Once again Hasbro and Atari
transport us back to the days of Reaganomics and roller rinks, this time via the game.com
version of Centipede. Just like the venerable old stand-up version, the game.com port has
you piloting around blowing up centipedes, spiders, and other sinister garden pests. And
like previous classic ports (think Joust, Defender, Robotron and Frogger for the
game.com), you know just what you're getting into.
While the latest manifestation
of Centipede is no box of surprises, the game.com does a great job, as usual, of providing
an old-school gaming experience. While there's no little track ball, you still move your
little gun in four directions on the screen, trying to blast through the mushrooms that
are left when a part of the Centipede dies. The goal is simple enough: blast the baddies
before they bum rush you. Succeed, and you get to continue through level after
mind-numbing level of the stuff. Repetition is inevitable unless you're a big fan of the
game, and having a soft spot for baseball sleeves helps.
The game.com version stays true to the original, right down to the blips and buzzes
that are ingrained in every twenty-something's soul. The updated mode adds a little
shading, and there are options to give yourself what amounts to unlimited lives and play.
Sure, your score can suffer, but you can keep plugging through levels for as much time as
As usual, this isn't the game to make the game.com a must-have item, but it fits nicely
into the veritable library of classic arcade titles available for the ultra price
efficeint portable system. While sitting in your living room with a disc full of classic
video games is nice, the old titles tend to be the most impressive on little systems like
the game.com, and become even more appealing when away from home. A pocketfull of game.com
arcade classics can make those commuter blues much easier to deal with.