Elite Systems Ltd
Not Known
1985
Arcade: Race 'n' Chase
£7.95
English
ZX Spectrum 48K
None

119
Chris Bourne

The inlay card states that 911TS has been produced with the cooperation of the Dunlop TyreCo. However from the information uncovered by the CRASH network of agents it seems that the game was put together for Dunlop to be used in their spring publicity drive. This may mean that the game might be a little difficult to find in the shops.

In essence what we have here is a car racing game. You are an ace rally driver on a very tough course being relentlessly pursued by an unsporting foe. The opening stage of the game shows the player with £2000 to spend on goodies for the car.

The add-ons are selected from four pages each with a choice of four items which range from tyres (price from £248 up to £644) to steering and suspension systems. You will have to budget carefully in order to buy the optimum range of accessories, the extras are not fitted to your car for the start but must be collected en-route.

The race takes place over 8 stages through four different types of scenery. The main playing screens presents a birds eye view of the road and a map of the course marking the positions of each of the 8 stages together with the position of your car and that of your foe. On the left an indicator shows your speed and opposite a similar indicator shows the amount of damage you car has sustained.

At the top of the screen the distance to the end of the stage is shown together with the total score and the time remaining to complete the stage. Your car appears to stand still while the road scrolls downwards, and since only a small part of the road ahead is in view you have very little warning of the oncoming hazards.

At the end of stages 1, 3, 5, and 7 you are able to take advantage of pauses to collect some of the extra goodies which you may have ordered for without added features your car will not have the performance required to finish the race. Should you survive the race you can start again but each new start becomes more difficult as the time allowed to complete each stage shortens.

CRITICISM

'Graphically the game is not unlike Grand National, obviously the same sprite routines have been used, this is all very well it the game is good, playable and action packed but this game boasts none of these features. Avoiding bushes and the other objects scattered about the road isn't my idea of fun. Okay there is a certain degree of skill in avoiding the bushes etc. but it's not very entertaining. I think it ' s about time that Elite pulled their finger out and came up with something original that uses their usual high quality graphics but with a high standard of content'

'911TS is fairly typical Elite game the style of the graphics and movement are giveaways. 911TS is produced with the cooperation of Dunlop which means that the game uses the various Dunlop product names. While the game is fairly playable the act of dying on the first stage, or indeed any stage, means returning to the start, a severe knock for addictivity. Avoiding obstacles and so preventing damage to your car will require quick reactions and a great deal of concentration. Elite may have another commercial success because it's a commercial game, but to be honest, I don't think this is such a great improvement (except graphically) over oldies like Turbo Driver by Boss. it's also rather like The Dukes of Hazzard rotated through 90 degrees. Perhaps Elite should be known as the Wham' of computer games'

'I am sure that I would have enjoyed this game a lot more if I didn't have to return to the start every time my car was written off. This annoying feature occurs because you only have one life, to be fair though the damage to the car is reduced at the end of each stage but with the huge amount of debris on the course you will be lucky to make it that far. The opening stage of buying extra equipment for your car to improve performance could have been enhanced if prize money was given for completing the race. This would allow the player to buy more tackle and so improve the car further ready to face the rigours of the next stages which must be completed in a shorter time.'

COMMENTS
Control keys: O/P accelerate/brake Z/X left/right
Joystick: not stated but Kempston appears to work
Keyboard play: suitable layout and responds well
Use of colour: good choice but slight case of the attributes
Graphics: attractive with smooth scrolling action
Sound: none
Skill levels: 1 but game becomes progressively more difficult
Lives: 1 but damage reduced at the end of each stage
Screens: scrolling action

General Rating: An attractive looking game which tends to be boring.

70%
75%
55%
57%
54%
55%
58%

Screenshot Text

Rallying along on your Dunlops can be rather a slow process.