Dunc: Well here's an old chestnut. Commando was being played to death on the Spectrum and C64 back in the days when my pet hen, Derek, was still an eg. (Derek's nearly three now, if you're interested).
Anyway, hens apart, it's quite simply a viewed-from-above vertically scrolling shoot 'em up with no knobs attached (well, hardly any). At the start of the game you're dropped onto the desert landscape by a helicopter. Your little sprite seems to wave goodbye to somebody off-screen and then the helicopters buggers off.
You're armed with a machine gun with unlimited ammo and a finite stock of grenades (which can be replenished by picking up the numerous grenade boxes that litter your route). Run forwards and shoot absolutely everybody you can, while dodging the oncoming barrage. At first there are just roaming foot soldiers to contend with, but as you progress through the game, you'll encounter soldiers behind sandbags, soldiers on overhead bridges, soldiers in trenches, soldiers manning cannons and soldiers pootling about in little red pedal cars. (Are you sure about that last one? Ed.)
To say the game gets hectic would be an understatement - what we have here is pure unadulterated machine-gunning, bomb-throwing violence. It's all tremendous fun in the gameplay stakes, apart from one thing: the collision detection. Due to the 'overhead and behind' viewpoint you feel as if you're just about safe from being touched by things when, in reality, you aren't. So you die. This collision routine is consistently inaccurate however, so you do get used to it fairly quickly.
What about the graphics? Erm, well, as I said - Commando is an old, old game. And this conversion is a pretty accurate rendition, visually speaking. So, what that basically means is that the graphics are, er, a little bit crap actually. And the sound? Well, there's a rat-a-tat-tat noise as lead spews from your gun and a sort of muffled boom for the grenade explosions but that's about it.
Commando is still a load of fun to play but it's pretty basic. I think maybe this should have been a budget game. I'll just ask my hen Derek what he thinks of it. Oh dear, Bernard Matthews has taken him away.