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Mikro-Gen Ltd
Chris Hinsley
1986
Arcade: Shoot-em-up
£9.95
Multiple languages (see individual downloads)
ZX Spectrum 48K
Unspecified custom loader

21
Luke C
Chris Bourne

As you've no doubt gathered from the title, we're deep in space for this game and if you're looking for a quick comparison, Elite is the nearest.

As captain of the good ship Phoenix, it's your unenviable task to quash the evil Zoltar who's declared war on the five planetary systems in your universe. No problem... if you've got a joystick that is - without one, the keyboard controls turn into a nightmare that'll tie your fingers in knots! With five status screens to keep your eye on, planets to land on and alien spaceships to dodge and destroy, you've got your work cut out.

The idea of the game is to put up such a good fight against the invading aliens that they take the hint and find some other universe to destroy. But there's oh so much more to it than that! This is not your average 'zap 'em up' game. The alien craft all have different characteristics, and judging a spaceship's speed as you home in for the kill is something you'll get the hang of only after much experience. And something else that'll take time is landing the Phoenix on a planet's surface, plus negotiating the hyperspace gates... but it's all good fun and if you've got a spare couple of hours to practise, very rewarding.

The graphics are fast and extremely well-constructed. The screen format looks a bit confusing at first but, like the keyboard controls, all becomes familiar after a few games. Just don't panic if you don't stay alive too long on your first time out behind the wheel... it'll all come together if you hang on in there.

7/10
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