Several years ago, a simple little game called Thrust appeared on the 8-bit machines. The basic premise was that you flew a dart-shaped space
Now, after years of waiting, this classic is now available for the Amiga in the form of Zarathrusta.
Crash and burn
The plot tells of your struggle as a pilot of the rebellion, on a deadly mission into the empire's territory to steal the much needed Klystron Pods. The rebels' struggle is gaining a certain amount of success, but without the pods to power the star-cruisers their efforts will be wasted.
You must pilot your craft deep into the heart of a number of imperial bases to snatch the pods. To do this, you must carefully navigate your way through treacherous caves and pick up the pod with your tractor beam, before escaping to the carrier which is orbiting the planet.
This would be easy enough, but the empire, naturally, has various defence systems to stop you. Here are a few of the hazards you have to watch out for:
LIMPET GUNS - sit on the cave walls blasting pot shots at you.
JET THRUSTERS - fire a deadly flame out of their ports. Anything in their way will be fried.
AIR VENTS - fire streams of air at you, blowing you off course, invariably into a wall!
ELECTRO-MAGNETIC-CORES - pull your ship off course.
RAMRODS - propel themselves at intervals from the walls. Watch you do not get spiked.
LASER PULSERS - fire a beam across the caves. One touch is instant electro-death!
LIMPET DROIDS - bounce around the surface. If they manage to clamp onto you, your ship will become instantly more unwieldy.
Along the route are other items that you need to deal with:
FUEL PODS - use your tractor beam to suck them dry.
TIME LOCKS - once zapped with a tractor beam, this will act as your restart point when a ship is lost.
CAVERN DWELLERS - tractor them for an extra life.
BARRIERS - use the switch to open them up.
REACTOR - blast it continually to cause a meltdown.
If you can steal the pod and escape, then you are transported to the next planet, where the empire's forces are stepping up against the defenses!
Spin and win
It would have been easy to swamp the original's gameplay with all manner of fancy effects and trickery. There has been a lot of work done on producing some nice colourful graphics and effects, but the same feel has been retained.
The extra enemies and weapons add a certain something to the game, making it a more involving blast, but one of the main points of the original was its budget price. Now five years have passed and charging the full rate for what is, in effect, a revamped budget game seems a little over the top. Still, if you want to have a breath of the days when games were young, cheap and simple, then it does prove enjoyable for an hour of two.