Platoon (Commodore 64)

Platoon (Choice Software, 1987)

Platoon was released in 1987 for the Commodore 64 and various other platforms including the Amiga, Atari ST and NES. It is based on the movie of the same name. As a licensed game, this one is actually pretty decent which is unusual. This is an action game though it doesn’t really fit into one genre as it has different stages which play like different games.

The movie follows a squad of five soldiers during the Vietnam war. The game has four distinct stages that generally follow the movie. Each of these stages is almost like a completely separate game though each one is a progression in the same story line.

The first stage plays like a fairly typical side-scrolling action game. In addition to enemies on the ground, you will face obstacles like booby traps and air strikes. Each stage has one or more goals and in this stage you must destroy a bridge and find a village where you must locate various items.

The second stage is a first-person 3D game. In this stage you navigate a network of tunnels in order to find flares and a compass. Of course there are enemies to battle here as well.

Once you escape the tunnels, you settle down in a bunker where you must use the items you located in the previous stage. You now have a limited number of flares which must be used to locate attacking enemies before they can shoot you. Afterwards, you have to use the compass you found to navigate to a position safe from an incoming airstrike and your time is limited.

In the final stage, you face Sergeant Barnes. This stage is relatively simple but that doesn’t mean easy. You have to hit Barnes with five grenades before he kills you in your foxhole.

Overall, this is an above average action game for the Commodore 64 and I think it was decent on the other systems as well. Most licensed games are extremely bad so even though this one probably isn’t going to rank in anyone’s top ten, it is stands well above other movie-based games. This one hasn’t been re-released as far as I know so you will have to track down an original or use emulation to play it. Screen shots above are from the Commodore 64 version.