1989
Arcade: Shoot-em-up
£8.99
£2.99
English
ZX Spectrum 48K/128K
Multiple schemes (see individual downloads)

44
Nick Roberts, Mike Dunn
Chris Bourne

Gemini Wing is probably the first computer game to go healthy. We all know it is better to eat organically, but is it better to shoot 'em up organically too? You man a small ship that has to fly over seven levels of organic excitement with a mission to kill Mutant Alien Scum, who try their best to smash into your ship (ouch!).

Being the hard person that you are, you could probably kill all the alien enemies with a single laser gun (or a secret store of rubber bands like Skippy has.., ping, ouch!), but the Gemini Wing ship is capable of much more than that.

You can collect gunballs from the aliens you liquidise to give the Wing extra fire power. These gunballs do all sorts of extremely catastrophic things to the poor aliens, like blasting a three way fire ball, an alien seeking missile, a spiralling circle of destruction, and the dreaded windscreen wiper of death, the subject of many nightmares on planets far, far away. They also give extra lives and points.

All this plot sounds so exciting I think my Spectrum is going to explode (puft!). The only trouble with Gemini Wing is that you can't see it (Eh?!). The organic backgrounds are detailed, the aliens are detailed and the ship is... well not so detailed, but put them all together coloured with the same monochrome and you simply don't know what's going on half the time! Though there are colour highlights on the explosion effects.

Different mega weapons are a good idea (even if it's been done before), especially the windscreen wiper of death, but there's a lack of playability. Decent sound effects and tune do a good Job to rescue the game, but it's not enough. Gemini Wing holds nothing new, so check it out only if you are a shoot 'em up lover, or disappointment may be yours.
NICK ... 65%

CRITICISM

'Not another! Vertical scrolling shoot-'em-ups are all well and good... at least, they used to be. This isn't. The tune on the title screen is pretty good, but that doesn't really make it worth the asking price. The graphics are too small, and the colouring is awful: yet another example of 'invisible enemy syndrome', it's just another shoot 'em up, and as such there's no real reason to buy it. If Gemini Wing was more original, and the colour plan thought out slightly better it would be great - but these two flaws really knock it down.' MIKE ... 61%

Decent blaster, with a good theme, but doesn't work well so well on the Speccy.

80%
61%
77%
65%
59%
63%