Not even the weapons she eventually pick ups up by killing one of the everpresent nasties is of much help. Some of them even completely misses the target, at least if it is too near. In fact, the only real target is Athena herself - as most of the creatures can't be avoided. Those tiny things crawling from out the trees and biting her toes are the worst. Little bastards. Anyway, exploring the monochrome cyan forest she finally found a sort of wild monster running back and forth and she actually defeated it, using the kamikaze tactic, more than her strenght, really. After multiple, uncountable deaths, it eventually gave up - and she was ready for the second level, a yellow place that reminded me of Renegade III: The Final Chapter. After all, the programmers are the same: the Deakin/Horn dynamic duo, and this is no Operation Wolf.
I'm not sure, but I think that Psycho Soldier - Athena sequel - received worse reviews - but, really, at least it's playable.
by Colin Ajayi-Obe
They Call Me Trooper, a full price game from CRL for the Spectrum 128k only, looks like a mix between Lode Runner and Fred, but its gameplay is more varied.
It's got a miserable average vote of just 4.8/10 in WoS, but I think it's pretty good, and I suspect the low votes come from the fact that most of the players haven't been able to climb out of the starting point... as I haven't been able myself before taking a look at the instructions. There are lots of (redefinable) keys to use and many actions you can perform, so you have to study a bit (not much, anyway) before going into full action.
When a red slab height is half your character you only need to walk against it for your sprite to climb it automatically, but when it's high as you, you must jump and then give the lateral direction with the right timing, in order to climb. When there's a whole wall to be climbed, you can't rely on just your arms and legs, you need a rope with a hook - and once you have it you must select it, and keep pressed fire until you think it's enough to throw it over the wall, then go up and once reached the edge, climb laterally, or you're going to fall. Additionally, the rope can also be used to climb down.
Ricochet [Firebird Software]
Uchi Mata [Martech Games]
SQJI! [The Power House]
blocks going up and down. But you're not going to discover what they are. You can't move. I checked the instructions, found the control keys, pressed them, and nothing happened. Then I pressed every single other key and, still, nothing happened. Eventually I discovered [reading other people's experiences with SQJI] that the only way to make the game work was and is breaking into the program, and insert some command lines, then start it again: The Power House released an almost totally not working game and even wanted you to pay for it: extraordinaire. Or maybe it was just an ingenious way to stimulate the kids to really use their brain and learn to program, in order to correct the game and play it. By the way, those who really played it say that, anyway, is still totally crap.
Gangplank! [Pirate Software]
Ghostly Grange [Sparklers]
Knight Fall [Pirate Software]
Steelyard Blues [Tynesoft]
Tidy Tony [Tynesoft]
The notorious game stealer Harry S. Price ripping off somebody else's work again changing a sprite or two and trying to monetize on it.
Slingshot [The Power House]
Better renamed Crapshot, it's a cockpit space shoot'em up, with a grid, and planets that roll against you from the bottom of the universe looking like balls of multi-coloured excrements, and, what's worse, you probably won't be able to stop them.
Hypertron [Scorpio Gamesworld]
It's a rehash and re-release under new particulars, a false name and a plastic surgery that left it exactly as ugly as it was, of a game from 1985 titled The Valley Of The Dead, by the prolifically demented programmer Barry Jones, which in some 1986's review I baptised "the Ed Wood of Spectrum games". The game, as I remember it, is so hard that you may want to bite your head off.
Call Me Psycho [Pirate Software]
A shoot-at-everything game with cartoonish graphics and horizontal movement, a little bit like Cobra, only dull and uninteresting.
Los Angeles SWAT [Entertainment USA]
Another slaughtergame, this time with a vertical movement along the streets of a crime-ridden town, where lots of jerky and repellent urban thugs kindly approach you to kill you, but - be careful - don't shoot at the grannies! It's a game about degradation and decadence: and it shows under every aspect, including graphics, sound and gameplay.