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Piranha
1986
Arcade: Action
£9.95
English
ZX Spectrum 48K
Multiple schemes (see individual downloads)

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36
Phil South
Chris Bourne

When you boot this game up, look v. closely at Senior Sergeant Irina Viskova. Look familiar? She should, because its in fact a Sam Fox (wahay) style digitised pic of our very own cuddly T'zer. (Less of the cuddly! T'zer). Blimey! Stone me, guy. The girl's fame grows by the minute. Anyway, T'zer gets enough press without her intruding into games reviews, so that's all I'm saying.

I'd really like to say this game is a load of cobras, but (just my luck) it's too good. Strike Force Cobra, besides being the 459th game called Strike Force summink or other, is a 3D combat game. which p-p-pours scorn on Commando and other such rubbish. You are in control of a team of international soldiers, whose solemn task (again?) is to save the World from an evil genius known only as The Enemy. Why always evil genius? Why aren't we ever threatened by evil idiots? We are in real life, so why not in games?

The enemy, or Enny to his chums, has captured all the world's top computer scientists, with a view to hacking into the superpower's defence computers. The Strike Force is despatched to break into the evil lair (a semi-detached in Wapping?), find the stricken scientists, learn the codes for the computer and smash it up before Enny Baby can perpetrate his little roast. There are four Strike Force members and in order to complete their task they must work together. You can switch control between them, opening doors and removing obstacles that your buddies can't reach. The name of the game, in spite of their political differences (sentimental sniff) is co-operation.

This is a big game. There's a save game option for those of us who don't have four days at a stretch to play it, and a good thing too. I've been told how to play it to the end, and I still can't get very far on level one. All the same it's one of the most challenging games of the year, and manages in spite of its complexity to be great fun to play. There's a lot of detail in the game controls, like the ability to fan your machine gun (to spray bullets, not cool it off, dummy!), and to jump, turn and land in one smooth movement.

If you want a game that you can get your teeth into, (moan!) and you're tired of coming up with a mouthful of nothing, get Strike Force Cobra. You won't be disappointed.

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