There are games of destruction, there are games of mass destruction and there is... Green Beret! Never in the field of micro conflict have so many been slaughtered by so few. By one in fact - the eponymous Green Beret - or Green Bert as he became owing to a nifty typing error on my part. His aim's to rescue the captives but no retread Rambo this. The game is not only extremely playable - it's also infuriatingly addictive and extremely hard.
For those of you who've kept your blood lust out of the arcades and on the streets where it belongs, the plot is this. Bert is sent to single handedly wipe out as many of the enemy as he can over four game sections - the Missile Base, Harbour, Bridge and finally the Prison Camp itself. At first he's armed only with a knife, times being hard in the Quartermaster's stores, but if he kills the commandant he's rewarded with additions to his arsenal, such as a flame thrower, grenade or rocket launcher. Sadly shots from these are limited and if he loses a life he also loses the weapon.
Still, Bert can bound like a ballerina and he's going to need to with all these nasties on his tail. Some of them are real karate experts too and the only way to defeat them is to match leap with leap. Otherwise hitting the mud is the only thing that'll stop Bert biting the dust - keep an eye open for troops who hesitate to fire and duck immediately. No time to lie around though because there're always more pistol packing palookas in reserve and when the going gets tough the tough get going so it's up and at 'em.
The other thing that makes it all so speedy is that the smoothly scrolling landscape has up to three levels and used wisely they can give Bert a distinct advantage. After all, there's very little sense in Bert running along the ground, trying to jump mines, when he could climb onto a missile launcher.
I confess that I'd have been happier with a beginners level owing to the speed of the game. But it's one of those arcade treats that makes you want to go back for more and practice your skills until you too are worthy of a Green Beret. And for those who're of a less heroic bent there's sure to be a good market for POKES for infinite lives! Go on, get out there and blow up a battalion or two - you know you'll feel better for it.
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