Every now and again we will have to look at a classic game that was, well let's say, a bit of a turkey. Well, Viper III has the honour of being the first game we look at that really wasn't good. At all.
Released by Mastertronic for the ZX Spectrum in 1984, this was another game in their large budget range that retailed at £1.99.
An evil race of galactic bad boys called the Quardons had invaded the peaceful planet of Nimea.
It was up to you to take your squadron of ace fighters and free the peace lovers from the clutches of tyranny. Apparently this was your hardest mission yet! Dun dun daaaahh.
|The loading screen is better than the game itself...|
All of your skill and concentration was needed to manoeuvre safely through the attacking Quardons, using lazer fire in short controlled bursts. Ok, classic arcade game on!
This sideways scrolling arcade game used very basic graphics and sound effects to display the action. The aim of the game was to try and pick up the fleeing Nimean refugees whilst destroying the Quardon's base defences.
Once you had reached the end of the level it was a quick search and pickup of fuel in order to continue the mission (if you could be bothered).
This game would have been acceptable in 1982 during the early stages of Spectrum games development, but by 1984 Spectrum gamers had been treated to the likes of TLL, Jet Set Willy, Lode Runner and other polished releases.
We have to cut it some slack as it was a budget release, and for £1.99 you never really expected much - and there were worse titles you could pick up in the same price bracket.
I remember owning this game way back when and it really was far too basic in every way (gameplay, graphics, sound) even then. It was games such as this that (somewhat unfairly) gave rise to the 'Masterchronic' moniker.
Mastertronic would improve their reputation ten fold over the next year or so with quality titles (such as the Magic Knight series of games).
Get yourself some Sinclair hardware if you can. If you want to try this game you could download it for a ZX Spectrum emulator. Perhaps you could even play it online.
Please see our other classic game reviews - all links are in alphabetical order. Cheers all.
GENRE: Arcade game
RELEASE DATE: 1984
RELEASED BY: Mastertronic
DEVELOPER(S): Mark Pollard
PRICE: £1.99 - UK
Mart tries to keep fast and low...
Classic Games, Arcade Games and ZX Spectrum Games