Psychedelia

Retro Gamer - - THE MAKING OF: BATALYX -

If you needed any more ev­i­dence that 1985 was Jeff’s ‘Year of Ex­per­i­men­ta­tion’, his only other full re­lease that year be­sides Batalyx was Psychedelia, a user-con­trolled light synth. A fairly full ver­sion of it ap­pears here and acts as a groovy kind of pause mode. “I loved Psychedelia so much I wanted to chuck a ver­sion in,” en­thuses Jeff, “so if you get stressed out play­ing the other games, you can hit that but­ton and chill out for a while. Not ev­ery­one might have thought to buy Psychedelia when it came out… I mean, when I first wrote it, I wanted to give it away be­cause I thought the idea was too good to be sold. Too pure to com­mer­cialise!” There’s no com­ple­tion icon for this sub­game, but it is a lovely way to take a break from the blast­ing and ap­pre­ci­ate that part of Jeff’s ge­nius is look­ing be­yond the tra­di­tional idea of what con­sti­tutes a ‘game’. “There are par­al­lels to I, Ro­bot and the doo­dle mode they had in there,” he ex­plains. “You could choose to play the game or play the ‘ungame’. I re­ally like that idea and this was me say­ing, ‘You can play with these graph­ics and make nice stuff!’ When I first in­vented, or dis­cov­ered, Psychedelia, I got the feel­ing I could re­ally do some­thing with and it went on to be­come Trip-a-tron and all the vi­su­al­i­sa­tion stuff for the Xbox. It was some­thing I’d never thought of do­ing with a com­puter be­fore – a light syn­the­siser to mu­sic. It blew me away.”

» [C64] Jeff says he “dis­cov­ered more than in­vented” the idea of the light synth and has re­vis­ited the con­cept over the years.

» [C64] Chillax ev­ery­one and dig those crazy pat­terns in this un­ortho­dox take on the pause mode.

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