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Arcade: Shoot-em-up
ZX Spectrum 128K
Multiple schemes (see individual downloads)

Other Links

Andy Smith
Chris Bourne

Go! Create some havoc.

Pinball games are not something you expect to find in the middle of vertically scrolling shoot-em-ups. Bedlam, however, is one such vertical scroller, and the four pinball games incorporated are designed to increase the players' score during the main game. This consists of taking charge of a spaceship (viewed from above) and attempting to complete the 26 levels of the game - which is, apparently, really a fighter simulation cooked up by the heads of the Stellar Imperium Pilots Academy, where you are a cadet. The various levels involve attack from both ground-based installations and waves of airborne aliens, and contact with any of these results in the player losing one of his initial five lives.

Extra fire-power is available to the player who manages to pick up any of the firepower symbols that appear on the ground at set places throughout the game. The programmers have been very considerate, and included an option that allows the player to take up the game again from the point he reached last time. That said, Bedlam adds nothing new to the shoot-em-up theme. You'll have to be very determined to fight your way through to the end - and it doesn't take long once you've learnt the wave formations.

Reviewer: Andy Smith

Spec 128k, £8.99cs, Out Now
Amstrad, £9.99cs, £14.99dk, Out Now
C64/128, £9.99cs, £11.99dk, Imminent
IBM PC, £19.99dk, Imminent

Predicted Interest Curve

1 min: 70/100
1 hour: 80/100
1 day: 90/100
1 week: 70/100
1 month: 30/100
1 year: 10/100

Absorbing fun for a while on the Spectrum, but not so on the Amstrad. Even on the Spectrum the fall-off's rapid though.


Banner Text


Great use of colour makes this a very good-looking game. The scrolling is adequate and the animation is fine. Gameplay is good if you're playing solo, but it tends to be a little tricky in two-player mode. If you're a real fan of this sort of game then check it out, though even shoot-em-up diehards could find the interest waning early.


Gameplay is a lot tougher, as your ship moves around a lot more slowly. It's more colourful than the Spectrum version, but that's only to be expected. No pinball tables available on the Amstrad version, making it a very average - and missable - shoot-em-up.

Graphics: 8/10

Audio: 6/10

IQ Factor: 2/10

Fun Factor: 7/10

Ace Rating: 678/1000

Predicted Interest Curve

1 min: 70/100

1 hour: 72/100

1 day: 68/100

1 week: 60/100

1 month: 30/100

1 year: 10/100

Screenshot Text

Spectrum - That's you in the bottom right-hand corner. Near the top is the entrance to the first of the pinball tables.