Amstrad Action

Return Of The Jedi

Author: Gary Barrett
Publisher: Domark
Machine: Amstrad CPC464

Published in Amstrad Action #41

Return Of The Jedi

Way back in AA29 there was Star Wars (37%), followed in AA3B by The Empire Strikes Back (51%). Now the trilogy gets rounded off with the final instalment. Can Luke, Leia, Han and Chewie (hurrah!) save the universe or will it fall into the hands of evil Darth and the Emperor (boo!)? And, as a matter of somewhat more pressing importance to the earthlings at Domark (they are earthlings, I suppose?), is the Return Of The Jedi game any better than the other two mediocre efforts?

The action takes place on and around the planet Endor. Endor is home to the cute and cuddly Ewoks and far above its surface, the Empire's latest mega death weapon, a new Death Star. At present it's still uncompleted and only protected by a forcefield generated on the surface of Endor. A Rebel fleet is at this very moment travelling through hyperspace (hopefully they won't got swallowed by a dog - just thought I'd throw in a quick Hitchhiker's reference to check you're still awake) to destroy the Death Star, but they need the forcefield deactivating.

Luke, Leia, Han and Chewie get the dubious honour of deactivating the forcefield. Once that's been done you get to fly the Millenium falcon right inside the Death Star and shoot the reactor core. Getting out of there as fast as possible is your next problem because otherwise you'll piay a very active part - a radioactive part, indeed - in the Death Star's destruction.

Return Of The Jedi

Stage one is set on Endor with Leia racing towards the Ewok village on a speeder bike with Imperial Stormtroopers ill hot pursuit. Trees, logs and the occa-sional Ewok trap get in your way and you also have to deal with the enemy.

Reach the village and you then control an Imperial Walker guided by the hairy hands of Chewbacca. Logs and rocks have to be destroyed or avoided, as do the occasional Imperial Walkers. Meanwhile Lando Calrissian is flying towards the Death Star in the Millenium Falcon and the action switches between the two every so often.

Eventually Lando gets inside the Death Star and you have to guide him towards the reactor. Tie fighters are pursuing you and must be dealt with in the usual, predictable way. Should you reach the reactor you have to blast it and then get out of there fast the same way that you got in.

Return Of The Jedi

There are three difficulty levels: easy, medium and hard. On the easy level, you don't ride in the Imperial Walker but instead go straight to the attack on the Death Star. With the medium level you don't get the Death Star approach, which is available only on the hard level. Every time you destroy the Death Star, the level increases and things get tougher, but the points awards become greater.

Although the diagonal scrolling is a bit on the jerky side, it's still very good. The sprites are rather chunky, but at least they're colourful. Sound effects are something that you might as well forget about, all you get are laser blasts, explsions and walker steps.

At last Domark seem to have come up with a decent Star Wars game. As a matter of fact they seem to be producing better games in general at the moment. Long may it continue!

First Day Target

Return Of The Jedi

Score 200,000 points.

Second Opinion

Here's something of a novelty: a Domark game that's more than just type. There's some real gameplay and skill involved and some of the later levels are quite tough. I like it - hope they can keep up the good work!

The Verdict

Graphics 64% P. Best diagonal scrolling in game yet. P. Chunky, but colourful graphics.

Return Of The Jedi

Sonics 29% P. Step, bang, kaboom.

Grab Factor 86% N. Not mentally stimulating, just blast and dodge. P. OK, so all you do is blast things and dodge them. What's wrong with that?

Staying Power 76% N. Three skill levels... P. Each one is more of the same.

Overall 82% The best of the Star Wars games.

Gary Barrett

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