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Der Lattex Held

Putty logo

Originelle Spielideen sind rar geworden, vor allem die Plattform-Landschaften werden fast nur noch von bewaffneten Helden in Sprungstiefeln heimgesucht. Immerhin, bei System 3 hat man sich jetzt etwas Neues einfallen lassen!

Putty Damit ist allerdings keinesfalls die einschläfernde Vorgeschichte gemeint: Der böse Zauberer Dazzledaze hat alle Bewohner von Putty Moon entführt, nur einer konnte entwischen – Putty, ein springlebendiger Kaugummi! Um die Kidnappungsopfer wieder ranzuschaffen, muß der ungewöhnliche Held all seine "dehnbaren" Fähigkeiten aufbieten und 18 feindverseuchte Level nach Hilfsrobotern abgrasen.

Als Kautschuk zur (Plattform-) Welt zu kommen, hat unbestreitbare Vorzüge: Putty kann laufen, springen, sich unglaublich weit ausdehnen oder ganz flach auf den Boden quetschen. Nur in den seltensten Fällen empfiehlt es sich, einfach draufloszuhüpfen; vielmehr will jede Aktion im voraus geplant sein, schon weil den einzelnen Gegnern nur auf höchst unterschiedliche Art und Weise beizukommen ist: Mal hüpft man ihnen auf den Schädel, dann werden sie zur Seite geboxt, im Notfall bläst sich der digitale Barbapapa auf das Vierfache seiner ursprünglichen Köpergröße auf – zerplatzt er dann mit lautem Knall, fegt es sämtliche Bösewichte vom Screen! Als besonders nützlich erweist sich auch die Gabe, die Gegnerschaft "einzuschleimen", denn so kann man entweder einen Teil der bisher verlorenen Lebensenergie zurückgewinnen oder sogar für begrenzte Zeit Gestalt und Fähigkeiten der Feindes übernehmen.

Putty Es steht also eine hübsche Bandbreite verschiedenster Verteidigungstechniken zur Verfügung, genau wie es Widersacher in den vershiedensten Variationen gibt: Gefährliche Pilze hüpfen wild über den Screen, Raupen drohen mit funkelnden Blitzen, Spielzeugsoldaten marschieren durch die Gegend, fast jeder Level hält neue Überraschungen und Gefahren bereit. Zum Glück enden nicht alle Feindberührungen gleich tödlich, Putty verfügt über drei Leben und ein paar Continues, wodurch auch weniger geübte Zocker ihre Freude an dem Gummimännchen haben werden – zumal hier an Gags, Extras und Bonuskammern nun wirklich kein Mangel herrscht.

Auch die Grafik wurde nicht vernachlässigt, sämtliche Landschaften kommen bunt, abwechslungsreich und durchgestylt daher, und die witzige Animation der Sprites hat sich glatt den goldenen Kaugummi am Zahnseideband verdient. Alleine das sagenhafte Augenrollen mancher Gegner ist schon zum Kringeln, aber wie sich der Titelheld über den Screen "quetscht', wie er sein halbes Augenpaar hinter sich herzieht oder manchmal gelangweilt dreinguckt, das ist einfach genial! Zu bemängeln wäre vielleicht das nicht ganz ruckfreie Scrolling, die etwas gewöhnungsbedürftige Steuerung und die Tatsache, daß man sich während des Spiels mit Soundeffekten begnügen muß. Dem Spaß an der Freud tut das jedoch kaum einen Abbruch, mit Putty haben die Jungs von System 3 gezeigt, daß sie mehr auf der Pfanne haben als nur langweilige Neuauflagen von "Last Ninja". (rl)

Amiga Joker, November 1992, p.46

PUTTY
(SYSTEM 3)
PLATTFORM - INNOVATION

81%

"POWER-GUMMI"
Amiga Joker
GRAFIK
ANIMATION
MUSIK
SOUND-FX
HANDHABUNG
DAUERSPASS
79%
86%
69%
72%
67%
84%
FÜR FORTGESCHRITTENE
PREIS DM 90,-
SPEICHERBEDARF
DISKS/ZWEITFLOPPY
HD-INSTALLATION
SPEICHERBAR
DEUTSCH
1 MB
3/JA
NEIN
NEIN
ANLEITUNG


Putty logo  CU Amiga Super Star

John McGrane has always been a funny-shaped bloke, but he really cannot compare to the stretchable star of System 3's latest blockbuster game.

