V - The Team Trial
||Machine Type: Spectrum 16K
|Submitted on: 13th of November, 2020
||Download or play online
Our final review is another game from Kerl, which was actually submitted as his first entry. I usually do these reviews in chronological order, but in this case, Kerl specifically requested that I delay releasing this game until after Christmas (no worries on that front). V – The Team Trial is an action game based loosely on the television series V.
In The Team Trial, you control Diana, Lydia and Pamela (represented by numbers 1, 2 and 3, but don’t ask me who’s who). You must guide all of them to safety at the bottom of the screen by collecting red hares, which prevent the asteroids from growing in size. As with all good tie-in games, the association seems only to extend to the title and the instruction inlay – nothing within the game itself seems to imply any connection with the source material.
As the tape loads in, we get a loading screen – an uncommon treat for a CGC entry. It’s still fairly naff, but hey, it’s something. Unlike Mental Rally, this game is very quick to start, with a neat little beeper ditty that can be skipped over by pressing a key.
Controls work satisfactorily and with little delay, which is unsurprising, given that this game has actually been compiled, allowing it to sidestep the infamously slow speed of Sinclair BASIC. That being said, you still have to hold the key down firmly when changing characters, since there’s no visual indication as to whether the key press was recognised. This is the only bottleneck with regards to input, however.
Sound is used infrequently, but it’s at least listenable, so there’s a plus. Apart from the loading screen, the entire game is presented in patent pending ASCII-o-vision™, along with the jerky vertical scrolling common to type-in games.
Up until the deadline, Kerl made several changes to the game, providing different builds, trainers, and packages. I’ve played them all, and I’m afraid to say, I can’t tell what the difference is between them. All I can determine is that the “hard” version of the trainer program, V Ladies, throws up wider asteroids to avoid; everything else looks and feels much the same.
All in all, V – The Team Trial is a pretty rubbish game to go out on, which is fitting for the nature of this competition, I suppose.