Just in the few short months during which it has been my humble privilege to serve the mighty Gamer, barely a couple days have gone by without some desperate sould dragging him or herself over to the damp and rancid corner in which my Victorian schooldesk nestles lopsidedly, and asking - imploring - open mouthed and eyes agog, as to whether Humans had yet arrived.
I'm not a sick man by any stretch of the imagination (our survey disagrees - Ed) but I have to admit to feeling a dark satisfaction as the look of anguish and emptiness that sank deep into their faces as I pressed my lips together and glumly shook my head.
Frankly, I couldn't understand why these people were getting their undergarments in such a twist - we've got literally cupboards full of games to while away those dull lunchtimes. And Friday afternoons. And Monday mornings.
Then I saw a demo version and the scales were lifted from my eyes: I became one of those sad people, carrying out my duties with a heavy heart and tortured soul - knowing that my life would be incomplete until the day of arrival, er... arrived.
That day is now here, so with never ends a-tingling and eyes lifted gratefully to the heavens, let us without further ado boot up our collective Amiga and see if it's all been worth the wait.
Humans is an 80 level puzzly platform affair along the lines - dare I say it - Lemmings. You control a small tribe of some of the very first human inhabitants on our planet, and the idea is very simple - you have to evolve.
Easy enough to do when you have a good few million years to spare - simply exist and produce a few babies and the job's a good 'un, but it's a bit more tricky than that when you work all day and have to do the evolving at night on a computer. Beginning with just a few paltry pot-bellied moronic cavemen, you must help them to complete certain tasks before moving on to the next level.
Many of the tasks simply involve moving your tribe to a different section of the screen. Sound easy? Don't you believe it - remember this is 20 trillion or so BC and there isn't exactly a lot of help available in the form of implements and the like.
You see, it's all very well if one happens to be, say, that Super Mario chap; any problems he comes across can usually be solved by finding a magic laser gun or some such nonsense, but the time in which Humans is set is just a little bit before laser guns and hoverbikes are invented.
Puzzles are solved by using whatever you happen to 'discover'. For example, the first discovery you are likely to make will be a spear. This is very handy indeed for stabbing things, but could it have more uses do you think? Well you'll have to find out - that's the idea, see!
Once you are in possession of any item, it will stay with you throughout the whole game: you collection of discoveries will grow as you progress - each one is needed to solve the levels you reach after finding it. Geddit?
You will begin the game with only four humans in your tribe. The sprites themselves are very small but brilliantly detailed with pot bellies, flyaway hairstyles, a big nose and a great expression of perpetual surprise.
Obviously only one human at once can be controlled, requiring much toggling of the cursor keys in order to shift all the little chaps to their destination. This can be a bit of a pain, but is offset by the multidirectional scrolling as different humans are located on screen.
More tribe members can be added by rescuing fellow cave dwellers who have become trapped in many of the levels; in some cases the actual rescue completes the mission on that particular level, in others you may still have a destination to reach. Once you have begun to make some headway and the size of your tribe increases, it isn't necessary to use all the humans to complete a task. Good job too, since there are any number of ways of dying, and you'll find you need plenty of reserves to keep going.
There is always the danger that your tribe will become extinct. This happens when you don't have enough humans to complete a certain level, and therefore cannot progress any further.
Hurrah and huzzah for the trusty old password system is what I say - you will be kindly provided with a password after every level which is invaluable if you are to refrain for any length of time from hurtling your hardware through the window.
One of the features that I was most impressed with is the many different ways in which your tribe can utilise their discoveries. By clicking on the icons at the bottom of the playscreen you will find that, among other things, they can throw, jump, climb, ride (!), push, carry and kill.
The latter of these attributes is very important, as you will find yourself battling against and dodging all manner of strange and hostile creatures. Other tribes exit, and from time to time one of their members may decided that his family deserve something a little more than dinosaur steak for tea - something a little more tender, if you're getting my drift.
Speaking of dinosaurs, keep your eyes open for any you might encounter - it's worth sacrificing one of your tribe members just to hear the hilarious gobbing sounds it makes as he is devoured piece by piece.
Looks like it's time to sum things up then; lets talk about the graphics first - they're brilliant. One thing I haven't mentioned so far is that the game is spread not only over 80 screens but also in six different scenarios - cave, desert, summer, winter, forest and swamp, in which the details are brilliant.
As if all this wasn't enough, whenever your tribe completes a particularly important task you are rewarded with a funny little animated sequence. The only drawback to this is that it involves a lot of disk
You are given the choice of music or FX. The music comes in the form of numerous jaunty/
Buy it soon, and if you're not happy send me a cyanide Mars Bar through the post.