Author: Julian Rignall
Publisher: Domark
Machine: Spectrum 48K

Published in Computer & Video Games #97


Okay, okay! I know it's winter, and it's most probably just about to pour with rain, but imagine yourself in California on a sun-kissed day. It's hot. Reeeeal hot. To cool off, you and your buddy Bif each grab a six-pack of Cokes, inflate a couple of giant inner "toobs", jump in the creek and prepare to let your troubles float away...

But, as you doze off downstream, you start to dream that the creek has become a wide, wide river. Suddenly, off to the right, a tree plunges into the water and floats in your direction! If it punctures the toob it'll be certain glugsville! In desperation you hurl one of your coke cans towards it and, amazingly, it goes straight to the bottom! But before you have time to get cocky, some more formidable foes appear further down the bank...

Fishermen cast their deadly hooks at you, and you have to use your hands and feet to frantically paddle your toob away from rocks, sharp branches in the water and nasty toob-eating snakes.


The only way you and Bif can ever wake up from this nightmare is to toob it all the way to the end of the river - and that means running the gauntlet of a daunting array of hazards. Every so often the river forks - with each separate tributary leading to another world. In Hillbilly land, blunderbuss-packing bumpkins are after our buoyant boys. Hell is full of such nightmarish creatures as skulls, knife murderers and pyramids with eyes. Even worse is The City (all concrete, nasty punks and pollution) and then there's The Jungle and Ice World which are both teeming with deadly wildlife...

To make things even more difficult you have to manoeuvre your toob through bonus gates. Miss too many and a giant 'gator swims down from the top of the screen and tears you limb from limb...

But it's not all a nightmare. There are extra coke cans dotted around the river which can be picked up and hurled at the baddies, and if you grab a six-pack, you'll have an unlimited arsenal - very handy. Beach balls speed up your rubbery ride and there are also extra lives to collect in the form of toob patches.


If you manage to reach the beach party at the end of the final level, the nightmare is over and you can return to normality (as if anything in California was ever normal anyway).

As you might have gathered reading this. Toobin' is one strange game. But it's this surreal weirdness that makes it so appealing. Paddling down a river chucking Coke cans at wacky baddies might sound silly, but it's great fun - you just never know what to expect next!

The graphics on both the Amiga and ST are great, with nicely detailed sprites and colourful backdrops, and there are a host of wacky soundtracks to toob to. The gameplay is highly addictive, with bonuses all over the shop and some really crazy worlds to paddle through.


Whether or not you were a fan of the coin-op, this conversion is definitely worth checking out.

Atari ST

Looks, sounds and plays great. An excellent conversion of Tengen's weird and wonderful coin-op.


More colourful sprites, full-screen scrolling and superb tunes make this even more fun than the ST version. If you're after an original and fun-packed game, check this sucker out!


Decent scrolling, but some of the sprites are a little indistinct. Still, this conversion captures the spirit of the coin-op, and is addictive and enjoyable.

Julian Rignall

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