Sega Master System / Mark III / Game Gear
BTTFII • IMAGE WORKS • £34.99 • OUT NOW
While on a trip to the future in Doc Brown’s DeLorean time machine, Marty McFly purchased a sports almanac to win vast fortunes on future races when he went back in time. However, before they had time to return, Biff’s grandfather stole the book in the hope of making his grandson some money and therefore himself rich.
With the possibility of space and time collapsing in a cataclysmic time line failure - “Don’t mess with the future, Marty!” - Marty and the Doc must recover the book and restore everything to normal.
The action takes the pair all over time. They first get involved in a car chase through Hill Valley’s streets. After that they have a run-in with Biff, then rescue Jennifer from the cop shop and finally return to 1985.
Back to the Future II is supported by a massively detailed and colourful front end. The logos are crisp, well defined and identical to those in the films. It also contains a short graphical sequence showing the DeLorean taking off and rocketing into the future, and then Doc and Marty dis- discussing the mission next to the car. For the MS, these graphics are incredible and make full use of its capabilities, but this promising start is completely ruined by the actual game.
The first level contains simple, blocky graphics that shame the opening screens. The obstacles lack action and look tame and bland. I hated the way that every character seemed to contain only one or two frames of animation causing them to appear jerky and unrealistic.
Collision detection remains consistently abysmal on all levels and many times I lost energy for no reason. As everyone knows, if the game doesn’t play fair then you soon get disheartened and chuck it back on the shelf.
8-bit flicker is also evident on most levels, especially the spectacular clash on the first car and many characters throughout the game. The game tune is an extremely quaky version of the theme tune with bippy, boppy inserts that serve only to degrade the original score.
Apart from the delightful opening graphics, Back to the Future II holds nothing to addict or inspire any gamesplayer, even if they are avid devotees of the films.
Although Back to the Future II boasts some fine graphics and animation, the gameplay has been left somewhere in the original. Best wait for Back to the Future III.