Commodore User


The Transformers

Author: Mike Pattenden
Publisher: Ocean
Machine: Commodore 64

 
Published in Commodore User #29

The Transformers

Trust Ocean to produce a game based on what looks like being the best-selling Christmas toy. Transformers are warrior robots which can be turned into different shapes by pulling them about. Denton Designs, given the unenviable task of producing a game based on them, have stuck with the tried and tested icons of Shadowfire.

Two robot teams fight for control of earth. The goodies are the Autobots who are trying to stop the evil Decepticons. The problem is that the Autobots have an energy crisis caused by high radiation levels. You control the five Autobots in an attempt to assemble the four pieces of an Energon cube scattered around a massive platform system. Yes, that's right, it's a platform game, but only in the sense that Impossible Mission was.

You control the five robots individually via the icon system. The action shifts to the platforms where dustbin-like Defensa Pods are scattered around. These are home to your robots and can be used to replenish energy and shields which dwindle rapidly once you're moving about.

There are three modes of travel. You can walk ponderously about, transform into a vehicle or simply fly off in search of the cubes. A combination of each is advisable, but flying around is a good means of exploration. Selecting modes of travel is done by fiddling with the joystick. This takes a bit of getting used to, and after a while I was still turning into a Porsche instead of getting into my dustbin.

Graphics are good and the whole game is well put together considering the problems involved in transforming (hoho) a toy into a computer game. The idea is nothing novel, and I'm left feeling a good part of the game's difficulty is in coming to grips with the controls. As far as the platform approach goes, Denton get away with it, but only just.

Mike Pattenden

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