SWIV works best with a partner. Player one controls a helicopter, while number two runs around the screen in a tank. Each vehicle comes with its own set of advantages and disadvantages. The helicopter doesn’t have to worry about crashing into ground targets, but it can only fire in one direction. The tank, however, is the complete opposite. A rotatable turret allows you a shoot in a 360 degrees arc, but has plenty of buildings and gun emplacements to avoid. All sprites and background graphics are loaded in while you play. This means there’s no loading between levels, so you can go from start to finish without stopping. Clever sprite routines are used giving dozens of enemy craft on screen without the game slowing down. It’s these tricks that give SWIV a genuine arcade feel. SWIV difficulty level is set according to how well the player is doing. If you’ve gone straight through to the second level without losing a life the alien attack waves intensify, as do their rate of fire. Should you find yourself struggling on level one the aliens will be firing infrequently and there’ll be a lot less of them. This is one of the elite band of Amiga shoot ’em ups which is truly arcade quality. The graphics are outstanding, it plays very well and the presentation is top notch.
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