ON A SPRING
Graphics, £7.95 cass, joystick or keys
Gremlin? Yeah, course you do. You know the guys -- Potty
Pigeon, Wanted: Monty Mole and Suicide
Expre . . . Oh! THEM! Yes, them. And you thought
they weren't going to do anything else on the 64 ever
again, didn't you? Well you're wrong! What do you think
this is then? Thing on a Spring, that's what.
Yes, after a rather comatose finish to 84, Gremlin make
a rather delayed, but welcome return to your favourite
micro. Thing on a Spring features a brand new
computer star who goes by the name of Thing (oh he of
the rather strange game title).
evil toy Goblin (Boo! Hiss!) has cast spells on the
children's toys and ordered them to come to his factory,
deep in the earth (the toys, not the kids, stupid!)
On no! Golly! etc . . . But wait! Don't despair! Thing
is hair! (Yay! Cheers!) Thing will put a stop to this
foul Goblin. How? By collecting nine pieces of a jigsaw
puzzle which are to be found about the factory. When
correctly assembled, these pieces will give Thing a
clue as to how he can finally stop the Goblin's goings
are not so simple for our hero, though. Throughout the
factory are a multitude of devious traps -- a mess left
by the malicious Goblin. Also left about the factory
are five switches. Once collected, a switch will activate
certain functions through the factory, like there are
some 'escalators' which can't be used until you have
the correct switch.
factory is composed of four levels of several screens
length. The levels are joined by a lift which cannot
be used until the correct switch is collected. The floor
you are currently on is indicated below your score.
Each of the levels contains four rooms of around four
screens width. The screen scrolls left/right incredibly
smoothly when moving through these rooms and up/down
when using the lift (look, no split screen glitch)!
The sixteen rooms each contain a mixture of platforms,
escalators, traps, 'spring-boards', nasties and a multitude
of other things. They are separated by 'tubes' which
contain blocks to be skilfully manoeuvred and nasties
to avoid as you pass through them.
are a large number of different ghouls and guards patrolling
the factory and they move around the screen in unpredictable,
predictable patterns. They must be avoided at all costs,
because if Thing should be touched by any one of them
he will lose oil and will start to rust up. The amount
of oil remaining is shown in a sort of thermometer at
the top or bottom of the screen (depending on where
Thing is). If Thing losses all of his oil then his will
totally rust up and his mission will have failed. Oil
can be replenished, though, by collecting one of the
oil cans lying around.
score is kept at the top of the screen and increases
by one point every second Thing remains springy. Other
points are gained when collecting a piece of jigsaw,
a can of oil or switch, and a further bonus is given
on successfully disposing of the Goblin.
lengthy piece of music plays throughout the game along
with various and varied sound FX, and a music on/off
option exists for the Noise Abatement Society members
among you. Other options are a restart function (very
useful!) and the ability to redefine your own keys.
The main character of Thing
On a Spring sets
new standards in computer character cuteness (sorry
Rockford, you're on your way out), the googly-eyed
Thing is brilliant as he bounces about the screen,
spanging off the walls, ceiling and platforms.
Luckily, the game is of the same high standard
as its main character, and although being essentially
a platform variant, offers many puzzles and original
touches. The scenery is very colourful with smooth
scrolling, and there are all sorts of nicely animated
hostiles munging about. The sound is unbelievable,
I won't describe it but just wait until you hear
it; words fail. The game strikes a happy medium
between being easy to get into and difficult to
solve, but beware, there are some really mean
touches that will have you tearing your hair out.
packaging and instructions, good in-game options
Very good use of colour, excellent
'drawing' and animation, marvellous scrolling.
The London Symphony Orchestra might
Music, cute character and gameplay
just glue to your seat.
It's more powerful than super-glue.
For Money 92%
Amazing game at a good price.
Sproing, sproing, sproing you can't