The reviews on this site are the text versions of the videos on my YouTube channel. The text based reviews use (if at all) very little pictures. Please follow the link to the corresponding video in order to see in game graphics.
Barnyard Blaster was made in 1987 by Atari for their 8 Bit computers family and the Atari 7800.
In the game's story the player and the player's grandfather put all financial assets into buying a farm. On the farm they realize that there is vermin everywhere. They fear that these critters will endanger their existence and start shooting on them.
The game consists of three types of levels which will loop in increasing difficulty: A Shooting training on a fence, shooting vegetable and critters on a cornfield and finally shooting animals in a barn. After every level another shooting training takes place, in which grandpa will throw bottles for the player to shoot. These bottle throwing levels are just for bonus points and don't have an accuracy requirement. Shooting grandpa will end these bonus segments.
The player uses a semiautomatic gun with infinite capacity but limited stock of ammunition. Shooting objects will be rewarded with points. Most objects will yield more points, the sooner they are shot. The only exception are the spinning bottles. In order to reach the next level the player has to meet an increasing accuracy threshold. Sadly this requirement is nontransparent and can't be found in the manual. The game is over if the player doesn't shoot accurate enough. Then the final score and a title are displayed, which depends solely on how many levels were passed. Beating level 36 will yield an actual ending in which the vermin leaves the farm.
The 8 bit computers family game is very similar to the 7800 game. [little pause] The graphics vary a bit in color, but are mostly the same. From now on until the end of the video I am switching to solely 7800 footage.
Personally I don't like the game. The graphics are nice and the sound effects are well made. Sadly the bullet spread is very high and the accuracy is bad. There is no calibration screen. Considering that the whole game is solely about accuracy, as a high score alone will take the player nowhere, this is a problem. I tried both, a Sega Light Phaser and an Atari XG-1. The game has a hard time locating the shots of both.
The box art looks really nice. The hand drawn art represents the game very well.
I own the game for the 8 bit computers family. In order to play it on my 7800 I ran it from a rewritable game cartridge made by Mateos. He sells these masterpieces is his web store, where he also offers similar carts for other systems such as the Gamate hand held.