Missing ... One Droid

Reviewed by Paul Rixon


Issue 31

Jan/Feb 88

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1 player

1 joystick


Despite their experience, Bug-Byte are not a company noted for exceptionally high quality software and they have yet to produce a serious threat to their competitors in the battle of the budget barons, although their last release –CHICKEN CHASE – was a step in the right direction. MISSING ... ONE DROID is Bug-Byte's latest offering and has been released under licence from Analog. The author – Paul Lay – is no stranger to PAGE 6, and you will undoubtedly remember his fantastic game `Munchy Madness' that appeared in issue 24.


This one is written entirely in machine code (not an obvious statement to make when discussing Bug-Byte!) and boots up from cassette in around one hundred seconds. A disk version is also mentioned on the inlay, which hardly seems necessary for such a short amount of code. Now for the customary elaborate story, which tells of how Rusty the Droid has become separated from his Droid companions due to his impetuous tendencies – he has foolishly manipulated himself into a topo-dimensional converter and promptly disappeared into a construct universe!! Intuition tells him that if he keeps active and fights off the assailants, the construct universe will become over-stressed and reality inertia will flip him out of the construct and back to his pals in the real world!


Onto the game itself, which runs in a similar vein to `Robotron 2084' and opens up with a title page almost identical to the `Munchy Madness' one, complete with scrolling starscape, reverberating colours and futuristic sound track. A press of the START key reveals Rusty, in a blank void, all alone (ahh!). Enter the wicked baddies, right, left and centre, whose only intent is poor old Rusty's destruction. This is where you enter into the plot, guiding Rusty around the screen to avoid various aliens, and blasting them with Photon missiles at every available opportunity. Clear one screen and it's onto the next level of increased difficulty.


That's really all there is to it. Each collision with a pursuer decreases your score and energy level, whilst a successful hit increases the score, and extra energy may be obtained by collecting heart symbols. The existing graphics are very well done but are lacking in quantity and variety, with large and clearly detailed PMGs, together with the scrolling starscape, adding interest to an otherwise forgettable scene.

I can only describe MISSING:... ONE DROID as a competently programmed revamp of an aged game concept that would merit unreserved praise as a magazine listing, but one that is far too simplistic and monotonous to warrant a 100% recommendation in today's competitive budget market. Apologies, Rusty!