Spectrum 2.0

Review of 'Smash TV'

Rating:3 User: Matt_B

Back in the day, this arcade port was one of the few games to get a 97% rating in Crash magazine; the highest ever to be awarded to a select few games. Looking back now though, you'd have to wonder quite what the reviewers had been smoking at the time. Realistically, it's a pale shadow of an arcade game, with fast moving colourful sprites and dual stick controls, that was never going to work well on the Spectrum.

Programmer David Perry and graphics artist Nick Bruty did a pretty good job with the tools available to them. It's still a very colourful and attractive looking game, albeit that is only achieved for the price of making everything move in exact character squares; adding a certain jerkiness that you wouldn't associate with the arcade original.

Similarly, there are some gaping holes in the gameplay that just weren't there in the arcades. For most of the levels you can just hide in a corner, avoiding most of the enemy, whilst blasting away to success. And, with only a few screens to get through, that success can come pretty quickly.

Ultimately, it's at best a flawed gem, which flatters to deceive graphically, but totally fails to recreate the look and feel of the original. Taken on its own merits, it's a half-decent blaster, albeit a short-lived one.