The Phantoms of the Asteroid are not the nicest
of chaps, if you take trying to kill people as not nice.
If you're particularly callous you'd probably think
'It doesn't matter that much. I mean, it's not me
they're trying to kill'. Think again, because it is.
The asteroid on which the phantoms live is inconveniently
on a collision course with old Mother Earth. Obviously
everyone's a bit panicky, since it's a jolly big asteroid,
one that would cause a little bit more than a slight
dent if it hit our bluey-green world. Not only that,
but the phantoms also want to take over the planet.
Not too nice really.
you're a hero and it's your job to blow the approaching
megalith to smithereens. Since it's such a large asteroid,
a nuclear bomb of gargantuan size is required. Luckily,
advance scanners from Earth have detected the existence
of 36 uranium cubes on the asteroid, just enough to
make meteor dust out of it. All you have to do is collect
all three dozen cubes, combine them so they achieve
critical mass and then rather rapidly depart to avoid
getting mashed along with the floating rock mountain.
All very easy, if it wasn't for the force walls, poisonous
plants, energy draining phantoms, ever draining oxygen
and your fuel-hungry jet pack. Ho hum, well this sort
of thing isn't supposed to be easy.
equipment supplied consists of the bog standard power
pack, a handy device that propels anything strapped
to it skyward. The power supply, however, runs out very
quickly; luckily there are fuel outlets at a number
of points around the asteroid for replenishing it. Similarly,
your oxygen supply runs out fast, so it's nice to know
that there are also oxygen points for topping up. Another
handy piece of standard equipment is the gun. This fires
in the direction being faced and any phantoms in your
way get splatted into phantom ghoulash. Regrettably,
others appear to take the ex-phantom's place.
bulging eyes and gormless expressions, the only real
harm the phantoms can do to you is bump your body. This
depreciates the energy supply, shown as a histogram
on screen. Also histogramically represented is the fuel
and oxygen supply; let any of these hit rock bottom
and the game's over. Another way of dying is to go full
splat into the constantly toggling force shields. To
open them you just stand on their control pads and they
deactivate for a limited amount of time. You have to
hurry since there's nothing worse than having a force
wall reactivate through the middle of your body.
game is represented on a scanner in which your character
remains centrally positioned, while the background scrolls
as he moves. Up activates the jets in the power pack
and lets a hefty flame belch from behind you. To go
down just leave the jets off and gravity drifts you
floorwards. Asteroidal phantoms home in on you constantly,
flying through rocks to reach your location if necessary.
Because of the enormity of your task, Mastertronic have
thoughtfully provided load and save options to save
your current position out to tape -- saving Mother Earth
ain't so simple.