Putty Mention the name System 3 and the average gamesplayer will automatically think of their Ninja series of strategic arcade adventures. Lately, the Harrow-based company has been trying to distance itself from the Ninja reputation with an avalanche of different gaming styles. First there was the platform antics of Fuzzbal, then the hack 'n' slash going-on in Myth and now Putty.

GOING ARCADEY
The story goes something like this. You are Putty, a small globular chap composed almost completely of putty. You know, the funny little brown substance that you used to put around the glass in your window panes to keep the difference between a hole in the wall and a window constant. Rather like Zaphod Beeblebrox's revelation that biro pens live a life of their own on a biroid planet somewhere in the Horsehead Nebula, System 3 believe that all putty comes from a place known as Putty Moon, circling somewhere in their unstable imaginations.

Putty Anyway, Putty Moon has been taken over by an evil wizard called Dazzledaze, and as one of the small blobs who weren't entirely happy with this situation, you were banished from the planet. Naturally, you don't want to stay in this predicament, but how can you return without a rocket? Just ask a passing bunch of friendly robots to build a skyscraper high enough to allow you to reach Putty Moon. Of course, Dazzledaze doesn't want you to come back, so has sent everything he's got to slow you down or stop you completely. That's only to be expected, but the other problem is one of your own making. The robots are all solar powered, but you can only operate at night. By day, the robots are a friendly enough bunch, laughing, joking, building and slapping each other's backs occasionally, but at night they become mindless and suicidal, and so have to be watched all the time. What's a poor Putty to do?

CAN DO A LOT
You will have to get by with Putty's rather extraordinary capabilities. I have to say, if there is one thing the console invasion has done for Amiga games, it is the introduction of very versatile characters. Putty, like the toy of similar name, can do a hell of a lot of things considering he is just a small blob of goey stuff. He has many different ways of moving about, for example. He can walk along platforms, with two little bumps sticking out below him in place of feet. He can leap too, gathering himself into a little ball and then springing up into the air. But that isn't all.

Putty Possibly Putty's biggest trick is his ability to stretch himself over vast distances until he finds another platform, at which point he pulls the rest of his being after him, basically transporting himself to his new location. This trick, once mastered, allows him to race all over the screen in virtually no time at all.

But, you might be asking, what can he do to defend himself? In this respect he can use one of four different tactics. He can either punch to the left or right, forming a small part of his side into a fist and then jabbing anything within range. Or, with most enemies, he can absorb them, extracting, the life energy for himself. This is done by getting in front of them and then spreading out flat on the floor until they walk on him, at which point he sucks them in. Another trick (and this he can only do with limited enemy creatures) is 'Puttymorphing'. When he has absorbed a creature, a double stab on the fire button changes him into the shape of the aforementioned victim, complete with attacking capabilities. For example, in Toyworld a clockwork orange marches up and down spitting pips. Once Putty absorbs this and polymorphs into it, he can spit pips at other enemies. Smart eh?

Finally, for a really big bang, Putty can turn himself into a smart bomb to take out all the opposition on screen at once. Waggling the joystick furiously causes Putty to expand to superPutty proportions before blowing up, wiping out everything else.

PLIABILITY
Putty None of this can be done without energy, and Putty needs a lot of this in the form of Pliability to be able to do anything besides leap. As he performs all his little functions, his Pliability meter slowly drops, but this can thankfully be replenished by absorbing passing creatures as well as bonus food and energy tokens.

The game is played over six levels, starting on the ground and working upwards to the tallest building on Putty Moon, where Putty can make the most important leap of his life. Each of the six levels is played over four stages, and each stage can be up to four screens high. The format of each screen is essentially the same, although the strategy develops as the game goes on. Robots appear all over the level, and you have to collect them, one at a time, and drop them off at a specific point until a preset total has been matched. At the start of the game, everything is pretty easy. The first level actually contains a trainer mode, complete with arrows and instructions written on the wall to help you become accustomed to Putty's powers, and to teach you some basic strategies for getting around the vertically scrolling screens.

