Arcadia (video game)
Spectrum cassette inlay
|Developer(s)||David H. Lawson - ZX Spectrum|
|Platform(s)||VIC-20, ZX Spectrum, Commodore 64, Dragon 32|
Arcadia combines elements of Gorf and Galaxian. The player controls a space ship as the aliens scroll and moved freely down the screen. The game consists of 12 different levels of descending aliens. After level 12 the game loops back to level 1 with no extra difficulty. An extra life is rewarded after every four levels. Advancing to the next level involves staying alive until the timer in the top left corner ticks from 99 to 0. Once zero is reached the surviving aliens descend rapidly down the screen.
Points awarded per alien destroyed are in line with the current level: Shoot down an alien on level 1 and you are awarded 1 point, roll around the levels and the same alien killed on level 13 is now worth 13 points.
ZX Computing said it was "highly addictive and well presented", Computer & Video Games said "it lives up to the advertisement blurb and gives you a good addictive game of Space Attack" - rating it 8 out of 10. Popular Computing Weekly were particularly impressed with the graphics, stating that they "have no equal in the Spectrum field," and "lift this game into a class of its own", rating it 86%.
Bugs and Issues
The ZX version was written to be compatible with the Fuller Sound Box - which included a joystick port. If the box was not connected the nonexistent port was read incorrectly making the space ship occasionally move and fire of its own free will. This was potentially hazardous on some screens - such as level 4 "The Pins" - where it was tactically sound to leave a single alien falling rather than shoot it and have an entire squadron descend on the player again. Early VIC-20 versions contained a bug that resulted in no further aliens appearing after the eighth level; this was later fixed by the publisher. The Commodore 64 was noticeable for the very long loading times from tape: the loading screen of the game contained the warning "Please wait 18 minutes for loading". 
- Arcadia at SpectrumComputing.co.uk