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1986
Arcade: Platform
£5.95
English
ZX Spectrum 48K
None

30
Rick Robson
Chris Bourne

Artic may have vamped up its new budget software label, Antartic, with the release of a new title in the hope of taking a byte out of Mastertronic's market. It makes a big deal of the new packaging - but if the cover of The Master is anything to go by then Antartic may well leave you cold.

As for the game, it's a multi-screen arcader with the emphasis on platforms. Jasper, who has a penchant for watching horror movies, has fallen asleep during one. He awakes to find himself trapped within a world of film horror. Spookey! His only escape is to play his way through seven platform screens before the ultimate confrontation with The Master on the eighth.

As Jasper, to reach The Master, you must collect the correct number of Holy Crosses, and that's not easy as they have a tendency to transform into symbols of evil. Along the way, secure in the knowledge that, like the coolest of cats, you have nine lives, you'll need to zap numerous aliens (though they can't all be killed) and avoid a barrage of missiles. Once you've defeated The Master five times (yawn) it's back to the fray, though in a new form, to vanquish the vituperative vampire. On your journey you'll be tempted, Alice like, to press certain buttons which may or may not help you. Either way, complete the task before midnight (you'll see the daylight seeping away on-screen) or you'll end up with a right pain in the neck.

As you can probably tell, the game relies heavily on repetition and persistence - I mean, you have to fire and jump like crazy to get through the screens. If that's the kind of game you like to get your teeth into, fair enough - but I'm sure you'll find as good elsewhere, even at this price.

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