Shahid Kamal Ahmad is working on a follow-up to his classic 8-bit game, Chimera. The original game was developed on a ZX Spectrum and ported to the C64, Atari 8-bit, Amstrad CPC – and for some reason*, the Watara Supervision.
In the original game you must explore a spaceship, which is on target to destroy earth, solving puzzles to ultimately set off the ship’s self-destruct mechanism and saving the planet. The game’s isometric view was inspired by Ultimate’s Knight Lore.
Ahmad has been attempting a Chimera sequel for some time. In 2010 he began working on Chimera 2010 to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the game, but was never completed.
Ahmad says on the itch.io page:
“This game is what I should have done next. I didn’t, and my life went very differently.
Not a bad turn, just not the turn I perhaps should have taken.
I’ve wanted to correct that mistake for decades, and well, never really committed.
I kept looking for permission, for funding, for the right time.
It never came.
It never does.
The time is always now.
Until I had the crazy idea of just launching whatever prototype work I have and then continuing to develop it for as long as I can.
And worse than the shame of showing early sketches with people who’ve learned from me watching, to actually ask for money (though that’s optional as you’ll see)
The game takes the assets from the ZX Spectrum version (for now) and I will in real time, continue from the point where I left off.
It might be rubbish.
I might not finish it.
Or I might make something special. “
You can check out the progress of Chimera 2 here, and download alpha versions for Windows, Mac (currently doesn’t seem to work on Monterey) and Linux (including the Steam Deck).
Ahmad has also launched Season 3 of his popular Twitter series, Code is Just, which chronicles his life as a coder in the eighties. You can read by clicking on the Twitter link below:
In the thread you can access a code which unlocks special features in the game. Ahmad says “…every day in my Code is Just thread, I’ll be inserting codes without warning. If you type “code ” then something will happen. You’ll get a new feature, or a new mini-level, or new mechanics, or well, let’s just see.
It’s mad. It’s absolutely mad, but I thought it was fun and the few people I mentioned it to thought it was great. So there you go.”
*Found the reason – “It even made its way onto the ill-fated SuperVision because I needed the money.”