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R. Macfarquhar
1984
Arcade: Action
£2.99
English
ZX Spectrum 48K
None

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135
Chris Bourne

In these hard times you have decided to supplement your meagre income you have taken a night job as watchman at Capital City's Space Terminal cargo warehouse. You have been assigned to the R block (radiation contaminated shipments). Why is the pay for this four times the normal rate? Why is the last man's gear still in his locker? Why did they ask for your next of kin? Still, your buggy should stand up to anything…

So say the instructions to this new budget game from a wing of Software Projects. The radiation, of course, has caused creatures in the warehouse to mutate, and you must go around in your 'zappodozer' zappodozing them by shoving the crated goods at them and squashing them before they get you.

From this brief description it is easy to see that what we have here is really a 'Pengo' type game where crates replace ice blocks. Each level is enlivened by the fact that the goods are changed. As each screen starts one of the crates will be flashing and a creature will emerge from it after a second or two. More crates flash as more creatures come to the attack, becoming more intelligent as they go along. Crates may be pushed along or melted (except the yellow ones which may be pushed only). At the base of the screen is an energy bar - there is also a time counter which affects the bonus score.

CRITICISM

'I didn't think Moonlighter was very playable because the dozer is too sluggish while the pasties are quick. Also the fact that there are quite a few keys does not help very much. The most exciting bit of the game is the 'zippy' noise that occurs when all the lives are lost!'

'Another attempt at an ice age game - 'Pengo'. The screen is laid out on quite a large grid of 'ice' - but in this game crates of 'Dunlot' tennis balls. And it is this load of balls that keep on hanging about trying to get you! The mutated balls seem to be very eager to try and squash you and move very fast in comparison to you'. I found on the very first screen that killing off five balls was a nightmare -on the second screen with ten balls after me it seemed impossible. Colour has been used very well in this game, graphics are clear detailed and move well. There are many tunes, all quite jolly and pleasing. At £2.99 this does represent good value for this type of game.'

'The graphics in Moonlighter are smooth and quite fast, and although they are actually quite detailed, they don't really appear to be so, which is a bit odd. It's a fairly standard 'Pengo' game and a pretty hard one - perhaps too hard. Good value though for the price. Nothing amazing - just reasonable as a game.'

COMMENTS
Control keys: Q/A up/down, O/P left/right, M to fire, N to push
Joystick: Kempston
Keyboard play: responsive, but melt and push are the wrong way round for comfortable play
Use of colour: above average
Graphics: only average
Sound: good tunes, some nice spot effects
Skill levels: progressive (more jumps, leaps and bounds!)
Lives: 5
Screens:
Special features:
General Rating: Average game, which represents reasonable value for money.

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