Arcade: Shoot-em-up
ZX Spectrum 48K/128K
Multiple schemes (see individual downloads)

Tony Dillon
Chris Bourne

When someone first breathed breathlessly (?) in my ear "The conversion of Typhoon is here", my first reaction was "Who? What? When?" Then I thought of Hurricane Gilbert, laughed a bit, and then I thought "Oh. Must be an arcade game I've never heard of."

Typhoon is a little known (to my knowledge) Konami arcade game that we also had a demo of on our Megatape 8. The game is thus. Fly forward Afterburner-fashion for a bit, blow up a mothership, fly forwards Flying Shark-fashion for a bit, blow up another mothership, fly upwards a bit more, do a bit more flying forward, blow up a few more more things and then you've done the game. Well, actually it's a bit more than that.

Typhoon is actually two games stuck together and, unfortunately, neither are in any serious danger of going anywhere above the the "Oh, that's pretty OK" mark on the SU Commentometer. The first section, as I said before, is an Afterburner jaunt down through the various cloud layers until you emerge above an aircraft carrier, somewhere out at sea.

As you fly groundward, waves of enemy fighters emerge from the clouds and launch missiles at you, which are pretty easily avoided. Past all the fighters and on to the carrier, the idea is to get in about five direct hits on the missile launcher, which is a bit more tricky considering that the launcher is doing it's job (launching missiles) so you have to get between the missiles, fire, and then get out.

A moan about the graphics on this section. The update of the sprites is quite smooth, but the update on the backdrop is terrible. Whether this is close to the arcade I don't know, but it's still terrible. Also, the plane still holds it's completely horizontal position. How odd!

The second level is the one we were lucky enough to get on Megatape 8, the Flying Shark level. You now have left your F-14 behind and are flying a helicopter over a long vertically scrolling landscape that gradually gets more and more heavily defended until you
reach the mothership at the end, which is no more than an electric barrier, erected to stop you from passing. This needs to be shot down by continual bombardment while you avoid the waves of planes and helicopters that fly on from all four sides, fire at you, and the fly away again. On top of all that, there are ground turrets that have to be bombed by pressing B on the keyboard.

At some point during this stage, icons float fro top to bottom. Collect these and you get an extra weapon, fro a Vulcan (?) ) through things like lasers (very useful), 3-way fire, smart bombs and missiles. The smart bomb is a pretty handy thing to have because it kills everything on screen, including bullets.

This level is difficult. Not because there's a lot of frantic activity going on at the same time, nor is it because of the response (which is very good), but because of the colour system used - blue and black - which makes it very difficult to see bullets, the enemy, yourself, the score, the TV/monitor... or in fact anything else. This does tend to lower the playability level quite a bit.

The following levels are merely the first and second repeated in different orders.

Typhoon is quite a good game and one well worth taking a look at, though the monochrome colour scheme might cause some problems, as it nearly always does.

Label: Imagine
Author: Steve Lamb/Alison Jeftha
Price: £7.95
Memory: 48K/128K
Joystick: various
Reviewer: Tony Dillon

A nice bit of blasting, though the colour scheme makes it a little unplayable.