BATTLE OF THE TANKS
IT WOULD have been better if Atari had not given its permission to Quicksilva to produce Battle Zone as the game is no better than the original arcade version. Many companies at least try to add a new element to such games or put something extra into the graphics.
If by now you have not heard of the game the object is to move your tank around a landscape in which other tanks, space craft and flying saucers are on the prowl.
The bare instructions, found in the game and not on the cassette insert, tell you to hide behind objects which are littered around so that the enemy cannot see you before you make your move. The movement of your tank is difficult to master as the tank is on tracks. If you press the lefthand side of the keyboard the left track moves forward, shifting the tank right, and if you push the righthand keys the tank moves left. Time to reach for the Kempston joys- tick.
Forward movement shows the clumsiness of the 3D graphics which are inferior to the original. Outlines crack up, objects jerk when they move and missiles on target do not always score a hit.
While no better than Battlezone the Real Time Software 3D Tank Duel does have a coloured landscape, the former being only green and black. The standard of graphics is slightly better than the Quicksilva version and the action is smoother but the tanks, spaceships and flying saucers move faster than your gun sights which will cause a problem if you are lucky enough not to have played the game before.
The instructions and key layout are better than the Quicksilva version so at least you can use the cassette insert if you need reminding about controls during play.
Neither of these games have much to recommend them except that you do not have to pay 50 pence a time to play in an arcade. If you are after classic original arcade simulations then both games are good buys. If you want excitement from your computer then just pass them by.
Joystick: Kempston, Sinclair, Cursor