Cavern Fighter ZX Spectrum
Good old Scramble!
The classic arcade game by Konami was given the ZX Spectrum treatment by Bug Byte in 1984.
Even by 1984 Scramble was getting on a bit (we're talking real old school here), but Bug Byte did well with their version.
Cavern fighter was a quite classic version complete with caves, missiles, cities, fuel dumps (for you to destroy to gain fuel and points), defence installations, asteroids and alien fighters.
The object of the game was to penetrate as deep as possible into the caverns of Zragg (great name!) and destroy the evil Dictator’s lair whilst avoiding the automatic missiles, guardians and alien fighters. It was classic arcade action all the way!
All of this had to be accomplished without crashing into the zig-zagging walls and ceiling's of the caverns.
For anyone that doesn't know in the game you could move up and down as well as left and right. You could fire horizontally (lazers) and also drop bombs onto targets.
Your fuel level constantly dropped as you flew along the right to left scrolling landscape (you never 'stopped' in this game) and you had to destroy fuel dumps to keep your fuel level topped up.
One difference that this game had over traditional scramble was that you were always 'inside' a cavern - there was always a ceiling to be wary of as well as the ground.
You began the game with three lives and the game was over if you lost them all - or you managed to kick the evil dictators butt clean across the cosmos.
Well Scramble was incredibly popular in the arcades - and it was good to have a well crafted conversion on the ZX Spectrum. The game was playable and full of colour - the likes of Crash magazine awared it Game of the Month in April of 1984. Fans of the arcade game picked it up and were generally impressed.
The test of time:
Well Cavern Fighter is incredibly dated - the graphical style gives it away as an earlier Spectrum games release. But even so, it's still fun to play. The scrolling is adequate, the controls are responsive and it takes a fair bit of skill to make it through the varying sectors. If you're a fan of Scramble you could do a lot worse. Not bad and definately worth a go.
The games author never developed another title on the Spectrum as far as we know which is a shame as he was obviously a good coder.
Scramble! Scramble! - and play Cavern Fighter again.
We recommend getting hold of the real hardware - but if not then download a ZX Spectrum emulator and download Cavern Fighter for the ZX Spectrum. Alternatively you could try and play it online.
GENRE: Scrolling arcade game
RELEASE DATE: 1984
RELEASED BY: Bug Byte Software
DEVELOPER(S): John K Jameson
PRICE: £5.95 - UK
Sector one is no match for flying ace Major Lawrence Bartle Frere. Classic arcade action:
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