Jetsons, The
by 221B Software Development, PAL Developments: GEO
Hi-Tec Software Ltd
Crash Issue 97, March 1992   page(s) 12,13


I'd 'Sing the sig' but it d probably shatter all the glass in CRASH Towers (and I'm not up to GBH of the ear'oles -Ed) and most people remember the Jetsons cartoons anyway. They were always on around teatime when I came home from school... ahh, happy memories. Or was that Ivor The Engine? (stop waffling. pillock! -Ed).

Anyway, this seemingly harmless cartoon has mutated! A full length feature film did a spot of blockbusting a while back and now there's this triffic computer game!

George Jetson has a problem. His horrible boss Mr Spacely has forbidden him to go home before 1400 hours but he wants the whole afternoon off to take his family to Las Venus for the weekend. (Personally I reckon he's a complete whinger; he only works three hours a day, three days a week as it is! We should be so lucky - unless we work 26 hours a day, our slave-driver Ed docks our wages!)

Anyway, being a bit of a rebel and well cheesed off with this Spacely geezer, he decides to go anyway, but he needs help to get out of the Spacely Sprocket factory (trying the front door would be much too easy. I s'pose -Ed).

Runaway chairs, sinister sprockets and faulty chutes are on the rampage to stop George so lots of joystick wiggling is needed to dodge them. The basic layout is similar to other Hi-Tec games like Top Cat and Yogi. Characters move up and down the screen to avoid objects in a semi-3D environment.

George isn't the only character to crop up in the game (otherwise it'd be called Jetson, wouldn't it, readers?). If you're familiar with the words of the theme song you'll know he has a wife, Jane, children Elroy and Judy, and Astro the dog, not to mention the scatterbrained robot maid, Rosey, and robot dog Electronimo.

The eight action-packed levels each feature a different character to control and are split into two styles. Arcade adventure levels are set in places like the factory, the family home and in outer space.

Between these George rides in his 'car', flying through the futuristic buildings collecting bonus points. Speed is of the essence. The jetcar can double its speed by holding down the turbo button.

But the space police don't take kindly to crazed motorists and if George breaks the speed limit he's pulled up and given a right good telling off!

As if worrying about the police wasn't enough to slow you down, there are black holes that warp you back if you collide with them.

The strange thing is that the main storyline is based around George Jetson but you play a different member of the family in each level. The second has Jane Jetson running around her house avoiding a horrible cat burglar who's sneaked in -if he gets hold of her she loses one of George's lives!

That's equality for you! Judy has to collect hearts in her level to win a kiss from her favourite pop star, Jet Screamer, and Elroy has to find his way out of school after being kept behind.

Jetsons works really well and recreates the cartoon to a tee. What annoyed me at first was the layout of level one. There are holes scattered about the most important screens so by making one wrong move I landed in a screen miles away from where I fell! With me almost tearing my hair out, Al Green came along, pressed a few switches and walked straight through the tricky bit with no hassle at all! Flippin' know-all!

Jetsons, The Computer Game is one of the first releases on the new Hi-Tec Premier range, which means it's more involved than a budget game but not priced out of the range of many gamesplayers. There's enough lastability to justify a full-price release so you definitely get value for money - let's hope other software companies follow suit and bring down the price of their games to make it more accessible.

All fans of the cartoon series will be well chuffed with the computer game. It has all the favourite characters, a nice tune to sing along to and lots of playability! Pop down to your local interstellar software shop and download yourself a copy!

'I truly sympathise with the Jetsons. Living in their luxury hi-tech world (pun itended), life should be soooooo easy. All they want is a nice weekend away but they've got so much to do first; each member of the family has really got their work cut out. Jetsons is a real cutey. The graphics depict the cartoon characters very accurately and could have you in stitches at times. At the Premier range price tag, this has just as much fun and depth as many of those game, that leave you penniless for weeks on end (sad and desperate times, eh?) Not quite a CRASH Smash but fans of cartoony capers should be onto a winner.'
ALAN… 84%

Summary: The crazy antics of the futuristic cartoon family come to life on your Spectrum.

Transcript by Chris Bourne

Your Sinclair Issue 77, May 1992   page(s) 18,19

Saturday mornings are a bad time for me, I either get up ridiculously early to catch a train to some throbbing metropolis or I have a well-deserved lie-in. Which ever way I decide to spend my weekend, Saturday morning television is still a no-go area. So I can't really say that I've seen the Jetsons recently, cos I haven't and I never lie. Well hardly ever.

The Jetsons are the perfect space age nuclear family. There's Mom, Pop, a pretty and no doubt clever daughter and a cheeky but charming little son. Oh, and a dog. The whole family are clean and neat with fashionable haircuts and very white, straight teeth. And that includes the dog.

Apple pie in the sky hopes
It seems like we've been waiting ages for Jetsons the computer game (and no, that's not a mistake - there's no 'the' in the title) and I, at least, really did have high hopes. I was so sure that Jetsons was going to be completely funsome that I grabbed it as soon as it came into the office and demanded to be allowed to review it. (I can be incredibly silly at times.) I pulled off the wrapping, ooh-ed and ahh-ed at the beaut poster and had a quick flick through the instruction book. And then I played the game. It was ten o' clock in the morning and the first disappointment of the day.

