A game they said couldn’t be done; this sort of thing really should have been impossible…
Basically it’s like Smash TV on the Sam!
Shoot lots and lots (and lots) of enemies, collect power-ups and crisp packets, and advance screen-by-screen until you’ve beaten the big bad B.U.T.T. (Bugs Unified Terrorist Team).
Exodus is quite an old game by now, it’s probably been knocking around for two, maybe three years and unlike a lot of SAM games it hasn’t dated that badly at all.
This is mainly due to Doug Holmes producing what where probably his best ever graphics and some very slick programming.
The game is basically a Smash TV rip-off, only minus the level structuring idea and without the organised enemy phases of the original. This is a bit of a pity as knowing what what going to happen next helped a LOT on the original game, and in this one you have NO chance at all because it throws everything at you on every level. There’s none of this ‘learning curve’ stuff, oh no. It’s hell-bent destruction from the first moment.
On each level you must collect five crisp bags to progress to the next one, and this is where it can be slightly annoying, in that some bags are impossible to reach (having been deposited in the enemy-producing holes at the edges of the screen, and it’s also annoying that it has a multiload for some reason. Even when each level is almost EXACTLY the same, maybe the mega-enemies deserve a multiload, but I think it was probably a move to keep 256k compatibility.
In case you have never seen Smash TV, here is a brief description of this particular version of it:
The levels consist of a square room with about 6 entrances in the side from which enemies constantly pour. You must shoot the enemies to produce crisp bags and other bonuses, such as extra lives, and improved weapon power. When you’ve got all 5 crisp bags it’s onto the next level. Simple, but bloody hard. You really come to rely on getting extra-lives, because unless you get seriously massive quantities of them then you’re not going to survive the first 10 levels. It’s really a pity about the difficulty level, as the game has lot’s of nice bits, including a full disk intro sequence (though not to the standard of Steven Picks work), lovely music and simultaneous 2-player option. Anyway, it costs about 6 quid and can be bought from, um, well, it might be SAM PD (Derek Morgan ), or it could be Phoenix Software Systems (David Ledbury ) who knows? Licences on the SAM change ownership more often than I change my pants (so that’s about once every 6 months :) ).
|Graphics||88%||Beautiful colouring makes the most of 16 colours.|
|Addictivty||74%||Marred by the incredible difficulty of the game.|
|Instant Appeal||85%||Very good, thanks to a good build-up etc.|
|Sound||84%||Good E-Tracker music, and no spot fx. Pleasing.|
|Overall||81%||A nice game that should have been easier.|
At last!! A phrase which keeps cropping up all the time. I’m excited to report I now have a copy of Exodus after 2 issues of whining! Yehaaa! I have two disks, so I’ll load up the intro first. Ha, ha, ha! Nice graphic of a woman giving a report from the scene of the action. Some narration. Ha, ha, ha! Nice graphic of who they are fighting with. Some narration. Ha, ha, ha! The machine has crashed. Ha, ha, ha. What?!!! Christ! Don’t panic, Steve. Load up the second disk. (Puts disk in drive and hammers F9, praying for it to work). Noooo!! The screens corrupted! Quick, phone up someone… Dave Ledbury ! (Sounds of Dave playing the $&@% thing on phone). What is that, Dave? 512k? Oh, no… Please excuse me while I get myself a 256k upgrade and modernise myself somewhat… ( 2 weeks of money saving and purchasing later…)
At last!! Ha, ha, hahahahaha!!! I have a 512k upgrade! Now to play the thing!
A while back, there was this really fabulous game called Smash TV. It came out on the good old Spectrum, as an arcade conversion, and from what I have played of it, it had me hooked! Fortunately, Exodus is having the same effect on me… Right, let’s get our facts straight about the Coupe software scene - most of the games you can purchase either have something to do with tiles, balls or both. In other words, a puzzle game! Thankfully, this offering from the guys at Apex Developments is an incredible breath of fresh air! For a start, there is a plot (shock horror!) to this mindless shoot em up - presented in a rather nice-looking intro on a separate disk, but from what I remember of it, the baddies from B.U.T.T. are planning to kick yours, so you have to murder them completely!
Yes, this is a SAM game we are talking about!! You (or another player in simultaneous two player action) can play the parts of two chickens (or is it chicks?) powered to the gills with heavy artillery. Each level is set in a room (like Smash TV) with the exception that you can’t move from room to room like in Smash, but stay in the same one while the action takes place. Ah, yes. The action. Saying that the action on this game is fast, furious and confusing is an understatement to say the least! From the word “go”, you are bombarded by an assortment of weird and wonderful creatures - from carrots with koshs to the headless chicken brigade, the baddies set the pace for the game nicely. Once dead, some nasties drop extremely useful add-ons from total destruction, to one of the five crisp packets you need to obtain to exit one level to the next.
And to make the game complete, who can omit the end of level baddies from hell, which pop up on every fifth level. The one I tackled on my seventh go is Mecha-bunny, a direct relative to the end of level bad guy in Smash TV. There is even an arcade machine of said game in the introduction sequence!!! The graphics are simply gorgeous. Amazingly animated and full of life, they even boil down to the fact you can die over five different ways, from being swallowed by the ground, to a halo vapourising you! Note the two player option as well - not a case of actually co-operating, as most of the time, you will not have time to see how player 2 is doing in the fighting stakes! You won’t even notice that the poor bugger has croaked it until you turn around to see that your mate has stopped wiggling his joystick (no innuendo intended!).
So, to cut a long story short - BUY THIS GAME! You, as a SAM owner, NEED THIS GAME! And because of the fact this has recieved undeserved poor PR, the game itself should be in the hands of every single puzzle-hating SAM owner. Right, I’m off to kick Mechabunny’s B.U.T.T….