Micromega
Derek Brewster
1984
Arcade: Platform
£6.95
£2.99
English
ZX Spectrum 48K
None

59
Dave Nicholls, Ross Holman, Roger Willis
Chris Bourne

Roger: Forget the nonsensical story line - "mummy rat warning young Jasper about how dangerous the jungle becomes after the 'Furt is Wangled'" - because this superb offering is obviously intended as a covert training aid to Central American guerrillas. Twenty-two screens of lethal shrubbery, wildlife and obstacles have to be negotiated successfully, to recover the key and get safely back indoors... to continue one's studies of Che Guevara's Collected Works in Basic, no doubt!

Everything kills with gory certainty, but a smart rat can collect all sorts of useful tackle along the way. Pacifists will relish Jasper's inability to slaughter vindictive rabbits, spiders, wasps, dogs, bears, scorpions, frogs and monkeys (not to mention the odd 'Contra' chucking spears and the sinister helicopter buzzing through some frames, blasting away at our Jasp). Avoidance and survival skills are the name of this game.

Assault course simulation is a strong feature, with ropes in situ to swing on and others lying about in handy coils for later use. Picking flowers helps jumping ability, food can be picked up for score and sustenance, umbrellas stored for cliff descent and the occasional aerosol spray used for dodgy weed disposal. Acquisition of Magic Potion restores lives, too. If you can handle attractive cartoon graphics, excellent arcade tactics and essential adventure strategy, then an awful lot of practice with Jasper could get you a decent job as a full-time guerrilla. 5/5 HIT

Dave: Jasper has a lot of very pretty graphics, but technically the game's a bit naff. Swinging on the ropes makes the tune slow down and the attribute problems are awful. 1/5 MISS

Ross: Another 'jumping/platform' games where you utilise various objects to aid your progress. Jasper's ability to crawl, use ropes and perform extra long jumps adds to the thrill, but not enough to keep me interested. 2.5/5 MISS

1/5
2.5/5
5/5