#01
31 августа 1995

Part 5 - Rebel Star.

<b>Part 5</b> - Rebel Star.

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*    PART 5  - REBELSTAR    *
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REBELSTAR TRILOGY By Julian Gollop

REBELSTAR RAIDERS - Red Shift

(retro reviewed in Crash no.28 May 1986 by
Sean Masterton)

Now  we're  going  back in time a bit. Red
Shift were known for their science fiction
strategy  series. One of the best of these
was  RebelStar  Raiders.  As is typical of
games  at the time, the program takes ages
to  load.  The  player is presented with a
choice   of   4   scenarios   on  loading:
Moonbase,  Starlingale,  The Final Assault
and  Expansion.  These  need  to be loaded
from  tape  individually and the scenarios
themselves  take  as  long to get into the
computer  as most modern games do. Ah, but
these  were  the  days  when  such  things
mattered not.
The  player  is  presented  with  a screen
depicting  a  deck plan of an area of ship
or  installation which has to be protected
from   attack  by  raiders.  A  few  human
operatives  and  a  section  of  droids is
available   to   assist.   Each   deck  is
different,  depending on the scenario, and
some  were  designed  to present a greater
level  of  difficulty  to the players than
others.
During  play the defender deploys the crew
one  by  one.  Each crew member has a name
and   weapon,   and  weapons  can  include
anything from pistols and sub-machine guns
to  lasers and grenades. Not unreasonably,
each  weapon has a different effect on the
enemy  -  but  these of course are no more
than  variations  on  a  theme.  They  are
deadly  if used properly! Once Raiders are
deployed, the game begins.
Movement  and  combat  are  handled  by  a
points  system  which  dictates  how far a
character  may  move  and  what sources of
action  are  available  to  him. Damage is
dealt   with  in  a  similar  manner.  The
Raider's  forces  outnumber the defender's
but the defender's robots are armoured and
consequently  difficult  to eliminate. The
concept  of the game is strikingly similar
to  that  of  a  conventional  board  game
called  Azhanti  High  Lightning  by  Game
Designers  Workshop,  which had deck plans
for an 84 deck space cruiser and scenarios
for   shipboard  combat.  Both  games  are
highly   addictive,   being   well-devised
tactical simulations with great variety in
play.  They provide a lasting challenge to
the most preserving of tacticians.
Red  Shift  no  longer exists, which means
it's  unlikely  that  you'll  catch one of
their  titles  on your regular stockists's
shelves.  RebelStar  Raiders  was  another
title   which  suffered  from  a  lack  of
adequate  exposure  when  it was released.
Anybody  with  a  copy  of the game should
treasure it - the game has its faults, but
it  was  (and  still  is) way ahead of its
time.

==========================================

REBELSTAR - Firebird

(reviewed  in  Crash no. 31 August 1986 by
Sean Masterton)

