Red Heat

by Charles Davies, James Bagley
Ocean Software Ltd
Your Sinclair Issue 43, Jul 1989   page(s) 31

£8.99 cass/£14.99 disk
Reviewer: David Wilson

Incredible though it may seem, here is the Ocean game of that muscular relief cream. Red Heat! (No, you idiot! That's Deep Heat. Ed) Hem, hem, sorry readers! in fact, what we have here is a conversion of the movie Red Heat, the tough comedy thriller starring Arnie Schwarzenegger and James Belushi.

Just in case you haven't seen the movie, Arnie plays mean Rusky cop Captain Ivan Danko, Head of Moscow's Homicide Division, and Jim Belushi plays a wacky Chicago cop who teams up with him. Their combined talents are up against one man who certainly doesn't 'just say no', wicked Viktor Rostavili. He's the fiendish Russian drugs baron whose collar our Arnie wants to feel! (Oo-er!) Viktor has now moved to Chicago (My kind of town, Chicago is..') (Shut up! Ed) and our heroes are in hot pursuit.

This is the game scenario... 'cos Red Heat the computer game follows the plot pretty closely. You get to play Danko, punching, shooting and head-butting out loadsa baddies on your way to the final showdown with Viktor. Jim Belushi is reduced to a cameo role as a little sprite who moves swiftly across the screen waving his hands about in Al Jolson fashion. Red Heat has been converted for Ocean by Special FX, the Liverpool based company who did such a skill job on Batman - The Caped Crusader. This game too features nice big clear, yet detailed, monochrome graphics, smooth scrolling and much of the company's (now) familiar, quirky sense of humour. The screen shows a horizontally scrolling cinema type pic with the characters visible only from the waist up, and is a tad sparse for my liking. Only half the area is occupied by the game and the rest, apart from small scales representing energy levels and bullets, is blank.

Arnie walks (or at least his torso does!) in a fashion reminiscent of the Batman sprite. On the right hand side he moves left and right, whilst trillions of baddies, head-butters, karate choppers, gunmen, cripples (sic), transvestite nurses (!), and the villainous 'Cleanheads' - the gang in Viktor's pay - all come in on the left to try and pop your clogs! Viktor comes on prior to his fight to have a potshot at you. Since he darts on pretty speedily from left, Arnie's fists can't reach him. There is however the opportunity to shoot him a couple of times in order to weaken him for the final showdown.

There are four levels and within each there are one or two sub games. Every now and then, you will come across a 'B' icon and by collecting these you get either more energy, more bullets, or entry to a sub game. Oh, and beware, there are also bad icons. These will suddenly pelt you with an energy-draining 'snowstorm'! Success in the sub games will give you more points, energy and/or bullets.

No arcade adventure type pick-up-and-use objects here. Instead this is a straightforward horizontally scrolling monochrome beat/shoot 'em up. Apart from the absence of Arnie's legs, the graphics are nice and clear, with big sprites and loads of detail. There is a wide range of adversaries, and the sub games add variety. All those transvestites and gory gunshot wounds contribute to a fun tongue-in-cheekiness that makes for an addictive and appealing game.

Life Expectancy: 75%
Instant Appeal: 83%
Graphics: 85%
Addictiveness: 90%
Overall: 85%

Summary: Jaw-socking stuff. Quirky and clear with a lot of variety but only a half-sized 'envelope'screen.

Transcript by Chris Bourne

Your Sinclair Issue 68, Aug 1991   page(s) 61


Out goes Barg B, and in comes something nearly exactly the same (but covering the rereleases). PILLAR AND PELLEY remain your hosts.

The Hit Squad
Reviewer: Rich Pelley

Davey Wilson reviewed this film tie-in beat-'em-up as a full pricer a couple of years back, and I still pretty much agree with everything he said.

Red Heat was that tough comedy thriller starring Arnie Schwarzenegger and James Belushi. In the game, you get to play Arnie, punching, shooting and head-butting your way to the final showdown with Viktor, the big baddy, Davey told us this at the beginning of his review, and I certainly agree with him there. He also happened to mention that Red Heat features nice big clear, yet detailed, monochrome graphics, smooth scrolling and even a sense of humour. And you can't argue with that. However, as all gameplay takes place through a horizontally-scrolling cinema-type pic with the characters visible only from the waste up, the remains of the screen were a tad sparse for Davey's liking, and (agreeably) mine also.

More explanations of the actual content of the game came next, referring to such delights as the four levels, the subgames entered by collecting icons and the variety of baddies (a bit of a 'Dave Rave' apparently). And finally, no doubt exhausted by this point, Davey concluded in that brilliant way only Davey knew how - "This is a straightforward horizontally-scrolling monochrome beat/shoot-'em-up. The graphics are clear with big sprites and detail. There is a wide range of adversaries, and the subgames add variety. All in all, an addictive and appealing game". And. once again, I just have to agree with him. Then he awarded it 85°. But I reckon that it's just a trifle too thin and repetitive, so I'm going to give it 76° instead. (Hope you don't mind, Davey.)

Overall: 76%

Transcript by Chris Bourne

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