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Simon Cobb
1983
Arcade: Action
£5.95
English
ZX Spectrum 16K
None

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115
Chris Bourne

With an obsession verging almost on the pathological (not to say paranoid), Hewson Consultants are again urging us to our zappers to confront the menace of the egregious Seiddab. Having beaten us down in 3D Space Wars, invaded our planet in 3D Seiddab Attack, they've now gone and stolen our Di-Lithium crystals (and life's hell without a Di-Lithium crystal or two). These vital crystals have been placed in a vault guarded by four droids armed with lasers. You must break into the vault and scramble to get the crystals as the seconds tick by. So much for the scenario. how about the game?

The 'vault' is a 20 x 30 grid of small squares, character-sized, in fact. The four droids are tank-shaped objects which are situated on each of the four axes, firing inwards along the squares, so there's one on top, one on the bottom and one on either side. Each moves and fires independently, homing in on the line of squares occupied by your man.

The crystals are arranged in various patterns on the squares, the patterns change with each screen, and those containing diagonal patterns obviously make you work harder. Collecting is done quite simply by moving over the crystals. The droids move fast, and it is essential that you should not stay on a line for too long. At the corners, and in the most dangerous places therefore, are red crystals. If these are collected then the time limit is increased for the screen. The time indicator is situated at the bottom of the vault.

The program will crash if CAPS and BREAK are pressed at the same time.

CRITICISM

'Di-Lithium Lift is another version of Transversion, which was produced by Ocean. Comparisons are therefore inevitable. Di-Lithium Lift seems to me to be much faster, which is not necessarily a good thing, as Transversion's pace was deceptive, and anyway allowed you to get further into the game. On each of your lives in Transversion, you restarted collecting at the point you died - another factor which allowed you to get quite a way in quickly. In Di-Lithium Lift each fife starts out afresh with all the crystals back again. This makes it more frustrating. And, I must say, that on the whole I found Transversion's colour scheme a bit easier for playing. On the good side, Di-Lithium's graphics are very fast and smooth and there is an option for user-definable keys, which is essential with such a fast game.'

'Your task is to collect all the crystals on the grid. This is not at all easy because it 's a race against time. To help there are the time crystals placed in the corners of the screen, but you can't get at them without getting shot. It's a very fast game, but that's as far as it goes. The game speeds up and slows down according to the pitch of the BEEP. I thought this was an impossible game to play. It looks very like Ocean's Transversion, but that was much more playable. '

'If you like a very fast, very simple game, then you may like Di-Lithium Lift. I say "may" because in my opinion the programmer has made the game too hard, stacking up the odds just that bit too much to make it very playable. There are seven screens, but after some hours of playing I haven't managed to get beyond screen 3. After a bit, this becomes frustrating in the bad sense of the word rather than the good arcade sense. Nevertheless, there are probably players who will find this game a challenge worth taking just because it is a tough one.'

COMMENTS
Control keys: user-definable
Joystick: most types via UDK
Keyboard play: responsive
Use of colour: average
Graphics: small block characters, but very fast
Sound: good
Skill levels: 1
Lives: 3
Screens: 7 with increasing difficulty
General Rating: Fast and tough, perhaps too hard to be really addictive.

69%
61%
57%
62%
59%
58%
61%

Screenshot Text

Grids and bullets - some Di-Lithium needs a lift.