Sunday, September 25, 2016

CarVup


CarVup is a cute scrolling driving/platformer released back in 1990 by Core Designs. You get to play the part of a cheerful car who appears to love painting platforms, simply by driving over them. It's a pretty simple idea and will certainly feel familiar to the ... well... more mature gamer just like me!

Each screen has many platforms in need of a new coat of paint. This easy task soon becomes tricky because of the numerous baddies that populate the playing field. Don't think about shooting your way through because there are no weapons, without power-ups, so baddies must be avoided which will become troublesome seeing as your car has no breaks and is constantly driving kamikaze fashion! This mechanic forces you to constantly flip direction to find an alternative route when frantically trying to find that last tile.

This is a game which would sink like a lead balloon if it had anything less than perfect controls. So I'm grateful to say they are indeed responsive and well thought out without any lag. Many platforms are difficult to reach so require precise timing, which is made harder when the enemy might be blocking your path. CarVup always requires quick and immediate reactions to avoid losing a life because you never know what might appear.

Each level always looks superb with lots of colours and a lovely cartoony design. I think Core has done a pretty nice job with the scrolling and the sprites are too cute! Sound effects are nice and do their expected job very well but I love the chiptunes which are all foot-tappingly superb. (press key 'M' to toggle)

CarVup might not appeal to everyone but I recommend you give it a try because it's an enjoyable twist on the painter theme. I'm ancient, so I found its old skool simplicity highly addictive and I always needed "just one more go".

LINKS

 - Still not convinced? Here is my video recording for the Doubting Thomas' amongst you!
 - 8BitChip have created a hard drive installable version which is just dandy.
 - The One magazine released a demo of CarVup which contains extra levels NOT in the commercial release!
 - Did you know, if you press the 'Z' key during gameplay then it will stop your car!
 - Enter these codes into the high-score table :
          -> infinite lives - R.J.TOONE
          -> infinite bumpers - BUMPER
          -> 9 lives - PUSSYCAT
          -> faster turn speed - WOOAARRGGHH
          -> level skip - WHOOPSIE
          -> extra points - ARNIECAR
          -> more points - BARMY CAR