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Ocean Software Ltd
1986
Arcade: Action
£7.95
English
ZX Spectrum 48K
SpeedLock 2

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92
Graham Taylor
Chris Bourne

It's a Knockout. Now there was a TV program! How I remember Eddie Waring's incisive wit and Stuart Hall's infexious laughter.

Now, according to dark rumours too horrible to countenance, the whole thing is to return.

Ocean has done a computer version that leaves me speechless.

It recaptures something of the original flavour of the TV programme in being, foolish, rambling, ludicrous and amateurish although it brings in the whacky new feature of attribute clash to make things even more kooky.

There are several games in it's a Knockout, all of them silly, most of them quickly tedious.

You pick a country and play through the events in authentic it's a Knockout style. This means there are a number of games played 'at once' and a continuing game 'the marathon' played by each country between the usual games. I decided to be Belgium since then it wouldn't matter if I failed miserably.

First up is Flying Flans. You control a waiter who tries to catch flans which come hurtling over a wall - having been launched by two men with a see-saw and a mallet. Catch the flan and take it off screen.

Collect more flans. The graphics are budget standard but it's sort of fun in a way. Once.

Harlem Hoppers is nothing to do with its title. At first glance it appears you're collecting camel dung whilst stretching against a spring. Actually it appears to be small round objects rolled down the camels back by a woman member of your team.

Awful.

Titanic Drop is sliding down a rope trying to land in coloured lifebels. Even more awful.

Diet of Worms has two people dressed as chickens - they have to peck at worms and put them in a tray. The chickens change colour completely because of attribute clash depending on where they are standing. It seems to belong to another game.

Obstacle Race is just like the hundred metres in one of a thousand other Track and Field games except that sometimes you have to jump silly obstacles. It is very tedious and it looks appalling. Infinitely worse than a trillion other budget offerings.

However, the marathon game, called Bronte Bash is pretty gdod, quite nicely programmed and actually very funny (if cruel). You have to move a giant weight and drop it on the head of a brontasaurus which peeps up from inside one of a number of craters. I felt bad about stunning the rather innocent looking beast. The feeling quickly passed.

One OK-ish game and the rest a joke, only in an unintended sense. just like the TV program really.

Label: Ocean
Author: In house
Price: £7.95
Joystick: Kempston
Memory: 48K/128K
Reviewer: Graham Taylor

**

Six games in one. Five of them absolutely dreadful. One of them not too bad. Therefore I doubt if the whole thing's worth it.

2/5