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Starlight Software
Not Known
1987
Arcade: Vehicle Combat
£8.99
English
ZX Spectrum 48K
Multiple schemes (see individual downloads)

Other Links


122,123
Paul Sumner, Mike Dunn, Bym Welthy
Chris Bourne

You control three different droids, each with different capabilities; they can be activated in turn, and each sent to one of a series of hexagonal landscapes.

These barren vistas consist of ramps and valleys, chasms and level plains. Move your droids carefully, controlling their movement so they don't tumble to their death or wander into acid lakes: there is a task to be done. Contained within each landscape are energy pods which must all be collected before the droid can go on to the next panorama.

The letters B-O-N-U-S can also be collected to give a bonus play later.

The landscapes are inhabited by patrolling alien droids who can reduce your own droid's energy level, though it can be restored by picking up items. To help your droids in their quest are teleport pads, a dread-freeze device that temporarily immobilises alien droids, ice switches that glaciate an acid lake, and time capsules that either extend your time limit of an hour or reduce it.

Collectible smart bombs not only destroy all the alien mechanoids in the immediate area but can also take out enemy droid-generators. That's useful because when all the generators in a landscape have been destroyed, no more alien droids come a-nibbling at your robot's tin heels till the next landscape.

When a screen has been successfully completed a flashing hexagon is shown on the main landscape map. Link the far left landscape to the far right landscape with a series of such hexagons and victory is yours.

CRITICISM

'Despite the large play area and the many landscapes, Red L.E.D. has surprisingly little game content. Most of your time is spent going through an endless (and colourless) void; only a tiny fraction of the map actually has anything affixed to it. And to make matters worse all the characters are very small and intricately detailed; thus they end up looking like smudges on the screen. Red L.E.D offers very little.' PAUL … 51%

'Red L.E.D. is a decent little game for Marble Madness fans the world over. The graphics are attractive; the scrolling is a lot smoother than in many games of this genre, but it still jerks more than it should for a play area of its size. Red LE.D. is playable and quite addictive, but there's still a niggling feeling that it isn't going to last as long as a full-price product should.' MIKE ... 68%

'Some games, such as Firebird's Park Patrol (reviewed in this issue), benefit from slow-response graphics. Red LE.D. does not! The intricate landscape layouts require a speedy yet controlled movement. Yet after two hours of mastering droid-control, the game becomes playable, if nearly impossible to complete. The lurid colours scrambling all over the screen in a wild complexity of jumbled lines don't make it any easier or more fun. Also, the reasoning behind your losing a small amount of energy for jumping out of the arena and losing a great deal for bumping into a jumbled mass of confused pixels the inlay calls an enemy droid escapes me completely; one happens as frequently as the other. Still, though I find games with many similar screens taxing on my patience, I'm sure many will love Red L.E.D..' BYM ... 65%

COMMENTS
Joysticks: Cursor, Kempston, Sinclair
Graphics: mainly monochromatic, good scrolling
Sound: tune and FX, but nothing stunning
Options: definable keys
General Rating: A limited but enjoyable Marble Madnessesque collecting game.

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Screenshot Text

'Lurid colours in a wild complexity of jumbled lines'.

Red L.E.D.: a simple collecting challenge.