Thursday, 16 February 2012

Crap Game Corner Cometh!: Miami Vice (Spectrum, 1986 - Ocean Software)

Yes, it's that time again. Where TV licenses and crap ideas cometh together to create an abomination the likes of which even Arnold Schwarzenegger couldn't handle. And this time, it's personal!
Well, at least the advert looks awesome.

Miami Vice started in 1984. It centered on the exploits of two cops: James 'Sonny' Crockett and Ricardo Tubbs. Together, they come against drug lords, pimps who are out of their depths, and wrong doings in jail, with a few car chases and gun fights along the way. It ran until it's demise in 1989 due to falling ratings, and some rather shoddy storylines (alien abductions, anyone?). Still, at least the first three seasons were great. Ocean seemed to pick up on this, and what a surprise, made a game of it for the ZX Spectrum, Commodore 64 and the Amstrad CPC464. But, it didn't turn out to be the gun totting, car chasing bang-bang extravaganza it was meant to be. Quite the opposite in fact.
One of the most plainest loading screens I've ever seen. oh, the humanity!

To start with, it just looks crap. Yeah, I know, the home micros were as powerful as a unplugged microwave, but were capable of awesome graphics if pushed. This game isn't an example of awesome graphics. They're just...just...well, crap. The streets don't look like Miami, but just look the same as each other. And what's going on with the rather ugly, and hard to understand status bar at the bottom? Plus, why does the car look so sodding stupid. It looks like it's been designed after a crap looking bullet. So far, so rubbish.
Miami. In all it's 8bit...erm...glory. Are those supposed to be cars?

But wait, that's not all. It also plays like total arse as well! Your car steers with the gracefulness of a classic piano, and driving around is really tedious. So tedious in fact, that should bore you to tears within, say, 5 minutes. The gameplay consists of driving to the correct location to stake out the location at the correct time, to catch the scumbag you're tailing in the act. Miss the target time, and you have to wait a very long time for it to happen again. Once more, all too tedious.
What the game SHOULD have been!

Oh, Ocean. What did you do there? You dropped the ball on what could have been a rather spiffing conversion of the definitive 80's cop show. But, instead, it's a lackluster affair that doesn't deliver the bang you're after. More a sort of whimper with a small crackle following it. Play Wizball instead.

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