Head Over Heels

by Paul Morrison


How do you take the isometric 3D adventure, a staple of Spectrum gaming for years and possibly going a little stale, and stand it on its head? If you're Jon Ritman, you add a second character to play as within the same game, and call it Head Over Heels!

Awwwwww... look at his cute little face!

Awwwwww... look at his cute little face!

As was commonplace with British games, the story behind Head Over Heels was pretty original, not to say funny. The evil world of Blacktooth holds four planets as slaves in its Empire. Nearby worlds are concerned that Blacktooth might now be looking further afield in a bid to expand that Empire. To try and find out what's happening, a pair of spies are sent from the planet of Freedom on a mission to investigate...

This is where we would be heading down the road of the likes of Knight Lore or Ritman's earlier game, Batman. But with two spies to control, each with different abilities but that can be teamed to form a greater force, the game plays in a whole new way. You'll want to get the spies back together again, even if it's just to see how cute they look sitting on top of one another, but then you'll need to split them up again to solve certain puzzles, too.

They should have had one of them in Quazatron.

They should have had one of them in Quazatron.

It's a brilliant piece of game design which makes Head Over Heels much more interesting than it otherwise might have been. There are plenty of devious puzzles to work around, which wouldn't be possible with the standard single character format.  Even the more "normal" puzzles are great fun... pushing a robot Prince Charles into the right place so you can jump on his ears to reach tricky platforms is a right laugh.

With tremendous character in the graphics and those superb puzzles to figure out, I'm still head over heels for Head Over Heels!