Activision Inc
1990
Arcade: Shoot-em-up
£9.99
English
ZX Spectrum 48K/128K
Multiple schemes

79
Nick Roberts, Mark Caswell
Chris Bourne

Weird, mystical and a bit crappy names, ahoy! You're Kayus, King of Agamen, and ride on the back of Bahamoot the dragon to battle the minions of Zanbaquous, self styled King Of Darkness. Discontented peasants have freed Zambaquous to overthrow Kayus, and already the creatures of darkness roam Agamen.

Six horizontally-scrolling levels, filled with more vile creature than you could shake a dragons tail at, stand between Kayus and the destruction of evil Zambaquous. Kayas is armed with a cross bow, whilst Bahamoot spits dirty great energy bolts from his gob (which increase in power when the fire button is held down). Enemy creatires attack and damage is inflicted if Kayas is hit.

Watch out for the weapon power-ups: when the more vicious creatures are blasted to bits they leave coloured orbs behind. Red orbs bestow barbecue breath on Bahamoot, silver orbs give homing missiles, blue orbs give lightning bolts and gold orbs send sharp scales winging their way to the enemy. The more orbs you collect of the same colour, the more powerful the weapon.

Activision has the strange habit of releasing obscure coin-op conversions and Dragon Breed is no exception. The graphics are incredibly large and colourful and there's very little colour clash. The sprites are also well animated and the action is fast and furious. Although in the same vain as Saint Dragon, this isn't ass playable. Maybe it isn't fair to compare the two games, but I feel that Dragon Breed will suffer slightly in the light of its more playable counterpart.

MARK … 84%

CRITICISM

'From the coin-op company that brought you R-Type comes… R-Type with different graphics! Yes folks, that's all Dragon Breed really is. That doesn't mean the game is no good though, shoot 'em up fans will find it highly entertaining. Coming so soon after Saint Dragon (92% Issue 82) everyone is bound to point out the similarities between the two games. The graphics in this are not as slick as the Saint Dragon ones though, they are bigger but also clumsy. What makes Dragon Breed stand out is the way the little man riding on the dragon's back can jump off and run along the ground! Dragon Breed is a shoot 'em up maniac's heaven - lots of enormous monsters to be killed, plenty of different weapons to be collected and a continue-play option. Excellent fun initially, but whether it will still be addictive in a couple of months' time is another matter.' NICK … 76%

A colourful and playable shoot-'em-up lacking the polish of greatness.

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