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Mission Software
Stewart Peart
1984
Adventure: Text
£6.95
Multiple languages (see individual downloads)
ZX Spectrum 48K
None

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11
Chris Bourne

Fancy yourself a top-notch secret agent, well versed in the arts of self-defence and investigative intuition? Then Mission 1, an adventure that seems to be the first in a series of missions from this new company, might appeal.

The package is presented in a novel way. The cassette is glued to an ominous manilla envelope which contains a passport, briefing sheet, brief outline map (top secret) and useful hints including a previous agent's last message from inside a top secret enemy missile command centre. It is now your task to penetrate this installation. Once inside, you must locate the main computer room and nobble it by entering a destruct code to be found somewhere in the complex.

Once started, the adventure follows the standard graphics adventure formula with a picture of the location on top of the screen and the text beneath. Type in HELP and you get a list of 11 basic command words and their understood abbreviations. In keeping with most long adventures, it has a SAVE routine.

You enter the complex through a ventilation shaft, and if you're clever enough to get past watery and electrical hurdles, you find yourself on the first floor of the command centre, a set of corridors with rooms off. The search for the code can now commence.

CRITICISM

'Mission 1 is a fairly standard adventure. I thought the graphics rather basic, lacking detail, and they made the wait for them to build up a bit boring. Unfortunately the text descriptions were no more atmospheric either. Response to input is slow due to the BASIC, and very limited in its understanding of words. Not exactly a James Bond Mission.'

'A neat adventure for beginners I would think, though lacking in excitement and things to do. Because of this, when you meet with the immoveable difficulty of entering a lift to the second floor you might very well give up rather quickly.'

'A slightly overpriced adventure for what you get. It's a pity the software doesn't quite match the excellence of the packaging and accessories. More options on how to complete the obstacle course and more atmosphere would have helped. But I did find it oddly compelling in a frustrating way. Its very simplicity made the biggest difficulty I encountered seem even more difficult to solve when the answer must have been so obvious. I couldn't help liking it and feeling friendly towards it despite its shortcomings. Enough, anyway to look forward to their next Mission in the hope that it's a tit more developed on the text and action.'

COMMENTS
Response: fairly slow
Graphics: generally line over coloured background
Features: excellent packaging simulating a dossier for secret agents
General Rating: An excellent idea spolied to some extent by the actual program.

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