By Kixx
Commodore 64/128

Published in Zzap #68


Earth is under threat from Hsiffies - 'nasty yellow, buck-toothed, slimy aliens, who cheat at poker and jump red lights'. They also want to blow Earth up, which is of course the classic excuse for a shoot-'em-up and Stavros Fasoulas doesn't let us down. The follow-up to Sanxion beams that horizontally-scrolling format into space and adds plenty of power-up weaponry.

A novel twist is that the power-up icons are lethal grey blocks which kill on contact - unless you've destroyed a formation or two. In the case some of the icons turn blue and can be collected. Speed-ups, multiple fire, protective satellite, shield and a time slow-down feature are all available to the thrifty, fast-acting gamesplayer. But don't get too attached to them, they all face away after a set time!

Back in Issue 24, Delta won qualified support from the Zzap! team, Julian Rignall raved: "The graphics are superlative, the effects are stunning and the music is nothing short of amazing... you can't get much better within the horizontally-scrolling format." Steve Jarratt agreed the programming was top-notch, but "the gameplay... is a little on the weak side - learning the attack formations is essential but more often than not monotonous."

The overall mark was 74%, which doesn't seem too unfair now. True, there's 32 levels, some great Rob Hubbard music (which gets better later on), but memorizing the route is essential. Missing a power-up can often be fatal and while the graphics are good, including some impressive Salamander-style flames, they're not outstanding with primary coloured enemies. Nevertheless for shoot-'em-up fans, this is a quality, if unoriginal product with plenty of variety. Robin loves it too, so worth a look at this price.