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Operation Wolf
Ocean £9.95/14.95 Dec 1988 YS36
Graphics: 9/10
Playability: 9/10
VFM: 10/10
Addictiveness: 10/10
9/10 Overall
 
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Beg, steal or borrow a copy of this game if you really enjoy a bit of mindless violence on your machine.
Pete Shaw
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Flying to Manchester seemed like a fun thing to do. Sure, your arms ache by the time you get over Stockport, but on the whole it's a real "happening" thing to do in these days of the North/South divide. Once you get past Watford then a 'must' on your itinerary is a visit to the North's answer to Castle Rathbone - Central Dungeons. An ominous building looking very much like Bootle Police Station, but actually home to those who call themselves' Ocean. And why did I make this flight of fancy? To bring you, gentle viewer, the 'gen' on Oceans latest babe, Operation Wolf. If you visited this year's PC' Show, then you probably saw the Coin-Op version of Operation Wolf on Oceans stand - or rather you would have seen a huge crowd of people looking at the Coin-Op classic. It broke a bit of new 'ground' for arcade games 'cos the 'nasties' fired directly at you through the screen. And it also had a pretty mean gun which you shot your foes with. And although this Speccy version of Oppo Wolf doesn't come packaged with a machine gun, the authenticity to the arcade machine is extremely good.
    You play Lone Wolf, the typical he-man character who wants to take on the world and his wife as long as he can volunteer for the job. You parachute into enemy territory, and from that point onwards it's a Case of shooting anything and everything with a couple of exceptions. What's that? Did I say exceptions? Surely shome mishtake. But no, even in this day and age when you'll shoot even the earwigs for extra points, Oppo Wolf sends things like stretcher-bearing nurses and all-american boys running across the screen to see if you're too trigger happy. So watch those itchy trigger fingers! On each level - and there are six all-told - you have to take out a certain number of baddies, tanks. Launches and helicopters in order to move on. You have a limited ammo reserve with which to do this job, but you can find extras by shootinq vultures, chickens and cassette tapes. No that's not a misprint. It's so you can make a fowl Bros soup. More 'sensible' items you can shoot for extra goodies include various bottles of potions. Some give you extra machine gun power (without using up your valuable supplies), while others will nurse your damage rating back to a more healthy score. Also, if you shoot the dynamite, then everything on the screen will blow up - except you! Good, eh?
    Your first task is to take out the communications centre. This level, which gets you used to the game, is full of plenty of things to shoot, and once you're through it it's on to Level Two. Here your task is to survive in the jungle. Switching to a luverly shade of green, you encounter gun boats for the first time - nasty things which take a fair bit of ammo to shift. But once you've done your duty amongst the shrubbery, it's back to the village where it's time to blast the chopper squad. Wheeeee, blammo!
    When you leave the village you enter the next level which is described as the Powder Magazine - in plain terms this is your worst enemies ammo dump, and destroying it earns you loadsa points. Level Five is where you get serious - 'cos it's the concentration camp and you've got to start rescuing the hostages. You need them to get anywhere in this game.
    All those nawty nurses and scampering children that you were trying not to hit in the earlier levels (weren't you?), turn out to be jolly useful in this level. 'Cos the hostages tend to walk across the screen without a care in the world, and hitting them not only increases your damage status, it also puts you one step further away from completing the game.
    If you're good enough to get to the final level, you'll find yourself at the airport. Everything is thrown at you here, you've got to be Rambo IV to get anywhere. The hostages you saved in the last level will walk across the screen again. And if they foolishly step into the path of your speeding bullets, you'll find they sprout angelic wings and fly heavenward. If, finally, you've shot your quota of baddies then freedom will be yours. But if you don't save any hostages then don't expect to be asked on any other missions!
    Needless to say you've got to rush out and buy the game, so here's a couple of tips I found quite useful while playing.
    1) You've got a supply of grenades - but don't throw them at the soldiers since they only require a bullet from your gun to send them to the great arcade in the sky.
    2) Save your 'G's for the big guvs like the helicopters. Even then, keep an eye on the number you still have to eliminate of each type.
    3) If you've already taken out enough helicopters then don't keep blowing up more when there are tanks for the taking.

Arcade version screenshot...
Arcade screenshot
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Ratings given by other magazines
   CRASH  9/10    Sinclair User  9/10   
Crash Review---
Info supplied by the SPOT*ON database

YS Cross-references
P
pOperation Wolf/OceanYS31
PRE
C
pOperation Wolf (in The Biz)YS51
90
G
pOperation Wolf (in The YS Complete Guide To Shoot-'em-ups Part II)YS56
94
 
pOperation Wolf/Hit SquadYS63
87
G
pOperation Wolf (in The YS Official Top 100 Part 2)YS71
No.58
Some info from Sinclair Infoseek+SPOT*ON

Pete Shaw has kindly authorised this site
Reviews in other magazines:
       
 
Crash (HTML)
 
Sinclair User
 
C+VG
 
       
 
The Games Machine
 
ACE
 
MicroHobby
 
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