A reasonable enough ten-pin bowling simulation is what’s on offer here. Knock down as many skittles as you can in each of the ten frames, hoping to knock all of them down and thus score a strike. The bowling alley is viewed from an isometric 3D perspective, and the bowler shuffles slowly left and right, trying to aim the ball. It’s up to you to judge when to release the ball, but careful timing is also required when releasing it, otherwise the ball will instead land on the floor, or even your foot! However, while the graphics and music are both fairly good, aiming the ball correctly becomes a matter of routine after some practice, and there is also no way of aiming the ball diagonally.
Watch a YouTube video of this game by: ChinnyVision.
Strike Force Cobra
Reviewed by Robert Small
An ambitious isometric action game and a challenging one as well. There are eight different commandos to choose from, each with a portrait and biography, and you can choose a maximum of four for your team. Once playing you can somersault through windows, kick open doors, throw grenades and fire your machine gun. You will be on the lookout for scientists to rescue who will give you codes for your Digital Lock Breaker which is essential to complete the game. Swapping between your commandos and activating pressure pads are key to progress. It’s a decent-looking game but prone to slowdown and very basic on the audio front. Be warned; it is no pushover.
Strike Force Harrier
Reviewed by Robert Small
You will probably guess from the title that this is another game to feature the Harrier Jump Jet. Anirog got there first (just about) with Jump Jet when it came to offering CPC owners a simulation featuring the Harrier. So is Strike Force Harrier any good? Visually this game is the more colourful of the two. It’s not the most detailed in terms of instruments or scenery but it plays at a reasonable speed. It also tilts the landscape, which was something that was missing from Anirog’s game. On the audio front I didn’t have an issue with the sound of the jet, and the weapon fire was suitably meaty. It was nice to be able to launch both vertically and in the traditional runway manner and there are some interesting little touches during the game. The difficulty is adjustable, but once again there are many controls mapped to the keyboard. If you have the time and patience then this isn’t half bad.
Strike Force SAS
A group of terrorists are holding people hostage in various locations and threatening to blow up a nuclear power station. In a situation this serious, you call the SAS. You control one SAS gunman at a time as you attempt to stop the terrorists from carrying out their plans. You start at a farmhouse where the terrorists are based, watching out for enemy fire, grenades and mines. That’s probably the only one of the four levels that you’ll have the chance to see, because the game is far too difficult. The main problem is that the action is just too fast; the gunman you control, and the terrorists, move so quickly that you just can’t avoid enemy fire. The graphics and music are quite good, but it’s a shame that it’s wasted on such flawed gameplay.
Watch a YouTube video of this game by: Xyphoe.
Here’s a football game in which you play the role of a player instead of a manager. You’re a young 18-year-old footballer starting in a 4th Division team, with ambitions to play for one of the top teams in the 1st Division, and even represent your country. Your progress is entirely based on your ability to score goals. Provided you’re picked for a match, there will be several opportunities for you to aim the ball at the goalmouth. You have to judge what angle to shoot the ball at, and press a key at the right moment. With practice, you’ll become more adept at this and help your team to be promoted. There isn’t a lot else to the game, but I actually enjoyed it for a while. At least it makes a change from all of Cult’s football management games.
Cult released lots of football management games in their time. Most of them are awful, so it comes as a surprise to discover that this one is actually good! Unlike most football management games, you don’t have the option of choosing any team you like; instead, you must choose between two 4th Division teams who want to offer you a contract. Match highlights pass quite quickly, and when a player attempts to score a goal, the screen switches to a nice view of the goalmouth. Unfortunately, there isn’t much in the way of tactics, and you can’t choose where your players will be positioned on the pitch, but if you don’t want a complex game, then this is a good one. It’s very well presented, too.
Can you get the beautiful Marilyn to remove all her clothes within twenty rounds of strip poker? Actually, it’s a lot easier than you’d think. The game uses only 32 of the standard deck of 52 playing cards, which makes it easier to obtain a winning hand. Unlike most other strip poker games, this one doesn’t offer any form of betting, and you can only change cards if there is an ace in your existing hand. Marilyn offers very little challenge, and within a few goes, you’ll more than likely win the game and see her in all her glory. The easiness of this game would no doubt have delighted teenage boys back when it was originally released, but the graphics lack sophistication and there are more challenging offerings out there.
You have been assigned to rid several planets of an army of mutant aliens. Although there are a variety of aliens, the ones you must eliminate are the spider-like creatures – but instead of shooting them, you must trap them by lifting a grille off the floor, letting them fall into the hole, then replacing the grille. You must also collect a certain number of hearts. Once you’ve done this, you can return to your spaceship and go to the next planet. As this was one of the last Spanish games to be released for the CPC, it’s very little known. The graphics could be better; the choice of colours is poor and some of the backgrounds are very garish. The movement and scrolling are also quite slow. Despite these problems, it’s not a bad game overall, and it’s easy to play; if anything, it’s actually a bit too easy.
(Ere Informatique, 1986)
Wlamir the wizard and Olaf the dwarf are on a mission to slay the evil demon Morvelinh. There are 25 levels (or chapters, as the game calls them), where Wlamir and/or Olaf (you can play on your own or with a friend) collect treasure chests and potions, and destroy the hordes of monsters that are constantly in their way. Each level has four screens, and you must find the silver key and then the golden key, which unlock the door to the next level. The potions can be used to destroy the generators which create the monsters, and if you’re playing Wlamir, the monsters will also be destroyed. Yes, this is a Gauntlet clone, and it’s very nice indeed. The graphics and the loading screen are stunning and the action is fast. It’s slightly easy, but that’s not a big concern, and the in-game music is simply gorgeous.
Watch a YouTube video of this game by: Metr81.
Stryker in the Crypts of Trogan
(Code Masters, 1992)
This game caused a sensation when it was released, as it was the first non-cartridge game in the UK to utilise the extra colours offered by the Plus machines. Unfortunately, only a few other such games were released, which is a shame. Anyway, as Stryker, you are out to destroy the evil Trogan and his minions, and you must also collect sixteen parchments along the way. It’s quite a good platform game and it’s a great challenge. The sound effects are OK but it is the graphics which will knock your socks off (if you’re running it on a Plus, that is) – a beautiful skyline ablaze with colour, with eerie silhouetted scenery! The graphics are still very impressive on a normal CPC, though.
Watch a YouTube video of this game by: Axelino.