Heroes, eh? Every game's got one or two (apart from ones with heroines of course, but they're a bit thin on the ground) and on the whole they're pretty fab. But some heroes are just that little bit more heroic than the rest. Domark has obviously reaslised this, and has selected four of the most hero-packed games around. And then put them onto a compilation. (I think we ought to take a gander, really.)
LICENCE TO KILL
Domark didn't really 'score' with the first few Bond games, because they were all totally nob. So it's just as well that they got their act together and did Licence To Kill, or we'd be probably be faced with something horrible like Living Daylights at this point. In fact, Marcus was really quite impressed by this scrolling shooter back in issue 45, awarding it a respectable 79'.
He was right, you know. In stark contrast to the rest of the Bond games its got a decent set of graphics, variety (a bit, anyway) and it's actually quite fun to play. A minor success. In other words.
1990 Rating: 74'
Blimey. Heroism is certainly where it's at in this one. And loads of it, too. Once again, Marcus passed sentence on it (in issue 37) but this time he wasn't so happy. "It's not terribly exciting," he thundered, and slapped a '6 out of 10' on it. A little harsh, I think.
The hero in this case is a muscular fellow with a huge sword, or alternatively a female-type person (a heroine, in fact). And his (or her) task is to explore a whole load of rooms and beat up all the monsters contained within. Definitely worth having, but not the out-and-out corker that this compilation so urgently needs.
1990 Rating: 77'
THE RUNNING MAN
But this one might be, though. (The corker, that is). It's got a real hero: Arnold Schshw... Shgwch... Schwarze(nggh...)negger (or 'X' as he probably signs his cheques). It got the thumbs up and 90' from Dunc back in issue 42. And it's really rather good.
Iit's a beat-'em-up again (do heroes ever do anything else?) that's made up of a whole series of levels with a logic puzzle at the end of each one. Perhaps Dunc went just a little bit over the top with the saliva, though. While it's competently programmed and quite a nice tie-in with the film (there was a film, you see), Running Man isn't really all that different from any other beat-em-up you might have come across. Good. But not that good.
1990 Rating : 79'
Er, this one's a bit old isn't it? And you don't even get to set eyes on the hero. He's all tucked away in an X-Wing Fighter, of which you're in control. And I'm sure you know what happens next (the arcade version is one of the most famous games ever).
Eh? You don't? Well, it's one of those wire-frame graphics affairs, in which you've got to take on the whole Imperial Fleet (or whatever it's called) and generally bash them about a bit. First of all there's the flight to the Death Star, then a low-level pass over the surface, and the grand finale is a trip through a sort of tunnel thing, which has quite an important bit at the end which needs to be blown up. Great fun (for a while) but a bit creeky. The worst of the bunch by a narrow margin.
1990 Rating: 63'
And I think that makes, er, four. Not too painful, was it? Star Wars is a bit ancient of course, but the rest just about lie within living memory. None of the games are likely to set your joystick on fire, but they're generally pretty impressive. Individually, at full price, they probably wouldn't be worth looking at seriously these days, but on a nice, cheap compilation... um, it's not that cheap, is it? Fifteen quid is rather a lot for just the four of them, don't you think? Well I do. All the same, Heroes is probably one of the better 4-packs around at the moment, and would make a lovely Christmas pressie if you're buying early).
Four really quite decent 'hero' games in one big box. Ever so slightly pricey, however.
Licence To Kill - the best James Bond game yet (hardly difficult, eh Spec-chums?) and by quite a long way too.
Star Wars - it might be ancient but it's still actually quite good (Domark have been getting good value out of it too - it resurfaced only recently on their Star Wars compilation).