Publisher: Top Ten
Machine: Commodore 64/128

Published in Zzap #36


Following a Moldavian coup, the staff of the country's embassy are under siege. As Joe Starbuck, the player controls a helicopter with which to collect essential supplies and drop them (by pressing the space bar - a fact not related in the instructions) onto the embassy's roof. If the supplies are collected but not delivered, the mission is deemed a failure.

The screen scrolls horizontally from right to left, displaying landscape features, enemy gun positions and helicopters. Contact with any of these or any of the enemy bullets results in the loss of one of three lives. An information panel at the foot of the screen displays the score, suppllies delivered and number of lives remaining.


I don't know whose top ten this game is in, but it's horrendous with a capital 'H'. It would appear that some clever fellow has managed to find the secret to time travel, and taken the poor games player back about six years, judging by the awful graphics, which were the focus of some considerable mirth among the team.


The awful matchstick men, choppers and tanks decorate a landscape that is infantile and quite unforgivable. Sound consists of a weedy tune on the intro screen, and totally unimpressive sound effects during play.

The gameplay itself is minimal, as even from the start, Helidrop proves quite difficult to actually play and, in the light of the horrible graphics, doesn't do much to make the unfortunate purchaser even try. Avoid this game at all costs: even at a couple of quid you would be wasting your money.


Every aspect of this game is basic in the extreme. From the title screen through to the high score table, everything is very poorly executed. Gameplay is terribly simple and echoed by the tawdry graphics: monochrome sprites move in hopelessly predictable directions across aesthetically retarded landscapes.


The rotor blades offer about the only decent sound effect since the explosions are stupidly inappropriate. Presentation is patronising, with its ridiculous pink hand indicating 'Drop Supplies Here' and a large arrow on the landscape pointing downwards. However, the major criticism is the inconsistency in the difficulty level: it ranges from moronically simple to frustratingly impossible.

This transforms an already weak game into an abysmal one. If it's meant to be a semi-comical homage to some past genre, I didn't find it very funny.


Presentation 9%
Inaccurate instructions, weak attract sequence and no options.


Graphics 7%
Incredibly bad throughout.

Sound 18%
Reasonable helicopter noise but pathetic explosions.

Hookability 22%
Basic presentation and poor graphics match the appalling gameplay.

Lastability 8%
Tedious and unrewarding gameplay dispel any addictive qualities

Overall 11%