Publisher: Atari (1991)
S.T.U.N. Runner is an excellent example of what the Lynx hardware is capable of. The action is fast and smooth as you glide through winding tubes while shooting blue blobs and hitting speed boosts. Periodically the tunnel opens up to reveal the outside world, and the colorful scenery is a glorious sight. Technically the game is impressive but the gameplay never quite hits its stride. Your goal in each race is to reach the finish line before time runs out, but you have very little control of your speed. Hitting obstacles slows you to a crawl and it's difficult to regain momentum. Speed panels propel you, but it's hard to see them coming and react in time. The game prompts you to hug the outer wall during turns to maintain speed, but that doesn't seem to help much. On the novice level the game said I needed to collect 11 stars to activate my shockwave, but when I did, nothing happened. On intermediate level I was told to collect 28 stars, yet after collecting far less the game prompted me to "Press B to fire shockwave". This weapon wipes out all enemies in view, but you can only use it once so it's really not that big of a deal. The audio features some forgettable music and a woman's voice that's hard to make out. S.T.U.N. Runner's slick visuals make this a showcase title for the Lynx but its tepid racing action feels like an afterthought. © Copyright 2017 The Video Game Critic.
Recommended variation: int
Our high score: 77,450
Slime World, Todd's Adventures in
Publisher: Atari (1990)
I rarely get to use the word "reprehensible" in my reviews, but I think Todd's Adventures in Slime World qualifies. This torturous side-scroller has the most uninteresting premise ever
for a video game. You play a guy in a purple suit exploring endless generic caves all dripping with annoying green slime. The pace is plodding as you walk, climb, fall, and occasionally stop to shoot plant-like creatures. Your weapon spurts some kind of white substance and you can angle your shots. There are plenty of items to pick up, but just about all of them are useless. Half the time when you lean over to pick something up the game informs you "you already have one". The so-called "slime shield" looks like a huge brown bug eating your head. The stages are a confusing mess and it's hard to tell if you're even making progress. It's not obvious when you're taking damage, and you often drop dead for no apparent reason. Heck, the game struggles just to keep your character centered on the screen! Pressing the option button should give you access to a map, but half the time it refuses to appear. Slime World's soundtrack is composed of random beeps which further fueled my unbridled disgust. Slime World was apparently designed for multiple players, but I can't imagine how six miserable bastards are better than one. Only play this if you're looking for a reason to quit playing video games altogether. © Copyright 2013 The Video Game Critic.
Our high score: 1,829,100
1 to 6 players
Publisher: Tengen (1991)
Our high score: 223,950
Super Asteroids Missile Command
Publisher: Atari (1995)
Recommended variation: asteroids/missile
Our high score: 14650/11219
Publisher: Gremlin Graphics (1992)
This is a respectable side-scroller along the lines of Ninja Gaiden
(NES, 1989). You control a futuristic warrior who leaps between platforms while shooting robots and slashing them at close range. Your switchblade is very effective, and special weapons like lasers and missiles can be purchased at storefronts. Keep in mind that just because you have a weapon doesn't mean you can use it - you'll need to find or purchase ammo first. Switchblade II is pretty easy thanks to slow-moving enemies, ample health, rapid-fire shooting, and your ability to leap higher than Blake Griffin. The title screen features some nice Asian-inspired music, but the game itself is played in relative silence, with only the sound of your pattering footsteps. The concrete platforms of the first stage are hopelessly generic, but later stages offer more variety as you trek through underground passages (with cheap traps) and scale a mountain with doorways leading to not-so-secret rooms. There are even a few bosses to spice things up. I love how our hero replenishes his energy by chowing down on plump hot dogs and juicy hamburgers. I've seen the future, and it looks delicious
. Switchblade II isn't a particularly memorable romp, but it packs enough entertainment value to hold your attention. © Copyright 2013 The Video Game Critic.
Our high score: CJS 23,640
Publisher: Atari (1992)
If you're looking for a quality platformer for the Lynx, this is the game for you! Toki is an adorable monkey with the ability to spit pellets in a rapid-fire fashion. Any monkey with that kind of talent will always
be in high demand in the video game industry. Toki can also duck, jump, and climb vines. The only catch is that he moves a little slowly. Toki's rapid-spitting ability is effective, especially since you can aim in any direction (including diagonally). You'll need every bit of firepower you can muster because enemies absorb several hits before they go down. You'll face a random assortment of creatures including trolls, birds, spiders, and ghosts. When defeated most drop coins that are worth big points. The graphics are first-rate. You'll see a lot of bright tropical scenery and dense jungle with thick vegetation growing over stone ruins. Unfortunately the small projectiles fired by enemies tend to blend into the rich backgrounds, so you need to keep an eye out. The difficulty is fair (read: easy) and several continues are available. The high score is displayed at the top of the screen so you'll always have something to shoot for. I even like the zany soundtrack! Toki for the Lynx is an excellent game that's a heck of a lot more fun than its Genesis counterpart. Go monkey! It's your birthday! Go monkey... © Copyright 2012 The Video Game Critic.
Our high score: 51,000
Publisher: Atari (1991)
I immediately recognized Turbo Sub as a distant cousin of Subroc
(Colecovision, 1983), another intriguing first-person shooter set at sea. The action begins as you rapidly glide across a shimmering water surface. Targeting flying saucers in the sky is easy thanks to the handy reticule. To avoid incoming missiles you just rotate until they are out of view, a move that isn't nearly effective in real life. You can dive below the surface but you'll see nothing but bubbles and coral. That's because you're not supposed to dive until the game tells you to!
Why are you so damn impatient?! The underwater action is a little murky as you blast evil crabs, mines, and fish monsters. Your supply of smart bombs comes in really handy down there. Each bomb unleashes destruction for several seconds, allowing you to plow through several waves of denizens. Each stage concludes when you enter an undersea cave. There you can purchase items like rapid-fire, multi-shot, fuel, and extra lives. The second stage features purple water, so it looks like you're motoring through an ocean of Kool Aid with stone heads floating in the sky. Very strange. Turbo Sub is not easy, but with ten lives the games run a little longer than it needs to, and your thumb will pay the price. That said, Turbo Sub is a refreshing title to play during the hot summer months. © Copyright 2017 The Video Game Critic.
Our high score: 26,100
Publisher: Imagitek (1991)
Our high score: 13220
Save mechanism: password
Publisher: Atari (1991)
Publisher: Atari (1991)
It would be easy to write off Xybots as an outdated corridor shooter, but I think it's kind of cool. You view the action from behind a space soldier as he treks through the colorful but non-descript hallways of various space stations. The illusion of movement is relatively smooth as you walk forward, but turning is disorienting as the screen abruptly shifts 90 degrees. It's fun to strafe and fire rapidly at enemy robots, and the ensuing explosions are satisfying. These metallic monstrosities look properly menacing, and each type exhibits unique attack patterns and vulnerabilities. A separate map screen is available, but it's rarely needed because the stages are relatively small. Xybot's graphics are better than average, with large, colorful sprites and imaginative animations. You can tell the programmers took pride in their work. Likewise, the jaunty musical score exhibits a surprising range of styles. One notable flaw is the fact that your energy is not
displayed on the main screen, and all too often you'll keel over without even realizing it was running low. Xybots won't bowl you over with its generic gameplay, but Lynx fans looking for some simple shooting action will find plenty to like. © Copyright 2006 The Video Game Critic.