ZX Computing


Publisher: Codemasters
Machine: Spectrum 48K/128K

Published in ZX Computing #38


As the Sun grew old and turned into a red giant the ancient Earth culture retreated into the core of the planet leaving a series of formidable defences in their wake. Aeons later the Overlord of Tenz (that's you!) returns to Earth in a one-off total aggression ship to destroy the old defences and clear the way for safe space travel.

Your ship is not only equipped with a standard photon cannon but also a nucleonic Transmuter. This definitely non-standard weapon sucks in debris from around the ship and converts this into pre-programmed forms. So as the game proceeds and you blast away at the Earth defences, your ship gets stronger!

The game is set in the caverns that lead to the Earths core and are packed with vector graphic nasties such as limpet guns that blast you, tops that float just out of the path of your cannon bolts and generators and pour nasties into your path.


Later on you'll have to face combinations of limpet guns, trundling tanks and generators at the cavern walls narrow. As you blast these, you'll be offered various additions as the Transmuter recycles the debris to produce extra speed, double shot (you fire six bolts instead of three at a time), a laser (instantaneous bolt), shield (absorbs one collision) and a second cannon that appears below the ship but makes it easier to hit. Unfortunately you can only have one of these at once but since the menu cycles through them as you take out nasties you should be able to get what you want.

Complete the first cavern and you'll get a chance at a bonus screen of blasting ships in space (dead easy) and then on to the next cavern that's totally nasty free! The only trouble is that you have to steer your ship through a maze of scrolling, winding caverns where the slightest mistake will cost you a life.

An excellent game that shows that the old Scramble format is still alive and kicking. For only £1.99, what more could you want? Sheer budget brilliance!