Producer: Automata UK
Memory Required: 48K
Retail Price: £6.00
Language: Machine code
Author: Jason Austin
Burt has been miniaturised and injected into that favourite playland of so many programmers - a computer. His mission is to track down the Big areas of RAM, collecting all the objects in each memory location. There are a variety of minor bugs in each location. Red bugs have the power to tunnel after you, but the white, green and magenta bugs can only follow in your tunnels. Tunnelling under the edit keys, win cause them to fall, and if they fall on a bug, you send it back to its starting position and gain points. Lighting up the letters of the word EXTRA at the bottom of the screen gives you an extra life.
Control keys: Q/A up/down, O/P left /right
Joystick: Kempston, Sinclair 2, Cursor type
Keyboard play: well placed and responsive
Use of colour: very good
Graphics: reasonable size, smooth and cheerful
Sound: good tunes and spot effects
Skill levels: 1
A very playable, frustrating and addictive game. All the graphics are neat and not jumpy like so many other games. Each screen has a faster, sometimes more intelligent, set of mini-bugs for you to squash or flee from. On each screen you must make up a routine which you should stick to, otherwise your tune will run out (you have roughly 1 minute and 55 seconds per screen). Every 10 screens there is a bonus screen which is near to impossible to complete. I really enjoyed playing Pi-In-Ere, even though it might be a little behind the times.
That super hero of super heroes, Burt, is back again in another Automata game. Burt is portrayed using very good graphics, the way he turns around is brilliant. The graphics are good, bright, colourful and amusing. Pi-In-Ere is a different yet playable game. Because there are 61 screens, don't worry about losing your last life on 59 and having to start again, as the game always starts from your last level.
Ifs nice to see that Automata are producing some playable games for a change instead of games that are fun, but a bit pointless. Pi-In-Ere is a very original idea probably conceived from an arcade game along similar lines. Graphically, Burt is a marvellous character - he's very well animated, swivels round, moves up and down with his arms waggling - he looks so jolly and bouncy. This game has an incredible amount of screens although they don't vary very much, the bugs are different with every screen. They also look very and snappy. You'll probably be able to play this game for a long time without getting bored with it, although after a while it may become tedious just collecting the objects needed to continue on to the next screen. Overall, a very colourful, jolly game - a trademark of Automata games - jolliness.
David: The tedious scenario for this arcade game casts you as a miniaturised BURT inside a computer. Your mission? To track down the 'Big Bug', by tunnelling through RAM and collecting items along the way. And if you think that sounds like an original idea, I don't know where you've been for the last few months.
The graphics are very reminiscent of Pi-Balled's characters, and are both colourful and well-animated. The game's actually quite difficult to succeed at, especially when you're creating new tunnel knowing that there's a band of nasties on your tail. I must admit though, that it didn't inspire the 'just one more go then...' feeling that should come with a good game. On the other hand, it's a reasonable version of its kind and is well supported by good graphics and sound. While it does have a Kempston joystick option, I found it too unresponsive to be useful and ended up back at the keyboard.
This game certainly won't stun the computer world by leaping up the charts - but it should a success among Piman fans. 3/5 MISS
Ron: The title does nothing to suggest that this is nothing but a Mr Do! rip-off... but so what. The game's great fun, and it's certainly my tip for the top. 4/5 HIT
Roger: At last - an arcade game that requires some detailed strategic planning. Automata's Piman games do have a tendency to be a bit similar but, having said that, it's quite difficult to play. 3/5 HIT
MACHINE: Spectrum 48k
Automata getting desperate for Pi-sounding titles for their games. Quite what Pi in 'Ere has to do with a character called Burt hopping round the insides of a computer, I'm not sure.
Oh, and before you ask, Burt isn't of the Q variety. He may have a big nose and look like a long lost cousin of the PiMan but he's been given a rest from jumping around a load of blocks and turning the air blue.
Burt, so the story goes, has been miniaturised and placed in a computer. His task is to track down the Big Bug by exploring the various areas of the computer's memory and collecting the objects which lurk within.
There a 61 different screens and, on your way to an encounter with the Big Bug, you'll meet lots of other nasties which have to be avoided.
Although set in a computer, you wouldn't know it unless you read the inlay card.
The graphics are good, though, especially the loading screen which has some cute pictures of the characters from the game. Sound effects are average, which is more the fault of the Spectrum than the program itself. Control is from either the keyboard, or with Kempston or Interface 2 joysticks.
Incidentally, if you ever get fed up with this game and want to swap it with your friend for a different cassette then you're perfectly entitled to do so as long as you don't make copies, despite warning to the contrary on the cassette inlay card.
The last of the bunch is PI-IN'ERE by Automata U.K. Limited. Automata is a trendy company, doing to computers what the SEX PISTOLS did to music.
PI-IN'ERE is another game where you have to go around screens and collect even the greatest 'Arcadist' among you, there should be no times of boredom.
A nice feature of the game is that after all your lives have been used up, the next game can be started from the last visited screen or from afresh. This is a great idea and I hope that many more software authors will follow, as sometimes it can be tedious going through all the same screens when wanting to discover new. You can also save or load the last position and high score, which will stop you from going through 59 screens to get to the 60th each time. A random life will also be granted, if the word EXTRA is lit up at the bottom of the screen.
The idea is as follows: You are Burt, who has been injected into the computer where his mission is to track down the elusive 'BIG BUG'. Isn't there one in every computer? As you go through many screens, collecting the various objects (I would love to know how milk bottles managed to get into the computer, but you cannot trust electronics all the time...), your progress is hindered by minor bugs, each with their own degree of intelligence. The red bug is able to tunnel after you, whereas the other three cannot.
And then there are the EDIT keys, which when loosened from the walls, will give you an extra 30 points if they fall on a 'bug'. The only problem being that if they fall on you - BANG - a life gone. One unfair screen is when the EDIT key starts falling on you right at the beginning and you have to get out of the way immediately, or else!
With clear but not too detailed graphics, with good sound and joystick option, with the wonderful music of just Kooks on the 'B-side' of the tape, a definite must for any computer game freak and lover of KOOL musik.
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