SWIV is a classic bottom-up 2D vertically-scrolling shooter that was considered a spiritual successor (not officially) to Tecmo arcade game Silkworm. The game was initially released for the Commodore Amiga and the Atari ST in 1991, and later ported to the Acorn Archimedes computers (1992). The game looks good, sounds wonderful and contains some of the most frantic action back then in a shoot-em-up.
STORY / GAMEPLAY As in the original Silkworm, you can choose to control either an armored jeep or a flying gunship to battle your way through the game's enemy territories and swarms. This also gives you two different playing styles and, although you might go pretty far with one vehicle, you could end up getting blown up straight away! Using the helicopter you have the advantage flying above any dangerous obstacles scattered around the ground (such as trees, mines etc) but the heli can only fire in one direction, which sometimes makes killing enemies a bit hard due to their enormous amount of firepower. On the other hand, you have the jeep with a mounted cannon. Maneuvering this 4WD car can be a little difficult (due to the total chaos that occurs on the ground) but it can jump over some obstacles making life a little bit easier. Shield power-ups can be found, which can be either picked up to afford temporary invincibility or detonated to destroy all enemies on-screen. Every so often, a boss enemy will attack you and will grant you with gun upgrades when killed.
GRAPHICS / SOUND The Archimedes SWIV version's graphics are pretty good with some superbly drawn sprites and backgrounds that portray the action in a militaristic style. Note that the graphics between the Amiga and the Archimedes versions are identical. The sprites move fast and smooth while the scrolling is very smooth. The game's sound is excellent, utilizing the Archimedes' sound capabilities to produce true stereo. If you move your vehicle to the left the sound comes from the left speaker; move to the right and the sound shifts to the right, a feature this creates an amazing atmosphere! The SWIV's sampled SFX are of great quality and the introductory tune is pretty decent too! Unfortunately, like in all versions, there is no in-game music which is rather awkward considering the power of this home computer.