Big Box 2 (Beau-Jolly) Review | Zzap - Everygamegoing

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Big Box 2
By Beau Jolly
Commodore 64/128

 
Published in Zzap #92

Another big one chasing your Christmas dosh! Serious bargain or blatant attempt at fooling parents into buying sub-standard games? Ian "Out Of His Box" Osborne decides...

Big Box 2

Beau Jolly get the prize for quantity - thirty games for under twenty quid isn't to be sneezed at! Even at less than a quid a game, it's quality that counts. Will this one by a Christmas cracker or a seventeen-pound turkey? Only one way to find out...

Mega Apocalypse

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A Crazy Comets-inspired outing par excellence. Nothing special on paper, brilliant graphics, sound and animation drag it out of the average and into great game city. Bloomin' old (1987), but don't let that put you off!

Lords Of Midnight

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From the dawn of time, Mike Singleton's classic adventure/strategy game is still one of the best things ever to grace an eight-bit machine. Containing a zillion-odd locations, and umpteen-squillion pictures, this one'll keep you up 'til way past midnight!

Guardian 2

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There's nothing here you won't have seen before - on a Williams early-eighties coin-op to be precise! Guardian 2 is a standard Defender clone, but lacks the speed of its arcade namesake. Don't let that put you off though, it still kicks bottom.

Split Personalities

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Another winner! Domark's brilliant puzzler has you re-arranging famous fizzogs in a sort of sliding puzzle thingie, but with power-ups, hazards, bonuses, and everything else you'd expect from a happening headscratcher. Another timeless old classic that still looks fresh and new.

Dan Dare

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As arcade adventures go, Dan Dare's pretty damn daring! Developed on the C64 (no Speccy port here), it makes excellent use of its sound and graphic capabilities. Highly recommended.

Cauldron II

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Another arcade adventure, this one hasn't stood the test of time. In these Dizzy-dominated days it appears a little pedestrian and tame - it's still pretty good, just not as blinding as it was when first released.

Barbarian II

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Here's one for the mappers - as well as excellent graphics and animation, it also features a world to explore! The huge range of moves make it tricky at first, and too many enemies fall for one particular move, but it's still one of the deepest beat-'em-ups around.

Sanxion

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This horizontal-scrolling blaster isn't as awe-inspiring as when it was first released, but it's still worth a quick blast. I can't see anyone coming back too often though - while not a bad game in its own right, it's been overtaken by several better ones since.

Driller

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Arguably one of the most important programs of all time, Driller was the first ever Freescape game and revolutionised 3D programming. Not as polished as later Freescape games (Total Eclipse, Castle Master, etc), but it's still well worth a look, if only for its historical value.

Insects In Space

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If Guardian 2 is an accurate Defender clone, Insects In Space is a blinding update! Unlike Guardian 2, it doesn't lack the speed of the coin-op, and it also features a wacky power-up system! A well-deserved classic, this one's really not to be missed.

Delta

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Not the best sideways-scrolling shoot-'em-up, but a damned fine game nonetheless! Delta features one of the spookiest soundtracks ever, and it's worth a quick blast just for that!

Orion

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Reasonably entertaining blaster. The graphics and animation are embarrassing, but what the heck?

Battle Valley

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Precursor to the brilliant Silkworm, guide a tank or chopper through sideways-scrolling enemy territory in one of the best blasters of yesteryear! Indispensible, even if you've already got Silkworm!

Snare

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Snare's one of those games that you play for hours without realising - you settle down for a quiet blast, and before you know it, it's Tuesday! A typical puzzler, it's simple to play but frustratingly addictive nonetheless - highly recommended.

Iridis Alpha

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Jeff Minter at his barmy best - a great game that no self-respecting C64 owner should be without!

Maze Mania

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Painter meets Pac-man, but they don't get along too well. This one didn't impress on its first release and certainly doesn't now.

Also Featuring

  1. Zoids
  2. Heatseeker
  3. Ocean Conqueror
  4. Firelord
  5. Hunter's Moon
  6. Gribby's Day Out
  7. Defenders Of The Earth
  8. Anarchy
  9. Eliminator
  10. Eagles
  11. Tunnel Vision
  12. Que-Dex
  13. Thunderforce
  14. Alleykat

Conclusion

Reviewing Big Box 2 is like greeting an old friend - all the early Eighties classics are here, and at this price, we can exclude the odd dud. A worthy winner and the perfect purchase for those who'll be getting a C64 for Christmas.

Ian Osborne

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