Running Man, The
Copyright/Publisher: Grandslam Entertainments Ltd, Developed By: Emerald Software Ltd, Release Year: 1989, Genre: Weird Sports, Number Of Players: 1

The year is 2019 and the USA has become a totalitarian state. Personal freedoms no longer exist and only television distracts the people from their plight.

One show is more popular than any other, The Running Man, a deadly cat-and- mouse carnival in which the contestants battle for the ultimate prize: survival.

After refusing to fire on un-armed demonstrators Ben Richards is wrongly convicted and labeled "Butcher of Bakersfield". This is the start of a chain of events which lead to him becoming the 'Star' runner on 'The Running Man'.

No contestant has ever won. All have perished within the 'Game Zone' of a destroyed Los Angeles, hunted down by four lethal 'Stalkers'.

In tonight's show Ben Richards must survive, prove he is innocent and expose the corrupt propaganda of the ICS network.

Ben is launched into the game zone by Damon Killian, the host and inventor of 'The Running Man'. He promises Killian "I'll be back!" - no other contestant has ever come close.

You are Ben Richards, you must run for your life.

The Running Man is a one player game in which you must manoeuvre Ben Richards through four game zones and a TV studio. You must defeat all the stalkers and guards, fight off the attack dogs and fulfill your promise to Killian. The first zone is the 'Ice rink'.

Zone 1 - Ice Rink
Here you will encounter your first human obstacle, SUB-ZERO. This ex-ice hockey champion carries a razor-sharp hockey stick and launches exploding pucks.

Zone 2 - Suburbs
If you survive SUB-ZERO's attentions you will meet the deadly BUZZSAW whose tri- teflon coated chainsaw can finish Ben's run right here.

Zone 3 - City Lights
The third game zone was once the bright lights of Los Angeles, it's now illuminated by the flash of lightning bolts from the human christmas tree, DYNAMO. You must use all your cunning to overcome this opponent.

Zone 4 - The Complex
Inside this labyrinth of pipes and ducts you must avoid the red hot flames of FIREBALL. His flame-thrower also functions as a jet pack enabling him to fly.

The Studio
If your skill is such that no stalkers can stand in your way you will return to the TV studio. Here armed guards will attempt to halt your progress to Killian. If you succeed in reaching him the reward will be freedom and revenge.

Basic Play
The joystick is used to control Ben as follows:

Without the fire button pressed
Centre - stands still
Down - moves into a crouch if standing
Up/left/right - jumps up if standing, stands up if crouching.

Left/right - turn/move left or right. If the joystick is moved twice quickly in the same direction Ben will run in that direction (he will make a higher/longer jump whilst running).

Down/left/right - crawl

With the fire button pressed
Centre - kicks in the direction faced.
Down - moves into a crouch, if standing; if crouching collects/drops weapon.

Up - jumps
Left/right - turns/punches if facing in that direction; if holding a weapon uses it.

In the game zone you may find various objects which you may use as weapons. These include bricks, pipes and guns. You can kill some stalkers without using weapons but this will require greater skill.

If you are struck by a stalker or fall into a trap your health will suffer. Your health is displayed at the bottom of the screen together with that of any stalker you are fighting.

Your health can be improved by two methods, medi-packs which are in various locations throughout the game and by completing the UP-LINK CODE.

If your health gets below a certain level you are deemed as unconscious and the game ends.

Between each game zone you must try to attain the UP-LINK CODE. This involves a simple coordination game, in which you must match two sets of symbols.

You are presented with two sets of 8 symbols, the left set is then mixed up.

Two highlights will appear; these can be moved with the joystick. If the fire button is pressed the two symbols that are marked will swap position. Using the right-hand symbols as a guide you must put all the symbols in the correct position. If this is achieved in the allocated time then your health is restored for the next game zone.

The score is based on the money bet by the viewers. If you fight well then the more monet they bet. Bonus betting occurs when you complete a zone and for killing a stalker.

If you get a good score you will be invited to record your name on the high score table - showing today's best Running Man.

Ingame Keys
F1 - Switch music on/off
P - Pause/Continue game