-Tecfri (1987)


The Story:

A race of aliens known as the Sauro decide to invade the Earthís oceans to capture our valuable oceanic resources of sponges and plankton. They also took over any vehicles they found in the water such as nuclear powered submarines and battleships; a little extra firepower never hurts. A new attack sub has been in development and even though itís not finished, youíre going to pilot it against the Sauro anyway. Ample speed is certainly not needed while fighting off alien attacks.

My Thoughts:

If an attack submarine is going to look like a sleek space fighter, then it should move just as fast. This is not the case with Sauro. The actually cool looking sub moves slower than a turtle pushing a rock uphill. The entire game is underwater, so understandably the sub would probably be slower than a jet or space fighter, but when bigger, normally slow-ass subs are moving much faster than you, the game becomes infuriating.

There are some weapon power-ups and a limited shield that sometimes saves you from a stray shot. The fuel of the sub also decreases as you play so, conveniently, there are barrels of fuel to collect, but youíll most likely die before having to worry about running out of fuel. In addition, there are no speed power-ups and latter parts of the game require some precise and quick movements through underwater caverns filled with stalactites, stalagmites, and danger. The crappy little sub must fight off depth charge dropping battleships and torpedo firing jets on the surface. Destroying the battleships makes them sink in pieces that you have to avoid, which is actually a neat little gameplay element. In the water though, youíll face off against big supposed-to-be-slow-but-not subs and a few different types of alien UFOs.

While trying to navigate through the caves, shooting the ceiling makes parts of it fall down on you. Great! The screen also scrolls very quickly, making the subís lack of speed even more frustrating. Most of the points earned come from just moving around. Yes, being able to move the control pad is enough to earn a high score. Slower auto-scrolling or scroll when you move would have made this a much better game. If you want a good submarine shooter, play In the Hunt.

Score: 3.0