Grand Monster Slam
Copyright/Publisher: Golden Goblins Games/Rainbow Arts, Graphics By:
Olaf Menges & Andreas Gortz, Music By: Chris Hülsbeck,
Release Year: 1989, Genre: Weird Sports, Number Of Players: 1

Beloms aren't exactly vicious creatures. These small furry balls are either masochistic or stupid - they let everyone else kick them around, literally. The beloms are used in the weird sport of Grand Monster Slam where two competitors stand at either end of a pitch, trying to kick all twelve beloms over the other side, the main tactic being to knock your opponent over.

The height of kicks is determined by how long the fire button is pressed, while they can also be aimed left/right. If a player kicks a belom into the crowd, a penalty (taken by kicking a duck!) is awarded to his opponent. If the penalty is successful, three of the taker's beloms are sent over to the other side.

Playing against various computer opponents, you must win three matches to advance to the next of three leagues. Between matches, a 'Revenge Of The Beloms' sub-game is played. The overhead view shows the player surrouned by nine angry beloms. They attack one at a time, and a given number must be knocked away with a staff to retain the score from the previous match.

If three matches are won, the player proceeds to another sub-game, Faulton Feeding. Six reptilian faultons sit on progressivly higher poles, waiting, in turn, to be fed. The player has a single attempt for each one, kicking a belom into its open mouth. A certain number of faultions (2 one the first level, 4 one the second) must be fed to qualify for the next league.

PHIL
The sick humour featured in Grand Monster Slam makes it initially very appealing! But those poor beloms have a hard time of it - I wonder if the RSPCA know about this sport. Presentation throughout the game is very good - the weird computer opponents are especially well animated with some humorous touches.

The concept of two competitors, kicking things at each other is reminiscent of the old 'Crossfire' board game, but with the added attraction of being able to knock your opponent over.

This simple idea makes the game instantly playable and surprisingly addictive, but the lack of a two-player mode lessens the long-term appeal. And with just the two simple sub-games, there's a general lack of variety in gameplay.

Randy
Kicking furry things at each other seems a weird thing to do, but it's great fun for a while at least. All the opponents have different abilities, so you need to change your tactics slightly for each one.

Having said that, once a basic strategy is mastered it's too easy to progress through the leagues, the main obstacles being the tricky sub-games.

To get to final league, four of the six faultons must be fed, and if you fail you must play in the second league again - especially irritating for C64 tape users, as each opponent must be multiloaded in. Still, if you fancy a lighthearted 'sports' game, this is the funniest one yet.


INTRO SCREEN

PRESENTATION 67%
The tape multiload is irritating, but each opponent has a full, humorous description.
GRAPHICS 72%
Only two different pitches, but the players are well animated.
SOUND 65%
A good 'medieval' title tune and informative in-game effects.
HOOKABILITY 80%
The amusing gameplay has you in stitches from the first go.
LASTABILITY 60%
The gamer is a bit too easy and there's no two-player option.
OVERALL 71%
The appeal may not be long-lasting, but the game is great fun until completed.


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