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Crystal Raider

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Released: 1986

Genre: Platformer

Format reviewed: Atari 8-bit

Publisher: Mastertronic

Developer: Matthew Trimby

Submitted by: Shaun Scott

Another Mastertronic budget release here!

A simple but engaging game about an explorer hunting for crystals (I do love the old 8-bit gaming plots!). There are approximately 50 screens of platform trickery to navigate, with multiple paths to take on many levels allowing you to choose your own route. Clearing all the crystals on one level will gain you an extra life. A good strategy is to build up lives on the easier levels before tackling the levels which require precision jumping and have multiple obstacles.

You can move your character left and right only and have a jump button which when pressed will propel you in the air until you release it or hit the ceiling. This is initially a little awkward to use but you will quickly get the hang of it.

Graphics are simplistic but clearly defined although the colour schemes are a little drab. Sound is functional though for some reason the game contains a ‘Close Encounters of the Third Kind’ ditty when you gain an extra life.

The game is quite tough overall and you’ll need many of those extra lives you’ll pick up along the way.

An excellent value game at the time and certainly still worth a play today!