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Mastertronic Ltd
Severn Software
1985
Arcade: Shoot-em-up
£1.99
English
ZX Spectrum 48K
None

33
Rick Robson
Chris Bourne

Big Brother - presumably of 1984 fame - has been overthrown but crucial nuclear plasma has been stored away on four other planets. Your mission in your frail craft is to seek out the plasma and return it to save the world.

Sounds familiar - even if not too much like Orwell? Well this is a version of the arcade Gravitar. In fact It starts off like Lunar Lander in reverse - the first skill to learn is how to take off. You have thrust power but your left and right controls make the craft rotate - and extremely hard to manage. Suss this central control and half the fascination of the game is gone.

Once going you have six screens of caverns and landscapes to negotiate - the take off screen, four plasma pick up planets and the tricky fusion core finale. Lots of phews! and cors! here. You might groan at the jokes, folks, but at £1.99 everyone can afford a smile even if the whole program is massed on the action. The music for instance slows down whenever a gratuitous spaceship flies past, and the screens character, not pixel, scroll. One to get your cosmic L-plates on.

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