Reviewed by Jim Short


Issue 25

Jan/Feb 87

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48k Disk 14.95

48k cassette 9.95

1 Player


This review is dedicated to all those egotistical mega-players out there who find most computer games far too easy to challenge their skills, and have been looking for a decent game to get their teeth into, or their trigger fingers at any rate. Okay, you lot - SIDEWINDER is the one!

It's been described in other less illustrious mags as a sort of horizontal 'Caverns Of Mars' but, in actual fact, it's more akin to a helicopter version of 'Airstrike'.

In the game you are the only survivor of a team of crack agents sent underground to capture SIDEWINDER - the very latest in helicopter technology. In order to escape, you must fly SIDEWINDER to freedom through a maze of caverns guarded by an array of fiendish defence and security systems.

SIDEWINDER has a fuel consumption along the lines of the Space Shuttle, so you must continually shoot or bomb all the fuel pods you encounter to keep the chopper airborne. This is particularly significant as there are no 'lives' involved in the game as such - each time you lose a chopper it is immediately replaced with another - but the game is over when you run out of fuel.

SIDEWINDER is similar to Calisto's 'Warlok' in the sense that you have to reach a landing pad at the far end of the cavern system and then return to the landing pad at the beginning to advance onto the next level of play. When you 'lose' a chopper you are penalised by having to restart all the way back at the previous landing pad. Frustrating is one word which springs readily to mind here, but there must be a better way to describe SIDEWINDER. Any offers??

An added bonus is the SIDEWINDER EDITOR which allows you to design your own Sidewinder screens and save them to disk to create your own customised version of the game. Futureware were offering a prize for the 3 best designed screens but, as SIDEWINDER has been available for some months now, the closing date for the competition has long since expired.

Despite the fact that you no longer have the option to win an Atari plus disk drive. SIDEWINDER is still an excellent package. If you like your games H-A-R-D then this is the one for you.