After defeating hordes of alien scum in his first conflict, Turrican settled down for a well-earned holiday. Sipping pina coladas on some Mediterranean beach soon become boring for our hero (well it would, wouldn't it?) and he longed to be blasting again.
Just then, the broadcast of Greek folk music he was listening to was interrupted for a special report. The planet of Landorin was under threat again, from another evil being. Named The Machine, it was stronger and more cunning than anything Turrican had come across before.
Not being one to walk away from a challenge, Turrican set off to Landorin armed with an all-new powersuit. This time his suit has been given a mega 360° laser, useful for wiping out everything in sight. Smart bombs are used instead of grenades and a variety of other weapons can be collected by shooting special aliens and rocks. To help Turrican out of small gaps he can transform into a small gyroscope wheel, which can place mines on the ground.
There are five worlds of arcade action in Turrican II. Four have two levels and the other has three, to make a total of 11 levels to play. Each new world is as addictive and colourful as the last, graphics and game style changing all the time.
You start off on the planet's surface, where the landscape scrolls in all eight directions. Backgrounds and sprites are jam-packed with colour, so much you'll begin to wonder whether you're playing the Spectrum version of the game!
Aliens come in all shapes and sizes, some walking, some shooting and some flying in an attempt to stop you in your tracks. There's plenty to collect, from weapon add-ons to extra lives and diamonds. Collecting a hundred diamonds will give you a continue play if you die before the end of the level.
You'll never be able to complain about the lack of variety in Turrican II. Each level has new monsters and many have two end-of-level baddies to be dealt with. Reaching world three takes you into a totally different game. The three levels that make up the world are horizontally-scrolling shoot-'em-ups. You control a ship (Turrican's inside it) and have endless aliens to kill plus the rugged landscape to cope with. The last of the levels has a scroll that gets faster and faster while you attempt to guide the ship through small gaps in the scenery!
Turrican II is one of the best games I've played on the Spectrum. The excellently drawn and coloured graphics are a real treat and the vastness of the game will keep you busy for ages. If you enjoyed the first Turrican you'll be blown away by this one. Brilliant!
NICK ... 95%
'Hooray, the sequel to one of my all-time favourite shoot-'em-ups is finally here. Turrican. II is every bit as good as its predecessor, with its brilliant intro tune, fast-paced (and very violent) action and rainbow-hued graphics. All credit must go to Enigma Variations for this masterpiece in Spectrum programming. The wide variety of weird and wacky alien take their jobs very seriously indeed, especially the end-of-level dragon who knocks you over with the wind from his beating wings. Of course, this wouldn't be a very good shoot-'em-up without a few pick-up weapons, and the old favourites are there along with a few surprises which help make a nice destructive collection. And it isn't all yomping-around, shooting anything that moves, there's a neat Nemesis zip-along-in-a-spaceship-shooting-anything-that-moves section, too! Will there be a Turrican III, one wonders. I certainly hope so!'
MARK ... 96%
Gosh, I've waited a long time for this. You wouldn't believe the number of sleepless nights I've had wondering when it was going to pop through the letterbox and how good it was going to be. I've tossed and turned and stared at the ceiling - I tell you it's fair worn me out! I'm a mere shadow of the incredibly good-looking and eligible bach... (Get on with it! Ed).
Oh, okay. If you don't know Turrican 1, hang your head in shame. It's only one of the best horizontal 8-way scrolling shoot-'em-ups ever to appear on the surface of this planet. It was fast, it was slick, it was mega-playable and it had brilliant graphics. So the big question is whether Turrican 2 is better. And it's one I don't think I'll answer just yet (Ha!) Nope, first I think I'll just tell you about it and build up the suspense.
You start off on the surface of a weird planet called Landorin. You're there (out of the kindness of your heart) to trash the Machine, a big robot-thing who's been trying to wipe out all the people on the planet and take it over (the rotter!). But before you can even get close to it you're going to need to hack your way through seven levels of complete anarchy (see box). Ulp! Sounds like a tough job, eh? So, first off, let's have a quick look at the size of Turry's equipment (if you see what I mean).
Armed and dangerous, is he?
Yep! Tury's got new weapons! Cast your mind back to the original game, and you'll remember he had a titchy laser thing and a 'Lightning Beam'. These have been upgraded, so now he's got an improved lightning laser (which sprays electron death like a hose) and a blaster gun which fires blobs of electricity at everything in its way. Also available are pick-up weapons such as extra-wide blasters (to hit more aliens) and special long-range lasers. In fact, you couldn't ask for much more firepower in a shoot-'em-up. Everything looks incredibly mega-destructive and mean (except the lightning gun which looks a bit crap on the screen, like it's been programmed m BASIC).
As you blast your way through the swarms of mutant baddies you realise just how huge the playing area actually is. It's not just right to left scrolling we've got here - you can go up into higher spooky unexplored caverns, or drop down a waterfall or something to visit the nether regions (ooer!). Of course, you don't need to go through every screen to get to the end of each level but it's great knowing they're there (to visit on a return trip if the fancy takes you!).
But it's not just the number of screens that's so impressive (900 at the last count!) - it's how much programmers Enigma Variations have been able to cram into them all. Every step of the way you come across absolutely loads of aliens, pick-ups and new and weird obstacles to overcome. I couldn't believe my peepers! In fact there's almost too much going on - because everything's so colourful, our old friend Mr Attribute Clash rears his many-coloured square heads again and some of the sprites sort of mix together a bit. It's a pity, but a small price to play for the generally stonking graphics.
