- Space Walk (1978 on Arcade)
In this space game the player steers an astronaut to collect the stray satellite that is roaming in space. To do this he has to avoid or shoot the asteroids and other spacemen. Once it has been collected, the player has to keep his finger on the trigger to take the item to the spaceship. The level is completed when the satellite is inside the ship and the game then moves on to the next level, where the asteroids and other spacemen become a little faster.
Credits (Commodore 64 version)
Average score: 80% (based on 1 ratings)
Average score: 3.2 out of 5 (based on 10 ratings with 1 reviews)
Codemasters was established in October 1986 by David Darling and his brother Richard, and the company made some cracking games during the eight- and sixteen-bit eras. I remember playing Mr. Angry (a.k.a Stringer), the only game I had of theirs on the Commodore 64 where you control an Inspector Gadget-lookalike gathering four items so he can photograph a model. Before Codemasters, the duo created a few budget titles for Mastertronic; one of these was Space Walk, a game similar in style to their other titles, Bionic Granny and BMX Racers.
You control an astronaut whose spacecraft has crash-landed on an unknown planet and the object is to fill ‘er up. The fuel comes in the form of satellites that float down toward the surface. The satellite is a fair distance from your ship, and retrieving it means hovering over the surface of the planet, while avoiding asteroids, rouge astronauts, space landers, rockets, lunar pods, and robo-destructors. Your jet pack is equipped with a laser, which can be used to fire at anything that gets in your way. Coming into contact with any of these dangers will cost you one of your three lives.
Carrying a satellite back to your craft requires you hold down the fire button to prevent it from dropping down any further. The game supports rapid fire, so you can still fire at the dangers. The weight of the satellite prevents your jet pack from going up. The satellite is also fragile, so letting it drop down to the surface means instant game over, no matter how many lives you have remaining. There are sixteen levels, and if you manage to complete them all, the game returns you to the first level. Your score remains intact until you exhaust all of your lives.
There are two versions of the game. In the tape version, your craft has landed on the surface of a moon, and the backdrop consists of a few stars and planets. I found it rather buggy; it was difficult to lure the satellite to my craft, and even if I could, the satellite would go right through it and the game ended anyway. The obstacles you are supposed to destroy with your laser also turned out to be invincible. The disk version is so much better, with added background music, a beautifully-drawn landscape, and a lot more objects in the backdrop.
The disk version also has colorful, but vague, instructions at the start, and I think they are included in case you lose the cover the game came in. The player is given the option of using a joystick or keyboard. (Personally, I found the joystick easier to use.) Graphic-wise, the asteroids are in different colors, making them stand out against the backdrop. The music is on par with BMX Racers, containing only one instrument that does not get boring.
The game gets insanely difficult the further you progress, making it impossible to complete the final levels due to the speed being ramped up, as well as the inconsistent movements of each sprite. In the first few levels, for instance, the asteroids move from left to right across the screen, but then later drop from the top of the screen and then move in a diagonal direction even later. But what makes me angry is that the dangers are also found right near your craft, so sometimes you don’t have a chance to hover over its hatch so you can drop the satellite.
From level three onwards, the music turns into an annoying, grating sound.
The Bottom Line
Space Walk was designed by two brothers who would eventually form Codemasters. In the game, you attempt to retrieve a satellite before it reaches the surface and carry it back to your craft without touching any dangers that block your way. If you think this is easy, just wait until you are able to get past level ten. Graphics and sound are good, but the only thing letting it down are the inconsistent sprite movements and the horrible music after level four. It is nice for a few goes, but that is it.
Commodore 64 · by Katakis | カタキス (43051) · 2023
- MobyGames ID: 35732
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Contributors to this Entry
Game added by airshark.
ZX Spectrum, Commodore 64 added by Sciere.
Game added August 24th, 2008. Last modified February 22nd, 2023.