Durell Software (of Harrier Attack fame) have come with another game of naval conflict, only this time they're just the programming house. The setting is the Arabian Gulf and you have control of a McDonald (no relation to Pat) Douglas (no relation to Adams) VTOL ground attack jet. Your mission is to destroy seven enemy missile bases in the surrounding area.
A large sprite of your jet sits in the middle of the four way scrolling playing area and a panel across the bottom of the screen showing the status of your aircraft and your score. Aircraft status is broken down into fuel, weapons and damage sustained.
You have four weapon types on-board: cannons, bombs, air-to-air missiles and anti-ship missiles. Bombs and cannons are in the greatest supply with a single anti-ship missile and a handful of air-to-air missiles. All damage is repaired and fuel and weapons systems are reset to maximum when you land on your own carrier. If the carrier sinks, however, things will start to go very badly for you. You have three jets to complete the mission with and bonus ones can be gained.
Exocet missiles are being fired at the carrier and so you have to periodically return to the ship so that you shoot down the missiles. MIG 21 fighters are also in the area and they have to be dealt with in a typically violent manner: blast-'em! Ground-based targets also fire at you and launch missiles at your carrier.
Sound is unimpressive, with just a handful of explosions and an irritating noise coming from your engine. There's a good tune on the title screen, though.
The scrolling is fast and smooth. You can do some pretty impressive manoeuvres with the plane and the explosions are crude but effective.
Operation Hormuz cannot seriously be described as ultra-sophisticated, but it does its job as a shoot-'em-up very well. Destroying the seven bases is fairly irrelevant, and you'll get your kicks just flying around killing things instead. Not a classic, but a solid, playable game.
A not-half-bad shoot-'em-up that will occupy you for quite some time before your attention wanders.
Graphics 64% P. Fast and smooth scrolling. P. Plenty of colour.
Sonics 54% P. Nice title tune. P. Ticks and booms, but they suffice.
Grab Factor 73% P. Plane's tricky to control at first... N. But you'll soon be flying!
Staying Power 64% P. Seven bases to destroy. N. Just a simple shoot-em-up.
Overall 70% Ideal for gratuitous blasting.