Sinclair User


Gemini Wing
By Mastertronic Plus
Spectrum 48K/128K/+2

 
Published in Sinclair User #107

Gemini Wing

Subtitled "Die Mutant Alien Scum", Gemini is rather a strange shoot-'em-up, obviously designed someone little Japanese at Tecmo who had indulged in much raw fish or suchi, the night before.

It's a vertical scroller, it's a bolt-on-weaponer, and it's an end-of-level nasty type. It's also an aliens against-Earth-men effort, but this time we're classed as the nasties, as the civilised races of the galaxy gang up on the insufferable Earthmen to put an end to their crude behaviour once and for all. For some reason not understood by Earth scientists, dead aliens drop anything up to eight Gunballs which you can pick up to boost your weapon status, unlike some games, in which weapon bonuses are few and far between, in Gemini Wing there are dozens of the buggers, but the catch is that you use them up very quickly when you activate your extra weapons. These include three-way fire, alien-seeking missiles, FireWall, speed-up, Circle of Death, Windscreen Wiper of Death (!?), extra life, and points bonuses Gunballs trail behind you like a tail, and are used up in the order they appear; in two-player mode, you can pinch your partner's gun-balls if he has more than three, but think how unpopular that will make you. The graphics in Gemini Wing are rather small and squinty; smaller aliens tend to blend into the background, while end-of-level nasties like the giant walrus (?!?!?! again!) are nicely depicted and hard to zap. Not a bad effort, then, probably as good a version of the coin-op as you could expect, but in order to include all the action of the original, the graphics have had to be squashed into a scale which makes gamepiay 'difficult' rather than just challenging, if you see what I mean.

Overall Summary

Unusual, imaginative, but slightly eye-straining vertical scroller; worth a squint.

Chris Jenkins

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