This classic arcade game for the ZX Spectrum was released by Hewson Consultants (who pretty much always impressed with the likes of Uridium and Technician Ted - both classic games) in 1984
This was a time when anything with 3D graphics was amazing, and to be fair this was a very good and playable arcade game.
It is also notable for supporting the Currah Microspeech unit and for having a back story on side 2 of the cassette which was a conversation between the pilot and the mission leader (If my memory serves!)
It continued the Seiddab story too and was probably the best game in this series...
|Skimming the surface of the moon|
The game required you to fly in your almost cool sounding Z5 Luna Hover Fighter against the baddies which was protected by three rings of defense. It was classic arcade action all the way.
The first consisted of robotically controlled DAB tanks which fired missiles at your craft which could be destroyed by laser fire.
The second was a mountainous area seeded with aerial mines which exploded within a certain range of your craft. These could be shot down or flown around.
If you flew too close an exploding mine would damage your craft and knock you around quite realistically causing your craft to shimmy and shudder.
The third zone was dotted with missile silos, which again could be shot at with your lasers.
If you managed to reach the command zone, a lot of straffing runs were required to destroy the base which tried it's best to shoot you down with a barrage of gunfire. If you took it out then it was mission complete and in classic arcade game style you returned to the beginning to do it all again.
|A classic earlier era loading screen|
Weapon selection was automatic (and pretty cool), below the horizon it was lasers, above the horizon missiles were chosen. The transition of weapons was nicely done.
There was also a rader effect which showed you in which direction to proceed - but only when your cross-hairs were at the bottom of your view screen. This added a nice tactical element to the game which made it more than just a bog standard shoot em up arcade game.
All in all this classic game was a bit of a benchmark in 3D gaming which also included good gravity and collision effects. I played it a lot back then and it still gives me fond memories.
The 3D sprites were quite amazing, the playability great and the cockpit graphics almost made you feel like you were really in a space-ship. This was the highest quality of 3D gaming and mags such as Crash raved about it. The little mission briefing audio on the tape was a nice bonus too.
The Test Of Time:
It's sooo basic these days, but I still quite like it. This classic game is such a retro 3D shooter that unless you played it back in the day you may not like it as I do. Still, it has aged a lot better than many other 3D type arcade games on the Speccy. Not bad, and I still give it a go now and again.
Oh, and if you get shot down you can always say 'Hewson, we have a problem'.
We recommend getting hold of the real hardware - but if not then download a ZX Spectrum emulator and download anything but this game for the ZX Spectrum. Alternatively you could try and play it online.
GENRE: Arcade Game (3D Shooter)
RELEASE DATE: 1984
RELEASED BY: Hewson
DEVELOPER(S): Steve Turner
Classic Arcade Action - And It Was 3D too!
Classic Games, Arcade Games and ZX Spectrum Games