Unless otherwise stated this review is not affiliated with any other website nor has the review been authorised by the copyright company or indiviudal author. As of 17th July 2017 this encompasses every review within ZXSR. If you would like this or any other review removed from this website, please contact the website administrator here.

1986
Arcade: Maze
£7.99
English
ZX Spectrum 48K
Multiple schemes

Other Links


136
Chris Bourne

The evil Wardlock is a genius. Unfortunately, the Wardlock's talents are misplaced and instead of using its genetic experimentation capacity for the good of mankind the machine known as the Wardlock done just the opposite creating horrendous genetic experiments.

Two by-products of his dabblings are Solo, a synthetic man, and Nejo, a baby. These two outcasts are doomed to wander the strange world of the Mechlabs f orever, unless they can escape. But since the Mechlabs are infested with byproducts of the evil Wardlock's previous experiments, escape is far from easy. However, Solo has a plan: if he can expose the evil workings of the Wardlock to the outside world, then the experiments will come to an end and the Wardlock will be destroyed.

The Globjewels and Bloberites are uncomely creatures which wander around the Mechlabs terrorising everything that comes their way. As Solo and Nejo try to find a way out of the nightmarish world in which they are imprisoned, they are constantly hassled by these inhuman beings. Fortunately, Solo is in possession of a nifty bubblegum gun which can be used to temporarily disable the nasties encountered.

The Mechlabs consist of three vast dimensional mazes. There are four sections altogether: the Ice zone, Fire Zone, Tech zone and Veggie Zone. These are distinguished by different colours. Solo must trek through the Mechlabs, searching for power crystals. Once found, these can be taken to a computer room and used to reprogram the computer causing it to open exits to the Outside World.

Unfortunately, Solo has more to worry about than just the Globjewels and the Bloberites: tagging alongside him is the baby, Nejo. Lacking a natural mother, Nejo attaches himself to the nearest object, which happens to be Solo. Looking after a toddler is one thing, but trying to keep him in perfect health in a place as fundamentally unhealthy as the Mechlabs is something else! Solo must watch out for nappy rash and make sure that the baby has clean daipers every now and then. Babies must also be kept spanking clean, so water and bath facilities must be found and used along the way. Taking Nejo through the maze is quite a problem, since he often finds it difficult to move around obstacles. So, Solo has to guide him quite a bit.

A readout at the bottom of the screen provides hints from time to time, and the status area at the to monitors oxygen levels and the condition of the baby you're looking after.

For the first six minutes of a game, the nasties are fairly harmless but if you touch them during this period they get really heavy.

CRITICISM

'Well the graphics ARE quite pretty, and the sprites move quite well, but I don't really think that Prodigy is a very good game. The control keys remind me of the days when it was different to have control keys that fitted your finger patterns, but nowadays its more common to find a game with redefinable keys. Argh!! I reckon the music would be more aptly labelled noise, as it is absolutely awful. The game itself is almost playable, and therefore, quite addictive, but I don't think that It'll be a big success. 'Nuff said?!'

'Who fancies a challenge then? You'll certainly get one if you buy this game because it is very, very hard, I grew more disappointed the more I played Prodigy, not due the game itself but more to do with my inability to play it successfully. The graphics are surprisingly good. The playing area scrolls smoothly and quickly and the characters are excellently animated and detailed. The various component parts of the playing area are also very pretty. The sound is brilliant: there is a wonderful tune on the title screen and the effects during the game are great. If you manage to work out what you have to do and then get past the nasties in the first six minutes then the game is a little easier to play, but if you mess that part up then you've had it. Controlling your synthi-man is a little on the tricky side as the keys used are all in a line, but after lots of practice it gets better..'

'The first thing that struck me about Prodigy was the very smart way in which it is presented. The graphics are all very well drawn and very detailed. All of the characters are very well animated and move about very smoothly. The sound at the beginning of the game is superb - even better than the Ping Pong music, it features loads of very realistic drum effects and synthesised sounds - that I presume are sampled, but still belt out of the Spectrum speaker at a fair old wattage. I felt that the game was quite unplayable to start with, as the small screen and consistent dying made it very hard to get used to. Once mastered, the game is exciting to play and quite addictive. If you can get over the limited play area and awkward key positions then you'll find quite a good game, one definitely worth a look at.'

COMMENTS
Control keys: left 6, right 7, up 9, down 8, fire bubblegum 0, pick-up 0, drop W. pause SPACE
Joystick: Kempston, Interface II
Keyboard play: quite responsive
Use of colour monochromatic play area
Graphics: detailed and well animated
Sound: clever tune at the beginning
Skill levels: four
Screens: scrolling play area
General Rating:

69%
84%
67%
66%
72%
65%
68%

Screenshot Text

A horrid bog-eyed Cameron look-alike follows synthi-man down a corridor! Yeuchh!

Synthi-man and the parentless baby make their way through the hostile environment as a floating nasty hovers...