Red Heat logo

Ocean, C64 £9.99 cassette, £12.99 disk; Amiga £24.99

Big Arnie - he's as hard as I-don't-know-what. In the latest computer representation of one of the big Austrian's films, you play the role of one Captain Ivan Danko, a Ruskie on an exchange visit in the USA. What is he doing here though? It seems that a certain Viktor Rostabilli is bringing drugs into the country, via the Soviet Union. Gorby is a bit perturbed at this so Danko - that's Arnie (and you) - is on the tail of the nasty pasty.

You begin in Moscow. Relaxing in a pleasant sauna you're attacked by a gang of hoodlums. Derobed, hence gun-less, it's your fist against a lot of unfriendly junkies. Then it's a swift hop over to Chicago, where Rostavilli was last spotted, for more of the same, only this time you're armed with a revolver - trouble is, so are your assailants!

Scattered around the different screens are power pellets and extra ammunition, which can be picked up by stooping. Crouching down also assists in getting out of the way of flying ammo, discharged at waist level by the armed drug-smugglers.

The action is displayed in a 'movie screen' style, with only the top-half of the action (and Arnie) shown, the rest of the screen being taken up by the status panel.

On completing a level, you are offered the chance of boosting your flagging energy via a test of strength. Your hand is shown, clenching a rock, and by waggling the joystick very quickly you must crush the stone. Not the sort of practice you'd expect from yer normal bobby on the beat, but then again, Arnie isn't, is he?

Paul Rand Graphics are fine on both machines with good use of colour throughout, although backgrounds are unnecessarily slow-moving (considering that only half the screen is being utilised). While spot effects are on the weak side, they can be turned off in favour of a rousing tune. I did find the bonus section irritating, not to mention unrealistic (how many people do you know go around crushing rocks with their bare hands?) but luckily it doesn't affect the playability of the main game. Red Heat isn't a game I'd immediately rush out and buy, but if you've got the cash to spare you could do a lot worse.
Robin Hogg Yet another film I haven't seen but the game is quite different to what I expected. The plot comes second to the action (presumably like the film) with the differing locations serving only to provide graphic variety. Schwarzenegger strides slowly but purposefully through each level with some good animation on his and the enemies' part. It's a pity Special FX didn't widen the screen, the massive characters could have looked very good indeed. The sub-games provide much needed variety in gameplay and the shoot-'em-up elements is nicely violent in its execution. On the other hand repetition does creep into what is an above average but slow moving beat-'em-up.