Horses for courses. I agree totally with Gary Penn—I much more enjoyed the mix-e-load (and Hubbard's in-game score) than the game itself, which I found tedious and frustrating. It was more like a memory test than a shoot 'em up. Frankly, I still believe Zzap! over-rated the game, although I know I'm in a minority there!
As for Nemesis, I didn't think much of that one either, and would have knocked the Overall score down by 15 per cent or so.
Thinking about it, I don't think I agree with most of the scores Zzap! ever gave Thalamus games:
The Apex games, although good fun, were all flawed in some way and didn't, in my opinion, deserve such high ratings. Creatures would have just about Sizzled in my book, but Retrograde soon became boring, while Creatures 2 was a serious pain in the backside to play. Of the other Gold Medal games, only Armalyte really has a strong claim: Hawkeye was over-rated, while the fact Nobby the Aardvark got 96% is something of a joke.
Some of the Sizzlers were pretty mind-boggling, too. Sanxion: 93%? There must have been "happy water" in Zzap! towers that day. Similarly, Winter Camp's high rating was surprising (as was the 80% dished out to the truly appalling Summer Camp, which would have scored about 50% in my book).
Still, there were some odd under-ratings, too. While Heat Seeker's 75% was perhaps due to the game's strangeness, how Hunter's Moon failed to get a Gold Medal is beyond me, as it's one of the best shoot 'em ups ever created. Similarly, Snare should have at least Sizzled, and its 88% seems very low—perhaps this was down to the iffy graphics.