Sega Master System / Mark III / Game Gear
After the nuclear war of 2000 (oo-er, not very far away is it?) the human race picked themselves up, dusted themselves down, accidentally dropped themselves again, and then tried to rebuild their shattered society. They built lots of shiny new buildings and shiny new machines and everything was going pretty well.
That was until Dalaus woke up again. And no we’re not on about the TV soap - Dalaus is a huge artificial intelligence computer which managed to survive the war. However, in the process she (for it is a female artificial intelligence computer) has blown a few diodes - this gal wants to rule the world (don't they all?) and is busy taking control of the new cities, starting with the armed and armoured guardian craft!
The human race has but one chance - and it should come as no surprise to find that it's your turn to get shot at again. Your mission is to pilot the new CA-124 transforming combat astro-plane, destroy Dalaus' guardian craft, enter her underground lair, shoot a few more guards, survive the defences and then face Elgramzon - the robot embodiment of Dalaus herself.
The CA-124 has the useful capability of altering its shape and weapons systems, by picking up special tokens. A little truck thingy scoots, which you should immediately blast, to release a question mark bubble. Collect this and you can power-up by selecting one of the flashing letters at the top of the screen, whereupon your ship gets a swift redesign and a new coat of paint.
Extra energy for the ship and armaments can also be gained, allowing you to extend the life of the current weapon, and replenish the ship's dwindling energy banks.
More 'bot' than 'trans', your ship fires a mean weapon C!
Goin' underground... underground...
Anyone expecting transformer-type fun from this cart can forget it right away. This horizontally scrolling shooter is just that - and not much else. There’s an alright soundtrack (although this never changes and gets on your wick after a few mins), a neat parallax scroll effect and an unusual power-up method. But, unfortunately, the game itself is brain-deadeningly boring!
It goes like this: blast hundreds of dull alien craft and eventually suss out how to enter the underground section (tip to save time and your sanity: use weapon D on the Hiluns). Once inside the underground section you blast hundreds of dull alien craft until you meet Elgramzon. Kill this deformed Scout Walker from the Empire Strikes Back and it's back upstairs to blast more dull alienzzzzzzzzz. And so it continues, and continues and... oh, just forget it.
Without doubt the most tedious Sega game ever. Don't touch it. 'Nuff said.