REVENGE OF THE VULPINE VIGILANTE.
Poor old Mr Foxx is a henpecked husband. His vixen (wife) has a tendency to whack him over the head with her favourite rolling pin it he doesn't bring home anything for dinner. But poor old Mr Foxx can't just pop down to the local Tesco's and fill up his trolley like everyone else. No, he must forage the countryside for titbits like every other wild animal. The trouble is that those hardworking farmers (like myself) aren't particularly fond of Foxx, and send their trusty hounds to hunt him down with guns. Well they only want to borrow his lovely fur coat, don't they?!
But Mr Foxx isn't going to take all this aggro lying down, so what does he do? Yes, you guessed it - he goes and gets himself a pistol! And it's just as well he has some form of defence as even his country companions aren't much help; badgers lob rocks at him, while squirrels aren't averse to throwing a few nuts at the hero's bone! Even more dangerous are the dive-bombing chickens which chuck exploding eggs at the hero. Collision with any form of missile reduces Foxx's energy, which is displayed by the pantometer- Foxx's tongue hangs further down as he gets tired! When Mr Foxx returns to his den with something to eat, Mrs Foxx is elated. Unfortunately this frame of mind doesn't last long and she's soon reaching for the rolling pin again - well at least this vixen doesn't brandish a whip!
It's great to see a game about the countryside for once, but what I want to know is where are the sheep?! Anyway, Foxx Fights Back is a humorous and instantly playable game which holds your interest with cute graphics and good tunelets. Go and hunt for it in the shops!
Joysticks: Cursor, Kempston, Sinclair
Graphics: well-animated sprites run and jump through a smooth, horizontally-scrolling country landscape
Sound: a bevy of neat tunes at the front end, plus plenty of atmospheric effects and tunes during play
Options: definable keys
'Foxx Fights Back is a hilarious romp through a game fraught with such dangers as bomb-throwing chickens, motorcycle-riding dogs, and squirrels who lob exploding acorns at our unfortunate hero. But he isn't defenceless, no siree, he gives as good as he gets. As for the game itself, well it certainly looks good, with a tough looking Mr Foxx running around the countryside trying to find some grub for the even tougher looking Mrs Foxx. Sound is also well implemented, with a very 'tally ho'-sounding title tune, and a variety of boom and blast gun effects. In short, a great game in which the poor old fox at last manages to wreak revenge on his age old enemies.'
MARK ... 85%
'What a relaxing change from all those mindlessly violent games', I thought when I heard that this was set in a peaceful, rustic scenario. But hold on a minute - a gun-toting fox fighting some of the weirdest enemies you could wish for?! Much skilful joystick jiggling is required to counteract Foxx's strange pursuants. I just love the dive-bombing thickens but what have they been eating to make them lay exploding eggs?! And poor old Mr Foxx needs all the firepower he can get, so it's fortunate that as progress is made he can find more powerful weapons. This is a superbly presented, whacky scenario with neat sprites and some good classical tunes on the front end. An Instantly playable farmyard romp.'
STUART ... 85%
This is one fox who's had enough. He's had enough of chubby horsemen chasing him around the country on their worn out nags. He's had enough of flea-bitten bloodhounds disturbing his Sunday Lunch (fried chicken of course!) and he's had enough of killjoy farmers surrounding their stock with barbed wire.
He's finally flipped and like some kind of rural Charles Bronson he's out for revenge. But what can a poor fox do against such odds? Surely he's going to be pretty helpless against hordes of dogs and horses? But maybe not! Maybe there is a way he can turn the tables - because the countryside's littered with weapons and ammunition and old Foxy has been in secret training with the SAS. So watch out you country dwellers, the hunter is about to become the hunted!
I'm sure that by now the more liberal among you are standing up and shouting that revenge is wrong. If you are, stay calm because there's more to Foxy's 'search and destroy' mission than getting his own back. Our hero's Vixen is stuck in the den and starving to death so it's up to to him to get out there and collect all of the apples, milk and other scrummy goodies that he can lay his paws on.
The rural play area is divided into two levels, above and below ground, and scrolls in both directions. Foxy runs, walks or crawls in either direction, collecting food and extra weapons along the way by running over them. It may be hard to believe, but Foxy is adept with pistol, shotgun and machine gun - but he'd better be because all of a sudden the whole countryside is like a battle zone.
The bloodhounds have taken the hint and got themselves an arsenal of rifles - and even the hens are armed to the teeth (Hens don't have teeth. Ed) with exploding eggs. Other hazards crop up along the way, including vicious squirrels, bear traps and dogs on motorbikes.
Foxy's health is represented by a small picture in the bottom left hand corner of the hero with his tongue hanging out. The longer the tongue, the tireder the fox - and when it reaches the bottom of the screen Foxy expires in a fit of exhaustion. The only way to increase the falling energy level is to dive down to the lower level and search a rabbit warren for a breakfast of bunnies.
Foxx Fights Back is fast, furious, funny and... erm, Foxy! It scrolls well, is quite difficult and pumps the adrenaline just enough to bring you back for another go. It may not be a classic, but it is a good romp and should take a while to complete.
There comes a time in everyone's life when you have to decide to make a stand. You can only be oppressed, walked on and abused so much, before, one day, it all comes to the boil and you reach for the Browning in the sideboard.
For Foxx, that day has come. Fed up to the back teeth with having to move house every time the local gentry decide to dress up in the red jerkins, Foxx decides that enough is enough and with the help of a revolver it's time to redress the balance.
Despite the obvious superficial similarities to Vixen - particularly in the running of the central character - Foxx is a much more playable and really quite different game.
You start off down in your den, with the Mrs complaining about the general state of affairs. From there you take a swift leap upwards into the hostile world. For the most part the game centres around running left and right across a parallax scrolling landscape, trying to snatch apples from treetops and taking them back home to appease Mrs Foxx. Tedious? Well, it would be apart from the fact they you're fighting for your life all the lime with maniac beagles, badgers, squirrels and birds, all hell-bent on bringing about your demise.
The beagles come in two forms, pedestrian ones out to blow you to bits with machine guns, and those on motorbikes, who will simply run you down. The squirrels and badgers throw grenades at you and the birds drop, er, bombs. Yes, I know it all sounds a bit like a Beatrix Potter story gone mad, but believe me, it's great fun. You belt around, collecting apples, shooting beagles in the head and catching the birds between your teeth as they fly over.
Along the way, you'll encounter numerous hazards like truly gruesome mantraps which will literally make mincemeat out of you. There are nasty rivers and lakes to negotiate too, and you'll have to get your jumping pretty well off pat if you are going to get anywhere at all.
The more tired you get, the longer the tongue of your Pant-o-meter becomes, until eventually you peg out. Obviously, your constitution isn't boosted by being run over by a rabid beagle on a motorcross bike or falling into the clutches of a grenade launching squirrel.
To help you out along the way, a couple of more advanced weapons have been left at strategic points. There's a Thompson sub-machine gun and even a bazooka, both of which will help to despatch the bad guys at a swifter pace.
You can progress to later levels by collecting enough apples. All the time, life becomes tougher and tougher There is a bizarre bonus level which involves jumping down a rabbit warren and eating all these fluffy white rabbits.
Graphically, Foxx is pretty good, although the characters aren't actually very large on the screen, the animation is very nicely done and the beagles on the bikes really have to be seen to be believed.
There's a strange sense of humour throughout, but thankfully it doesn't detract from the grand level of violence. It's a corker.
Author: Denton Designs
Reviewer: Jim Douglas
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