Reviewed by Jim Short


Issue 24

Nov/Dec 86

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48K Cassette 

1.99 1 Player

Firebird are more noted for their budget software on other computers, namely the Spectrash and Crummydore 64 than on the Atari. They first entered the Atari market with CHIMERA - a brilliant game based loosely on Ultimate's `Alien 8' and one of the best of the 'recent' Atari releases - and COLLAPSE is their next Atari effort to hit the highstreet shops, retailing at an incredible 1.99.

COLLAPSE is a simple game in the arcade mould. You are presented with a grid-screen made up of grey sticks and bridges. You must guide Zen the bear around the screen, changing all the grey sticks to blue, before using his magic to set a 'Rotix' into action to make all the sticks collapse on top of one another. Once all the sticks have been cleared you advance onto a new screen. There are 96 different screens in all.

A couple of cruising aliens - no selfrespecting arcade game would be the same without it's quota of aliens - hinder you at every turn, but you can keep them at bay with a liberal dose of 'pepper dust'. Extra pepper dust is available from all good supermarkets sorry, I mean at random intervals throughout the game. Oh, and there's a timer too. Extra time units are gained by collecting the occasional diamond. Bonus points are awarded for collapsing the matrix in one go, but this is no mean feat. And that's about all there is to it. Like I said, simple but addictive to the point of being annoying! The graphics are distinctly Spectrumish and the game characters have jumped straight out of Jet Set Willy (oh no, not that game again!) but at least Firebird are trying and that's more than can be said for certain others.

More Firebird games are planned. At this standard and price they are not to be missed.