It had to be very impressive, just it is watching screenshots. An amazing discovery by GamesThatWerent
“Robocop meets Marble Madness is a perfect description.”, developer Richard Costello told Atari Compendium back in 2016. “It was very heavy on graphics, which as you mentioned were gorgeous. They were the best bit.”. On graphics duty was the talented artist Kevin (Kev) Bulmer, who sadly we were unable to talk to about his wonderful artwork in this feature, as he tragically passed away back in 2011 at the far too young age of 49.
“After playing it a fair bit I got bored, so I commented that perhaps within the game Ramrod should stop getting bored by listening to music.”, he began. “We needed a control panel and I had just bought a big Yamaha HiFi (still got it actually) and Kev used my tuner & CD drive as inspiration for the control panel complete with eject buttons and LED display. It was beautiful, as everything Kev did was, but again – all a bit random as you can imagine.”
Ironically, the general concept itself grew into having an aim of ensuring your character didn’t get bored, by navigating the isometric landscape and avoiding enemies, collecting coins to play on the coin-op machines scattered on the levels. If boredom levels got too high, you could buy cans of Pepsi to give you more time as well as find CD’s to play in the CD player to keep your character happy.
On each level there were 4 arcade machines which Ramrod entered by standing in front of them, having collected a token / coin he would then enter the arcade machine TRON style to play in a sub game. These were themed along the lines of Space Invaders, Motos, Defender and Asteroids with Ramrod themed graphics. Internally they were called:
Gun (Space Invaders)