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Tim Gilberts
Utility: Game Editor
ZX Spectrum 48K

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Dave Nicholls
Chris Bourne

When Gilsoft first brought out The Quill, text-only adventures were the norm. Now they have come up with The Illustrator which allows you to add full screen graphics to Quilled adventures. You can then save the game independently of both The Quill and The Illustrator.

When the program's loaded, a largish menu appears listing the various options open to you; normally the first you'll choose is "LOAD DATABASE". This loads in the first few bytes of a previously created Quill database. Then The Illustrator finds out how many locations there are and how much space is available.

Now comes the creative bit. Once you've told the program about your game you can get on with the business of drawing pictures. Each piccy is stored not as a series of bytes like a Spectrum SCREEN$, but instead it's kept as a series of commands that recreate the original when you play it back. This saves one hell of a lot of space but it does mean that you've got to start with a pretty good idea of what the final picture will look like. And although editing facilities are provided, any mistake can mean going right back to square one.

There are commands for point plotting and line drawing as well as several fill routines and an excellent shading command that lets you produce a stipple effect. You can also define pictures as subroutines and use them over and over again. If I have a niggle it's the lack of circle and arc drawing commands though this can be got round.

All in all, The Illustrator is an excellent companion to The Quill. It'll produce some very good pictures, subject to artistic ability, of course - which I'm rather short of!

Not Rated

Screenshot Text

A pretty good likeness of the snake from the Hall of the Mountain King drawn on the Illustrator by someone with no artistic talent!