Computer Gamer

5 Star Games
By Beau Jolly
Commodore 64/128

Published in Computer Gamer #22

Five Star Games

This is yet another compilation of games that have come out in the past year to tempt the Christmas buyer. This particular has five games on it from four companies and on two tapes.

Spindizzy from Electric Dreams was one of the later "Marble Madness"-type games, but was mixed with good problem-solving and maze aspects as well. The main idea of the game is to collect gems and map out the maze that you are in. The display is of the (now) traditional 3D isometric variety that you can pan around to reveal parts of screens that you wouldn't normally be able to see. The puzzles are very good and take some time to work out with variations in key/lock combinations and various kinds of actuators. The graphics are top quality and the animation is excellent.

This is the main game on this compilation, and is definitely way ahead of the others in quality. Except, perhaps, for the second best game on the tape - Who Dares Wins II, by Alligata.

This is a modification of the "Commando-type" of game where one intrepid soldier attempts to smash his way through whole armies of enemy soldiers in an attempt to free his buddies held hostage by the nasty, horrid enemy.

This game is probably better than the game that it originally copies, the layout of the screens is better, and instead of having to copy a coin-op game faithfully (difficult on any home computer, even one with good graphics like the Amstrad), the designers and programmers can take the capabilities of the computer into account when the whole thing gets put together. This results in a much better presented game that 'holds together' much better. A good choice for a compilation.

The second game on the tape is Three Weeks In Paradise, a problem-solving game with very colourful graphics. Find the objects, save the people, all good standard stuff. Screens go left to right and there are also the occasional exists into and out of the screen onto another screen. The game originally formed part of the series with Wally Week as the main character.

Zoids from Martech is a complex strategy game that was featured in some depth by Computer Gamer when it first came out. Based around the toys and TV series of the same name, it involves battling with vast robots in order to further the triumph of good over evil. Despite its rather odd subject matter and licensing, it is a very good game. Whether you will spend the long time required to get into it is another thing.

The last game on the compilation of Equinox by Mikro-Gen. This is a fairly ordinary ladders and ramps game with all the problem solving and dexterity tests that feature in this kind of game. It'll keep you occupied for a while and is a good, safe finisher for a compilation.

Like all compilations, you can't really fault them for value. This one is a bit different than most compilations in that the games on it are unlikely to be all in one owner's possession already, and there is a good mix, though the emphasis is definitely on the problem-solving aspect, with the exception of Who Dares Wins II.

Mike Roberts

Other Commodore 64 Game Reviews By Mike Roberts

  • Pitstop II Front Cover
    Pitstop II
  • Elektra Glide Front Cover
    Elektra Glide
  • Marble Madness Front Cover
    Marble Madness
  • Borrowed Time Front Cover
    Borrowed Time
  • Spindizzy Front Cover
  • Summer Games II Front Cover
    Summer Games II