New Releases: What upcoming games are you looking forward to?
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Who didn't thrill to the sight of a midget robot saying "Beedee beedee beedee, hey Buck, you're my kinda guy!" on TV in the late 70s and early 80s? So naturally, a video game seemed almost inevitable. Sega's Buck Rogers: Planet Of Zoom, however, is more closely related to the original comics character created by Robert Dille than it is to the disco-era slick of TV schtick starring Gil Gerard. Players fly Buck's space fighter at low strafing altitudes over a scrolling 3D landscape, blasting away obstacles left and right. And that's really all there is to the game. Buck Rogers: Planet Of Zoom wore out its welcome in the arcade quickly once it became apparent that the pretty 3D graphics hid a repetitive game that offered little challenge once the player had some practice under his belt. Furthermore, its use of the "continue" feature — allowing players to drop another quarter into the machine and continue from where their last game ended — was bewildering, as unlike most games with that feature, it also retained the player's score. Anybody could make it to the high score list as long as they had plenty of quarters. Sega ported Buck Rogers: Planet Of Zoom to several home consoles, such as the Atari VCS, Atari 5200 and ColecoVision, but by that time, Imagic's Moonsweeper had beaten it to the punch with excellent graphics, a similar 3D perspective, and vastly more challenging gameplay. On second thought, maybe adding Twiki might have spiced things up. ~ Earl Green, All Game Guide