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Michael Wood
Arcade: Action
ZX Spectrum 48K

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Chris Bourne


READING the playing instructions to Reactor from Gemini might lead you to believe that you have to be a nuclear physicist to play, but in practice the game is not so complicated as it sounds.

The object is to control a nuclear reactor by moving a control unit in such a way that the metal elements bounce from it at right angles and hit the central discharge unit, a tricky manoeuvre until you get used to it. Each time you accomplish it successfully, the power of the reactor increases and radiation is kept under control.

There are neutrons to take into account; whenever they hit a piece of metal it splits into two, increasing radiation. Further, if you collide with metal after having absorbed neutrons, you lose one of your four lives.

Keeping power up and radiation down for the required time leads to the next stage of the exercise, which involves laying a trail of concrete to box-in every metal element in sight. You can then go on to try your hand at controlling a new and more difficult reactor, knowing that sooner or later nuclear power will inevitably get the better of you.

The graphics are relatively simple but the game offers a new and original concept and its degree of difficulty is well-judged to keep you playing for a long time.

Memory: 48K
Price: £7.95
Joystick: Kempston