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Work Force
Jim Scarlett
Arcade: Action
ZX Spectrum 16K

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Chris Bourne

Doom Bugs is an entirely original sort of creepie crawlie game, best left alone if you 're squeamish about these things! It introduces us to Tarant Tula, an engaging blue beetle who is our hero - but he's an endangered species, trapped in the Grubbers lair. Inside the lair the young Grubbers are left to hatch out (small round egg-like things) and honey is left for them to feed off. When two Gubbers meet, a nasty squirmy green Bubbergrubber results. Should two Bubbergrubbers mate a Red Backed Grubber is produced. These are similar in size to Tarant Tula but touching one is instant death.

In the centre of the lair is a trap door. To get through it Tarant Tula must first eat a mouthful of honey and then ram the door. It takes several attacks to break through to the next level, taking more honey between each attempt. At the same time the other members of the Grubber family are also gobbling at the honey. Tarant Tula must also dash about eating Grubbers and Bubbergrubbers to prevent them from becoming Red Backs. It's no easy life!

Successfully breaking through the trap door leads poor old Tarant Tula into a maze guarded by three Red Backs. Should he get through there safely it leads into the next lair where the temperature is warmer and the eggs hatch quicker - and so on.


'Because of its originality and cute graphics, this is an instantly likeable game to play - and it isn't easy either! You only have one life, so the frustration of messing up just before getting your highest score is terrible - in anger I kept pressing the start button and having another go.'

'This is an addictive game to play, no doubt. My only complaint is that Tarant Tula keeps moving once a key has been pressed until you press another direction. Makes him a bit hard to control. especially in the maze, or when under attack from Red Backs, which do home in on him. A game to come back to anyway.'

'The graphics are quite good and it's reasonably addictive in playing. Tarant Tula is a bit difficult to control because of the continuous movement. Quite a good game.'

Keyboard positions: sensible, Q/Z up/down, I/P left/right
Joystick options: none
Keyboard play: responsive
Use of colour: average
Graphics: good
Sound: average
Skill levels: increasing difficulty by screen
Lives: 1

General Rating: Above average addictivity, good game.


Screenshot Text

Deep in the DOOMBUGS lair, Tarant Tula tries to get through the trap door.

Red Backs block the way in the second screen.