Ocean's Terminator 2: Dead hard
Date: November, 1991
By: James Leach
When Arnie says 'I'll be back' he really means it! T2 has got to be biggest, most amazing-looking film ever - the sort you watch about seven times, then go and get on video. So you can imagine how much I was looking forward to seeing the Ocean game. And, as if by magic, here it is.
Right. Terminator 2 is one of those famous Ocean three-games-in-one lobbies. I think the best thing would be for me to sort of look at each level. So, er, l'll just do that then, shall I? Good.
Level One is a bit of a punch-their-heads-in game. You're all alone in the corridor with Mr T1000 who is made of a weird mercury-type substance which, when bashed, globs back into its proper shape. You're both trying to smack each others metallic brains in and, being Terminators, the violence level is remarkably huge. It's a great section with plenty of neat effects, bits of the T1000 reform as different shapes and his arms turn into spikes and so on.
Hasta la vista, baby!
At the bottom corners of the screen are two piccies of the T1000 and Arnie. As they get bashed around, their skin drops off (eurrggh) and the insides of their faces show through. Nasty, eh?
Get through Level One and you find yourself on a motorbike with John Connor (the lad you're trying to protect) on the back. It's a vertical scroller and it's as fast as a weasel with rummy troubles. You view your bike from above and behind you is the T1000 in a rather scary lorry, trying to run you down. What a cad, eh? This level is very, very fast. By my calculations, you've got about 0.13 of a second to avoid all the wrecked cars and the pools of oil that lie in your path. If you've got good reactions, you're gonna love this!
Right, if you get through that little lot okay, you're onto Level Three. Here you've got to do a bit of an op on Arnie's arm. It's one of those difficult arrange-the-squares puzzles with an evil time limit which'll have your hair falling on the floor quicker than you can say Duncan Goodhew. The display is really swanky, and the joystick movement works well too. Yep, those bods at Ocean certainly know how to string a game together!
Level Four is a bit like level one, except that T1000 is a tad tougher, Bash him 'til he gives up and runs away, And that's it basically. It all looks very nice and everything, but you've seen it all before.
Level Five now. Rearrange the blocks (yes, just like Level Three) 'til Arnie's face is in one piece. It's even harder than Level Three if the truth be told. There are lots of great colours here, so crank up the contrast on your telly for this bit. But, arrggh! That blasted time limit - it gets me every time!
Level Six sees you in a van on a vertically scrolling road. It feels a bit like, you guessed it, Level Two. It's just as fast, but it's got different graphics and the T1000 is in a helicopter, trying to ram you. But nay fret, you've got target crosshairs and you can blast that molten dude to kingdom come. Lt's a very slick level, is Level Six, so you'll have lots of fun with it! Level Seven is the last level (phew) and it's another fighty one. The T1000 has lost his powers to regenerate, so every smack you give him weakens the nasty fellow permanently. But he's still a bit hard, what with his spiky arms and all, so take a care.
And that's the lot?
How much do you blimming want? Seven levels, based on three types of gameplay, is a lot of code. Each level is different enough to get into (so you won't get bored) and the game is just so jolly quick that your heart will pound and your sweat will flow. (Not mine, matey. Ed) If you've got a good joystick, you probably won't have by the time you finish playing Terminator 2!
Any criticisms? Well it's a blasted difficult game to beat. The scrolling bits are the hardest, but the fighting sequences aren't exactly a pushover either. If you don't complete the puzzly bits in the time allowed you still recover energy for your battered and knackered Terminator, depending on how many pieces you managed to get right. Useful, if not downright blimming vital, I'd say.
Yep, T2 is an absolute corker of a stormer of a multi-level game. You really need to have seen the movie to understand what all the bits mean, but of course you can still play and win without having to sit glued to the cinema screen for a couple of hours. If the game was a wee bit easier, at least on the driving levels, it might have made Megagame status. But that, and the fact that each level does sort of repeat, means that it falls short by a degree or two. Still, if you're an Arnie fan (and let's face it - who isn't? Ed), you'll love it. 48K dudes will be dead annoyed that it isn't available on their machine. Upgrade now, guys!
But I haven't seen the film yet!
Well, if you don't want to know what the movie is like, don't read on. Right, that's got rid of them.
Okay, there are two Terminators. One was sent back to rub out John Connor (who, if he grows up, will lead a rebel band against the Terminators. The other is Arnie (hurrah!). His job is to protect John.
The two cyborgs battle it out between them with loads of serious hardware and manage to destroy most of LA along the way. Each level of T2 (the game) is taken from a part of the film, Arnie and the T1000 really do get to punch and kick each other quite a lot. In a completely brilliant bit the T1000, in a rather large lorry, chases Arnie and the little lad (who are sat tight on their Harley Davidson) along a storm drain. There's also a fab part where Arnie's driving a van with John and Sarah (John's mother) and blasting millions of machine rounds out of the back at the Mr. Unstoppable in a helicopter. At the same time! It's got some of the best chopper flying I've ever seen (and I've seen quite a lot actually).
Elsewhere in the film there are a few non-violent bits where John tries to make his Pet Terminator act like a really cool guy by teaching him full of various Californian phrases and hand-slapping techniques. This is where Amie learns to say "Hasta la vista, baby". Linda, YS's resident linguistic expert, informs me that this is Spanish for "I go to the house". Er, makes sense.
Anyway, the best bit has got to be the hand-to-hand fight at the end of the film. It's absolutely mega-stonking, and has the best computer-generated graphics in any film ever (You're quite a fan, aren't you? Ed). And the weirdest thing is that if you manage to play through the complete Ocean game (without using cheats), the chances are you'll be as knackered as both the Terminators! Cor!