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The Power House
John George Jones
1987
Arcade: Platform
£1.99
English
ZX Spectrum 48K
None

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108
Robin Candy, Paul Sumner, Nick Roberts
Chris Bourne

It just hasn't been a good day for your family.

Having been convinced that the little light does stay on, your father has been imprisoned by the wickedness of evil spirits in a fridge. To release him, you must find eight spirit keys. Then you can help Dad search for your mother.

She's been mutilated and dismembered, her bodily parts scattered hither and thither. Still, where there's hope and an awful lot of Elastoplast, who knows what can be done.... But first her organs and limbs must be gathered and carried back to the fridge.
You undertake these simple tasks in a subterranean multilevel world of vertical passages, horizontal corridors, tunnels and rooms. But your progress through this land of menace and depravity is hampered by myriad bizarre, destructive and menacing devices.
Heavy anvils keep falling on your head, sets of spikes pummel downwards onto the unsuspecting, babies are caught in stretching devices and men pulled apart on racks, and flying blades swirl through the air.

For protection you carry a laser that can destroy some of the ghoulies and creatures of evil. But this weapon can become too hot and jam, if continually used; an indicator shows how close it is to this critical point.

As in all self-respecting evil domains, the things of darkness can seriously affect your heart, as in stopping it - and you have only three lives.

For further protection against this multifarious malignancy, try the invisibility function. It makes transparent and indestructible to find out where you are, just fire your laser).

And just think, if you get through all this, Mum and Dad are going to be SO pleased!

CRITICISM

'Soft & Cuddly's greatest asset is its graphics, big and colourful and a touch gruesome. The animation is sometimes hickory, though, and there's little else to make this standard platform game stand out. It's very easy to get into, but boring. Exploring the playing area is the most enjoyable part, but even that becomes repetitive.' ROBIN ... 68%

It's a pity that such a technically sound and innovative game should be dragged down by distasteful graphics and a horribly grim inlay. Like CRL's adventure Dracula, Soft & Cuddly should have a 15 certificate. There are some cleverly-animated and attractively-coloured graphics - indeed, all there is to Soft & Cuddly is graphics. The gameplay is repetitive.' PAUL ... 40%

Sick, sick, sick! The programmer of Soft & Cuddly needs intensive psychiatric help. The smooth, slick graphics show heads getting pierced by forks and four babies Joined at the waist. Though these graphics are a mite sketchy, colour is used very well. Still, I only recommend Soft & Cuddly to those of you who cut your toenails with a carving knife!' NICK ... 57%

COMMENTS
Joysticks: Cursor, Kempston, Sinclair
Graphics: big and colourful - the game's best point
Sound: spot FX
Options: silly-walk option (which doesn't work)
General Rating: An everyday platform game with good graphics and a bizarrely morbid scenario.

59%
77%
53%
53%
55%

Screenshot Text

Stand firm, you nasty creature from the depths of the underworld, and let me blow you to pieces.

More gruesome goodies on the spares trolley trundle toward you - and could that be Mr Mangram below?