Amstrad Action1st September 1988
Published in Amstrad Action #36
The metallic stars of Star Wars the movie, the books and the cartoon series finally make it to the micro screen. R2-D2 and C-3PO have been captured by the Fromm gang and imprisoned deep within their base on the planet Auren. R2-D2 managed to open the electronic lock and it's now up to you to get the duo to the surface where rescue awaits.
Across the bottom of the screen is a row of icons used to control the action of 3PO and R2. There are six: four control which way you move and the other two allow you to throw crystals or log-on to a computer terminal. Above the icons is the horizontally scrolling playing area with large characters of R2 and 3PO.
There are eight levels to the base and travel between levels is via lifts. Before you can use a lift you must get R2 to log-on and break the code. The code cracking stage is a sub-game in which the computer produces a series of sounds and lights. Duplicate the sequence and a longer, second sequence is your reward. Crack that and the lift is accessible to you. Computer terminals are also used to open doors that you come across on the levels. You're not alone in the base though, because there are plenty of hostile robots who deprive you of energy if you touch them and running out of energy is fatal. They can be despatched by throwing a crystal at them.
R2-D2 and C-3PO are large, colourful smoothly moving sprites. The enemy robots are drawn well too, but the background graphics are plain. There's a jolly tune that plays on the title screen and the sound effects are good too.
This is not one of the most difficult or sophisticated games ever, but it may keep some younger players occupied for a while. It gets tedious after a few games because each level is very similar, and all you get is longer sequences of colours to match.
I rather enjoyed this, though it's hardly Mastermind material - or perhaps that's why I liked it! Certainly R2 and 3PO are nicely drawn and smooth. It's been a long wait for our metallic pals, but worth it.
First Day Target Score
Green Screen View
Colour matching is more difficult in the sub-game.
P. Large, colourful sprites.
N. Backgrounds could have been more detailed.
P. Great title tune.
Grab Factor 53%
P. Exploration of the playing area is easy to begin with.
N. Awkward controlling the robots with icons in hazardous situations.
Staying Power 46%
P. Eight levels to go through before you reach the surface.
P. Sub-game is too easy to complete.
P. A simple game that will provide entertainment for younger readers.