Your Sinclair1st August 1991
Published in Your Sinclair #68
I remember this one! Way back in the mists of time, when the SAM Coupe was still no more than a SAM hatchback and Sir Clive Sinclair was dating Bernadette (yes, that long ago!), US Gold brought this out as a full price £9.99 game. Some raved about it, others raved at it, still others said "Just what the hell does it mean in the Grand Scheme of Everything anyway?". But, far more importantly, what did YS say? I can't remember.
The basic idea is to fight your way (and a friend can fight his way too if you're in two-player mode) through the four Forgotten Worlds (planets that have been occupied and emptied of life by the Grand Baddy) and kill three demigods to get to Emperor Bios, the God of Destruction. Knock him off and you've finished the game. As with so many shoot-'em-ups, of course, when translated into English this reads "go away and blast the crap out of anyone and anything you see - and don't come back until one of the sides in this little war is extinct". On the way, of course, you can pick up money left by dead baddies (it's called Zennies - isn't that what they had in Black Tiger?) and use it to buy bigger and better weapons in the shops half way through each level.
Standard shoot-'em-up material, you might say, but the slight 'rush-job' feel to it meant it wasn't quite good enough for a full priced game. Which means it makes for a much more compensating budget buy. Featuring all the normal, um, features of a mega-amazing sideways blast, and more! Full colour, shops with add-on weapons, 128K music, eight-way firing, two (count them - two!) players at once and, best of all, no brain power needed at all - just blow everything away. It's quite brill, really, although the slightly Wacko Jacko control system (i.e. you can't fire and move at the same time or you'll end up twirling all over the place and pointing the wrong way round) is a bit of a prob. Not the best re-released shoot-'em-up ever, but still a promising contender. Has Christmas come early this year? [Er, no. It's still summer. - Ed]