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Clive Townsend
Arcade: Action
ZX Spectrum 48K
Multiple schemes (see individual downloads)

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Duncan MacDonald
Chris Bourne

I imagine that a hell of a lot of you will already have this one, cos it did pretty well when it first came out. It was megagamed, actually.

It's a flip-screen platforms, ladders and tunnels affair in which you get to play a ninja warrior. You've got to infiltrate a security building and steal a computer disk. Out to stop you are guards trained in the martial arts. They also have knives and shurikens and things, but then so can you (if you pick them up - they're scattered around all over the place.)

You start off in a river and have to climb a jetty to gain access to the building. Once inside it's 'oh dear, which way now' dilemma time. There are ladders going up, ladders going down and further rooms leading off to the left and right. Walking into some rooms an result in a birrova shock, as you might suddenly find yourself being attacked by a guard (or indeed a guard dog). Hold down the fire-button and keep that joystick moving if you want to kick someone's light out. Fights are best avoided, unless you really can't help it or you have a throwing weapon, as they sap your energy - you can see the bar plummet.

Anyway, if you ever manage to find the disk, you still have to locate your helicopter to make good your escape.

Saboteur has nice big, well animated sprites, a modicum of colour and gameplay which is 384% more absorbing than a J-Cloth.

Re-release/Original score 9