Sega Master System / Mark III / Game Gear
Lemmings storied on 16-bit computers, and was subsequently converted to l6-bit consoles, before arriving on the Master System.
Guide the Lemmings home. Helping them overcome the various hazards that thwart them.
There is a race of well-known creatures, distinguished by their complete lack of intelligence and ingenuity, who can only follow the person in front, whatever the consequences are for themselves. But enough of our trailing magazine rivals, let's talk about Lemmings!
The Lemmings have invaded just about every games system, the Master System being the latest. Sega have lovingly recreated all the 100 levels of their original wacky world with all its attendant dangers. Cliffs, acid baths, fire, and walls stand before the green ones and their goal. As they trek onward the player has the onerous task of guiding and protecting them, by employing their skills wisely. But where are the Lemmings ultimately heading? Who knows? Who cares?
Every Lemming plays its part in society. When they fall into each level they tend to do nothing but walk back and forth. But, select a job, aim the crosshair and your chosen Lemming is transformed into any of the following eight characters:
Each level of Lemmings has a solution based on the Lemmings' skills. Some are obvious, some are fiendishly complex. Most of the time the Lemmings are safe but unable to reach their goal. However, as often occurs, some hazard presents itself that threatens to massacre every last Lemming unless you take immediate action. For example, the whirling death machine of level nine, into which every Lemming happily strolls unless you place a blocker. Level 16 harbours the treacherous fire of hell, with a long climb needed to reach heaven. Other perils include bottomless pits, and lakes of doom.
I'm going slightly mad. They're coming to take me away ha ha etc... And if you're not after playing this infuriating cart for a few hours you're either a liar or a smartass in which case, you're probably loathed by everyone anyway and not worth worrying about. Having said that, this is a classic conversion. Hair-tearingly frustrating but so much fun you'll be hooked as surely as a trout in a puddle being fished by a dozen anglers. Graphically superb without a hint of flicker or slow-down no matter how many critters are on-screen. It sounds great with rousing tunes and digitised speech to cheer you up as you fling yourself from the nearest window through sheer frustration. There's plenty to keep you going with different levels according to the difficulty setting. As with all formats of the game, my fave bit is when you nuke the moronic mammals when things get too tough. This is an admirable conversion and a nigh on necessary buy. Don't miss it.
I am mightily impressed by Master System Lemmings. What was originally seen as a revolutionary game, only for the advanced power of 16-Bit machines, has exploded onto this humble 8-bit system; Lock, stock and bloody barrel! The graphics, sound and gameplay are as near to the original as dammit, leaving you gasping at the achievement. Someone has found a way to get tons of sprites onto the Master System at one time, and all of them fully-animated. Despite the brilliant graphics and funky tunes, it's the gameplay I'm most satisfied with. The amazing playability of Lemmings is intact here. In fact, the faster cursor and scrolling improve on even the Super NES! The only omission, understandably, is the two-player mode. This was great fun, but Master System Lemmings happily stands as a classic without it. What MS owners should concentrate on is having 100 levels of innovative, frantic action within their grasp.