Cinemaware are a unique bunch of American programmers. Since 1987 they have been writing Amiga games to a brief of capturing the ‘feel’ of a film on a computer. The theme of the game is a tribute to the awful-but-great ‘big bug’ B-movies like Them! Tarantula and Black Scorpion. You play the part of an American geologist who is working in the town of Lizard Breath, in the middle of an American desert, for the last month or so since a meteorite fell on the outskirts of the town. Being an intelligent chap you realise the meteorite has caused a colony of ants to mutate to gigantic proportions and you also realise that in about 15 days time they will probably wander into town and have a party, thus ending Lizard Breath as we know it. Unless you can persuade the mayor to call out the National Guard who can then use tanks and jets to go blast the queen ant and destroy her nest. Soon after starting, you will realise the game is a cross between a graphic adventure and an arcade adventure: you spend most of the time in adventure mode, interacting with the characters in the game and trying to find clues that will pinpoint the whereabouts of the nest, and gather evidence to show to the mayor. Interacting with characters involves selecting responses from a list when certain situations arise, for example: there is a knock on the door, which do you choose – shout “Who’s there?”, ignore it, open the door or leave by the back door? Which you choose affects the way the whole game goes from there. The arcade games include things like knife fights, flying an aeroplane and putting out fires, and though none of them are tough they add variety to the game. It is the outcome of these arcade games that determines whether you are injured and thus have to spend valuable time in hospital recuperating, or get closer to your goal. Will the gi-ants destroy Lizard Breath? Well, you are in the director’s chair. Every location is well drawn and all the arcade games are well animated and excellent looking. The sound is also good, though the tunes do tend to get a little repetitive. It really is almost like being at the movies on a Saturday night.

More news: Generation Amiga magazine