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First started in late 2007, Kasey's Mobile Game Review (then just a regular feature of Kasey's Korner) started as a simul-post between here and IGN. Later I realized there's no reason to post it twice, when I can use the traffic on my own site. so, here we are, in 2010, and the mobile game industry has grown a bit. What do you think?

KMGR of "Spy Hunter"

Screenshot of the ZX Spectrum portImage via Wikipedia

KMGR of Spy Hunter

Spy Hunter was an arcade classic as it tapped into the James Bond mentality of gadget cars with lots of weapons shooting bad guys. However, it came out decades ago. The new version is not bad, except for the wrong orientation, and you get an alternate version as well. Not too bad for an overall package...

Spy Hunter is a vertical shooter. You control a super-car with machine gun, and you can get sub-weapons if you survive long enough to get to a weapons truck. The subweapons are more powerful, but your enemies are many... Slicers, rammers, gunships, gunners... and innocent civilian cars on the road, so don't be TOO gun happy.

This version offers an alternate "enhanced mode", which has better graphics, 3-stage damage meter (your car can take 3 hits before getting destroyed) and some super-weapons to be unlocked.

The problem with this version is the perspective. My LG enV has a horizontal (landscape) screen, but Spy Hunter is a VERTICAL (portrait) screen game in the arcades. If you keep the car the same scale, the the speed will be wrong, and/or you don't get enough distance to "see ahead" to give you time to react.

On the other hand, everything else is authentic, and the Peter Gunn theme is here. The classic version has that 8-bit graphics feel, while the enhanced version looks suitably modern and clean and crisp. Controls are good enough. Sound effects cut out sometimes as sounds can't "mix".

Controls are okay, but doesn't quite offers the PRECISE controls needed to dodge other cars on narrow roads, or to bounce another car off the road without crashing out yourself.

All in all, this package is not a bad port, except for the weird scale issue. 7 out of 10.

Overall score: 7 out of 10
Pros: mostly authentic port, plus an "enhanced" version to play with as well
Cons: portrait game adapted to landscape screen means wrong scale for the vehicles
Verdict: not a bad port, but somehow misses the flavor of the original

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