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CRL Group PLC
Colin Ajayi-Obe
1987
Arcade: Action
£8.95
English
ZX Spectrum 128K
None

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30
Chris Bourne

A conference between all the super powers is being held on the planet Therop. However, the sneaky Theropi, have plans for Galactic domination and have subjected the Earth Members to the Theropi's irreversible Brain Drain machine. They have been turned from loyal Earthlings into lethal exterminators working for the Theropi. However, there is one survivor from the Theropi's dastardly plans. Major R A Trooper, Squad Captain, has somehow avoided the Theropi, and now stands alone in a bid to stop their evil plans.

The Major, must exterminate the brainwashed Members, and escape from the planet alive. The parts of his spaceship have been scattered all over the planet's surface, so before he can even contemplate waving bye-bye to Therop, he must collect all these pieces and assemble his craft again. There are a certain number of pieces of the ship per sector. Each piece must be collected before he progresses to the next.

If Major Trooper encounters one of the green Members, he must fight them at unarmed combat, the screen automatically flips into combat mode. The action zooms in on the two fighters, and shows them greatly enlarged and in much finer detail on the screen. Using the relevant keys or joystick positions, Major Trooper has to highkick and punch his way to victory by draining his opponent's energy and stamina. However, the Major has to watch out for his own reserves. There are two bars on the Combat screen. The blue one showing the Major's energy and the magenta one showing his stamina. The idea is to get the opponent's energy and stamina down to zero. However, if the Member gets the better of the Major, then he loses one of his lives. These lives are displayed at the bottom of the screen as hearts, and are gradually eaten away as the Major's energy is lost. When a Member has been destroyed, the Major can then progress in the game. The screen then returns to the normal view, showing the characters and background in quite small detail.

Apart from the Members, the Major also has to fight against the Theropi, natives of this strange planet. These small yellow blob like creatures can only be destroyed by shooting them. They knock over our hero and drain his energy. The planet Therop is composed of sheer cliffs and large drops into huge valleys. The Major does possess quite good jumping abilities, but some of the cliffs are just too much for him. When he comes across one of these he must find some rope and tackle. Other objects can be picked up and put into the Major's pockets. These can then be used by selecting the relevant pocket.

CRITICISM

'I really do wish CRL would make their mind up. Academy is, without doubt, superb, but Dr. What and this one, well, a different matter entirely! The graphics of the fighting characters are excellent, big and well animated. There is no doubt in my mind that the game would be vastly improved if the wasted arcade adventure part was scrapped, and the memory used was put towards improvement of the combat section. Overall, the combat section has potential, but the other part is a disaster.'

'This is the first 128K only Speccy game that I've seen, if the rest are of the same quality as this then I'll take back my oldie rusty 16K door stop Sinclair any day. C'mon CRL surely a +2 can do a little more than this. Graphically the overall effect is shoddy small undetailed badly animated characters and a garish use of colour. The sound too is well below average for the 128K, there are a few average tunes and minimal use of sound effects. The game at first seems as if it could be fun but after a few plays it does get very boring.'

'I was bemused with this game at first, but after some help from a colleague I got well into the game - I would have been stuck without him! As a game designed specifically for the +2 I was amazed to see that there is no Sinclair joystick option - you have to define the keys for the joystick - is this why it didn't get a Sinclair Quality Control sticker? The game contains some good features; such as throwing the rope and the dying effects.'

COMMENTS
Control keys: definable; up, down, left, right, fire/punch, jump, flying kick/hold, high kick/pick up
Joystick: Kempston, Cursor, Sinclair
Keyboard play: hard to get the hang of at first
Use of colour: uninspired
Graphics: not much detail
Sound: nice tune at the beginning with spot effects throughout
Skill levels: one
Screens: 200
General Rating: Most 48k games are better than this.

54%
47%
47%
53%
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46%

Screenshot Text

The combat screens, the Major has to resort to a bit of GBH.

Now how the heck do I get out of here. The start of Trooper, and a tall problem.