Ariolasoft UK Ltd
1986
Arcade: Maze
£8.95
English
ZX Spectrum 48K
None

24,25
Chris Bourne

Something is wrong with Tujad, a sophisticated Control Computer. One of its circuits has blown, making it behave in a most anti-social manner. Instead of controlling the Security Systems in the complex, Tujad has turned them against everyone, making the place a virtual No Mans Land. The only hope left is to send in Gen 19, the most efficient Combat Droid ever created. Hopefully it will be able to repair the broken circuit in Tujad, as the other maintenance workers can't get within a stone's throw of the complex without attracting hoards of nasty security droids, all lusting after their blood.

This mission is slightly different for Gen 19 it has to fight its own kind; fellow machines. In other circumstances, Gen 19 would find no problems in performing tasks set for it to complete, such is its programming. This time, however it's machine versus machine and a whole army of security droids are at Tujad's command. These droids are programmed to do only one thing KILL INTRUDERS!

The only way that Tujad can be brought under control is by locating 50 new parts of the circuit and replacing the old ones. These can be found wound the 100 rooms of the complex and Gen 19 collects circuit boards by simply walking into them. The circuits are then displayed automatically on the main circuit board so that the player can see how many sections have been found so far.

The biggest problem which Gen 19 has to overcome, predictably enough, is the problem posed by the Security Droids, the complex is absolutely crawling with them. At the beginning of the game Gen 19 has three lives, and these can be lost in two ways. Gen 19's energy depreciates with every encounter with the security nasties in the building and when the energy meter reaches zero the hapless droid loses a life. Some of the larger security droids are instantly lethal. These kill Gen 19 with a single touch and can't be destroyed with the conventional laser like the other droid minions.

Gen 19 has three weapons in its arsenal. Three missiles, three grenades, unlimited blasting on the laser and 3 alien destroyers are available. Obviously, this collection of weapons is not going to last very long when you're up against some of the most sophisticated security droids ever invented. Luckily enough, Gen 19 can top up the weapons store by collecting replacement ammunition along the way.

To save undue wear on the old footplates as a result of legging it around, Gen 19 has been supplied with a hover platform which is very useful for travelling upwards or over any undesirables and makes the robot very manoeuvrable. When Gen 19 reaches solid ground, the floating platform automatically retracts and it's back to traditional footwork. Lifts link pairs of locations in the complex, and represent hand shortcuts.

The status area shows how many of each type of weapon Gen 19 has left in his arsenal, and weapons are selected by flipping through the inventory. A robot figure indicates the number of lives Gen 19 has left, while a lightning bolt shows the amount of energy left in the battery pack. If this is looking particularly low, extra energy can be collected around the complex to give the heroic droid an extra lease of life in the battle against the Security droids and the schizophrenic Tujad.

CRITICISM

'I must confess that I didn't expect much from this, after seeing the ORPHEUS logo on the loading screen, which brought back nightmares of The Young Ones. Though not nearly as bad as That Game, Tujad isn't the most thrilling game I've ever come across; for one thing, it's too easy, with extra men and weapons liberally splashed all over the place. The graphics are prettily animated, but the whole quality of the sprites seems to lack polish. Owing to its easiness, I don't think Tujad is particularly addictive, despite a reasonable level of playability. Not a bad game, but one let down a bit by its lack of originality, and its rather boring style.'

'Tujad is a real improvement on the last game written by ORPHEUS and definitely worth a twiddle at. I found the game quite attractive at first, but after a few games it became apparent that there wasn't much to it at all. Any competent arcade player would get far in the game with no trouble at all. The graphics and animation are well up to scratch and very attractive to look at. I found that the game was just a case of remembering where everything was: once mapped the game is too simple to last long in anyone's tape recorder.'

'There isn't really anything here that I haven't seen before. Even so, all its little qualities have been put together in such a way as to make the game, as a whole, very playable. The graphics are nicely done, the characters range from fairly large to small and the backgrounds interesting but some of the use of colour is a little suspect. The sound is awful - there is no tune and only two different effects. The game is fun to play for a short while but I can see it being much too easy to complete.'

COMMENTS
Control keys: Q-P up, A-L down, Z, X, C left, B, N, M, right, SPACE change weapons, ENTER pause, 1-0 fire
Joystick: Kempston, Cursor
Keyboard play: responsive
Use of colour: pretty
Graphics: neatly done
Sound: spot effects
Skill levels: one
Screens: 100-ish
General Rating: Not a bad game, but nothing spectacular.

69%
80%
79%
81%
67%
64%
69%

Screenshot Text

Gen 19 romps along on his skyriding surfboard, avoiding the nasties and aiming to fix that mean ol' computer.