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Zarch Atari ST Loading screen


MobyRank MobyScore
ZX Spectrum
Acorn 32-bit
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Aliens have infested Earth, and are spreading a deadly virus throughout the planet. Needless to say, they must be stopped, and fast. The time pressure (your score upon completing a level is based on the uninfected percentage of the land) is only one difficult aspect of this shooter.

Viewed in remote 3D with a patchwork-quilt type ground effect, with trees sticking out and full gravity. Controlling your spaceship involves balancing the direction and height as well as thrusting to the right speed. A scanner tells you where the aliens are.


Zarch Atari ST Narrowly missing one of the polygon trees
Zarch DOS In-game, flying through the landscape (EGA)
Zarch ZX Spectrum Too fast on this occasion
Zarch ZX Spectrum Loading screen

Alternate Titles

  • "Virus" -- Amiga / Atari ST / DOS / ZX Spectrum title
  • "Lander" -- Acorn 32-bit demo title
  • "Bird of Prey" -- Working title

User Reviews

There are no reviews for this game.

The Press Says

ACE (Advanced Computer Entertainment) Acorn 32-bit Dec, 1987 979 out of 1000 98
ACE (Advanced Computer Entertainment) Acorn 32-bit Oct, 1988 980 out of 1000 98
Your Sinclair ZX Spectrum Sep, 1988 9 out of 10 90
Computer and Video Games (CVG) Acorn 32-bit Jan, 1988 9 out of 10 90
Happy Computer Acorn 32-bit Mar, 1988 86 out of 100 86
ST/Amiga Format Atari ST Jul, 1988 86 out of 100 86
The Games Machine (UK) Acorn 32-bit Dec, 1987 81 out of 100 81
Power Play Atari ST Jul, 1988 8 out of 10 80
ST Action Atari ST Sep, 1988 75 out of 100 75
Power Play DOS Oct, 1989 75 out of 100 75


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Acorn Archimedes version

A demo of the game, still called Lander at the time, was bundled with new Acorn Archimedes computers.

Commodore 64 version

Despite frequent rumours, no C64 version was officially planned.

ZX Spectrum version

The Spectrum version started as a bedroom project, as Firebird did not believe the game was viable on 8-bit systems. It was not until Steve Dunn had written a demo of the ship flying over the landscape that anything official was signed.


  • Computer Industry's InDin Awards
    • 1988 - 16 bit Game of the Year
  • ACE
    • October 1988 (issue #13) - Included in the Top-100 list of 1987/1988 (editorial staff selection)
Information also contributed by Indra was here

Related Web Sites

  • Virus - Memories (article about the development of the ZX Spectrum version, on The Bird Sanctuary)
Contributed to by Martin Smith (63162) and Terok Nor (18226)