Salamander, to the uninitiated, was (and probably still is) one of the hottest arcade hits of the past couple of years. It was the follow up to that wicked coin-op - Nemesis, also converted into glorious Spectrovision by owners Konami.
Salamander, the coin-op, stood out because of its snazzy graphics, mega-music, and a wonderful simultaneous double player option. The action was fast, fluid and frantic. Truly state of the art arcade fare.
Now we turn to the Spectrum version, and oh boy what a total disaster. Take away the original's fabby graphics. Ignore the musical qualities, convert it into a one player (at a time) game, and don't forget to reduce the rip-snorting action to a pitiful snail's pace. Add a dash of flicker with a small helping of colour clash. Stir once, then throw out with the rubbish! It's that dreadful.
This version (I am sure the other versions will be better) is about as lively as me on a dull Sunday morning. As cold-blooded as the reptile it takes its name from.
If you want to know, the action revolves around the liberating of deep space from evil hordes. Ho hum. It is really another version of the classic 'Defender/ Scramble' genre. Nemesis tarted up in fact! It plays better than the Speccy version of Nemesis, but that's not saying much. Most things play better than that!
If you want a tacky (but damn hard) shoot 'em up then get this. But if you are looking for the real Salamander - forget it chums.
Nemesis part two, but don't get excited. It's awful. A backward step for shoot-'em-ups.