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1991
Arcade: Adventure
£3.99
English
ZX Spectrum 48K
None

80,81
Rich Pelley
Chris Bourne

If you ever came round to my house, knocked on the door and said "Hey, Rich, what's this Top Cat game all about then?" then I'd probably say something like this...

"Top Cat is yet another one of those flip-screen collect-'em-up maze games, not too unlike another 30,000,000 games, including most of Hi-Tec's cartoon licences of late. Benny the Ball has gone missing, and you have to go and get him back, so the first thing to do is to find the rest of the members of the gang, whilst avoiding the nasties (y'know, hedgehogs, squirting fire hydrants and stuff) and collecting objects to allow you to progress further. The puzzles however are all pretty obvious (pick up the key to open the gate and so forth), and avoiding the baddies isn't too tricky either as they walk around in set patterns. So with a little practice you can avoid colliding, although the weird 3D effect does its best to confuse you at first. The only real hazard is if you touch a skateboarder, as some steal the objects you are carrying and stick them back in the maze, and also if you lose too much energy at once as one of your chums which you have collected might run off so you'll have to go back to get him again.

As in the case for most of Hi-Tec's other cartoon licences, they seem to have spent so much time getting the graphics to look right (TC really is adorable), that they've forgotten to write much game. There's not enough action going on - it's easy to avoid all the baddies, it's not fast enough for a straight maze game, and the puzzles are a bit easy and far between. You could certainly do a lot worse with three quid (lose it for example), but I'm sure with little effort you could do a lot, lot better, especially with all these re-releases around at the moment." That's probably what I'd say.

49%

Screenshot Text

This is the New York alleyway where Top Cat (close friends get to call him TC) lives.