The funny thing with... no. In all my years as a top journalist I have never... oh look, just how do you introduce a compilation? You know how much it costs and who publishes it (it says above), and you know whats on it (see below). And then I sum up whether it's worth getting at the end. It's just all so predictable...
Turbo the Tortoise
With a "94% Your Sinclair" sticker proudly glued on under its title, you can probably guess that we quite liked Turbo when it first came out. Six time zones lie ahead for our amphibious hero to battle through in a (kind of) Super Mario Land sort of way, in other words by jumping from platforms, squashing baddies and collecting collectables. The gameplay really is that simple - simple, predictable and probably programmed in about a week. And. judging by my I'll-definitely-get-past-level-three-next-time experiences, (which just goes to show that to review these things I don't just look at the box and read a previous review - er, oops) it's also addictive as hell.
There's a lot more to playing Captain Dynamo than making your way upwards, collecting the diamonds and surviving long enough to reach the end of the level (as Jon pointed out in his review). It's about skill, it's about timing, it's about having a good sense of balance. It's about reaching an obstacle, say a rotating blade, and due to a lack of skill, a bad sense of timing, and no sense of balance, dying. And then you know what to do next time or, more likely, what not to do.
The game is based entirely around this concept, with lots of obstacles (spikes, moving enemies, water) and lots of things to help (moving hooks, booster pads and apparently secret levels). The graphics are a bit fiddly, and far too slow, but otherwise Cap D is a great little game.
CJ in the USA
The main problem with this game is that it is almost identical to its predecessor, meaning that not only has it inherited exactly the same gameplay, but also all the same problems. Number one fault is the horrible jerky scrolling which tends to make your eyes go a bit funny, and number two is the unconvincing inertia conveyed by your character, a problem common to many platform games. I mean, just look at what they were doing with the Magic Knight series and Rick Dangerous years ago. Besides this, CJ in the USA is a still a fun little outing, if rather obvious budget material.
It has to be said, they are really all the same, aren't they? And, just while we're on the subject, you have to admit that there were better games than the Dizzy series years ago on the Speccy, even on budget. And there hasn't even been much of a notable improvement or hint of new inspiration over the series. Yet, well, who cares? Everybody (else) loves the little egg, in which case let's just say that Dizzy 4 is absolutely brilliant as well. The puzzles may be obvious, the graphics basic and the sound crap. But this is a Dizzy game, you knew that, and you love them. So here's another one.
Linda's reviewed this one over on page 15. Y'see, it's being released as a single game and as part of a compilation. She reckons it's a Megagame, so that bumps up the score a bit.
As to whether or not I reckon you should buy this compilation, well why not?
Trebor the Tortoise, eh? So he must be responsible for all those lovely sweets I enjoyed as a youngster. Old people were respected back then, you know. (There there. Have some medication. Ed)
Didn't Spangles have big 'S's on them? I used to like Spangles. They were ever so fizzy in your mouth. Or were those Refreshers? (There there. Have some cocoa Ed)
Well, it's your basic elephant carrying an umbrella shot, isn't it? So let's have a short story instead. Eric was alone in the old dark house, waiting for the others to come back from the library. He sat in front of the roaring fire and read his book, mindful of every little creak and squeak from the locked room upstairs. Suddenly he moved to Kent. The End.
But luckily Dizzy had his water wings and everything was okay. (The original version of this caption has been censored. Ed)