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Taskset Ltd
Andy Walker
1985
Adventure: Text
£7.95
£2.99
English
ZX Spectrum 48K
None

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84
Richard Price
Chris Bourne

HEADING back into the realms of text adventure we now come to the planet Megron - not a headache cure. Here you find the decaying remains of a high-tech culture apparently destroyed at its apogee.

These Megronians were just too clever and managed to loose Darkon onto their unsuspecting world. He, or it, is the manifestation of all evil and hate and, within a short time after his freeing, has become the absolute ruler of Megron. The land is now returning to nature but over all broods the shadow of sorcery and terror.

You, a bionic warrior accompanied by a faithful droid Komputa, have been transported to this none too pleasant place to remove the problem of Darkon. You aren't the first and will come across the remains of your predecessor along with his mangled droid.

You will immediately find several knotty problems to solve. The opening section involves the gathering of objects such as the helmet of your predecessor, foodstuffs and equipment such as a hover belt, a ring and, somehow, a crystal which falls from a surveillance robot which you must zap before it sneaks on you. There is also a standing stone and an altar concealing unnamed treasure. The major task is to discover enough gold to bribe a guide to take you past Darkon's monolith and into his realm.

The presentation is slick and the interpreter reacts quickly. My only real moan about the input buffer is that keys will repeat too quickly and even a light tap will result in a long string of the same letter which then has to be erased.

The descriptions are concise and deliberately intended to make you 'look' a lot and examine articles. Don't assume that things aren't there because the description doesn't mention them - there is a lot of hidden detail. That applies particularly to houses. They have doors but you won't see that stated in the location text.

The problems are not all simple and you will need some ingenuity to progress very far. I did feel that this was tied up with a relatively limited vocabulary, the main verbs of which are displayed if you type 'vocab'.

The graphics are very fast and are displayed on the left of the screen. They will react to some of your actions - the surveillance robot, for instance, is shown both before and after zapping.

The presentation is attractive, despite the key repeat problem, and there is sufficient interest in the early section to get you involved and keen to solve the riddle of the altar and the monolith. There is also action and the problems of dealing with other creatures who are not ultra-communicative unless you find their particular need or interest. Not bad.

Publisher: Taskset
Price: £7.95
Memory: 48K

***

3/5