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Quicksilva Ltd
John R. Edmonds
1984
Arcade: Maze
£6.95
English
ZX Spectrum 48K
None

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27
Bill Scolding
Chris Bourne

FOR MANY moons now Quicksilva has been advertising a chilling program entitled Blood and Guts - 'A fantastic fight to the death within your own bloodstream!' The more squeamish amongst you might be relieved that the game has now been renamed Fantastic Voyage, after the sixties hokum pic in which Raquel Welch was injected into the body of a brain-damaged scientist - he should be so lucky.

Together with your specially designed submarine you are minaturised and implanted in the body of the boffin. Unfortunately the sub does not withstand the process and its component parts are liberally distributed throughout the anatomy.

Starting your voyage in the scientist's mouth, you have only 60 minutes in which to locate each segment of the disjointed craft and swim with it up into the brain, where it is deposited upon a mysteriously convenient ledge before final re-assembly and escape. Quicksilva is coy as to the escape route - but if the game follows the film you'll return to the outside world inside a poetic tear drop.

The ludicrous plot nevertheless makes for a tricky, entertaining and - dare one say it - educational game. Leaving the mouth with your first piece of sub, you swim down the throat, avoiding the wobbly, lethal, epiglottis (?) and into the bronchi. Turn into the right lung, being careful not to touch the pulsating sides, through the valve to the pulmonary vein, zapping the wall of yellow cholesterol, then, in quick succession, the left atrium, left ventricle, the aorta and up into the brain. Drop the part and go in search of the next piece.

Actually it's not that simple. just when you think you're doing well, the screen flashes with the news that an infection has broken out in some distant organ, and you have to rush to the scene of the disturbance and destroy the wiggly things darting about.

Your energy is draining all the time, and to replenish it you need to feast on any passing red cells. Without the bloody cells you fast become invisible, and play is then nigh impossible. White blood cells are useful for removing any growths you encounter.

Graphics are adequate and mercifully abstract, otherwise you might be barfing all over your keyboard. All in all, an addictive and original entertainment. In these days of clone software, what more could you ask for?

Bill Scolding

Price: £6.95
Memory: 48K
Joystick: Kempston, Cursor

****

4/5