Well, spring has well and truly sprung. The snow is slowly leaving the Ludlowvian countryside and giving plenty of room for the snow drops. And with Spring comes another flood of Spectrum games. Ariolasoft appear to have a fair few products in the pipeline — first off there’s Ziggurat a 3D arcade adventure featuring lots of wonderfully weird puzzles and the arrival of the dreaded Mimbies — a cross between a Mummy and a Zombie and for some unexplained reason look like boy scouts. From their Starlight label comes Dogfight 2187, a vector graphic shoot ’em up, and a mysterious program going by the name of Deathscape — previews next issue.
The team down at CRL have been wallowing in copious amounts of mud over the last few weeks as they prepare to launch a game with distinct piggy overtones — OINK! Based on the silly goings on within IPC’s comic of the same name, this game sees you taking the role of the legendary Uncle Pigg — the illustrious Editor. The objective is to produce a magazine by the day’s end and increase circulation. All your favourite OINK! characters are featured, including Rubbishman and Pete and his amazing Pimple.
While we’re on the subject of animals, The Edge (Aka Softek) have bought the rights to the worlds most laid-back cat ever — Garfield. They’re planning to release a series of Garfield games, with The Big Fat Hairy Deal pencilled in as the first release. No doubt this game will make you paws for thought (Sorry!). The Edge are also leaping on the Gauntlet bandwagon with a 3D variant which goes by the name of Warlock. It has a neat twist though — you’re on the side of darkness and your cosy castle has been invaded by a bunch of soppy girlies all dressed up in Princess outfits. Being of the evil nature there’s no problem in slaughtering them to pieces. Once again we’ll have a preview next issue.
Elite have been a bit quiet recently, but they are due to release their second Six Hit Pak, featuring seven games(???) The seventh game, Duet, is previously unreleased — however, you might recognise it. Well, if you add a few letters to Duet and take a few more away you end with Commando 86, which is really what it is — but we didn’t tell you that.
Stringfellow Hawk’s Airwolf has been scrapped for the time being, although it might reappear in a different guise one day. Ikari Warriors, which is a kind of pretty Commando, is now due for an early summer release.
Gremlin are also going to be busy, what with Krakout, a Breakout variant; Thing Bounces Back, the return of the popular Commodore hero — Thing On A Spring; Deathwish III; Battle of the Bands; and Tour De Farce — more news on that little lot next month.
Gargoyle are nearly ready with their follow ups to Heavy On The Magick (still riding high in the Adventure Charts), the first one’s called The Trials of Thenon and following that will be The Tombs of Taro.
Infogrames, the people who brought you Mandragore and The Vera Cruz Affair, have tied up with French company Ere Informatique to bring two arcade adventures that have long enjoyed immense success on the Amstrad — Get Dexter and Doomsday Blues. Get Dexter is a 3D game featuring some stunning graphics and probably the cutest hero ever — Xunk — a single-footed creature who bounds about the screens warning our hero Dexter of ensuing meanies, and there are plenty of them. There’s also the follow up to The Vera Cruz Affair — The Sydney Affair. It takes the same form as its predecessor, but is a bit more involved. Derek Brewster will be casting an eye over that in a few months.
From Ocean comes Taipan, a 128K only game, an arcade strategy game which takes place in the orient. There’s smuggling, piracy and all sorts of other dodgy dealings. Once again, more news as we get it. There’s also Star Sleigh previously known as Slapfighter, Rampage, and finally Renegade, a future coin-op conversion.
Palace are departing from the usual spooky goings on in their Cauldron series, and going to give us all a bit of a giggle with Stifflip and Co. It’s set in the closing days of the British empire using ‘Stiff upper lip’ humour. Super, what?
Finally, there’s US Gold, who have a veritable host of releases hidden up Richard Tidsall’s sleeve. There’s a humourous boxing game, Fight Night; Gauntlet II — Deeper Dungeons; a helicopter combat simulation — Gunship; a wild west shoot out — Express Raider, and their two latest licences — Road Runner, from the arcades, and Indiana Jones and the Temple Of Doom, from the movie of the same name.