Somewhere in the mists of time and space, someone is changing our future by altering our past. An extinct primeval entity is being summoned through the barriers of time by a fanatical sect whose aim is to disrupt the future balance of power.
You are the sole survivor of a once-elite time corps, and you have been summoned to destroy this evil threat. The battle takes place in a once-thriving small town in the middle of nowhere - where there's a big problem. The locals aren't all that keen on time warriors and time lords, and they tend to get a mite upset at the sight of the multicoloured scarf and the police box.
But your mission is essential, and among your heavy armour and weapons you have a revolutionary energy-conversion kit that will turn harmless mortal objects such as lemons and worms into ultra-powerful weapons. (Some of the weapons don't last very long, though.)
The evil conspirators can be unveiled by destroying hostile busts - different ones on every level - which sometimes tire at you. Destroying a bust earns you a piece of a special jigsaw puzzle; collect six pieces of the jigsaw and an evil being becomes visible. This terrible entity is then forced to attack you - and this is your chance to weaken the monstrosity and repel it before moving on to another era and another enemy.
Joysticks: Cursor, Kempston, Sinclair
Graphics: well-defined and colourful
Sound: a couple of tunes and perfunctory FX
Options: definable keys
Nick ... 76%
'Hysteria is the right name for this game, it's so frustrating when you get savagely kilted. The game layout is very similar to Ghosts 'n' Goblins and the colour scrolling works quite well despite occasional clash. The gradually disappearing bust which shows your remaining strength is a neat idea, like the icons. Hysteria is a superb game with plenty of depth.'
Ricky ... 80%
'Graphically superb and well-animated, with some beautifully detailed characters, Hysteria is an addictive and playable game. The screen display seems well thought-out: there's never any confusion, whether you want to know your energy level, how many more pieces to collect, or whatever. Though Hysteria doesn't offer a long-term challenge, it'll certainly provide a lot of frantic fun for a while.'
Ben ... 78%
'At first I was well put off by Hysteria's resemblance to Cobra. Basically it's like the Ocean game tailed up with a few extra features; the graphical style, the sound and the feel are all unoriginal. But the gameplay has been changed, if not for the better, and Hysteria is good fun -and probably will be till I complete it.'