Wednesday, 20 March 2013

Budget Day - Pippo (ZX Spectrum)

I played Pippo for my other blog, A Gamer Forever Voyaging, a couple of years ago.  I was using my tried-and-trusted formula of trawling World of Spectrum and picking out highly rated games.  Pippo averages a score of 8.28 from the public vote... high praise indeed!  I felt sure I was in for a minor classic.
My face fell a bit, though, when I read that it was a puzzle game. Not exactly the way I want to spend any time off, playing puzzle games. Still, I was committed, so I loaded it up anyway.
What a dilemma! All that lovely money bouncing around, but you can't pick it up!

It turns out that Pippo is essentially a 2-D Q*Bert clone. That doesn't help much though... I hate Q*Bert as well! In Pippo, you play an odd, fat character, who must hop about the game board, changing the colour of the tiles. There's no reason given for this, that's just what you do.
Naturally, the boards have inhabitants, and they're dead set on stopping you in your tracks. I say that... they're not that dead set; they just potter about on their little paths, seemingly oblivious as to your presence unless you happen to blunder right into them. And they're all a bit odd... numbers, dollar signs and the like are the order of the day.

Ooohhhh, Pippo... whyyyyyy?

If you do happen to find them too offensive to actually share space with, an energy pill appears at times which, if collected, turns the enemies into springs (of course) which you can remove just by bouncing over them. Hurray for odd items that give you supreme power!

That makes Pippo a bit easier and less frustrating than Q*Bert, but on the other hand, it's not terribly exciting, either. It does have some nice touches... the music was better than I'd expected, and there's a sampled (if slightly garbled) scream if you happen to fall off the game world. Pippo is quite good fun and a nice enough diversion. I can at least consider myself a little more enlightened after playing this one.

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