A Christmas Miracle occurred in early August when it was announced that Atari had finally calmed down a bit and is working with Llamasoft to release an updated, thoroughly enhanced version of TxK for PS4, Xbox One, and PC as Tempest 4000. A notable lack of images or video came with the announcement, though, meaning that anyone wanting to talk about it had to use old TxK images to make their articles not look like a dull wall of text. While the picture problem cleared up fairly quickly, up until now there hasn’t been a scrap of video to be seen. Now there’s a good five minutes to watch, and if the game isn’t being played particularly skillfully (why would the player let all those powerups go floating away!?) it’s good to hear the driving techno beat and see the familiar enemies crawl up the web.
“Familiar” is a relative term, of course. Fans of TxK will instantly notice that the somewhat familiar enemies of that game have been replaced with the classic Tempest creatures, but with the modified behaviors of TxK. The flower-things, for example, only ever used to grow up the stalks that acted as level spikes for when you travel down the web. In TxK, once the stalk had grown, they hopped off and started wandering around before floating up towards you, and that hasn’t changed for Tempest 4000 despite the art makeover. That doesn’t mean this is just TxK with a reskin, though. Tempest 4000 is polished and rebalanced, and given a nice technical makeover to run in full 4K on any system that supports that output. Admitted, on PC that might mean you’ll need some good graphic muscle, but work is proceeding and requirements are still being nailed down. Even with a more modest system, though, Tempest 4000 is looking to be an incredible addition to the series when it launches by year’s end.