BEAU JOLLY is back on the compilation wagon, and the nouveau Beau Jolly is launching a two-pronged attack on the Christmas market with two collections and a £100,000 TV ad campaign for them.
The fourth in the series of 10 Computer Hits includes the Marble Madness clone Spin Dizzy and the Gauntlet clone Dandy. But pick of the bunch is either Pyracurse or Contact San Cruise, both CRASH Smashes.
And Though Five Star Games Vol. 3 has fewer games than 10 Computer Hits, its probably the better package, it's hard to choose between such greats as Strike Force Harrier, Tau Ceti, Firelord, Aliens, The Way Of The Exploding Fist and Uridium Plus (an improved version of the issue 35 Smash).
10 COMPUTER HITS VOL. 4
Bride Of Frankenstein - 59% Issue 43
Contact Sam Cruise - 93% Issue 36
Spindizzy - 93% Issue 29
Uchi Mata - 36% Issue 39
City Slicker - 65% Issue 35
Sacred Armour Of Antiriad - 89% Issue 35
Deactivators - 85% Issue 34
Starquake - 96% Issue 22
Pyracurse - 90% Issue 31
Pulsator - 66% Issue 42
Revolution - 91% Issue 33
Dandy - 84% Issue 35
Computer Hits 4 is an absolute blast as compilations go. Twelve full-price titles of which in my opinion five are fab, five OK and only two turkeys. Fab ones first: Vortex's Revolution, a 3-D multi-level arcade adventure featuring a bouncing ball, Spindizzy, the original Electric Dreams guide-the-gyroscope-around-the-3D-maze epic, Pyracurse, Hewson's Ultimate style arcade adventure. Sacred Armour of Antiriad, Palace's futuristic romp and Starquake, Bubble Bus' space skit.
The OK ones include Ariolasoft's Deactivators, CRL's Bride of Frankenstein, Martech's karate simulator Uchi-Mata, Microsphere's Sam Cruise, and Electric Dreams' Dandy. This leaves only the turkeys: Hewson's City Sticker and Pulsator. Overall, though, wotta collection!
Label: Beau Jolly
Reviewer: Chris Jenkins
Amstrad, £9.95cs, £13.95dk
C64/128, £9.95cs, £13.95dk
...And two 'free' games makes twelve. Everyone gets a copy of Spindizzy, the first-rate Marble Madness-esque spinning top game and Dandy, Electric Dreams' pitch at the Gauntlet-clone market which came a bit late and proved less than totally impressive.
In addition to the aforementioned duo, five games are common to all three formats:
An excellent, cutesy, arcade adventure from the programming parlour of Steve Crow, guaranteed to amuse and entertain.
A complicated puzzle game that requires you to clear building of bombs and reassemble a computer using Deactivator droids. Plenty of brainpower is needed to solve this unusual game.
Sacred Armour of Antiriad
A beautifully presented platforms-and-mapping arcade adventure. Collect up the components needed to activate an anti-radiation suit, clamber into it and destroy the alien mothercraft that is terrorising your tribe.
Bride of Frankenstein
Go off in search of Frankie's missing organs in yet another arcade adventure - this time the action is a little quirky, but fun nevertheless
Probably the only judo simulation so far attempted on computer - and accuracy is the order of the day. To begin with, play is relatively easy, but serious thought as well as serious practice is needed if you are to progress to beating the more skilled opponents. An outwardly complicated game that offers rewards if you persevere.
The Spectrum and Commodore collections 'share' three more games:
A straightforward pot-the-balls baize production.
An unpolished but playable skateboarding excursion where points are awarded for collecting flags and avoiding hazards on a series of urban courses.
A fast-action scrolling race game from C64 cult programmer Andrew Braybrook.
The Commodore collection is rounded off with:
An unusual and appealing subterranean platform adventure.
The excellent, fast and furious Jeff Minter shoot em up that includes sub-games where you can take a rest from the energy-collecting and alien-killing which forms the core of the main game
Spectrum owners can thrill to the delights of tomb-exploration in the 3D arcade adventure Pyracurse or go on a little private investigation all of their own with Contact Sam Cruise.
Amstrad owners receive a different set of five games along with the five common titles:
Sets you a fairly traditional 3D isometric adventure scenario on the quest to rescue a man who is capable of saving the human race. The pace of the game is a little slow and the puzzles less than mind-twisting, but there's enough to keep you busy during a rainy afternoon.
Off you go in pursuit of the equipment to defuse a terrorist bomb, following a fairly traditional arcade adventure format set in London and featuring many familiar landscapes.
A straightforward maze game that doesn't impress with the graphics but sets quite a tricky task involving the rescue of five captives.
A race game with a difference - you race against time on a set of abstract courses, hindered by spheres, cubes and bolts of energy dropped from the skies. Different, but a bit dodgy...
A tortuously tricky maze puzzle in which the player seeks to cross successive levels that make up a hostile 3D landscape, deactivating two cubes on each level in control of a bouncing ball, the aim is to avoid falling into a bottomless chasm, escape the clutches of a variety of abstract but mobile aliens and touch first one cube and then the other within a rapidly diminishing time limit. Tricky stuff indeed.
Verdict: A fairly random selection of games presented here, some classics mixed with some mediocre or less successful titles. Nevertheless, good value for money6 and a reasonable mix 'n' match of gamestyles.
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