Billions of baddies
Turry moves very much as he did in the original, but this time a bit faster and smoother. He's still got the ability to jump huge distances (blasting as he goes), but on the ground the sheer weight of baddies makes it difficult to zip quickly through the game. So to win you'll have to be really on your guard - rush in and you're gonna get ambushed and wasted real quick!
There are just so many different types of baddies I'm not even going to bother describing them all. Basically, though, - there are the small ground-crawling types which just get under your feet, there are the flying-and-need-to-be-zapped-quickly types and there are the you'll-need-loads-of-shots-to-kill-me guardians, who block vital routes under the surface. If you wipe out all the baddies in one section you'll have time for a breather before any others wander over to attack (and boy, will you need the breather!), and all in all they look great and move really well.
You'll probably have realised by now that I'm rather a fan of Turrican 2. It's a lot better than the first version (as well it should be, seeing as it's a couple of years on). The graphics have improved, and the sounds nearly up to Dolby standards (well, sort of) But best of all is that it's ridiculously playable and whoppingly huge! I'm going to be plugging away at it for a long time - and I'll be lucky if I can get through to the Machine in 6 months! If all this doesn't make it a Megagame then I'm an Icelandic fisherman named Susan. (Hiya Sue! Ed) Oh do be quiet Andy.
The original Turrican was a blimmin' huge shoot-'em-up with giant graphics, squillions of hidden features and the world's second-worst multiload. To my mind at least, the barking mad loading system ruined the playability of what was a rather fine game. Surely, with the sequel being 128K only an' all, this somewhat distressing prob has been solved?
Weeell... no. Every time you lose your lives, you have to reload the whole level. Aarghh! To add insult to injury, the game isn't particularly enjoyable. Granted, it retains the marvellous sense of freedom within the levels - you can go just about anywhere the fancy takes you - but the game seems to have lost the original's sense of loony fun. The action in Turrican 2 is more straitlaced and much tougher - it's ridiculously tricky to get around without incurring massive damage from the innumerable baddies.
To be fair, this sequel is overflowing with chunky graphics, and the wobbling enormity of it all is enough to impress the socks off anyone. Personally, though, I found the whole thing rather disappointing. It seems to have snazzed up the original in terms of presentation, but at too high a cost - the game just isn't fun to play.
Rave reviewed last issue with a staggering 95%, Nicko's still playing it and yelling about it being the best Speccy game ever (which is surprising since he's such a miserable bast).
So, Turrican 2 - what's it all about? Well, shooting, really. It's the ultimate shoot-'em-up played over 11 levels with varying action. One level you're running along as the cybernetic Turrican, blasting everything that moves, and the next you're in a spaceship, hurtling through a few scrolling levels!
It's not an easy game. The huge variety of aliens take their jobs (ie, killing you off) very seriously - especially the end-of-level foes which are often deadly (but stunning to see). Turrican 2's graphics are really something to behold. They're colourful, large and move very well considering how much can be going on on-screen at one time.
Quite simply, if you're a shoot-'em-up fanatic, there's one only game you need put on your shopping list and that's Turrican 2.
Rave reviewed with a staggering 95% and often referred to as 'the best Speccy game ever!', Turrican 2 is the ultimate shoot-'em-up played over eleven levels with varying action throughout. One level you run along being the cybernetic Turrican, blasting everything that moves, and the next you're clambering into a space ship and hurtling through a few scrolling levels!
It's not an easy game. The huge variety of aliens take their jobs (ie, killing you off) very seriously - especially the end-of-level foes which are deadly (but stunning to see). Turrican 2's graphics are really something to behold. They're colourful, large and move very well considering how much can be going on on-screen at one time. Quite simply, if you're a shoot-'em-up fanatic, there's one only game you need put on your shopping list and that's Turrican 2.
The man with the shiny metal armour is back, and this time he's brought a really big gun. Everyone's favourite cyborg Turrican returns to the Spectrum screen in this budget re-release of his second violence-packed adventure.
Turrican is a cyborg with a mission, and suffice is to day that it involves killing inordinate amounts of aliens to ensure universal peace and freedom (except in the immediate vicinity of Turrican himself, that is.)
Turrican 2 is a platform shoot 'em up much in the mould of the original Turrican. Turrican must traverse this landscape, killing all he sees. To aid him in this crusade, Turrican's gun has a handy seek and destroy gadget attached to it, which is activated by keeping the fire button held down. Whilst doing this, Turrican cannot move, but his laser homes in on any nearby opponents, causing them to die with the minimum of hesitation.
The graphics of Turrican 2 are certainly colourful. It's just a shame about all the attribute clash this causes. This self same colour problem can make it very hard to see incoming projectiles until it's too late, as well as looking somewhat messy. Still, playability is still there by the shovel load which is what you really want in a shoot 'em up, in the final analysis. The controls are a little slow (especially for fire), but as the emphasis is more on the platform part of the game anyway this doesn't really ruin things.
Still, when all's said and done, Turrican 2 has been seen and done numerous times before, and a lot better in some places.
Price: £3.99 Tape
Reviewer: Ed Laurence
ALAN: There's nothing really wrong with Turrican 2 other than its lack of originality. There are a hundred other games like this, and I must admit I didn't like it as much as the first installment. However it's good action all the way and I can still recommend this game.
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