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Adventure: Text
ZX Spectrum 48K

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Derek Brewster
Chris Bourne

The inlay which drops out of the case when you open it lists thirteen games starting with No. 1, Adventureland and ending with No. 13, The Sorcerer of Claymorgue Castle. Under the heading 'The Adventures' it extols the virtues of adventure No. 1, Adventureland. There is so little of it I may as well quote, ' Wander through an enchanted realm and try to uncover the 13 lost treasures.

There are wild animals and magical beings to reckon with as well as many perils and mysteries. The Adams Classic that started it all! Difficulty level: Moderate.'

Hardly a deep plot (find 13 treasures) and no theme to speak of. This adventure is not bad in the sense that it is well-programmed with the unmistakable Brian Howarth style made famous in the Digital Fantasia series, but I can't help but think this game will polarise opinion; if you're a Scott Adams fanatic you'll buy it as a collectors' piece, if not, you might wonder what all the fuss is about for this adventure offers you nothing that you haven't seen before and offers one or two things you would rather not see again. Yes, it features a wonderfully convoluted and totally unnecessary maze.

If you have been anaesthetized by the countless dream factory TV films and soap operas emanating from across the Atlantic, the American spelling in this adventure may not irritate you in the slightest (ax for axe) but I'll doubt whether many people will know what chiggers are without consulting a good dictionary (they are parasitic larva mites). If the program doesn't like what you've input it comes up with 'I must be stupid, but I don't understand what you mean.' At the edge of a bottomless hole you see a large outdoor advertisement. If you then READ ADVERT you get 'Check with your computer dealer for the next adventure program: Pirate Adventure. If they don't carry Adventureland have them call' what looks like a Birmingham number.

As with Digital Fantasia's programs you are offered the choice between graphics and seeing which objects are present, and for that matter, what location you are in. It's very tempting to play without the graphics which to be honest are nothing special, just average. The location descriptions are short and unimaginative.

Humour is evident when for all your efforts you end up in memory chip in a computer. Adventure/and is a competent work with fast responses, a good, sound, input routine and a famous name, Scott Adams. Since this was, or is, the first game in the series it would be a little unfair to say something like 'beats me what all the fuss is about,' so I won't say it.


Difficulty: easy
Graphics: all locations, mostly good
Presentation: rather messy, black on white, hard on the eyes
Input facility: two word input
Responses: very fast but the substance is often stupid
General Rating: Quite good.