Everyone has nightmares at some time. But where do they come from? Legend tells of a creature with a highly-developed psyche, due to his three-headed mutant form. His influence was so powerful that everyone on Earth was touched by his evil thoughts. The human race was gripped with fear and worry and terrible nightmares made the dark a cold and frightening place. This creature was named Morgul.
A heroic warrior named Devolon managed to battle him and banish him to a hidden dimension inhabited by strange creatures incapable of emotion and therefore immune to the fears and dreams he instilled in mankind. Years have passed since this age, with humans still occasionally troubled by nightmares and worry. Even though Morgul has been trapped, his influence still breaks through.
However, mankind has once again begun to experience horrific dreams, worse than ever before. No-one will venture out onto the streets during the hours of darkness. One terrifying thought is lurking at the back of everyone's mind - Morgul has returned.
You are Turrican - one of the few remaining people who have not lost all sense of courage. You have been kitted out with the latest state-of-the-art firepower ready for the mission ahead - to find Morgul and kill him.
You must travel through five areas of the realm that Morgul has created for himself, fighting off the creatures that he has warped to obey him. To begin with you are armed with a rapid-firing pulse rifle and a flash-beam which can project a directable stream of lightning to take out enemies at a distance. Extra energy packs can be picked up around Morgul's fortress and converted into weapons such as lasers, spray rifle packs and energy shields. Some are freely available, but others are hidden and have to be carefully searched out before they can be collected.
At the end of the last area is the evil Morgul. Can you use the weaponry available to destroy him? Who knows... but it could give you dreams for a while!
GRAPHICS AND SOUND
Turrican's appearance is very much in the mould of many coin-op machines. The graphics are colourful, smoothly animated and atmospheric and the sound backs the gameplay up superbly with a range of powerful effects. Even the music has been done well, using real chords - a point not often apparent in game soundtracks. In fact Turrican could well be an arcade game, except you do not have to put money in it all the time!
The feel of the weapons is easy to get to grips with and to begin with it is fairly easy to blast the living daylights out of all the attacking creatures. Things do get a lot tougher though, despite the extra pick-ups to help you on your way. A lot of playing practice will have to be put in before you get any distance into the game and it will be quite a while before all the levels have been conquered.
Some people may argue that there are too many shoot-em-ups on the market already, and this would be a fair point. The problem is that a great deal of them is pretty half baked, pale representations of established coin-op machines. However with a game like Turrican, not too many people could complain about the addition of another blast to the ever-increasing list. Rather than being a rip-off, Turrican could well be in an arcade (in fact do not be surprised to see some of Turrican's ideas finding their way into future coin-ops). The gameplay itself is nto particularly groundbreaking, but it is frantic fun and extremely well presented and should appeal immensely to fans of the old 'spraying bullets' genre.