The Power House
Grant Jaquest
1986
Arcade: Platform
£1.99
English
ZX Spectrum 48K
None

25
Ben Stone, Gareth Adams
Chris Bourne

A consignment of priceless crystals has been stolen by Silas Maximillian, the most wanted man in the galaxy. Only Lutherlrontooth has any chance of retrieving them from Maximilhan's headquarters on a far-off, dead planet.

The crystals are held in three storage vaults deep in a labyrinth of corridors. Two vaults are readily accessible, but one is locked, and entry to it can only be made by finding and using five keys.

Irontooth teleports down to the planet clad in full battle armour - here he's able to move left, right, up and down. However, once moving, momentum keeps him going until he hits an obstruction, or uses his blaster-pack to change direction. Luther possesses nine freeze bombs to help him avoid the lethal embrace of vicious robots.

Created in the form of jellyfish or flop-eared bunnies, they're simply programmed and only move in basic patterns- but particular care needs to be taken in the two open vaults, as the guard robots move a lot faster than Luther. Using a freeze bomb gives Luther five seconds in which to dodge the stunned robot and continue on his way.

Remaining freeze bombs are displayed on screen, along with Luther's score.

Diminishing energy puts a time limit on the quest, and Luther's energy level is also shown on screen, with one of four lives lost when it reaches zero.

CRITICISM

'This takes me back. Some time ago most Spectrum games were similar to this - playable enough then, but not now. Did the graphics have to be as simplistic, undetailed and uninteresting as they have turned out? The sound, too, is well below average with no tunes and generally dull effects. Even with the addition of a free game this represents poor value for money.' BEN

'Budget games are all the rage this month, so Cyrox has a lot of competition. Run-of-the-mill graphics offer fairly smooth animation, a few nicely drawn characters and lots of tasteless colours. However, despite Cyrox's many primitive aspects, I quite enjoyed playing it for a while. POWER HOUSE have had a good go at producing a decent shoot 'em up, and they're providing as much as you can expect for £1.99.' GARETH

COMMENTS
Control keys: Q up, A down, O left, P right, M Freeze Bomb
Joystick: Kempston, Cursor, Interface 2
Use of colour: reasonably clash free, if a bit tasteless
Graphics: small characters and jerky scrolling
Sound: varied spot effects
Skill levels: one
Screens: three scrolling screens
General Rating: A below average budget title.

40%
49%
42%
36%
50%
46%

Screenshot Text

Clad in his battle armour, Luther Irontooth resembles the robot from Poppysoft's classic oldie, Factory Breakout - and indeed, the game harks back to that period.