Stagecoach (Sparklers) Review | Computer Gamer - Everygamegoing

Computer Gamer

By Sparklers
Spectrum 48K/128K

Published in Computer Gamer #21


The stagecoach is out of control after the driver has been shot in an ambush. As Kidd Rivers, you must leap onto the coach, pick up some passengers and steer the coach through the mountains. After that, you only have to deal with the marauding Indians before you make it safely to San Pedro.

The first part of the game sees yoou steering your trusty steed through the desert, avoiding cactus bushes, as you try to find the coach. Then you must manoeuvre carefully into the right position before timing your leap which will hopefully land you successfully on the coach. If you get the coach under control, you can then attempt to pick up extra passengers who just happen to be scattered throughout the desert.

Should you fall off your horse at any stage (no pun intended), you must wait for him to return beore remounting. The game ends if six passengers fall out before you regain control.

Steering through the mountains involves guiding the coach through the various passes as indicated by the on-screen arrows. Collisions with rocks or being hit by falling avalanches results in damage to the coach and total damage ends the game. There are gold and ammo boxes to be collected en route and you must survive for a set period of time as indicated by an on-screen clock.

Part three sees you fighting off injuns. Some try to stop you steering a proper course while others are merely intent on kidnapping your passengers. You can leap onto the roof and try and shoot them but you are unable to steer when you are doing this and collisions with cactus plants results in damage to the coach.

Stagecoach is a fairly old game, as can be seen from the extremely crude graphics and animation, but it is quite good fun to play once you have mastered the fairly tricky controls and not bad value for the money.