IT'S FUNNY HOW EVERYONE GETS NOSTALGIC WHEN YOU MENTION PAPER ROUNDS. WE ALL STARTED OFF IN THE SAME WAY: TRUDGING AROUND THE TOWN IN ALL WEATHERS GETTING YAPPED AT BY NASTY DOGS OF VARIOUS SIZES. NICK ROBERTS GETS OUT HIS BIG ORANGE BAG AND SETS OFF FOR THE SHOP...
The conversion of the original Paperboy, the classic coin-op, earned 88% back in Issue 33. And with a little help from Mindscape, the BMX bombers are back in an all-new game that has everything the original boasted and more!
The diagonally scrolling streets, pleasantly annoying obstacles and amusing headlines are still there, but the game's been enhanced by full colour graphics, two-way scrolling and the option to be either a paperboy or papergirl (yeah, equality at last! - Ed).
The job's to deliver the Daily Sun to the subscribers in each street. There's no time to jump off the bike and put the paper through the letterbox so lobbing it in the house's general direction is the best the paperperson can manage.
If the paper lands in the mailbox, everyone's happy. Miss the box and the moaning Minnys cancel their paper! Hardly surprising, though: smashed windows, broken fences and toppled dustbins are just a few of the mishaps that can result from a misplaced paper (bloody strong paper, this Daily Sun - Ed).
BRILL BMX BONUS!
Completing the deliveries for the day earns a bonus trip around the local BMX track, complete with water jumps and targets to practice on. Surviving the first few screens of this obstacle course is a task in itself - reaching the end is something to only dream about!
On the second day of deliveries the landscape scrolls in the opposite direction to the first and features new obstacles and strange homes to deliver to. Boring suburbian houses make way for medieval castles, and there are increased dangers in the shape of homicidal vans that back unexpectedly out of garages, runaway prams (complete with babies - and no, you don't get bonus points for splattin’ ‘em!) and spooky ghosts!
Your boss back at the papershop won't be pleased if you lose all your subscribers so failing to deliver at least a few of the papers to the right place results in the big heave-ho! You discover who still wants a paper-throwing maniac coming to their house by studying a map of the street, displayed at the start of each level.
HALF A DECADE?
Over five years have passed since the first Paperboy and there have been many revelations in the world of Spectrum computing since. Some people would call the Paperboy style 'classic', others would simply say it's dated.
There's still plenty of fun to be had, even though nothing major's been added. The new obstacles and bonus track offer some playability but you could soon get fed up of Paperboy 2.
The new sprites and backgrounds are excellent - lots of colour and detail have been packed in. Having the choice of boy or girl is a thoughtful touch, the main sprite and status panel adapted as required.
Other neat additions are the newspaper headlines that appear between levels or when you fail, although I can't see the relevance of some of them! Paperboy 2 offers more of the same for all fans of the original.
Many Spectrum owners will never have played the first so this'll be a treat; people who've been playing the game since 1986 may soon find themselves getting bored. A nice follow-up, though.
NICK ... 84%
‘I can think of nothing worse than being a paperperson - all those ridiculously early mornings, lousy weather and enamoured dogs trying to mate with your leg. But as coin-op translations go, this is a good version of an oldie. As well as graphically competent, it's well designed, fast and full of surprises. Getting your paperboy/girl under control can prove difficult - the controls are less responsive than they could have been - but once you've got the hang of things you'll be hooked. There's loads of action at all times, with ever-increasing hazards to disturb your round and ruin your day - in this game it's permanently Friday the 13th. Paperboy 2 is playable, addictive and has nice touches all over the place. There are trees and hedges I swear jump out and bite you (I've only been drinking shandy, honest hociffer - hic!) and the BMX course is a goodly laff. The slightly unpredictable controls and perspective detract from the gameplay slightly but it's still impressive stuff.’
LUCY ... 82%
How many of you lovely peeps have, or used to have, a paper-round? Hmmm, so it would appear that approximately 50 percent of the population has been completely and utterly ripped off by newsagents who pay an absolutely pathetic wage to gullible kids and any other down and out unfortunates who find themselves suddenly in need of dosh. I mean come on, you get up at about five o'clock in the morning, rain or shine and proceed to spend about an hour and a half shoving weighty scandal-sheets through tiny letter-boxes for about 50p a day. Daylight robbery! Paper-people throw off your shackles and play this game instead. (You weren't ever a paperboy were you, Hutch? Linda.)
Yes,but that doesn't mean I'm bitter or anything. Anyway, what we have here is the follow-up to that ever-so-successful gamette Paperboy. In this revised version there's now a lovely red and yellow two on the box and ermm, some other tweaks to the gameplay.
You know the kind of thing. Spiced up graphics, improved sound, greater options; tweaks. In Paperboy 2, the man difference is largely cosmetic. You see, instead of just scrolling up the screen at an odd angle from bottom left to top right, Paperboy 2, scrolls from the bottom right to the top left as well. What this means is that instead of just delivering papers to one side of a street, you've got to cover both sides.
The idea of the game is to lob newspapers into peoples mailboxes. Get your timing wrong and the newspaper will smash a window, knock down a trash can, ruin a picket fence or even knock down a gravestone. If you're too generous with the newspapers, then for every stray object which you hit, you'll lose a certain amount of points. If you miss a house on your rounds, then they'll cancel their subscription. When everyone's cancelled, you're fired and it's time to put the bike back in the shed.
It might sound easy, but believe me it isn't. There are all sorts of suburban horrors waiting to knock you off your bike; kids in go-karts, men carrying pianos, trucks and cannonballs (no, really!) are just waiting to wipe that Golden Grahams smirk off your face.
DOESN'T SOUND TOO THRILLING
Ah, yes. However, once you get terribly good at Paperboy 2, you can start having some real fun. For instance, in this particular cul-de-sac of suburbia there are jumps all over the place. Thus you can pedal like mad right across someone's front garden and perform a neat jump right over the fence into next door's prize purple begonias.
What's more, if you actually manage to survive both sides of a street, you get to attempt the assault course. This has got loads of bales of hay, targets and water jumps. However, if you make so much as one teensy-weensy mistake you finish the ride and don't get any bonus points.
Once your end of day score has been calculated, you can head off home to bed, lay your head down on the pillow and get some serious zzzs in. You see, you'll need a straight head for tomorrows exertions when you'll do exactly the same with more obstacles in the way and more houses to deliver to.
It's all a tremendous giggle. The graphics are groovy and there's very little colour clash. Your paperboy scrolls around pretty darned smoothly, even though a close-up of his crashes would have been nice. Sound's a tad mediocre, but then how do you make a paper round sound sound?
There are two problems with this game. Firstly the collision detection's absolutely crap. You can be peddling along nowhere near a hedge or anything and the game will suddenly decide you're doing far too well and stick a large stick into your front wheel's spokes.
Secondly, it's not that different to the original Paperboy. In fact, about the only substantial changes are that you can choose what sex your paper-person is and you also get to deliver to both sides of the street! Vehicles still emerge from side streets like they did in the original and kids still attack you on the pavements with go-karts. The odd new hazard has been bunged in for good effect. For instance a runaway horse comes belting out of a wood at one point and there's a house which dislikes you so much they lob cannonballs at you. Paperboy 2's a groovesome game, but it's more like Paperboy 1.3.
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