CAPTAIN FIZZ MEETS THE BLASTERTRONS by Richard Karsmakers
He saw nothing, heard nothing, smelled nothing and felt nothing.
Everything around him seemed to be a black vacuum; pretty scary,
Last thing he remembered was having gone to hospital for a
routine tonsillectomy. All right, at an age of thirty-five he WAS
a bit late with that, but it was still going to be a routine job,
so the surgeon had assured him before putting him to sleep.
Now he thought of it...he DID feel something. He had a skull-
crushing headache. Where had that come from? He tried hard, but
didn't seem to remember.
He felt something now, too. He felt that he was lying in a
plastic bag or something just like it. Slowly but surely, he was
convinced of the fact that he heard himself breathing, too.
Only, he still saw nothing. Everything still seemed black.
He touched his face, and found out why he could see so little:
He was blindfolded. He removed the piece of cloth from his eyes.
He also discovered that he wore a fancy space-suit of some kind
and a helmet.
All he could see now was yellow; a kind of sandy yellow, as if
there was a mist that contained clouds of sand.
He heard something else in the mist, too. It sounded as if that
person was coming to from a deep sleep; he yawned and grunted.
"Hello?" the first person said.
The someone he had heard just now stopped yawning and grunting
and kept silent for a while.
"Is someone there?" it then replied.
"Yeah sure. Here. But I can't see you." the first person
replied. It occurred to him that the other's voice sounded just
like himself when played back from a tape recorder.
He now vaguely saw the other and started to wave frantically.
The other saw him now, too.
The second person came nearer, and they both couldn't believe
their eyes when they truly looked at each other: They looked like
exact replicas of one another!
"Who are you?" the first one asked.
"Fizz," the second one answered, "and who are you?"
"Er....well...I'm Fizz, too." He pinched himself. His fears
turned out to be true; he wasn't dreaming.
They both stood aghast.
"You can't be Fizz. I'm Fizz!" the first one said.
"You must be mistaken," the other replied, "for I am Fizz. All I
know is that I had to go to hospital for a routine tonsillectomy
and that I ended up here."
The first one was silent. Was this some kind of practical joke?
No, it couldn't be. The other one had also gone to hospital to
have his tonsils removed! And this whole thing couldn't possibly
be coincidence, either.
"If you are Fizz, too," he said, "their is only one explanation,
although I find it rather illogical. We must be the SAME person."
The other one looked at him as if he saw Vladimir Horowitz play
lead guitar for Napalm Death.
"Some way or another I, I mean WE, must have been cloned or
something," the first one tried to explain, "although I wouldn't
know when, where, or specially by whom."
They both thought deeply. The prospect of having a 100%
identical copy of yourself walking around was pretty odd. Someone
with the same thoughts, the same character, the same fantasies,
the same interests; probably even with the same reactions and
weird tendencies. In other words: Someone that could drive you
ultimately nuts within a matter of seconds.
They actually both thought they were the real thing and that the
other one was a cloned copy.
"Where are we, anyway?" the second one asked.
"Don't ask me. How would I know?" the first one answered.
"I don't know."
They both kept silent. It was quite useless to talk anyway,
since questions would not be answered by the other; he would
probably be about to ask the same question himself. They both had
exactly the same knowledge and could thus not answer the other's
They both seemed to have thought about this dilemma themselves,
for they both simultaneously sighed: "Yeah...such is life when
living with a clone."
They looked at each other and couldn't help to chuckle.
"What now?" the first one asked.
"Don't ask me. How would I know?" the second one answered.
"I don't know."
They both kept silent again. Yes, it was surely better not to
Finally: A compulsive two-player game so that I could lure good
old Stefan into playing anything else than "Bubble Bobble" with
It's true what all the press releases said about this game:
You'll HAVE to play with to people, and these people need to WORK
TOGETHER closely to complete each and every level! Allow me to
explain what the game's all about:
You have to complete each of the twenty levels. Each level is a
complex maze was laser walls (that are, obviously, quite lethal)
and doors with a specific color. There are access cards littered
around the maze - they can each open the door that has the same
color. It is of vital importance to make sure that one player
doesn't get all the keys or the other one will not be able to
access certain rooms and unlock his co-conspirator from some
fiendish plot going on there.
When you've destroyed everything that's on the level (I think
the "L" quadrangles are the most important), an elevator to the
next level is opened. That level will start when both mercenaries
have been ported over to it.
"Captain Fizz" is no doubt about the most co-operative game
around. Fight on your own and your comrade will die - and then
you're sure to die soon as well!
Except for the obvious Blastertrons, further levels will also
reveal further enemies (amongst which rocket-throwing tanks that
are quite difficult to obliterate).
Gameplay is awfully messy at times, because the game uses screen
switches instead of scrolling which would have been much better.
Especially when both players walk to a different screen and both
screens are newly built up, one tends to loose track of where one
is. This is pain in the neck, since it almost always means losing
a lot of energy (which is one step nearer to termination). Quite
often, you also shoot one another (which is, as you might have
guessed, another way to fast termination).
"Captain Fizz" is a bit chaotic and that's a shame; without the
chaos and some proper scrolling (yeah, iI KNOW it is difficult)
it would have been even more attractive.
Er...now I think of it...I think it's better to have this game
in its current setup (with no scrolling). For there are other
things in life rather than "Captain Fizz". Stefan and myself have
played this game for one whole long (very frustrating at times)
afternoon and...I guess we got hooked. If the game would have
been better, we might easily have become total addicts. The
number of puzzles, the co-operating...it all makes this game very
addictive indeed. Even more addictive than "Bubble Bobble" and
Your brain will regularly be found doing overwork playing this
game, while you also have to shoot up dozens of creepies and
Don't buy "Captain Fizz". It will ruin your life, your
universe...your everything (deep interhuman relationships
included). If you're happily married: Don't buy it! If you study:
Don't even THINK of it. If you have other plans with your life
rather than just craving for 'shots of Fizz': Don't touch it with
a ten-foot battle lance!
The game is devastating. Obliterative to everything but itself.
They should BAN this game!
Name: Captain Fizz meets the Blastertrons
Graphics: 7.5 (intro pic: 9.5)
Value for money: 8.5
Overall rating: 8.5
Remark: With scrolling, it would have been
even better and more addictive...
Hardware: Color monitor plus one additional
human (and joystick)
Special message to Jonathan Ellis and Angela Macaulay of
Psygnosis: I HATE YOU! You shouldn't have done this! I now spend
most of my time tied to a hospital bed a straitjacket! Whenever I
hear 'captain', 'fizz' or 'blastertrons' I start acting really
funny, shivering all over, shaking my knees, drool from various
parts of my oral opening (in other words, acting like I'm in
If some of you, readers of the world, might feel compulsed to
write for info about this game OR EVEN BUY IT (?!) then contact:
Port of Liverpool Building
Liverpool L3 1BY
Tel. 051 236 8818
The text of the articles is identical to the originals like they appeared in old ST NEWS issues. Please take into consideration that the author(s) was (were) a lot younger and less responsible back then. So bad jokes, bad English, youthful arrogance, insults, bravura, over-crediting and tastelessness should be taken with at least a grain of salt. Any contact and/or payment information, as well as deadlines/release dates of any kind should be regarded as outdated. Due to the fact that these pages are not actually contained in an Atari executable here, references to scroll texts, featured demo screens and hidden articles may also be irrelevant.