Spectrum 2.0

Review of 'Target: Renegade'

Rating:4 User: Danforth

Having done a stellar job of converting Renegade to home computers, Ocean bid for the rights to convert spiritual successor Double Dragon. They were outbid by Melbourne House for those, but (perhaps because Double Dragon was not the official sequel to Renegade) their contract allowed them to release a Renegade 2. Imagine everyone's surprise when it turned out a bit like Double Dragon!

Ironically, faced with Double Dragon's plethora of moves, throwing weapons, climbable scenery, big fellers called Abobo, etc., Melbourne House turned out a garish, sluggish, buggy mess, whereas the Target Renegade team were able to cherry-pick the advances they wanted to work into the game, and dump things that didn't suit the hardware or the visual style established in Renegade. So we got the two-player mode and the crucial ability to nick the enemy's weapons... who cares about scrolling? And the opening motorcycle attack is far more thrilling than DD's first wave of grunts.

In retrospect the gameplay is rather unbalanced, which prevents me from giving this game a 5 - the jump kick is overpowered and you can complete the first half of the game with it alone. The graphics, by Ocean regular Dawn Drake, are lovely and full of character - level four probably being the high point, for gameplay as well as looks, as enemies who can duck are suddenly thrown into the mix (along with an adorable but deadly doggie). Although the prequel is the more balanced one-player game, you can't beat Target Renegade for Speccy-based co-operative pummeling.