Ocean Software Ltd
1988
Arcade: Shoot-em-up
£7.95
English
ZX Spectrum 48K
Multiple schemes (see individual downloads)

26,27
Tamara Howard
Chris Bourne

Next time you've overdone it on the Chinese takeaway front, and you're up half the night with your stomach gurgling, "No more monosodium glutamate perleeaase!", just take time to spare a thought for the poor alien in Gutz. I dunno, he's just swallowed a teensy weensy spaceman, and all of a sudden he's being attacked left right and centre by a guy with a popgun. If that's not enough to give him rumble-tum then I don't know what is.

Gutz is the latest release from Special FX, and it's that sort of a game which requires you to play the part of a small swallowed space man and shut down the major organs of aforementioned alien. S'peasy, isn't it?

You begin in the kidneys (well, it could be the heart, or the brain or the lungs, one piece of offal looks much like another to me) exploring a maze of corpuscles and capillaries. Jigging about in the goo are various other noxious nasties, spidery-wormy-creepy things which spit amino acids and all sorts of other noxious substances at you. And you can't do a thing about it. What you need boy, is a weapon. (Fnar - JD).

Lurking in one of the walls is what looks to be a bit of corruption, this is in fact your ammo. Go up to it, twizzle your joystick around a little bit, and whammo, you've got a dirty great gun. Now go waste the nasties.

Once you've got the weapon, you can concentrate on finding the three components of a mega weapon, which is the only thing capable of shutting down the organ. Pick up three boxes per organ, and Bob's your whatsit. Protective womb of organ annihilated. ('Scuse me, I think I'm going to be sick - JD).

Along the way there are also bonus helmets to collect, which offer two and a half minutes protection against poisonous gases and bullets. Get some crystals too, they'll give you extra boosty fire power so you can mash loads more aliens. And keep a close eye out for the key, that'll get you into the room which houses the mega weapon needed to bump off the organ in question. You'll also find a map (particularly useful if you're a boy scout and into things like that).

So am I chucking up about Gutz? (What a ridiculous sentence. Go back and write again - GT) Oh, all right. What do I think about Gutz in general, all things considered, weighing it all up and taking the price of fish into consideration? (That's marginally better, but not much - GT). Um. It's quite nice really. Bit of a larf. But nothing spectacular. Call me difficult to please if you will, but I didn't find Gutz very challenging. After Firefly and its great SU cover game I was prepared to lick Special FX's collective shoes every time it threw a release in my lowly direction, but to be perfectly honest, that'd just be a waste of lick.

The graphics are OK, the gameplay's just about there, but you'll not be swallowing your joystick, or a spaceman for that matter, in desperation to play it. There's not enough, "Just one more go,' about Gutz. It's simply a perfectly reasonable game. And being a completely unreasonable person, I didn't like it half as much as I'd have liked to. (Wah? - GT)

Label: Special FX
Author: Special FX
Price: £7.95
Memory: 48K/128K
Joystick: various
Reviewer: Tamara Howard

Perfectly competent, but not really inspired search and shoot game.

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