Personal Computer News


Author: Bob Chappell
Publisher: Rabbit
Machine: Commodore 64

Published in Personal Computer News #021

Whirling Wonder

Whirling Wonder

This is one of the few arcade games where it is a pleasure to be defeated by the aliens! Cyclons has some rather good variations on the usual shoot-'em-down arcade game.

Your space ship is a revolving sphere-like craft, the faster it whirls, the faster it moves and fires. Motion is smooth and accurate. It takes a little practice to get the hang of controlling the ship. If it meets the edge of the screen, it bounces back. Although it can fire in any direction, it will only do so in the direction it is currently moving.


There are only two types of enemy. The first are small red lightning flashes which spin head over heel around the screen, carelessly tossing out missiles as they go. They tend to blow each other up if you can keep out of their way.


The second is a spinning flying saucer which unerringly heads after you. Your sole objective is to score as many points as possible before losing all five lives.

When either you or the enemy are hit, the result is rather beautiful. A shower of coloured lights explodes across the screen, accompanied by a gentle 'woooosh', the total effect being reminiscent of a sky rocket at the moment of its starburst. Beware, the debris can destroy your own ship.

In Play

The title page is created to the strains of an extremely impressive version of the Star Wars theme, showing off the 64's powerful music capabilities. This is followed by a screen menu of the game's options. You can play on any of four difficulty levels: beginner, regular, advanced or expert.


Mountainous terrain can be introduced, missiles an ricochet off the screen edges, and the top four scores (with scorers' initials) can be displayed.

The ranking system lets you enter three initials, in large size letters, against your score. The options can be used in a variety of combinations and are each selected by pressing one of the function keys.

One thing that neither the cassette sleeve or the program tells you is that you can return to the menu after each game by pressing the upward arrow key.


The whole Cylons program, from title sequence and option menu to game and ranking system, has all the marks of professionalism. I found it a delight, as well as great fun, to play. With more programs like this, Rabbit Software might well corner the market in Commodore 64 games software.

Bob Chappell

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