After  recently  looking  at  the  old Red
Shift game Rebelstar Raiders and getting a
lot  of response, I was pleased to receive
this   release   from   Firebird.   Called
Rebelstar,  it  is actually written by the
author  of that early classic but has been
much  improved. For the price, this has to
be the best strategy game I've reviewed in
ten months of Frontline.
One  and  two  player versions of the game
are  provided,  each  loaded as a separate
game   from   a   different  side  of  the
cassette.  There is only one scenario, but
this  is  larger  than any of those in its
predecessor.   It   involves  a  group  of
raiders  trying  to  break  into  an enemy
complex  and  disable  the  main computer.
Player(s)  controls  individual characters
or  robots  which  are  each  allocated  a
certain   number  of  action  points.  The
members  of  the player's team are ordered
individually    with   different   actions
costing  varying  numbers  of points. Each
team  member may carry out as many actions
as  required  in a single move, as long as
the  point allowance for that character is
not exceeded for that move. Each character
carries a weapon of some description and a
quota  of  ammunition  and  may also carry
several  other items found on the route to
the central computer. only one item can be
used at any time and it cost action points
to change from one item to another.
The  Screen  scrolls  in  four  directions
following  the trail of the cursor used to
order  team  members.  To the right of the
main  action  area, an information display
lists   the   options  available  and  any
information  about  the  figure  currently
highlighted by the cursor.
Play  consists  of  turns  during  which a
player  moves  and orders all forces under
his   or   her   control.   Movement   for
characters is eight directional and orders
consist  of  M  (drop  object), P (pick up
object),  L  (load  object), F (enter fire
mode). Movement is achieved by selecting a
unit  and moving it under the cursor. When
fire  mode  is  entered  some  map  detail
disappears,   combatants  become  coloured
spheres  and  the  cursor  changes  into a
sight.  the  sight  is  positioned  in the
desired target area and when confirmed, an
energy  beam  is  displayed  along  with a
message  detailing  the  accuracy  of  the
pulse.
There  are  three different kinds of shot:
an aimed shot costs the most points but is
most  likely  to  succeed;  a snap shot is
less  accurate  but  costs fewer points to
preform;  finally,  a  player  may  select
opportunity  fire  to  cover  a particular
area.  Opportunity  fire  only  executes a
shot  when  an  enemy  crosses the line of
fire  during  his  turn,  in  which case a
snapshot   is  fired  at  him.  Shots  may
damage,  wound  or  kill, scoring a random
number  of  points determined by the power
of   the   weapon.   Generally,  the  more
powerful the weapon a character possesses,
the  less  ammunition  is  available. If a
character  is wounded in combat, a message
to  this  effect  appears  next  time that
character  is  selected.  Wounding reduces
the  constitution  of a character - second
wound  kills.  Killed  players are removed
from  play,  but  droids  that  have  been
knocked  out leave wreckage which causes a
blockage.
As  the  complex  is entered and explored,
various  objects  may  become available to
the   players/   Keys   can   be  used  to
lock/unlock security doors (the key to the
armoury     is    particularly    useful).
Medi-probes  can  be  used to heal wounded
characters,   and   Droid-  probes  repair
droids.  Using  an  object  is achieved by
bumping into the required object.
In  the one player game, you may only take
the  part of the raiders but this apparent
limitation  is offset by the fact that the
computer  opponent  is  a highly competent
adversary. It deploys the defending droids
cleverly  and  uses them ruthlessly in its
attempt to thwart your mission. However as
there  are  eight  difficulty settings you
can  temper  this efficiency somewhat. The
game is superbly error trapped and many of
the  warning  messages  relate to specific
actions  to  avoid  ambiguity.  The map is
clean  and  well  drawn  but  packed  with
detail   and   every   item   is  properly
labelled.  Character  graphics  are  quite
good  with  different weapons altering the
look  of  the  troopers  (all  of whom are
named).   Even   the   sound  effects  are
reasonable.  Weapon  skills,  stamina  and
morale   are  taken  into  account  on  an
individual   level   and   atmosphere  and
variety   included  in  each  event.  Each
character  also has an assigned percentage
chance of hitting a target listed.
I  would have expected a game of such high
quality  to appear at a much higher price,
and  take  my  hat  off  to  Firebird  for
introducing  this much improved version of
an old favourite back onto the market at a
reasonable price. I can find no fault with
it.

PRESENTATION 88%
The presentation on screen is spotless. If
Firebird  had  taken  more  care  with the
instruction  inlay,  it  could  have  been
better.

RULES 90%
Simple to pick up, but deviously devised.

PLAYABILITY 92%
You  can  almost play as soon as you load.
The game runs at a fast pace from start to
finish.

GRAPHICS 90%
Colourful, clear, detailed...what more can
you ask?

AUTHENTICITY 91%
The Action Point system works excellently.
It  is  however, very similar to that used
by  GDW  in  their  game Snapshot. Come to
think   of   it,   there   are  a  lot  of
similarities...

OPPONENT 91%
You  will hate it once on the higher skill
levels.

VALUE FOR MONEY 95%
Unbeatable.

OVERALL 93%  CRASH SMASH
No  longer  need you lament for Red Shift.
This  classic  game is up for grabs now. I
can only suggest you scamper off and get a
copy.

==========================================

REBELSTAR 2 - Firebird

Reviewed Your Sinclair number 42 June 1989

'Arcade strategy' game that would probably
be   better  off  just  calling  itself  a
strategy game, 'cos that's what it is. But
then strategy is not a big seller it might
once have been, so any attempt to liven it
up for the wider audience is perhaps to be
welcomed.
Anyway,  this  little  number supplies you
with  a  number  of  forces (the Rebelstar
Raiders,  in  case you were wondering) who
must  fight an armed party of aliens which
has established itself on a nearby planet.
Not  only must you kill as many nasties as
you  can,  but  you must also see of their
eggs  - for yes, if they hatch, the phrase
'eggy  soldiers'  will  take on a entirely
new  meaning.  So it all comes down to the
traditional  strategy  features  of troops
deployment, bloodless battles, and terrain
neatly mapped out in a giant grid. You can
play against the computer or a friend (the
two-player game loads separately), and the
whole  is  quite a laff, if perhaps not as
detailed  as most full-priced strat games.
A neat addition to the genre, though.

==========================================

Thanks  to  assistant  Ed, for reproducing
The complete Rebelstar reviews.

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Другие статьи номера:

Part 1 - Intro.

Part 2 - Playing tips.

Part 3 - Instructions.

Part 4 - Adventure games.

Part 5 - Rebel Star.

Part 6 - The Dizzy story.

Part 7 - Spectrum history.

Part 8 - Spectrum on the Net.

Part 9 - September games charts.

Part 10 - A-Z Of Spectrum games reviews.

Part 11 - Next month.


Темы: Игры, Программное обеспечение, Пресса, Аппаратное обеспечение, Сеть, Демосцена, Люди, Программирование

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