It doesn't take an international man of mystery to deduce why Elevator Action was so popular nearly three decades ago. The original arcade machine mixed the excitement of a James Bond movie with the side-scrolling level designs of Mappy. But this wasn't some run-and-gun action game; it required players to sneak their way through interior mazes, using doors and elevators to avoid bad guys and collect hidden documents.
While it may not be the biggest name these days, Elevator Action has had a solid run over the last thirty years. Not only did Taito develop a 16-bit sequel in 1994, but they also managed to release versions on the Game Boy Advance, Saturn, PlayStation 2, Wii and countless other systems. Taito even managed to get a reboot into the arcades in 2010. Their newest version, Elevator Action Deluxe, may not be everybody's cup of tea, but it proves that this series deserves to be talked about all these years later.
Elevator Action Deluxe stays comfortably close to the original game. You play a spy on the hunt for classified documents. The object of each level is to search through several floors of a building (skyscraper, hotel, factory, etc.) for hidden documents. Once you've pocketed these important papers, you need to rush to the exit and move on to the next stage. But beware, there are guards everywhere.
While the concept is simple enough, the combination of labyrinthine mazes and increasingly aggressive bad guys makes this a tough process. Add to that a timer that is constantly ticking and you have the makings of a stressful day. Players can duck behind doors to hide from enemies, as well as use the elevators to move from floor to floor. The goal here is to learn how each of the different enemies acts and use the environment to your advantage.
Thankfully our hero has enough firepower to get out of sticky situations. He starts with a standard handgun with slow moving bullets, but soon enough he will uncover machine guns, rockets, lasers and more. While it may seem easier to run through the stages shooting everybody in sight, you'll quickly discover that this only brings more (and tougher) guars. You're better off sneaking through the stage avoiding being seen. Just don't take too long, you only have a few minutes to find the documents and flee.
Elevator Action Deluxe doesn't break any new ground, but it is a loving homage to one of the earliest action games. Here you'll find fifty unique stages of platforming puzzles, tricky labyrinths and increasingly difficult enemies. Even if the visuals won't blow you away, the game retains the spark that made the 1983 arcade game so much fun!
This product was submitted by the publisher for review. As a rule, Defunct Games does not review games we spent money on. However, that does not always apply to classic/retro games. This specific product, however, came straight from a PR guy for the purposes of being reviewed!