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Arcade: Adventure
ZX Spectrum 48K
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Max Phillips
Chris Bourne

Just how far can you take a platform'n'ladders game? Steve Marsden and David Cooke of Technician Ted fame reckon they've got a long way to go. So put the Speccy on load, eat and inwardly digest the cassette card and start out on yet another one.

City Slicker casts you as Slick (the city blah, blah... though what one is isn't quite clear). You've got to wander round famous London landmarks portrayed in attribute-confusing fuzzy detail and stuffed with a motley collection of sprites.

Your aim is to defuse a bomb planted in the HP sauce building by evil Arab Abru Cadabra and to do this, you've got to - you guessed it - first collect all the bits of a Bomb Disassembly Unit which some careless loon has scattered all around the screens.

Curiously enough, it's got nothing whatsoever to do with Guy Fawkes. Maybe the licensing deal cost an arm and a leg... and your insides torn out and being hung from... ah, forget it.

But you've just got to accept that this one's a bit different. Firstly, you're hotly pursued by Cadabra himself (who looks remarkably like our ol' friend Harry the Hippie) and contact is instant death with a big bang. Next there are plenty of objects and other characters to play with, including food and pep pills to keep your energy topped up.

Energy is crucial; getting bumped by a nasty wastes it and so does falling long distances. Feeling energyless affects your performance - it reduces your jumping height and eventually kills you.

The other change from the norm is that rooms are much bigger than screens - the game 'half-flips' from one screen to the next but if you get properly pranged, you can get sent back miles. Getting through a room isn't the easy task it once was.

All in all, it's a jolly good romp - perhaps the only really nasty bit being the graphic you're treated to every time the Houses of Parliament goes up - it looks like the MasterMind studio. But then what do I know... maybe it really does? If you like arcade/adventure on platforms, check it out...