Magnetron by Graftgold/Firebird is another one of those games that I never seemed to get my hands on back in the day. Being a big fan of Steve Turner & Andrew Braybrook, I’m surprised I never tried to get hold of this game. It was supposed to be a kind of ‘3D Paradroid’, which sounds brilliant, but it really never hit the mark…
Graphically it’s very good with typical isometric bas-relief style backgrounds and sprites, but the control method is clumsy and frustrating, so navigating the slim corridors and ramps with your droid can be a nightmare sometimes.
The aim is to locate the reactors on each level and disable them by altering the current to overload them. There are only a few levels to beat, but it’s very difficult, mainly due to the control method. It’s a game that should have been a classic, but ends up being for all its good looks and technical excellence a mediocre game.
And so the game is complete. The End.
HOW WAS IT COMPLETED?: I used a trainer to stop my energy drain and then plodded my way through the confusing maze of levels.
SO WHAT HAPPENS?: The ending is a short message which reads ‘WELL DONE KLP2. ORBITING STATION OF MAGENTRON HAS BEEN DEACTIVATED. BONUS 2000 POINTS‘. The title screen music plays in the background and on pressing the fire button you get another message which reads ‘PREPARE TO BEAM TO THE ORBITING STATION OF CALLISTRON‘. What – more levels? Hang on a minute… I’m not falling for this again. I’m sorry Mr. Turner but I’m wise to your cunning endings now. This is how Ranarama ends. You replay the game, but the level name changes to something new. You nearly had me fooled again there you swine!
Neil: It’s another ending with some simple text. It’s not one you’d want to see again. In fact I never want to see it again… ever. 2/10.
Vinny: I played this game a few months ago to see if I wanted to crazy hack it, and it’s one of those games that takes a bit of getting used to – a quick 5 minutes play isn’t really going to give you the full experience. I wasn’t blown over, but I could see that it needed a lot more time – unfortunately I didn’t have the patience for it. I never bothered crazy hacking it either!
As for the ending… a poor show from Steve Turner. I’m going to give it 2/10, but hoping that the tune that plays with the ending is actually a dedicated ending tune and not one used elsewhere in the game.
Andrew Fisher: I first played Magnetron on the compilation 10 Computer Hits Volume 5, and I like it – but I do still think Paradroid is the better game.
I have wondered what happens at the end, having completed one of the four stations before. Still it did seem likely it would loop.
Andy Vaisey: Although not a bad game by any stretch of the imagination, after releasing Paradroid, I didn’t see the point in this game. Although not a bad game, the ending is…
FINAL SAY: A trademark ending from Steve Turner. I didn’t actually see this one coming.