Your Sinclair1st December 1991
Published in Your Sinclair #72
Sky High Stuntman
I don't think I'd make a very good stuntman, there's not enough fame and adulation involved. Take Harrison Ford for example, he's massively rich and he didn't even have to jump over a single log. His stunt double, on the other hand, is languishing in obscurity minus a few limbs or so. Nope, I think I'd rather have a stunt double, thank you very much.
Sky High Stuntman is the everyday tale of a bloke (I presume he's male) with a few less brain cells than Timmy Mallett. For a paltry sum of money, this man is willing to risk life and limb just so he can tell all his mates that that's him snogging that chick. None of them will believe him, but life's like that for a stuntman I'm afraid.
Right, you're now a stuntman. Steven Squealburgh (ahem) has put you on his payroll, but he doesn't want to delve too deeply into his wallet, so you'd better be good. If you destroy too much of his costly (yet somehow strangely unrealistic) equipment, then you'll be chucked out at the nearest cardboard Messerschmitt without a brolly.
There are four stunt sequences in all, each one more terrifying than the last. At least, that's what the tape inlay says. Oddly enough, each sequence looks amazingly unterrifying, beneath you the sea looks calm and unruffled and the beach unpolluted and inviting. Mind you, they're probably made of gravel and papier-mache!
Anyway, you're far too busy to be gawping at pretty beach scenes because you've got loads of aeroplances and gun installations to shoot down. First you're in a biplane, then a balloon, then a Phantom and then a helicopter. Pretty skyhigh, whichever way you look at it! The first couple of levels are easy, but the last one is dead 'ard cos the enemy get themselves sorted and fling bullets at you left, right and centre.
The whole game is supposed to look as film-like as possible. What this means that the little screen is surrounded by a scroll of film and there's a little megaphone that yells (if you see what I mean) cut and action. It all pretty spanky really. Your plane (or balloon or chopper) is dead clear, you can't miss the the explosions and the scrolling's nice and smooth too.
I actually got quite into Skyhigh Stuntman. There I was cruising along in my little biplane, demolishing swarms of planes and ships. Old Squealburgh was dead chuffed and gave me lots of lovely encouragement! Thing is, each level's pretty similar and once you've got through one once, you can do it every time. Y'see, the planes, bullets, ships and things follow the same pattern. After a while, it gets a bit dull and you begin to yearn for a nice bit of solid ground. Who knows? If you do your job well, Mr Squealie might recognise your potential and make you a star. Look at Eddie Kidd. On the other hand...
An airborne shoot-'em-up with a film theme. Quite nice really.