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Video Game / Seek And Destroy

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Seek And Destroy is a Vertical Shoot 'em Up developed by Vision Software and published by Safari Software (A one-time division of Epic Games, then Epic Megagames) in 1996, for the PC and Amiga. Rather then a strictly vertical scrolling style, you are able to go anywhere in the level at your own discretion, similarly to Desert Strike but lacking Isometric Projection.

It's the far-off future year of 1998, following a nuclear World War III. You are are one of the last Vehicular Combat Troopers of the North American Armed Forces, on a mission to destroy various bases belonging to an unnamed, but very well-equipped South American faction. Whilst in their base killing their dudes, you sometimes must also rescue your dudes who the enemy has taken hostage, drop off and pick up a saboteur, and other objectives. You are usually tasked with destroying a specific target, but there's nothing stopping you from wiping the entire base off the map.


You have the option of using either an Apache attack helicopter or an unidentified (but awesome) battle tank, each with distinct weaponry. The Apache has six weapon bays and the tank four, as well as a separate "special" weapon bay, of which there are three unique ones for either vehicle. These bays can be reconfigured before each mission to hold different amounts of ammunition for each weapon, though the first bay always has the chain gun. You could have a whole bunch of ammo for one weapon or limited ammo but lots of different weapons, or any combination thereof. You can also tweak the specs of your craft, tipping it towards Mighty Glacier or Fragile Speedster as per your play style.

The game is divided up into five chapters called "Operations", each consisting of four to five levels, with different objectives and increasingly difficult enemies as you go along. Though the game lacks Bosses of any kind, you do get large groups of enemies thrown at you constantly in later levels.


This should not be confused with the 2002 PlayStation 2 game by Takara, or the Metallica song.

Seek And Destroy provides examples of:

  • America Saves the Day: Justified, if only because seemingly no one else can be arsed to fight the bad guys.
  • Attract Mode
  • Big, Bulky Bomb: One of the Apache's special weapons is the Mega Missile, which fires a single really big, really explosive missile.
  • Camera Screw: For some reason, your view in the tank orients to the body rather then the turret, so good luck shooting anything behind you.
  • Code Name: The player is "Apache One" while in the chopper and "Teen Yankee" in the tank.
  • Cool Tank: The playable tank is an engine of raw destruction, what with it's triple-barreled main gun. It actually only fires one shell to begin with, but can be upgraded to fire more, and with an auto-loader for even More Dakka. It's a little awkward to drive the thing though, and you'll need to master the turret rotation controls to get the most out of it. You are forced to use it in one or two missions where the Apache is "out of commission".
  • Danger Deadpan: Your pilot occasionally speaks, and he is most definitely this. Other characters, presumably support staff, are also this.
  • Emergency Weapon: The basic chain gun does little damage, but has unlimited ammo and both vehicles always have it equipped. It can be upgraded from near-useless to viable secondary weapon.
  • Every 10,000 Points: Get enough points, get a 1-Up. Pretty standard.
  • Exactly What It Says on the Tin: Though the fact that all enemies and structures appear on your radar kind of eliminates the "seek" part. Also in the chapter names: "Operation Heatwave" is a desert zone, "Operation Snowstorm" is an arctic zone, "Operation Monsoon" is a jungle zone, you get the idea.
  • Exploding Barrels: Even better: exploding fuel dumps and nuclear storage containers.
  • Helicopter Needs Fuel Badly: Both vehicles have a limited supply of fuel. If you run out, you blow up. You can find more fuel in the field, however, as a Power-Up. If you find a fuel pickup just before you run out (Or find an armor pickup when near death) your pilot says, "Just in time." The tank is slightly more fuel-efficient then the Apache.
  • Kill It with Fire: The Apache has access to napalm bombs that cause damage in a line, as well as a star-shaped blast super napalm bomb as one of it's special weapons. The tank has a flamethrower.
  • Land Mine Goes "Click!": Watch out for these while driving the tank. However, it goes both ways, as this is one of the tank's special weapons. Guaranteed to blow any land enemy right the hell into orbit.
  • Macross Missile Massacre: Your Apache starts out being able to fire a steady stream of dumb-fire rockets, but this can be upgraded to two and then four with each shot.
  • Pinball Scoring
  • Power-Up: Pick-ups include armor, ammuntion, fuel and shiny medals which serve as currency for the purchasing of upgrades between missions.
  • Stuff Blowing Up: Holy crap.
  • Support Power: You have a "Fire Support" ability, though it's upgraded and used like any other weapon and behaves like a Smart Bomb. There are three levels: Offshore artillery, chopper support, and a supersonic air-strike, each doing more damage then the last.
  • There Is No Kill Like Overkill: If you blow up enough enemies and buildings in quick succession, the word "Overkill" appears on your screen and you get a point bonus.
  • Videogame Cruelty Potential: You can run over enemy infantry with the tank. Or land on them with the Apache.
  • Weak Turret Gun: More then half the enemies in this game are fixed emplacements. They start out as this, but quickly become Goddamned Bats, a few graduating to Demonic Spiders.


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