Burntime is a strategy-RPG game developed and published by Max Design for MS-DOS and Amiga in 1993 for Europe and 1994 in North America.
Max Design was founded in Austria by the brothers Albert and Martin Lasser and Wilfried Reiter. It was dissolved in 2001, not before having made cult games like 1869 or the mighty Anno series (see Anno 1602: Creation of a New World).
The game is set in a post-apocalyptic version of the earth we know, where much of humanity is extinct and monsters created by the toxic waste that are now scattered around the planet, attempting to kill the survivors. After choosing a character class, the player must conquer what is left of the world and try to survive in the process.
As the adventure begins, the player's focus is on survival. The first objective is to be prepared for the journeys in the desolate lands, where there is always a need to take enough water and food. Without warnings, the game can end with the main character and his followers dying of thirst.
The resources are not only the main impediments to the rest of the adventure. The protagonist must fight against an endless number of monsters that will not allow him to advance. Generating a great legion of companions is fundamental. The hero of the adventure can hire three different character types, all of them called mercenaries and classified as doctors, technicians, and fighters. Each one has his unique abilities and benefits. Mercenaries will follow the hero on the map, and with enough of them, a location is considered conquered, and the game is one step closer to being won.
The visual part of the title is perfectly carried out to portray as dystopic and apocalyptic an environment as possible. The warm color palette, with backgrounds made mainly of orange, denotes that the land that has become a graveyard is uninhabitable. On the other hand, the extreme saturation in the colors generates an aura of imposition that perfectly develops the "Mad Max" style they tried to give to the release.
The sound, likewise, plays an essential role in this feeling. While they rotate in gentle sounds that foresee the appearance of something terrible and directly invasive and almost violent songs, The tunes could be the protagonist of a horror or mystery game.
The reviews were mixed; the critics considered it more than anything as a product that can appeal to the players most evoked to the strategy games. Furthermore, they also criticized and, in part, congratulated its difficulty. All this makes Burnout an attractive challenge for any gamer who wants to face a real challenge, where he has to think a lot and is willing to lose a few times. The question is: are you up to the challenge?