Elite (Acornsoft) Review | The Micro User - Everygamegoing

The Micro User


Elite
By Acornsoft
BBC B/B+/Master 128

 
Published in The Micro User 2.09

Strategy enters the shoot-'em-up scene

Trying to review Elite (Acornsoft) is rather like trying to re-write the BBC's manual to fit on a postage stamp. This is the first Acornsoft mega-game and let's hope that there are more to come.

It is based around Traveller, a role playing game first developed some eight years ago. You are a space ship commander trying to make an impact on the world of intergalactic trade. You begin with a very basically equipped space ship of the Cobra Mk. III combat and trading type, containing a single forward laser and three missiles.

You have 100 credits with which to buy your cargo and now you start your first mission.

Against you are several different types of enemy craft among the 16 or so types that ply the same routes as you.

Most of the other craft are far more manouvrable and powerful than your ship and this can give you a great many problems in the early stages.

As you accumulate your fortune you can customise your vessel to maximise your chances of survival - extra computers, lasers, space scoops, power supplies and even a large cargo bay on offer besides the fuel, missiles and energy bombs.

The price of these items vary from 30 to 6000 units, but you can only buy certain items on certain planets.

There are more than 250 planets in each of the eight galaxies so there is plenty of scope for exploration and profit.

One criticism that should be made is that there is no scope for alliances, which could have made the whole game much more interesting.

Not that the game lacks in interest it is the type that keeps you up at night and leaves you feeling somewhat drained the day afterwards.

The graphics are one of its major features and can only be described as spectacular. The program gives the impression that there are two screen modes, in windows, at one and the same time.

The top of the screen is the view from the window of the craft while the lower part gives an instrument panel reading.

> The most interesting feature on the panel is the three dimen sional radar screen showing both the location and relative height of all raiders in the vicinity.

This usually means trouble, and an empty screen means a happy life.

There are a number of other screens in the program - short range scan, galactic scans, status, market prices and planet ary information - in all a vast array of data which can be very hard to take in on the first few occasions.

> The package contains a 64 page training manual, a quick reference card, a 48 page novella, a function keystrip, a spaceship recognition poster, loading instructions and a competition entry card.

This is not a game for the dyslexic! It is not over priced and should keep the kids quiet for many many eons.

Dave Carlos

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