Mike A. Richardson
1984
Simulation
£8.95
£1.99
English
ZX Spectrum 48K
None

110
Phil King
Chris Bourne

Designed with help from Westland Helicopters (the makers of the real Lynx), Combat Lynx originally appeared way back in November 1984 on the Durell label.

The player's helicopter has between three and six bases to land at, depending on the skill level chosen. After landing, the Lynx can be armed with a variety of lethal weapons such as HOT anti-tank weapons and heat-seeking anti-aircraft missiles. Also available are mines which can be laid to protect bases from attacking enemies.

Although Base Zero has an infinite stock of weapons and fuel, other bases only have a limited supply. Also as most bases are miles away from HO, quickly mining around them is essential for their protection. If a base does come under attack a message appears in a small window, giving details of casualties etc.

For ease of locating both bases and enemies, a scrolling map screen can be called up, showing a contoured plan of the massive landscape (which is different for each new game). These contours are also present on the main 3-D view, helping to create a more effective illusion of solidity.

Combat Lynx is in no way a simple shoot-'em-up (even though it can be played that way), it involves much strategic planning to protect all the bases. For a game which can take many hours to play the lack of a save/ load function can be irritating, but the actual gameplay remains great. A game ahead of its time when it was released, it still looks pretty advanced even now.

CRITICISM

85%