Format reviewed: Commodore 16/Plus4
Developer: Jef Gamon
Submitted by: Barry Flowers
The arcade classic 'Scramble', one of the first C16 games to emerge. The simple plot doesn't matter, it's just a simple side-scrolling 6 level blaster.
Level 1 consists of a red rocky surface you fly over where rockets fly upwards to try knock you out the sky.
Level 2 you have to guide your ship through a blue underground cavern. The rockets can't fly upwards, but there are plenty of nasty aliens flying in on you who needs to be shot down quick.
Level 3 gets more tricky. Indestructible fireballs come flying at you. The only way through is to dodge them but they also hinder your chances of refueling.
Level 4 is more a high cityscape, where you have less room to maneuvour.
Level 5 sets you flying through an ever changing treacherous tunnel which requires extreme dexterity to avoid crashing into the walls or any stationary emplacements.
Level 6 is the final level. Your final task here is to bomb the main base, thus completing the mission. Miss and you get the opportunity to try again. Hit it and you get a congrats screen before the game loops over.
For a start, the graphics certainly does the arcade justice. The backdrops, adversaries and explosions are nicely detailed which scrolls smoothly along and move exactly how they should do which captures the feel of the original perfectly. While your craft looks a bit big which moves more in short character jumps, it feels smoothly responsive and moves in all directions nicely. The sound is also perfect for what you expect for the original classic, which adds to the whole atmosphere.
The best thing is, is that nothing has been left out. All the levels are there, the rockets, fireballs, the refuelling by bombing the fuel-dumps etc. The difficulty is just right too, it's all there. No hi-score table but does give your last score on the title screen.
This is without doubt one of the finest most playable accurate arcade conversions you'll ever find for the C16, and it's a game I've found that I've returned to time and again nearly 25 years later. A real classic.
You can watch the full longplay video HERE!