Not quite a shoot em up, more of a stab em up, this classic retro arcade conversion still holds fond memories for many.
Arcade stab em up game Green Beret (also known as Rush 'n attack - notice the play on words?) was released by gaming giants Konami in 1985.
In 1986 it was converted to most home computer formats, and the ZX Spectrum effort was an excellent conversion.
|Another of F D Thorpe's excellent loading screens
Imagine software (and programmer Jonathan (Jof) Smith) were onto another winner with their version of the original arcade game.
The game was well received and scored a whopping 88% in Crash magazine.
The game involved taking control of a highly trained soldier, with the objective to rescue some prisoners. This classic arcade game stood out from the crowd slightly because of your characters main weapon being the famous Green Beret knife - although you never did get to stitch your own arm up in a First Blood stylee. There were four stages to fight through (or four levels) which were:
- A missile base
- A Harbour
- An incredibly long military bridge
- A prison camp
On top of all of this, there were land mines to avoid too! Make no mistake, this game was tough... but it was beatable if you had the minerals to persevere with it.
|Our man is about to take a flying kick to the face
Fortunately, every once in a while a commandant would appear and if you killed him then you would be rewarded with a nice weapon powerup. Depending on the current game level you could be given a flame thrower, some hand grenades, a bazooka etc. It was always handy to make sure you had one of these when you got to the end of the level as there was always truck loads of soldiers, dogs etc to take out.
Plenty of practice was required to make it through to the end of this arcade game - but once you got to know the levels it was possible to run, jump and stab your way through to the end. Extra lives could be earned by scoring points (every 70,000 points yielded another life) - I would say this game was hard - but fair.
This classic game was popular in the amusement arcades, and the home conversion was eagerly anticipated. Most Speccy gamers were happy with the conversion, the levels were re-created accurately (with nicely scrolling backdrops), the enemies were all in there (such as dogs, paratroopers etc) and all of the graphics were about as good as you could expect for the era. The price of £7.95 was deemed pretty good value for the title too. It went on to be a big hit.
The test of time:
Well this game is still playable today - it was excellent back then. The ZX Spectrum version is a pretty good rendition of the original arcade game, and it still has that 'one more go' factor. Once again we here in the land of Spectrum Games are amazed at what Jonathan Smith managed to squeeze into 48K of memory. Nice one Jof!
Dig out a bit of Sly from your retro movie collection, and drop a line to Colonel Trautman and give it a go. After all, they drew first blood.
This retro arcade game for the ZX Spectrum is definately worth another look after all these years.
We recommend getting hold of the real hardware - but if not then download a ZX Spectrum emulator and download it for the ZX Spectrum. Alternatively you could try and play it online.
GENRE: Arcade game (stab em up?)
RELEASE DATE: April of 1986
RELEASED BY: Imagine Software
DEVELOPER(S): Jonathan Smith (Jof)
PRICE: £7.95 - UK
Mart overcomes all takers and takes you on a tour of the first level in one of his all time favourite classic arcade games
Classic Games and Arcade Games