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CRL Group PLC
1987
Adventure: Text
£7.95
English
ZX Spectrum 48K
Multiple schemes (see individual downloads)

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92
Chris Bourne

Epic satire from CRL?

Excellent idea this - to do a take-off of Mike Singleton's epic release. CRLs Quillustrated program features the adventures of Ludo Morbid, Cordless, and Rorthorn as they attempt to destroy the Crown at the Tower of Doom and win the War of the Franchise against the hideous Gloompork.

So, great idea. But not much of a game, unfortunately. Loading up the game raises the interest to begin with, especially when you see some subtly familiar graphics and realise that - in the early stages at least - the program manages to be quite clever at imitating its famous predecessor. The map layout is also disturbingly reminiscent of the lands of Midnight and anyone familiar with the various citadels and plains of that domain should have a few laughs.

Naturally one of the best features of the original Lords of Midnight was the strategy element. It would have been nice to see some attempt to introduce a take-off of this in Loads of Midnight, but it doesn't appear.

And that's about all, really. The humour seems to weaken as you move further into the game and any serious take-off of Mike Singleton's game becomes a more and more remote possibility as you discover a space-station and find that a disturbing number of simple commands are not accepted by the program. Spelling mistakes that are initially amusing ("horrorifically", for example) soon become nothing but a symptom of poor game-testing and faulty execution.

Software companies that publish Quilled and GACed games need to remember that many of these games are written by people with little experience. A good company will give the programmer help, advice, and back-up that ensures the absence of simple grammatical errors and sharpens game-design. Then you can end up with some good products. Without it, you get something like this, which very few people will want to add to their collection.

RELEASE BOX
Spec, £9.99cs, Reviewed
No other versions planned.

500/1000
580/1000
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490/1000

Screenshot Text

Looks like Lords of Midnight, but don't be deceived.