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John O'Leary
Adventure: Text
ZX Spectrum 48K

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Mike Gerrard
Chris Bourne

Your Deadly Mission in this game is to find the location of the rebel T'rilla Pirate Base and bring back its co- ordinates for the good guys. Intelligence reports show that the base lies within the Korgan Empire boundaries, or "boundries" as the program spells them.

Starting the game at your ship's controls, you'd better get a move on and search the ship, as I give you advance warning: it won't be many moves before you're under attack. You've a key right under your nose, and careful examination of everything should let you equip yourself with a torch and batteries, plus a little weaponry before you're attacked and have to seek the shelter of the nearest planet.

Whether this is a wise move or not I don't know, as wandering through the landscape I found a cave, and in the cave a slumbering monster guarding its nest. All I can tell you about the monster is that it had fangs as it attacked me and that was the only bit of the message I could see, because it scrolled instantly up behind the picture that shows you the game's over. Was there a clue in that message as to how I was disturbing the creature? I'll never know as it whizzed past too fast. I sometimes wonder if programmers actually play their games once they're written.

I obviously had to kill the mysterious fanged beast, but I have to admit to defeat, even at this early stage of the game. KILL ANIMAL, SHOOT ANIMAL, FIRE RIFLE, SHOOT RIFLE - all produced no response whatsoever, except the WHAT NOW CAPTAIN? prompt repeated, leaving me wondering whether anything was happening or not. Exploring elsewhere in the landscape, I eventually heard the sound of choppers, and before I knew it, I was thrown in the ever-familiar cell. The means of escape obviously required a screwdriver, which my spies told me was in the dreaded cave, so at this point I gave up.

I should have persevered with the game, I know, but I'd seen nothing that made the adventure stand out from the crowd. I must have seen at least 200 adventures exactly like this one. Not bad, not stunning, just another everyday story of adventuring folk. I want some excitement, I want some danger, I want to be... a lumberjack! (Puts on appropriate clothing and breaks out of YS office, never to be seen again. Till next month.)