1988
Arcade: Action
£1.99
English
ZX Spectrum 48K
None

110
Mark Caswell, Mike Dunn, Bym Welthy
Chris Bourne

Deadly spores, so virulent that even TCP can't destroy them, have overrun a laboratory. One hope remains: the strong pesticide held in barrels throughout the building. And the task in Spore is to collect all the barrels on each level.

But the spores are continually released from generator blocks, and you must always be ready to destroy them with your blaster - before they infect you. Rejuvenating flasks and protective pills also help in the fight against sporedom.

Flashing yellow barriers can imprison you or block routes to the vital pesticide - and though you can destroy them by blasting appropriate mirrors and squares that, too, could release more torrents of spores.

CRITICISM

'Though it's not graphically great, Spore's fast and furious action and tortuous mazes more than compensate for the main character looking like a I demented starfish and the 'menacing' (!) square eponymous spores. Spore is a highly playable collect-'em-up.' MARK

'Ah, this brings back memories - sweet memories of the good old ZX81 and the 16K Spectrum, with one-character-block graphics racing uncontrollably around the screen on a blast-everything mission. The sheer speed of Spore makes it hard to master, and what with its small graphics the game becomes a crazy brain-scrambling confrontation with the screen. At least the tune goes well with such an unbearable game.' BYM

'The challenge of quick blasting and quick thinking makes Spore instantly playable and addictive. The positioning of the mirrors and squares controlling the barriers means you have to pay as much attention to where and how you shoot as to the process of firing itself, and you should plan your progress through each level strategically. And there are enough different elements (the pheromone pip which makes the spores run away, the flasks you have to be careful not to shoot) to sustain interest for several levels. The graphics are colourful and distinctive, too, and there aren't many budget games with so much to offer.' MIKE

COMMENTS
Joysticks: Cursor, Kempston, Sinclair (none work, though!)
Graphics: small but well-defined characters
Sound: like dried peas in a tin
Options: definable keys (which, like the joysticks, don't function); maze-construction set
General Rating: Don't be put off by the simple display and control problems - Spore is very addictive.

55%
46%
75%
78%
67%