Uridium / Hewson 1986
Screenshots: play/stop



After Gribbly's Day Out and the excellent Paradroid hit the C64, game players were waiting for Graftgold to come out with something equally as good to whet their appetites once again. They were not disappointed when Uridium came out in late 1985.

Fifteen planets have been invaded by aliens, and their Super-Dreadnoughts (SD) orbit each planet, with each SD taking a different mineral resource from each planet. It is your job to strafe these SDs and steal the fuel rods that keep them powered. In case you're interested, the 15 levels are Zinc, Lead, Copper, Silver, Iron, Gold, Platinum, Tungsten, Iridon, Kallisto, Tri-alloy, Quadmium, Ergonite, Galactium and Uridium.

The game is split into three segments, with the first one being the main mission. You fly your ship low over the surface of the SD, taking out anything that can be destroyed, like landed ships, laser turrets, etc. Because you are flying so low, however, you have to avoid certain structures that are higher than your altitude, like meteor shields and communications turrets. One neat trick that your ship can perform is a 90 degree roll; effectively letting you fly on your side and giving your ship a very thin profile to get through those small gaps.

You will also have to look out for the SD's defence system, which comes as two forms: first, you have the homing mines which materialise over flashing generators, and then home in on your ship. They last about five seconds, so you have to outrun or outmanoeuvre them as they cannot be shot. The second defence is in the form of enemy squadrons. These are basically waves of ships that fly quickly by and try to shoot you. If you destroy the whole wave (there are up to six enemies in one wave), you will get bonus points when you land. The waves have a limited number of patterns to them: some just fly in a straight line, some fly in a single file and spread out as they get near you, and some perform loop-the-loops in an effort to get behind you and shoot you.

After a certain number of ground targets and enemy waves have passed, an alert will sound instructing you to "Land now." Near the right-hand side of the SD there will be a landing strip. You fly your ship towards the right, lined up with the landing strip and flying flat (rather than the 90 degree roll). This will automatically land your ship for you.

You are now onto the second part of the mission, stealing as many fuel rods as you can. This is basically for bonus points: There are six rods, each with a selector on either side. One selector has a number of points, the other says "quit", and a light toggles between the two at a regular frequency. You have to press fire to choose the points and not "quit". Every time you succeed, you progress onto the next fuel rod and the time between each toggle accelerates. On top of this, you only have 10 seconds to try and get to the sixth rod. So, the bonus points you achieve depend on how many rods you collect and the number of seconds you took to get there.

Once you have collected the fuel rods, it's back into your ship to escape the disintegrating SD. The ship takes off, flips over and climbs to a high altitude, while flying back over the SD. You can't be destroyed by anything, but you can shoot any ground-targets that you may have missed in the first mission.

Once you've flown past the destroyed SD it's onto the next level. Each SD has more and more structures to try and avoid or manoeuvre through, but the frequency of the waves and homing mines stays relatively the same. If you've destroyed the 15th SD (which is quite a short craft but has the words "Good zapping... turkey." after it) then you go back to level 1, but the frequency of the attack waves and homing mines increases.

If you like shoot'em-ups, then Uridium is a fantastic game. Lovely bas-relief graphics, extremely smooth scrolling and a playable, free-flowing inertia routine makes the game a joy to play. You don't even really care how far you get into the game, you just enjoy playing it. There is no music in-game, but the sound effects are adequate and have a minimalistic feel to them to go with the overall design. The title music is short and simple but effective while the game rolls through the title screen, high scores and a short scrolling message. Even if you're not a fan of the shoot'em up genre you'll pick this game up to have a few goes, just to experience the third part of the mission of flying over a superstructure and watching it disintegrate before your eyes.

Reviewed by Boz.

» Back to the game

  5th Gear
Hewson 1988
9475 downloads
Download now
  Alleykat
Hewson 1986
9985 downloads
Download now
  Anarchy
Hewson 1987
7535 downloads
Download now
  Battle Valley
Hewson 1987
5916 downloads
Download now
  Cybernoid
Hewson 1988
10762 downloads
Download now
  Cybernoid 2
Hewson 1988
10588 downloads
Download now
  Eagles
Hewson 1987
5424 downloads
Download now
  Eliminator
Hewson 1988
6671 downloads
Download now
  Evening Star
Hewson 198?
4172 downloads
Download now
  Firelord
Hewson 1986
6620 downloads
Download now
  Gribbly's Day Out
Hewson 1985
4720 downloads
Download now
  Gribbly's Special Day Out
Hewson 1986
5381 downloads
Download now
  Insects in Space
Hewson 1989
4734 downloads
Download now
  Iridis Alpha
Hewson 1986
4465 downloads
Download now
  Lunattack
Hewson 198?
3641 downloads
Download now
  Marauder
Hewson 1988
5918 downloads
Download now
  Nebulus
Hewson 1987
15457 downloads
Download now
  Ocean Conqueror
Rack-It 1989
4132 downloads
Download now
  Paradroid
Hewson 1985
20702 downloads
Download now
  Paradroid Competition Edition
Hewson 1986
8014 downloads
Download now
  Ranarama
Hewson 1987
5134 downloads
Download now
  Slayer
Hewson 1988
4961 downloads
Download now
  Stormlord
Hewson 1989
5833 downloads
Download now
  Uridium
Hewson 1986
20998 downloads
Download now
  Uridium Plus
Hewson 1986
10737 downloads
Download now
  Zynaps
Hewson 1987
7503 downloads
Download now

First page