He's got the key of the door, Spike's never played a Firebird game before. But if you have, you'll know what to expect - competent if not zowie gameplay and presentable graphics that can make a game look slightly better than it really is.
This particular example is non-violent, non-sexist and good clean family fun. Sounds yuk, eh? It should actually keep you occupied for ages and you'll need plenty of the old grey matter and razor sharp reflexes to plot Spike's progress toward the Hall of Dreams. Ah, wouldn't we all love to get there?
Spike has the belly of a qualified Abbot drinker but it doesn't stop him being a speedy mover and nifty little jumper (my mum gave me one of those once). Having mastered his leaping motions you have to make him jump at the correct door to gain entrance to the Golden Dream world. He has six lives and with no time limit there's plenty of chance to practice and believe me, you're gonna need it.
Once into the Golden Caverns Spike'll have to gen up on his gymnastics as he has to avoid various Guardians of the sphere (as we Evertonians like to call our illustrious back four) whilst he attempts to gather keys. Once you've located and retrieved the Dream Sphere the fun really starts! Not only do you have to retrace your bounds through the cavern maze but you must make sure you keep contact with the sphere. It's a bit like the magician's trick with the wand and ball, where neither seem connected yet both are inextricably linked - much like our T'zer's brain and mouth.* Don't be too unsubtle else contact will be lost and all your travails will have been to no avail. Solid if unsensational stuff from the Silver range.
*Ed's note: this was unfortunately Rick's last review before his early demise.