Unless otherwise stated this review is not affiliated with any other website nor has the review been authorised by the copyright company or indiviudal author. As of 17th July 2017 this encompasses every review within ZXSR. If you would like this or any other review removed from this website, please contact the website administrator here.

Joe the Lion
Jonathan M. Easter
1983
Arcade: Maze
£5.45
English
ZX Spectrum 16K
None

Other Links


55
Chris Bourne

For those who enjoy the blurb on inlay cards, Bimbo should provide some amusing reading before playing the game. The story tells of Bimbo rabbit and his Australian friend Bruce, and manages to fit into its theme just about all the best known software houses along the lines of:

"Just imagine," said Bruce. "Shh," said Bimbo, "I 'm trying to learn my alphabet so I can be superior to the rest of the class." "You'll never beat soft Tek. He says he finds english addictive and he's only severn. It's his ultimate ambition to teach these new ' automata."

And so on. The game is a 1 four directional scrolling maze many times the size of the playing area, in which Bimbo must move, eating ten carrots and avoiding the chasing black rabbits. There are also clover leaves to be found which can be eaten for bonus points. Black rabbits may be delayed by dropping green apples in their paths which they stop to eat. Moving and dropping apples uses up energy which is regained by eating the carrots, but if you run out of energy before eating all the carrots, then you're dead.

The game starts off with just one rabbit chasing, but with each -level progressed the number of black rabbits increases up to a maximum of ten. Each fourth screen is a special one without rabbits, but a severe time limit imposed by a dropping energy rate which means you must eat all the carrots before it expires.

To help you, there is a radar screen which shows the positions of Bimbo, black rabbits and all the carrots. Extra life at 10,000 points.

CRITICISM

'The game has some good graphics and use of colour. The scrolling type of maze idea has been used before, most notably in Sp/at, and Maziacs, but here there are a couple of changes. The carrots and rabbits chasing you show up on a radar screen, which makes it quite fun to play. I enjoyed the game but it seemed to lack lasting appeal.'

'The instructions don't tell you on the otherwise excellent inlay that there are pits which kill you if you fall in them, so check the onscreen instructions too! Mind you, I thought rabbits wouldn't be worried by things like pits, but then, frogs seem to drown in water in 'Frogger' games, so I suppose anything goes! Bimbo is a very different game, even the first level is quite hard and the rabbit chases pretty closely on your tail. He doesn't follow you right behind, often dodging the other side of a bit of the maze to catch you as you come round the corner. Quick reactions are necessary, so it seems a shame that they haven't provided alternate control keys or a joystick option. The drop apple keys are too far away from the directional keys and in a hurry you can lose a life in the time it takes to move a hand off the direction keys and try to find the drop keys.'

'Bimbo can be a bit hard to control at times because once the key is pressed he keeps moving until another direction key is presses or he runs against a maze wall. The game is, however, lots of fun to play and quite challenging. I don't know whether it's the subject matter or what, but I think it had as much lasting appeal as a game of its obvious difficulty should have. Perhaps the fact that the carrots always appear in the same places each game means that you get to know where to look for them without having to use the radar. But I'm sure it's going to appeal to quite a lot of people, perhaps a very difficulty game for younger players.

COMMENTS
Control keys: 2/VV = up/down, 9/0 = left right, Z or M = drop apple, not the best arrangement
Joystick: none
Keyboard play: responsive, but a key press keeps Bimbo in motion and reaching for apples can be a problem
Use of colour: reasonable to good
Graphics: generally good although a little jerky
Sound: good tune, otherwise average
Skill levels: progressive difficulty
Lives: 5
General Rating: A very good game let down by the control keys and medium addictive.

58%
78%
75%
69%
55%
85%
70%

Screenshot Text

Bombo, Bimbo, where ya gonna go-io?