A & F have added to the mythology of the Platform Game with their Chuckle Egg, which contains some of the best screen combinations since the original arcade versions of 'Donkey Kong'. The aim of the game is simplicity In Itself. You are a little yellow - well chicken it looks like, but probably a li'll 'ol farmer boy, with a wide brimmed hat, and you must travel the wide plat- forms collecting eggs, whilst avoiding the understandably agitated chickens. Depending on the screen, there are various combinations of long and short platforms at different heights, connected with ladders and/or lifts.
As you go through the screens so the set ups become more difficult, with more eggs to collect and more hens chasing, and more piles of - hen manure, to put it politely, to avoid.
Control keys: user definable, 4 direction and one Jump needed.
Joystick: Can be set up to cope with most and works with Fuller anyway.
Keyboard play: highly responsive
Colour: very good
Graphics: very good
Sound: continuous and good
Skill levels: gets harder with every screen
Features: speech vocabulary with Fuller Box, and 1/2/3/4 player games
'This game has a very good use of colour, very good, bright graphics, neatly animated and detailed. It has you climbing ladders, jumping over holes, jumping down from one level to another, riding lifts and generally collecting eggs like a maniac. I found it fun and addictive! It also gives you user definable keys and games for up to four players.'
'This is hardly a new game type, but it's certainly an excellent addition to the collection of holejumpingladderclimbingnastyavoiding games for the Spectrum. What makes it addictive, apart from the very good graphics and sound, is the construction of the various platforms. These soon get to be very complicated, and like the best arcade originals, you must plan your way round carefully. The control keys are highly responsive, your man jumping beautifully, even reversing direction in mid-jump if you time it right. Very addictive and nicely frustrating.'
'I had a lot of trouble at first getting my man to climb or descend ladders, but this is a trick of the program. He's very difficult to centre if you're being careful about lining up, whereas if you dash at a ladder and have the ascend/descend key also pressed, he whizzes straight up as desired. What must be remembered is to change directional keys while whining, or he may end up going in the wrong direction at the top of the ladder. One kindness IS that he can withstand some tremendous falls from one level to another. An excellent arcade game, with high addictivity built in. But it's very expensive at almost £8 - the one drawback.'
Producer: A+F, 48K £7.90 (2)
Author: N Alderton
Some games seem on the surface to be no different to other games of the same type, and yet manage in some hard to define way to be great. Chuckie Egg is one. In most respects, very similar to 'Donkey Kong', you must guide your egg collector over many varied levels of platform, taking the eggs and avoiding the vengeful hens. Ladders connect the various levels and there are also lifts to negotiate. An element of strategy creeps in as you progress through the screens, as you find the best way round the screen to get at the eggs, often in very awkward places. The graphics are very good, smooth and responsive - some of the best jumping in any game. It gets to be addictive and frustrating. Excellent user-definable keys, works with most joysticks, good sound and progressive skill levels. The only drawback is the rather high price, but this game shouldn't disappoint. Features speech with the Fuller Box and games for between 1 and 4 players. Overall CRASH rating 80% m/c.
LADDERS UNSAFE IN DUCK GAME
CHUCKIE EGG for the 48K Spectrum presents yet another variation on the Donkey Kong theme. here the object is to negotiate a system of platforms and ladders, picking up eggs and corn on each level while pursued by giant ducks.
It is surprising that the ducks give you less concern than the ladders. Whether intentionally or not, the game makes it difficult to get on or off the ladders unless you are in the proper position. The slightest touch on the key might make you over-shoot your target and, as the ducks approach, you will find yourself unable to move out of the way.
The game also offers a jump facility but judging your leaps accurately is no easier than climbing the ladders. Nor is it any use thinking you can wait for the ducks to cruise past you because you are playing against the clock and might run out of time.
Each level presents new challenges, such as bigger gaps in the platforms on level two, and moving lifts on which you must try to jump on level three. Fortunately you have three lives on each level, which obviates the need to return to the beginning again each time you are mauled by a duck.
Even though the difficulty of using the ladders as an escape route slows the game considerably, Chuckle Egg manages to be highly addictive and has appealing graphics and sound. It is produced by A & F Software, 830 Hyde Road, Gorton, Manchester M18 7JD, and costs £6.90.
MACHINE: BBC, Dragon, Spectrum
SUPPLIER: A&F Software
PRICE: £7.90 (Spectrum £6.90)
Chuckie Egg is an excellent game available for three different machines. The BBC version has better graphics than the others, but the Spectrum and Dragon versions are quite acceptable.
The screen is divided into levels joined by ladders and is patrolled by three ducks who move up and down the ladders in search of piles of corn which they then consume.
You control a little man whose task is to collect a number of golden eggs as quickly as possible. and preferably before the ducks have polished off all the corn.
Once you have cleared the screen you get a bonus depending on how much corn you have managed to save. There is also a time limit and ignoring it costs you one of your five lives.
There are eight screens and the further you progress the more complex the screen layout becomes, with moving platforms, ladders going nowhere and eggs hovering mysteriously in mid-air. Oh, and I forgot to tell you, the ducks may look cute, but they kill on contact.
There is no joystick option on this game, but ten marks out of ten to A & F Software fur allowing you to choose your own movement keys.
Not all the keys are available, and forbidden keys will vary from machine to machine, but this facility adds greatly to the enjoyment of the game. If only other software houses would follow this example...
Chuckle Egg is simple, highly addictive, and great fun to play. Easy enough for kids and compulsive enough for adults, its worth every penny.
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