Universal Hero
By Mastertronic
Spectrum 48K

Published in Crash #33

Universal Hero

Captain Burt has only 7 seconds in which to save the world. How will he do it? Slowly the captain swivels his chair around and stares at you coolly. 'Don't worry,' he says in a macho voice, 'I have a plan…'

Poor old Burt is in a right pickle. A space freighter is out of control and determined to blow up. This in itself is quite an alarming prospect, but to add to the dilemma, if the freighter does go K A P O W then poor old Captain Burt will be stranded on a horrid asteroid and will never get back to Mother Earth. Not ever.

What a terrible position to be in! But there's more. The space freighter is up in space and Burt is stuck on the asteroid. His only means of transport is a rather decrepit shuttle which just so happens to be broken. Contending with a pressing time limit, Burt must repair the shuttle, zoom off to a neighbouring planet, collect the spare parts for the ailing freighter and mend same before it explodes. Gasp! And all in seven seconds. As we said before, how will he do it?

Universal Hero

The spare parts to mend the shuttle are scattered all over the asteroid and must be collected in order to get the shuttle back on the road, to mix a metaphor. This should be an easy task but most of the vital pieces of the shuttle are possessively guarded by various alien horrors and contact with them results in Burt 's valuable air supply being sapped away. At the start there are four air bottles, but these are used up pretty quickly as he hurtles around the space rock. However, to make sure Burt has something useful to inhale; new air bottles can be picked up along the way. Oxygen status is displayed at the top of the main screen. When the chart reaches the red section on the fourth bottle you know it's going to be curtains for Burt very shortly.

Not all the objects on the asteroid are helpful and often you don't know this until they are safely tucked up in Burt's space suit pockets. Some are lethal such as the lump of Plutonium; some simply uncomfortable like the rough glass. Objects are picked up and stored by using the defined cursor keys and with nine pockets nine objects can be carried at one time. Objects can also be dropped and used when required and to know what's carried, a key press reveals the Inventory.

To move around, Burt is equipped with a jet pack that can propel him to great heights or carry him over large chasms. The asteroid consists of a series of underground caverns, as well as the knobbly surface which hides many surprises and many dangers.

Watch Captain Burt as he battles to save the world (and himself of course!) in all of seven seconds. Gee, what a hero!


Control keys: redefinable
Joystick: Kempston, Cursor, Interface 2
Keyboard play: great, very responsive
Use of colour: excellent
Graphics: very nice characters and good backdrops
Sound: nothing revolutionary
Skill levels: one
Screens: 128

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