You'll have to race against time to save your planet's most valued artifacts from the doomed star cruiser SS Achilles. The SS Achilles has been attacked by a strange space fungus which is slowly eating its way through the ship's maze of corridors.
The alien intruder is indestructible and your only hope of saving your culture's most treasured relics is to slow its progress through the ship, to give you enough time to escape through the shuttle craft with your cargo to earth.
The game starts by showing a very impressive graphic display of SS Achilles under which the game prompts the player to choose one of five difficulty levels, ranging from inept to expert.
You are placed inside an android protection suit to help you survive the harsh environmental conditions in the ship. Moving the droid into the walls or any grey object damages the robot's integrity level, shown at the bottom of the screen, together with the droid's remaining power supply. The level of the droid's integrity becomes more and more important as the game progresses and a lot of skill is needed to move the robot around the ship without hitting the wall or running into the fungus.
The growth of the fungus can be viewed by stepping into one of the tele-screens scattered around SS Achilles. This prints up a map of the ship's interior, showing the areas inhabited by the alien in orange.
To complete the game, you must pick up all the objects lying around the ship and deposit them in the shuttle's loading bay. There are four different types, but the droid can only carry one particular object at a time. If and when you've collected all the objects, you can abandon the ship in the escape shuttle.
SS Achilles is a very addictive and challenging game. The graphics are good and the animation is amongst the best I have seen on the Atari. My only criticism of SS Achilles is that the game is only available on disc.
SS Achilles is available from Beyond Software for the Atari 400/800 and costs £19.95.