Jetsons is a collect-'em-up with four levels, each with two parts. You start off playing George Jetson and the idea is to pick up all four family members in your bubble spacecar and take them off to the beach. You also get to take on three other roles - Jane the mom, Judy the big sis and Elroy the annoying little tyke. Each character has to perform a certain task by collecting hidden objects.

To find the all-important objects your have to work your way through a series of rooms avoiding obstacles and jumping around on conveyor belts. The rooms have various exits, there are the more usual doors as well as spooky tube lifts that transport you to a completely different room. You'll come across something like this in he race sections too. This can actually be quite handy, but only if it means that you comes across an object.

These objects are incredibly elusive and this is where the game falls down. Load up the game and at first it'll seem quite tough. So, as is the general rule, you persevere. Usually, this attitude bears fruit and you find yourself getting a bit better and a bit further each time, but not with Jetsons. Ho no, this is one of those incredibly annoying games that have a ridiculously difficult first level. This is a big mistake on the part of the programmers, the best games are those that have deceptively easy first levels. You start off thinking it's dead easy and you'll finish it in one sitting. Before you know it, it's two o' clock in the morning. You're pulled gently into the game and it gets more addictive as it gets harder. Those are the game that you play over and over again, convinced that you're going to finish that darn level this time.

Jetsons has one thing wrong with it, it's impossible to play. Unfortunately, this makes the nice graphics, easy controls and what sounds like an interesting game completely worthless.

Life Expectancy50%
Instant Appeal80%
Summary: Disappointing cartoon collect-'em-up/racer severely lacking in the playability department.

Transcript by Chris Bourne

Sinclair User Issue 122, April 1992   page(s) 22,23

Space. The final frontier. Why anyone would want a front ear is beyond me? But no doubt there's some reason for it, and there's probably a reason for this game too.

In the beginning there was nothing (now where have I heard that before), and then God created man. Man, in his infinite wisdom refused to be out-done and promptly, having first gone a little overboard with a lufa, created the squeaky clean Jetsons... Hi Tec's futuristic (but decidedly middle class American) family.

Based on the famous TV cartoon the Jetsons, this spaced out game involves packing the Jetson household off on a holiday. Destination. The beach at Las Venus for a little bit of sun bathing and lots of general weekend leisure antics. I must say I've never been to Las Venus but it sounds good.

George Jetson, the ultra cool, ultra modern space dad wishes man had restricted his creative talents just after he invented breakfast and shortly before he came up with the idea of work. You see, although George only works three hours a day, three days a week he's still not very keen on the idea. Whereas his boss, Mr Spacely a genuine slave driver by all accounts wants him to work as much as possible. Thus the basic plot is to get George off early from work without incurring the wrath of his boss and solve the various other minor problems the rest of the family encounter.

The maze-like properties of George factory are bad enough for anyone with the memory retention of a goldfish, but the dangers lurking within the mechanical manufacturer's rooms are prone to catch our George unawares. There are holes in the floor which he can slip into, sending him spiralling to the floors below, moving machinery which can knock him for six and button pressing puzzles that have to be done in the correct order. George also needs to collect various objects to help him through this level.

This really is an environmentally friendly game. George doesn't have a blaster of a ray gun (shame), but must use his brains (or yours), to get out of the factory. Pressing buttons will always do something: remove holes in the floor so that you can pass (and press yet more buttons) or open lockers in the walls that contain items that you may need.

Now you may call me an old fashioned old fart but this game does sound a little dull. In fact, why not call me a dinosaur and I'll say that it IS dull. No shooting, no aliens, no platforms - are there any saving graces? Well yes. The end of each level has an enjoyable race section where you must fly your jetcar as fast as possible to get to the next section whilst avoiding all the obstacles.

Unfortunately, as with any advanced society that needs the services of oral hygienists and telephone sanitisers, there are speed restrictions. Drive like a loony through a restricted zone and the cyber police will stop you and give you a ticket. Unless of course you fall into a black hole in which case you will 'gate' into another location (and not always to your disadvantage either).

The other levels involve the rest of the family in various related incidents (Jane Jetsont has to defeat a cat burglar, Judy Jetson has to win a kiss from her favourite pop star) but I have to admit my interest wasn't retained for too long after the first level, which began to get tedious after I had fallen through one too many holes. Maybe this says more about me than the game, as Jetsons has more than adequate graphics, gameplay and speed. But unfortunately variety and sheer excitement are absent, which is a pity, 'cos it's a good looking game at the right price.

Label: Hi Tec Premiere
Memory: 48K/128K
Price: £6.99 Tape
Reviewer: Garth Sumpter

ALAN: I did find the traps on level one a little infuriating but I disagree with Garth (heavens above!) on the variety front. Because there are several characters Jetsons actually has more variety than the average game, even though gameplay remains similar regardless of which one you're controlling. Fans of the cartoon would definitely find Jetsons a bit of a lark.

Summary: Very simple gameplay makes Jetsons a little tame but the graphics are crisp and the joystick control is spot on - it's a shame there wasn't a little space for more variety and better sound to add what any space family would want - atmosphere.

Transcript by Chris Bourne

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