AGH Atari 2600 Review:

by Fox Video Games

Fantastic Voyage
Unlike some of Fox's other movie-licensed home games (Porky's anyone?), Fantastic Voyage actually offers a great premise for a video game. But like too many Fox cartridges before and after it, one flaw or another conspires to prevent it from attaining star status like the version on the silver screen did. And it's not just because Raquel Welch wasn't included with the purchase of the game, either.

As in the science fiction movie from the 1960's, you're in a tiny ship travelling through a critically ill patient's bloodstream in a race against time. Your mission: to destroy a malignant blood clot. Players must move through narrowing arteries, destroy life-stealing bacteria and avoid life-preserving blood cells as you attempt to reach the clot before your patient expires. Now don't tell me that doesn't sound like great fun!

There's a lot going on here, too. The game screen is filled with well-detailed images including your ships, the artery with obstacles of all shapes and sizes, a time clock, heart monitor, point score readout and patients saved display. Unfortunately, what should have been a game that offers multiple challenges that forces you to keep one eye on the time clock and another on the death-dealing blood stream quickly becomes little more than a race game in which you end up avoiding rather than defeating all the challenges thrown at you. The time clock spins but never offers a precise measurement of how much time remains. Only the patient's quickening heart rate tells you time is short, and that's inexact at best. Further, every time your ship is hit by a floating piece of patient innards, your time is diminished -- by how much is anyone's guess. And how many times your ship can be hit by cells and clots before the patient dies is a big mystery as well.

Overall, it's not bad by Fox standards, but that's not anything to write home about.

Title Fantastic Voyage
Publisher Fox Video Games
System Atari 2600 (VCS)
Graphics 6
Sound 6
Gameplay 5
Overall 5
Reviewer Keita Iida

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