By Imagine
Amstrad CPC464

Published in Computer & Video Games #63


The arcades have proved a gold mine recently for software houses looking for new games. Galivan, however, proves that not all coin-ops happily make the transition to computer.

To be honest, I don't remember seeing Galivan in the arcades, but Imagine says these conversions are quite faithful to the original. All I know is that certain parts of the Amstrad game gave me severe eyestrain and a headache.

Some of the colours are so garish that they lance straight to the back of the eyeball. Ruined reviewer's retina isn't fun. Add to that some pretty violent juddering instead of scrolling and you've got a game I found very hard to play for more than a few seconds. The same lurching also afflicts the Spectrum version (reviewed last month).


The Commodore version is much easier on the eye and, if I'm forced to make a choice, gets my vote as the version to play. At least the game scrolls smoothly.

Galivan, the character you control, is the lone surviving member of the Cosmo police. His task is to rid the Techno Caverns of the Planet Cynep of androids, robots and various other lifeforms, including multiheaded demons. Not the most original plot, I hear you cry, but in the bop, bam, boom world of shoot 'em ups that really doesn't matter. It's the action that counts, and the slick way it's carried out. For me Galivan doesn't have enough action or slickness to make it a great conversion.

As Galivan moves around the screens he encounters power pyramids. These boost his energy and will give him more powerful weapons, ranging from a blue bolt neutraliser or arc blaster. For a lot of the time he must use his fists to get out of trouble.


Galivan involves a lot of manic, and panic, movements mixed up with frantic zapping to keep the nasties down. But Amstrad owners beware - it's painful on the peepers.

Your energy level is represented by a bar on the screen. Mine always seemed to be at an all-time low and that meant he has to talk with his fists to survive. It's a shame I've never been really good with giving people a swift one two and a mouthful of the knuckle sarnie.

Of the three formats Galivan has been released on so far, it's Commodore users who get the best conversion. But even that one isn't exactly the bee's knees.

Amstrad Scores

Graphics 60% Sound 70% Value 70% Playability 70% Overall 68%

C64 Scores

Graphics 80% Sound 80% Value 70% Playability 70% Overall 75%