Screenshot of Thunder Jaws

Thunder Jaws

(Domark, 1991)

The evil scientist Madame Q is threatening to take over the world by creating armies of mutants. You must infiltrate her underwater fortress and kill her. The game consists of four levels which are divided into two parts. In the first part, you must swim underwater, avoiding any hazardous objects, to reach one of Madame Q’s bases. The second part is a platform-cum-shoot-’em-up affair. Most parts have a very large enemy to defeat at the end, but none of them are particularly challenging. The same can be said for the rest of the game, which is so easy that I completed it on my first attempt! The graphics are very good and well drawn, but the underwater sections are fairly dull and you are given far too many credits. You’ll complete the game quickly and then forget about it.

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Screenshot of Thunder Zone

Thunder Zone

(Firebird, 1987)

Reviewed by CPC4eva

Flying a spacecraft from a first-person perspective, your mission is to repel the invasion of your colony, Flavius V, from enemy spacecraft of the evil emperor Zircon. Enemy ships are detected and measured by the amount of energy they make, which is probably the only game I have seen this in. The controls are awkward, as if you select down, you will find you that you are selecting different icons to use for choosing a weapon, hyperspacing to another zone or repairing your ship, so only up, left and right can be used for flying your spacecraft which means shooting enemy ships down is very frustrating. Some nice-looking sprites and colours but not very exciting gameplay.

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Screenshot of Thunderbirds


(Grandslam, 1989)

Reviewed by CPC4eva

If you didn’t already know it, Thunderbirds is a hugely popular puppet-based TV show with a cult following. The whole premise of the Thunderbirds is being good people helping rescue others in perilous situations and saving the world from bad guys, namely the Hood who wants to destroy the world. In this game you take on the role of the famous International Rescue team in four different daring rescue adventures, but you can only choose two different objects at the beginning of each mission to help you complete these very dangerous time-limited rescue missions. The graphics and colours chosen are very Spectrum-looking and not worthy of the International Rescue team, as the TV show does feature some very colourful and spiffy-looking outfits. If you love Thunderbirds you will most likely enjoy this graphic arcade adventure.

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Screenshot of Thundercats


(Elite, 1987)

Reviewed by Chris Lennard

Thunder, thunder, you know the rest. A blatant cash-in on the cheesy kids’ cartoon. As Lion-O, your task is to recover the lost eye of Thundera – the power behind the Sword of Omens from the clutches of Thundercat nemesis the vile Mumm-Ra, “the ever living”. A simple hack-’n’-slash platformer; you have to reach the end of every level as fast as possible within the given time limit and in your way are an infinite number of Mumm-Ra’s mutants to stop you. As well as picking points to rack up your score, you must rescue your fellow felines along the way. A dull repetitive affair, it looks as bad as it plays. One for fans of the show only.

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Screenshot of Tiger Road

Tiger Road

(Go!, 1987)

Ryu Ken Oh has kidnapped all the children from your village, so someone – you, of course – must rescue them. You are Lee Wong, a student of the Oh Rin temple, and on your journey along the Tiger Road, you will encounter all sorts of ninja, samurai and other warriors. The levels are all rather short, but each one is different, and it’s nice to have the action divided into neat segments. Every few levels, you will meet a particularly nasty enemy that must be defeated before you can continue. You can smash urns to collect different types of weapon, and some enemies will be almost impossible to defeat unless you possess the correct weapon. The graphics aren’t that good, and Lee Wong looks rather strange, but the music is wonderful and the game itself is fairly decent.

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Screenshot of Time


(Rainbow Arts, 1985)

Reviewed by Pug

In this game our ridiculously named hero, the Schroedeldoedel, is on a mission to find and kill Mr X. You find yourself trapped within his lair, a place full of nasties and deadly traps. To progress you must shoot or avoid everything (even the walls are deadly) and make your way to the next screen. Sadly, the joystick controls are often unresponsive, with a hero that moves very slowly. To make matters worse, you can only shoot sideways or diagonally. Due to these issues Time becomes a very frustrating experience that makes finding Mr X impossible. Drab and sluggish-looking in-game visuals do nothing to save this one. Try it out and see how long it takes for you to lose your temper.

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Screenshot of Time Machine

Time Machine

(Vivid Image Developments, 1990)

Professor Potts was working on his time machine when an explosion sent him into a time warp back to the prehistoric era, and now he has to find a way to return to his own time. The game consists of five time zones, but in order to unlock them, the professor must manipulate his surroundings, which will in turn affect the future. He has four time pods that can be dropped in any location, enabling him to teleport to that location in a flash, along with any nearby objects. He also carries a device for stunning creatures. While this game was lauded on other machines, the CPC version is disappointing. It’s not at all clear what tasks you’re meant to be doing to progress to the second time zone, and some objects need to be positioned precisely for them to be effective. It’s a blatant Spectrum port with monochrome graphics, and there is no sound at all.

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Screenshot of Time Out

Time Out

(Zafiro, 1988)

Reviewed by CPC4eva

This is a run-and-gun game set in three different time zones, starting in the American Wild West. It’s a poor-looking Spectrum conversion with many faults. The enemy can run faster than you and their bullets travel faster than you can walk, so you’re easily killed. All the sprites and bullets are the same colour (yellow) and the sprites look very similar in appearance. The backgrounds and colour scheme change as you pass from one screen to another but it’s not very exciting. There is also no other means to dodge bullets other than ducking for cover. It would have been nice if you could jump or run faster. It’s very repetitive and quite dull.

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Screenshot of Time Scanner

Time Scanner

(Activision, 1989)

My, oh my! Pinball games don’t come much better than this little baby. Four tables await you, all of them armed to the teeth with bells and whistles and each one based on a different time zone. This game has the lot – the ball bangs and whizzes about, the graphics and animations are clear and detailed, there’s a different tune for each table, and the difficulty is just right; although you get a very generous amount of credits (five of them, with five balls for each credit), it’ll take practice to reach the last table. This is one game that I’ll be coming back to often.

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Screenshot of Timelord


(Alpha Omega, 1986)

There’s very little information on what this maze exploration game is about. It seems that you’re on the planet of Oxijenless and must find several pieces of some sort of ornament; the ornament’s name and purpose is unknown. Anyway, it’s a totally ordinary, mediocre game. You simply wander around the maze, looking for the pieces and other things that will boost your limited supply of oxygen, and trying to minimise contact with the various monsters in each room. The graphics are poor and garish, and the animation, particularly of the main character, is awful. The same goes for the sound effects. It’s a boring game which isn’t worthy of your attention.

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