Thrust - Classic Inspection

Thrust is an easy game to describe, it's like Asteroids mixed with a splash of Moon-lander. You can tell from the word go that the guts of those classics have been well and truly assimilated, whilst retaining their addictive qualities.

Visually, Thrust is less than interesting, I remember it having a half decent loading screen, but that was your lot. If you were willing to forego a little colour and didn't mind a bit of light thinking, Thrust was a real treat.

Graphically it's very simple, you guide a spaceship where Gravity can work for or against. At first, it starts out easy, but on later stages, you've got to actively and precisely use the ship's thrust in order to prevent crashing into the scenery.

I can't remember why you have to do all this, but the story mentioned something about the resistance planning a massive attack on the Intergalactic Empire, ring any bells? Anyway, your mission was to fly in, grab the Klystron pod and escape in two pieces. Before you got anywhere near these devices you'd need to disable the gun emplacements that protected each planet. The guns were mounted on the Atomic stations and were set to home in and fire as you descended. I remember one of the best strategies was to pick 'em off from a distance. Fire too much though and the reactor would go Fukushima. In Thrust, if that happened the whole planet would go into meltdown.

You also get to perform three other functions - holding down the fire button protects you from gunfire, establishes the connection between your ship and the pod and is used to pick up fuel supplies in order to help complete the mission. Once you've connected to the pod, things take a turn for the worse, and handling the ship becomes even more difficult.

I could quite happily waste a few hours playing Thrust even now. For a game with hardly any graphics, music or sound, Thrust has an addictive quality that pulls you in. Disappearing landscapes, twisted caverns, doors that slam shut and reverse gravity might not sound like much, but for me, it's up there with some of the best gaming memories the 80's had to offer.


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