February/March 1992 - Balloon Crazy, Sammy Seal, Future Lock

Huh. So this issue spans 2 months, but the editor section explains it's not a general switch, just a one month realignment against OMNI's publishing schedule.

Balloon Crazy - Ligia Latino

I think this is a rather imaginative reskinning of the arcade game Anteater - but more importantly, it's fun! Rather than an anteater with a looooong tongue, you countrol a clown with a crazy, winding arm, and a knife (as if some people didn't find clowns scary enough!) Your goal is to pop each balloon. Green monsters crawl back and forth - they're vulnerable to your knife, but your arm is vulnerable to them. Luckily you can hit fire to quickly retract the knife back to- the wrist, I guess? But there's also a magnet that is dangerous to your knife, but harmless to your arm (but you can sneak attack and hit it from behind) Anyway, pretty cool and complex game. Rating:4/5

(Random side note... I was trying to find a video of a somewhat similar game for Atari and VIC-20 called K-Razy Antiks but then I found a video of this AMAZING looking VIC-20 game Garden Wars. Look at it. Just look at it!)

Sammy Seal - Arthur Moore

Quirky puzzle/logic game. Your seal has an ice block with one of 4 symbols on it. You need to throw it at a matching symbol in the big ice pile (throwing at any other symbol loses a life.) You then destroy the matching ice block (or bloks, if they are in a row) and the one behind is sent to you for your next turn. You can throw at the pile horizontally or vertically (for vertical shots, you bank off the top diagonal wall) The "goal" block is for the last block remaining: on the standard mode that's for bonus points, but on advanced mode it's a requirement. Not my cuppa tea, but kinda cool for what it is. Rating:32/5

UPDATE: On this blog's thread on the awesome site Lemon64, Rekrul points out this is a clone of a Taito game called Plotting that even had a C=64 port. Between that and the fact I wasn't crazy about this game anyway I've deducted a point.

Future Lock - Danny English

This bonus game is the third flick-screen game by Danny English. His games are frustrating, both in terms of playability, and in terms of wasted potential. You are a little man racing across a large city  - you must hack six terminals (hacking performed by standing next to a computer terminal) to unlock a gate which you then must find. You are pursued by relentless Patrol Robots... they quickly sap your stamina when they are over you and your only defense (besides running) is dropping one of 9 (refillable) bombs behind you. I think the relentless aspect is the most annoying bit, specifically how the game handles screen borders... you're significantly faster than the robots, but no matter how far behind the screen border they are when you cross over, they appear at the same border you entered from a few seconds later. Without that, this game might be a fun exploration game, but with that aspect it's just annoying. (Also, like his other 2 games, enemies always appear one per screen, which kind of reveals too much about how the sausage is made.) Rating:3/5

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