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Mind Games
Arcade: Platform
ZX Spectrum 48K

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Phil South
Chris Bourne

When is an arcade adventure not an arcade adventure? Why, when it's Timetrax, of course. It's just the same old post holocaust rune magic and sci-fi time portal hopping scenario that we all know and love.

You find yourself in control of a little man in a hat, who goes around the different levels, platforms to you, in search of the magic runes to imitate the Cosmic Pattern. It seems the Cosmic Pattern is a kind of willow pattern on the celestial breakfast plate of the universe, and Dark Forces (they never go by name) are afoot to nobble the fabric of time and space... well, just for fun, really. You search round the objects on the different platform levels, a la Impossible Mission, looking for weapons and the runes by the use of a duckshoot-style menu.

In your travels through the time portals (huh, you don't see one for hours, then two come along at once) you must seek out the eight minds, and pacify them by restoring items of lost property. Then you've gotta seal off the portals through time and reset the fabric of the universe. Tch! And what're you gonna do after lunch?

It's a bit of a shame about the lofty pretentiousness of the scenario of this game, 'cos it's actually not a bad little number. playing a little like a cross between Impossible Mission and Shadowfire, and looking like Tau Ceti and Frankie Goes To Hollywood, it's possibly as hard to complete as all four of them put together. It's a good idea to read the manual thoroughly before you play, as there are a lot of things to consider before wading into it. Especially important is the Cosmic Coordinates Table, which in temporal displacement circles is a sort of bus timetable.

Okay, the concept s a bit on the laughable side, so flippin' what! I think it's a good game, and anyone who says it isn't is lookin' for a rune up their nostril.