A review of the new video Amiga magazine

By Steve Duff, Contributing Editor, sduff@wolfenet.com

Well, here's Jason Compton's new baby. I'm sure everyone reading this knows of Jason Compton and Amiga Report. I read a great deal of Amiga Report even before I became an Amigan, and to say the least, Jason's writing in AR, and in particular his outstanding editorials, did much to convince me that I was making, and have made, a wise move. The only complaint I have about AR these days is that it doesn't come out often enough!

Legacy may be among the reasons why. Legacy has already failed to make its three issues in '97 goal, and I doubt we'll see five for '98. Oh well, that's life.

Probably the first question to ask about the Legacy video magazine is: how well does a team renowned for an AmigaGuide/HTML zine fare in the video world? The short answer is: pretty damned well.

The tape begins by introducing us to the team. Besides Jason, there is Katherine Nelson, Anne Willmore, and the intriguingly named Bohus Blahut. After this, we're swept into a look at the Midwest Amiga Expo, narrated in rapid-fire style by Jason himself. From the beginning, we know we're in good hands. The style is professional but not overly serious. The highlight is a speech by Petro himself. It was the speech we've all read, but for those of us who've been unable to travel, it was good to hear Petro himself say it.

After some ads, Jason swings into a series of game reviews. One instantly realizes that Legacy is the ultimate game review zine. With games actually playing full-screen, you really get an idea of what the game is about and whether you'd have any desire to own it. Jason is at his best reviewing the old MicroProse hit UFO:Enemy Unknown, which seems to be the start of the X-COM:Apocalypse series now running on the PC. Also included are reviews of Silent Service II and Formula 1:Grand Prix, which looks really smashing.

Following this is a newsbreak ably anchored by Jason, though amusingly, his voice seems to crack every now and then while searching for a high 'O'. Hot on the heels of this is an interesting demo of Pan Canvas by Ola Olsson, which is designed to work with ImageFX. Indeed, an ImageFX/Catalyzer ad is next, and mighty impressive it is. It sure made me want to figure out that wonky ImageFX interface.......... :>

A highlight for me was the overview of various Amiga 3D apps. For the first time we see a face besides Jason's, as Anne Willmore does the intro and outro for this section (she also edited the video, on both a Draco and a Toaster machine!).

Katherine Nelson shines in her look at POV-Ray and Imagine. One thing which distinguished her presentation is that she actually produced work in both apps, so we could see the results. Jason handles Tornado 3D, the exciting new app out of Italy, which I'll put on my software list this year. Finally, Bohus Blahut, an ImageFX guru, reviews Cinema 4D with the gravity of Walter Cronkite describing the Tet Offensive. It caps an excellent and informative section where my only complaint is that they might have focused a bit longer on the imagery, some of which was spectacular.

Another Jason-anchored newsbreak is followed by an example of the 'Baby, The Rain Must Fall' effect. Specifically, Deathbed Vigil material from Dave Haynie. This material was not included in The Deathbed Vigil, which I've never seen and which may well be a fine piece of work. What's included here, however, is damn near lethal, just a bunch of aimless chit-chat among occasionally wild-eyed ex-CBM employees. And it goes on for a long time.

Aside from that blemish, Legacy is a solid effort -- well-edited and well-presented by all concerned. Most of all, it's fun. As an Amigan, I wouldn't be without it. Highly Recommended.