Trantor: The Last Stormtrooper

by Probe Software Ltd: David Quinn, Nick Bruty, Alan Tomkins, David Whittaker
Crash Issue 46, November 1987   (1987-10-29)   page(s) 116,117

Trantor, the last stormtrooper, is abandoned on an alien planet. By activating the main planetary computer held in the terminal building, our hero can escape his imprisonment.

Trantor finds himself near the terminal building's lift, and to progress further he must run, duck and jump his way past a series of vertically pounding pneumatic hammers. All this time his bootsteps are dogged by myriad hovering droids and robots, which can be blasted from the air by the flame-thrower that Trantor carries.

To provide further aid, our hero can search any locker that he passes; when a helpful item is collected a suitable icon is displayed at the top of the screen.

There are eight terminals in the complex, each of which provides a letter. The letters must be made up into a computer-related word. This can then be keyed into the main computer terminal. (A time limit means that there is no time for dawdling in any sector, but discovering a letter resets the time clock.)

Once he's assembled the word Trantor is given a beam code which he can use in the beam area to complete his mission.

Joysticks: Cursor, Kempston, Sinclair
Graphics: beautiful - large and colourful, though this results in lot of clash
Sound: brilliant synthesised 4-channel sound - even on the 48K version
Options: definable keys

'Trantor has excellent presentation; the loading screen is a work of art, and the sequence just after the game has loaded, where the little man gets out of the space ship, runs along and trips up, is brilliant. I was quite impressed by the in-game presentation, too; the sound is very good, and the graphics are large and well-coloured, though there's an awful lot of clash. But it's annoying that Trantor refuses to jump and fire at the same time, because half the aliens come at you from head height! It's easy but unplayable, and thus unaddictive. I don't think anyone's going to splash out £8.99 for a nice intro demo.'
MIKE ... 52%

'Trantor has fantastic graphics but it takes some getting used to. Death comes almost instantly after you've started the game, because most of the nasties are out of your reach yet can easily take your energy. It soon becomes tedious starting the game over and over and over and over and over again and again and again'
BYM ... 68%

There's no doubting that the graphical appeal and presentation of Trantor is very strong, but it might not have lasting appeal to match. The biggest problem is the lack of variation. Nearly all the time is spent running and shooting - both of which require little skill - and practically no time at all is required for any problem using grey matter. Trantor would have been much better if Probe Software had spent as much time on the concept of Trantor as they obviously did on the graphics and animation'
PAUL ... 82%

Presentation: 80%
Graphics: 85%
Playability: 66%
Addictiveness: 61%
Overall: 68%

Summary: General Rating: Excellent presentation and graphics conceal shallow gameplay.

Transcript by Chris Bourne

Crash Issue 64, May 1989   (1989-04-27)   page(s) 31

The troop ship left and you are now up the proverbial creek without a paddle. The only way to escape is by finding the NIK security terminal and tapping in a computer related word. How do you discover the word you ask, simply tap into the eight sub terminals scattered around the underground complex you now find yourself in. A ninety second timer, a flame thrower and lots of aliens are all that you have for company. Obviously if the time runs out it's end of game, but when each terminal is reached the timer is reset, so ft's a race to get from point to point rather than complete the game in one go.

Trantor - The Last Stormtrooper is certainly graphically very pretty, a large, well defined character sprite strolls around the variety of caverns, roasting any and all scaley denizen who dares to show its face. Gameplay is tough but not quite as impressive, the denizens attack you a bit too mercilessly for my liking and this left me with a vague 'why bother?' sort of feeling. Take a look though, you might like it.

Then: 68% Now: 56%

Overall: 56%

Transcript by Chris Bourne

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