Sinclair User26th September 1989
Published in Sinclair User #94
Bit of topical humour, as Ben Elton would say. Moving Target is about those naughty naughty drug barons who have been causing such a commotion in South America by blowing up judges, bribing politicians and indulging in tasteless interior decoration. So this is your chance to redecorate their haciendas WIV THERE BRANES!!!
Yes, Moving Target is another horizontally-scrolling search-and-destroy mission where the aim is to bump off as many thugs as possible. And why not, as Bazza Norman would say. Problem is that while all the required elements are there, machine guns, landmines, gun emplacements, sections of bombs to be assembled, vicious guard dogs, the whole doesn't add up to much.
The main problem is that the monochromatic hero isn't very well animated - he leaps into the air like a constipated haddock, and his gun blazes dramatically, but doesn't seem to actually shoot any bullets. But he's nowhere near as funny as the guard dogs, which are supposed to be savage Dobermanns and in fact look like the HMV doggie, Nipper. Not too frightening, although for some reason you don't seem to be able to shoot them, even if you crouch down and blast them in the teeth.
The landscapes of bushes, caverns and steel doors are nondescript, and it's all too easy to find your hero getting wedged between one bush and another while you're trying to grab the necessary key, ammunition pack or food supply. Nothing's more annoying than wrestling with the joystick while you're being gunned down by the thugs.
As you climb down ladders into the deeper realms of the drug baron's fortress, a depth indicator shows your position. The lower half of the screen also features indicators for time remaining, strength, ammo, numbers of guards you have to kill before you get a bonus, and so on; it might have been a better game if the playing area was larger instead, but I suppose that would have made the speed and smoothness of animation even more mediocre.
On the whole, pretty unremarkable. As far as Moving Target is concerned, kids, just Say No!
Label: Players Premiere Author: Gareth Baker Price: £2.99 Memory: 48K/128K Joystick: various Reviewer: Chris Jenkins
Politically sound but crucially boring run and-shoot effort.