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Pete Cooke
Sport: Action
ZX Spectrum 48K

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Clare Edgeley
Chris Bourne

ONLY professional skiers need apply to race in Richard Shepherd's Ski Star 2000 - the slalom is more like suicide than fun on the slopes.

You are given 18 options for the type of game you want to race, there are a number of courses to choose from and you can also design your own course.

If you are a coward you will go for full visibility, a gentle, uncomplicated course and no snow fall. Even with the odds stacked in your favour you will probably end up on your head.

The screen is split into three sections, a large view of the course with flags marking the route and underneath, two small screens depicting your route and a display panel with a timer and speed gauge.

The game is played in exactly the same way as a flight simulation. As you bank to go round a flag the horizon tilts accordingly and straightens up as you go for the next flag in the zig-zag course. Those who have played a flight simulation will know how difficult it is to keep the plane steady and on a straight course. It is just as difficult in Ski Star 2000 and it is possible to turn 180 degrees and ski uphill to the start without knowing it!

The graphics are minimal with a few line drawings depicting a mountainous horizon and flags. It is a pity the game does not show the skier as that would make play more interesting. On harder races you will come across moguls scattered along the route acting as obstacles. However, the game is incredibly slow with jerky movement.

Options allow changes in speed, rate of turn, maximum roll and although those make the game marginally more interesting it is a poor substitute for the real thing.

Clare Edley

Price: £7.95
Memory: 48K
Joystick: Kempston, Sinclair, Protek