C64 Review of Tangent from Issue 39

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The four robot crew of space survey craft Orion have woken from hyper-sleep only to find their ship has been invaded by a race of mechanical aliens called Zimen. The Zimen have confined each robot to a separate compartments and reprogrammed many of the ship's systems for their own nefarious purposes.

The player's part in all this is to take control of each robot, guiding each through the maze of three quarter view cabins, to the bridge. Here, they can log on to the main computer, thus regaining control of the ship and winning the game. When he isn't blasting the Zimen, the player can try to decipher the code that they have used to reprogram the computer, and so use the ship's different recharging facilities to their own advantage.

This review was typed in/OCRed by Iain

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Paul Glancey
Tangent's pretty Lizard title screen, neat Demon soundtrack and very smart Hugh Binns in-game graphics are most engaging, and I was sure I had loaded a game worth playing. After a while, though, I was left incredulous as I realised that backing up all these aesthetic features is a very simple game indeed. It's as if all the Compunet personages involved have contributed their exemplary talents without actually having a well-considered gameplan to work with. As a result, gameplay is incredibly simple and varies so little that what we're left with is very much a mindless shoot ‘em up. Not too bad at this price, I suppose, but it could have been so much better with a bit more thought.
Gordon Hoghton
With a few extra features this could have been a great game: a two-player option, more impressive in game effects and more to do than just blasting would have improved it. As it stands it's not half bad: the parallax scrolling is very neat — some levels (such as the third) being out standing — and the action gets fast and furious on later levels. On the negative side, the alien patterns are unimaginative and the in-game sound doesn't create any kind of atmosphere; it's very much like a second-rate Dropzone, without any of the thrills. Take a look if you want a slice of simple shoot ‘em up action.
Very nice title screen but not much in the way of in-game options.

Pretty parallax scrolling routine matched by well-drawn sprites.

Good Demon title ‘tune and neat spot FX.

Uncomplicated action is only mildly stimulating.

Fifteen levels, but the action doesn't vary much.

A neatly-presented, but over simplified shoot ‘em up.