    From the trailer, the scrolling is certainly not glass smooth!

  • Sheridan

    From the trailer, the scrolling is certainly not glass smooth!

  • spiffyone

    Custom hardware, and that beautiful for the time OS made Amiga a helluva platform for more than just games. Part of what Macs are known for nowadays is larger than average acceptance rates in the art world (photoediting, digital art, video, etc.), but Amiga was THE platform for that stuff in the late 80s/early 90s. That thing was a decade or so ahead of the rest of the industry. Too bad Commodore mismanagement led to its demise. Back in the day, AmigaOS >>> Windows AND Mac's OS...combined.

    • Dave

      That where the days... there are still things my old Amiga could do better than any OS now... What those developers could do with only 7Mhz and 512K of memory... And considering that my iPhone is now even more powerfull than my Amiga 1200/030 with a whopping 8Mb! :)

  • spiffyone

    Custom hardware, and that beautiful for the time OS made Amiga a helluva platform for more than just games. Part of what Macs are known for nowadays is larger than average acceptance rates in the art world (photoediting, digital art, video, etc.), but Amiga was THE platform for that stuff in the late 80s/early 90s. That thing was a decade or so ahead of the rest of the industry. Too bad Commodore mismanagement led to its demise. Back in the day, AmigaOS >>> Windows AND Mac's OS...combined.

    • Dave

      That where the days... there are still things my old Amiga could do better than any OS now... What those developers could do with only 7Mhz and 512K of memory... And considering that my iPhone is now even more powerfull than my Amiga 1200/030 with a whopping 8Mb! :)

  • PhagoCychotic

    This game looks like a lot of fun, right up my alley as a puzzle platformer. That trailer music is amazing! Will that be in the game too?

    • PAinimies

      "That trailer music is amazing!"

      I second that. They should make the soundtrack available for purchase.

  • PhagoCychotic

    This game looks like a lot of fun, right up my alley as a puzzle platformer. That trailer music is amazing! Will that be in the game too?

    • PAinimies

      "That trailer music is amazing!"

      I second that. They should make the soundtrack available for purchase.

  • armageddon

    very interesting game !

  • armageddon

    very interesting game !

  • kevin

    any1 no the release date for this game?

  • kevin

    any1 no the release date for this game?