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Dalek Attack

Computer Game review by Edwin Patterson

Being a novice to arcade games, I really cannot compare this game to anything I have played before. Surprisingly, though, this romp around various cities is very enjoyable to play, and in my opinion is only surpassed in this respect by the pinball game, which is brilliant.

The game starts with an interesting version of the McCoy title sequence; though the music is slightly slow and the music far from brilliant, it does do the show a lot of justice, and yes, the diamond logo is used. Following this is a Dalek graphics bit, followed by a very impressive ominous grating 'Exterminate'.

After going through all these peripherals and more, we get to the game. After choosing a companion - if you want a two-player game (Ace or a UNIT soldier) and of course the Doctor (Seventh, Fourth or Second - personally I prefer the Seventh), the TARDIS dematerialises and we're on our way. The game is set in 2254 and the Daleks and Davros (who always seems to pop up in anything Dalek-related) have invaded Earth. They have ruthlessly hijacked four major cities and it is your task to infiltrate each city, release a set number of hostages so you can obtain that all-important smart card and then try and defeat the monstrous guardians (and I mean monstrous!) with your wits and weapons at the end of each level/city. This task is complicated by the odd squad of Daleks, Ogrons, rats, mutants, Robomen ete, all wanting to exterminate you along the way!

Not to spoil too much (as it is only six levels, counting the London sewer), I won't go systematically through it (if you want this treatment, pick up a copy of DWM 197 - it gives a lot of handy hints!), but a few comments are needed.

In my opinion Paris is the best level. From the start you are fighting to survive, with Robomen and French zombies (well, that was my impression), shooting at you as soon as you land, and that damned flying Dalek is always testing your patience; this level really throws you into the thick of it from the very start! It is here that you have to take a leap of faith into nothingness to find hidden footholds floating in mid-air, but beware if you look for the hidden goodies in the sky (extra lives, etc), you have a very good chance of not staying in the air for very long! Paris also harbours the hardest Guardian at the end of its level, with its continuous bombing and surprising reaction to being on the verge of defeat, making this 'flying killer the game's deadliest adversary.

The rest of the game is more blasé.

New York is relatively simple once you get to grips with the taxis (which don't stop for anything!) and building climbing (which also seems to yield to no one). However we do meet good old K9 for the first time here.

Tokyo brings up a few more surprises. You encounter Special Weapons Daleks, more flying Daleks, and smegging Ninjas! The final monstrous challenge is rather easy if you have managed to get this far and at its conclusion you are privileged enough to get transported to 'Dalek Central' Skaro, in a mission to recover the Time Ring from Davros (a rather tacky plot, but it does in some way justify you going there). This level proves to be a lot of fun and boy, is it packed full of Daleks!!!

My congratulations to the programmers for the excellent cheat mode of the infinite life Ace; I could never get past that blasted Paris monstrosity without it (though this invincibility is not always permanent, as I found out in confronting Davros one time).

My one gripe is that you can't save the game at any point, this one minor detail is a major burden to the game because when you die, and have run out of credits, you have to start the game from the start, even if you have made it to Skaro.

And my final comments on this game?

Well it comes in a nice package. The game is thrilling and the graphics are a realistic representation of the show even if Ace looks sort of reddish-brown so if you have a computer, a spare $60 and heaps of spare time, get this game and enjoy.

This item appeared in TSV 35 (September 1993).