Killer Gorilla, BBC Micro

Killer Gorilla is a throwback to the bad old days when companies could get away with releasing any old crap and people would still lap it up.

That Killer Gorilla was ever sold commercially is incredible in itself; never mind the fact that it was so popular that it was re-released numerous times. In reality it was nothing more than a coding experiment made by a kid who wanted to try to replicate Nintendo‘s arcade game, Donkey Kong.

Don’t get me wrong: the BBC Micro is a good machine, and is reasonably capable, but Killer Gorilla is (and always was) a terrible game.

Let’s look at the facts… The main character sprite doesn’t move smoothly at all – it jerks horrendously and is basically a poorly-animated stick man. The way he jumps is pathetic. No attempt has been made to make the running man look half decent and he feels like brick to control. Couple that with the fact that – if you fall from a height of more than a centimetre – you die. Also: the collision detection is just plain awful. On the third screen, getting past the first set of jumps is almost impossible because the stick man constantly falls through elevators. Or falls down the gap between them. Also: the game has a bonus timer that counts down and immediately kills you when it reaches zero, which is just stupid. The intermission screens are badly-designed. The whole game is badly-designed, and – in comparison with the game it is ripping-off – it is a feeble attempt to replicate the thrills and spills of Donkey Kong.

It’s been a while since I played a game that pissed me off so much that I shouted at it: “get off my f**king screen!“, but Killer Gorilla is that game. Not only is it a perfect example of the very worst of the BBC Micro, but it’s also not a game that anyone should waste their time playing now. Killer Gorilla is an embarrassment to the BBC Micro.

More: Killer Gorilla on Wikipedia

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