A&B Computing1st September 1988
Published in A&B Computing 5.09
Hah, here's one that will knock your socks off and have my fellow Beeb reviewers seething with envy - Kevin Edwards' sequel to Galaforce, called (with some inevitability), Galaforce 2.
It's a cracker! Everything the earlier Superior release was, and more - more aliens, more patterns, more speed, more features, more pure fun. Basically, the game is, I suppose, a completely rewritten version of Galaforce in Mode 5; the extra memory gained being used for extra features, although there is a curious alternative version in Mode 1 - remember Spy Hunter had a similar dual option?
Faster? No, it's mega-faster - how about 70% faster? Gulp! There is a two player option, there is a hidden cheat mode (a first for an Edwards game), there are twice as many patterns in 16 zones, there are lots of new aliens including what Kevin charmingly calls "some really nasty ones", there are smoother scrolling stars, there is a second ship bonus available (remember Zalaga?), there is auto-repeat firing, there is a neat screen edge clipping sprite routine allowing aliens to move off the screen byte by byte, there are no homing bombs, there is a lot of fun here.
The greatest change is, I guess, the introduction of bonuses which appear when some aliens are shot, floating down the screen to be picked up by you. Some of these are nice, some not so nice - reverse controls is a bitch! The bonuses are awarded at random, although rapid firepower is the most common. Rather like Arkanoid, it is a gamble whether to collect these bonuses or just shoot them and go for the points.
Every sixteen galaxies, you return to the start but it's harder next time. A serious omission from the earlier game has been fixed - when you restart you being in the galaxy you were killed in. This allows you to get much further into the game and is obviously a feature that Kevin saw was successful in Crazee Rider.
In short, this is a wonderful shoot 'em up - fast, furious, beautifully designed and stunningly compulsive. Pray that it gets a release soon - at the time of writing Superior was considering it. The company would be crazy not to rush-release it. This will be one of the top three BBC games of the year - I promise.