Nexus (Nexus) Review | Amstrad Computer User - Everygamegoing

Amstrad Computer User

By Nexus
Amstrad CPC464

Published in Amstrad Computer User #23


The first thing about Nexus to grab the attention is the packaging. Resembling nothing so much as Ford Prefect's lunch box, it reflects the game itself- imaginative and difficult to classify. The story runs thus: An experienced journalist (yep, you again), with both word bashing and survival skills, is suddenly called into the editor's office. It seems that a buddy of yours was investigating a drugs racket in Colombia when the baron thereof caught wind of his sniffing around and promptly kidnapped the hapless hack.

Your mission is to enter the drug ring's HQ, jump the jailed journalist and in the process garner enough gen to give the editor a scoop story for the next day's Clarion. To help you in this last task the Ed gives you 32 clues. These relate to items of information scattered (as always!) around the Colombian centre.

The HQ is a sprawling, multi-level complex which you enter via a river on what looks like an aquatic C5 (Sea 5?). Once in you meet Tony, a member of Nexus (nothing to do with Blade Running). This is an undercover operation bent on busting the drugs ring from within, and as such the Nexians are quite happy to help you.

This help can take the form of advice, weapons or skills. All of these you need, as, apart from the details above, you know very little when you start about the mess you're getting yourself into. There are two ways of doing things - either try to move as silently around the complex as possible, get the info, transmit it back to base and get your friend, or get in and out as fast and as messily as possible. This last might not get you a very high score, but it could be more fun!

So much for the plot, now how about the pixels? To match the complexity of the game the screen is divided into seven areas. At the top is a window which shows where you are and what you're doing with whom. The characters in the game are large, well animated figures that lollop along against a detailed backdrop of walls, doorways, fixtures and fittings.

There's another area on-screen which displays a digitised picture of characters' faces. It's nothing spectacular, but individuals are recognisable. There's a text window, where conversations take place, and the results of some of your actions are displayed. Radar and character ID are also shown, as is a locator. This is a kind of compass which points towards a person or object you wish to find.

The biggest window is concerned with control of your persona. As the game is flown by joystick and joystick alone, this area is important. By suitable manipulation, your sprite can run, walk, crouch and use a goodly selection of Kung Fu footwork upon anybody who crosses its path. Once weapons have been located, these too can be pressed into service.

Pushing the stick up and pressing Fire puts you into a command menu, where all the actions available are listed. All of these are actioned by just one flick of the stick, so the whole system is fast and doesn't impede the flow of the game. But it is easy to move the wrong way at first.

That's just the bare bones of a complex and detailed game.

As said at the beginning, it defies classification. But call it an arcade adventure/strategy/martial arts thrash, and you won't be far wrong.


I always wanted to be a journalist. Instead I write for ACU, If I worked for the Clarion, it seems, I could be having a crack at the drug barons. But this game is almost as much fun as being there. hots of action, lashings of detail, ideas aplenty.

The music adds to the game - after an hour at the joystick I didn't feel the need to turn it down. The fight sequences are beautifully done as well, you can almost feel the pain as a foot smashes into your jaw. Just the game to waste a week over.


This is nearly, very nearly a brilliant game but it fails by trying too hard. It reminds me of those compendium things you get at Christmas. There are lots of little games and counters everywhere but you never get down to actually doing anything.

You look at the scrolly bit at the top which is a cross between Kung Fu Master and V, then you find a terminal and play with that, look at all the pictures for a bit, then you start hitting the people who are supposed to be on your side. All the little bits are pretty but the game is not much fun.


This game has good animated graphics and the latest trendy icons and menus, which give it credibility in these cynical times. As a journalist you must free your friend from the clutches of a drugs ring with the aid of machine guns and grenades which have to be found by exploring the area. This is not an accurate simulation of a journalist's life. I think!

Nexus is a complex game of many aspects. Part strategy, part mapping, part combat, it is difficult to get into but easy to play. It's just the sort of thing to keep you amused for a few hours.