Maze Death Rally-X: Sinclair ZX Spectrum December Review

Maze Death Rally-X: December featured game

You all remember the 1980 Namco arcade classic Rally-X right? Well, Maze Death Rally-X for the Speccy should seem very familiar to you.

Maze Death Rally-X
Loading screen

Rally-X is one of my favourite golden age arcade games but it never saw an official release on the ZX Spectrum.

Back in 2018 a chap named Tom Dalby released his version, Maze Death Rally-X, to the world and what a joy it is for us Rally-X fans. The game comes in both 48K and 128K varieties but for the purpose of this review I’m playing the 128K version with the superior sound.


The premise is a very simple one, drive around the maze collecting the flags while avoiding obstacles and dodging the other cars which are chasing you. The game is as close to the arcade game as you’re going to get. For example, the action is smooth, the controls are responsive and the map scrolls nicely. Tom Dalby has coded this game with respect for the original. He has taken care to make it feel like the Namco version of old. The game neither feels easier, or any more difficult, which is an achievement in of itself.

Levels advance in the same way as Rally-X, advancing levels means more cars chasing you and, I’m not sure if this is just my perception but, they get faster and more accurate in their driving routes. It’s very easy to overlook the work gone into this game and just keep comparing it to its arcade counterpart but I really have to give credit to Tom Dalby for the game in its own right. He’s created nothing short of a masterpiece for the Speccy. I have no doubt he could’ve gone further and done a modern update to the game but the real skill is in keeping with the look and feel of the game and I’ll be scoring it based on that.

Maze Death Rally-X
Avoid those red cars like they’re anti-maskers in your local Tesco.

Tom Dalby has done an outstanding job on the game when it comes to graphics. Plenty of colour, without clashing I should add, and it feels very much like the arcade original, consequently the game runs just like the arcade version. He obviously knows his way around the Speccy.


I suspect resources were too limited to accommodate more in terms of sound for the 48K, subsequently this leaves the 48K version without music and only basic sound effects. However, the 128K has great sound effects and the original arcade music playing in-game.

Gameplay:5 out of 5 stars (5.0 / 5)
Graphics:5 out of 5 stars (5.0 / 5)
Sound:4 out of 5 stars (4.0 / 5)
Final Score:4.7 out of 5 stars (4.7 / 5)

Publisher:Tom Dalby
Release Year: 2018
Players: 1
Genre: Arcade: Race ‘n’ Chase
System: Spectrum 48K/128K

    • Keys (QAOP Space)
    • Kempston
    • Cursor
    • Interface II

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