Cisco Heat (Mirrorsoft) Review | Amstrad Action - Everygamegoing

Amstrad Action

Cisco Heat
By Image Works
Amstrad CPC464

Published in Amstrad Action #76

Cisco Heat

"This is Murray Walker coming to you live from the streets of San Francisco. The place, that is - not the TV series. Today is the day of the annual police race, and we will be focusing on one driver, AA Reader, in this contest."

"The race takes place over five stages. Competitors have to whizz through the 'Frisco traffic, trying not to kill too many members of the public in the process. AA Reader is in the red car right at the back of the field, and the first stage is about to start..."

"And there they go! It's blue car in the lead, followed by blue car, blue car, blue car, blue car, blue car and blue car. Then red car."

Cisco Heat

"And look at Reader, steaming through there. Into fifth place. Fourth. Third. Second. And look at that! Look at that! Reader's crashed straight into the back of blue car. What a mess that's going to leave. Er, no, it's not a crash actually. Reader's just locked bumpers with the other car and stopped moving. Press your horn, Reader. That's better. There's only two gears on these cars - high and low. And a maximum speed of 175mph."

"And oh I say! What happened there? A rectangle with a few letters on it appeared, then disappeared, then Mr. Reader's car went flying in the air. What on earth could that have been? Oh. Our technical advisers reckon that was a tram. Er..."

"Apparently some viewers have complained of a jerky, slowly-updating picture. No, it's not a technical problem we're trying to sort out. It's supposed to be like that, unfortunately."

Cisco Heat

"Oh my goodness! A yellow cab pulled out in front of Mr. Reader, and he veered to one side of it but still crashed. This is really most odd. I can't make head nor tail of it..."

"And... well... yes, and it seems Reader has got through the first two stages but run out of time on the third. James Hunt is with him at track-side. Come in James..."

"Thank you Murray. Well. AA, what do you think of the race?"

Cisco Heat

"Well it was a load of tosh, wasn't it, really? It was all too slow and jerky. I was steering round objects and still crashing into them. And trams and other cars kept vanishing briefly at the worst moments. It did my head in."

"The most vital aspects of any race are speed and responsive controls. This one yelled out at me its total lack of either. The first two stages were dead easy - I finished both with ten seconds plus to spare. But it then got ludicrously hard. And practice is unlikely to make any difference, because it doesn't seem skill comes into it in a contest as lackadaisical as this one."

"The cars are really badly designed, all blocky. And the beep of my horn, which was supposed to get other cars out of the way, was so pathetic it nearly drove me mad. It takes a lot of effort to produce a race that is totally unengaging. So I suppose you have to admire someone's effort."

Cisco Heat

"Well there you have it Murray, straight from the horse's mouth." .

Second Opinion

I liked Cisco Heat more than Adam did, but I didn't like it much. It's just too jerky and vague to cut it as a racing game, though the car sprite is nice and it's commendably faithful to the arcade version.

First Day Target Score

Get stuck on Level Three.

The Verdict

Cisco Heat

Graphics 63%
Is that a from or a toasted waffle?

Sonics 40%
Irritating in-game tune and dodgy fx

Grab Factor 62%
Looks at first glance like a reasonable racing game...

Staying Power 34%
...then you find out the truth.

Overall 38%
Mirrorsoft has turned out some decent games recently. This isn't one of them.

Adam Peters

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