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Activision Inc
Arcade: Shoot-em-up
ZX Spectrum 48K
Multiple schemes

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John Gilbert
Chris Bourne

FEW REMEMBER mankind's great achievement, a series of 30 planets constructed to protect their creators. They are called Sentinels and keep the balance of power in the galaxy.

Those planets have grown into conscious entities and have acquired a taste for power. Mankind has become too dependent on them and they must be destroyed.

First you must locate one on your sector map and then warp through hyperspace to go into orbit around it. The planet beneath the ship is shown in 3D at the centre of the main display. It rotates in a downward direction in relation to your ship.

Once you have arrived you can launch a shuttle which descends to the planet surface, ready to take on the alien fauna. You must shoot everything except the trees.

The alien hunt on the planet is the weakest part of the game. In the first 30 phase a downward scrolling movement is used to bring the aliens onto the screen. They are sitting targets.

XCEL depends heavily on graphics and not much else. The game is yet another version of Star Trek, Space Invaders and Centipede rolled into one. if you like turbo-charged graphics and hybrid plots the game will appeal to you. If, however, you are a battle-hardened hack you will find better shoot 'em ups on the market. Try Glass for one!

John Gilbert

Publisher: Activision
Price: £7.95
Memory: 48K
Joystick: Cursor, Kempston. Sinclair