As you go through the early stages, it is a simple case of bouncing around the levels, avoiding the enemy and getting the robots home. However, as you continue through the game, your strategies need to be developed as the gameplay takes on some unexpected twists, such as enemies that home in on you for example, or platforms that only move when you're not on them. Just because you can walk through the early levels without blinking doesn't automatically mean that you'll get through the later stages just as easily.

The range of enemies is quite astounding, and some are quite disgusting. From the terminator carrots who scream 'Uzi nine centimetre' before trying to blast you out of the skies, to the toy soldiers who match up and down belting out 'Achtung!' before clobbering you, there are some really bizarre sprites to encounter. There is even a guy in a bath who fires deadly bubbles of noxious gas in your direction, but not before letting you know exactly where the gas comes from by making a revolting gurgling sound in the bathwater. Almost every single character has some aspect to them that will make you laugh. God knows ho they got half the samples in the game and, come to think of it, I really don't want to know wither. These guys are sick!

UNCLE TED
There are a range of bonuses to collect, too, most of which are hidden in various parts of the scenery. It is down to you to discover how to find them. Naturally, there are all the standard options, such as bonus points, bonus energy, extra life and invincibility. Where would a game be without them, but there is one special bonus that reduced me to hysterics. Picking up this capsule releases the most foul demon ever seen in a computer game, a horror so unspeakable that the slightest sound of the poisonously magical tune he plays is enough to turn any creature into a whirling, dancing dervish, incapable to react in any way other than to jig the children of Hamlet. This monstrosity is a pub-pianist by the name of Uncle Ted – Children's performer and club cabaret star extraordinaire. Ted sits there, behind his upright piano, and bashes out a 'Roll Out The Barrel' style anthem which renders everything helpless. What a guy!

Putty After Myth, System 3 had to come up with something completely amazing graphically and sonically as to not move backwards. They couldn't have released a better product than Putty. All the way through, samples fly out of the speakers thicker and faster than anything heard before. A sausage that threatens to 'ave you now' in a scouse accent, a cat that pops up to taunt you Bugs Bunny style and a theme tune vaguely reminiscent of the Joe 90 intro, complete with Hammond Organ. This game has over a Meg of sound samples, and it shows.

Visually, Putty is something else. The animation on the main sprite is among the best I have ever seen, and I'm only too glad that there is a coverdisk so you can see how wonderfully he moves. Every little movement causes his eyes to swing about, and the angry look of concentration just before he explodes will stick in my mind as one of the most expressive faces ever seen in an Amiga game.

Putty is unlike anything I have played, it is not quite a platform title, and there is too much to it to call it a console action title. One thing I can say about it is that it is brilliant. The in-house programming team have let their imaginations run riot and the result is one of the most original games for a long, long time. Each level offers a new challenge coupled with another motley collection of hostile enemy sprites to overcome. This game HAS to be in your collection, whether you want it or not. Thanks to Commodore's new deal, this game will appear in the Christmas packaging of the A600. Lucky beggers. Everyone else, buy it now.

CU Amiga, October 1992, p.p.66-68

WHAT DIDN'T GET IN
Putty is a very versatile creature, and you'll need a lot of practice to master his moves. System 3's Adrian Cale agrees, and feels that it is unfair to throw players in at the deep end. 'If I pick up a game, and find I can't play it right off, I get frustrated. We want people to enjoy Putty to the full, which is why we've thrown in the trainer mode on the first stage, and given the game a definite curve'. The manual is also written for the first time Puttyist, using masses of illustrations to show exactly how to control our hero and what sort of strategies to adopt. How's that for customer service?

WHAT DIDN'T GET IN
The lads at System 3 are almost completely happy with this product. Almost, but not quite. The one thing they still find the time to complain about is the amount of things that they wanted to go in but just couldn't find the room for, such as some heavy breathing from an oversized Samurai who tires himself out after the smallest jump. Watch out for data disks soon...

buyers guide
release date:
genre:
team:
controls:
number of disks:
number of players:
hard disk:
memory:
 
October 1992
Adventure
in-house
Mouse, Joystick
4
1
No
1Mb

 

SYSTEM 3 £25.99
One of the best games ever. An instant classic.
GRAPHICS
SOUND
LASTABILITY
PLAYABILITY
96%
95%
88%
95%
OVERALL 95%