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Central Solutions
Edward Beck
Adventure: Text
ZX Spectrum 48K

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Derek Brewster
Chris Bourne

It is the tenth year in the reign of Good King Frederick. No more do the people enjoy a happy existence. The last few months have been a misery for each and every person of the realm. Everyone is miserable because King Frederick's beautiful daughter, Princess Leanora has been kidnapped. It is thought Bragen, an evil warlock, was behind this wrongdoing and it is said the daughter is held captive in the Black Tower. Several of the king's champion knights have failed in their quest to rescue the princess and now there is a reward for anyone who succeeds.

You are Brian, a peasant boy with very little knowledge but a great imagination. You have often dreamt of daring escapades in which you achieve great wealth. Secretly, you leave home and travel to the king's castle. The result is not altogether surprising you are not permitted to enter the hallowed cloisters of the sovereign's castle. When you tell the guards of your intention to rescue the princess they smile and tell you to go home before you get hurt. Maybe they are right, but standing dumbstruck outside the imposing castle, your dreams take on a new clarity. It is indeed your destiny to set out for the Black Tower and rescue the lair princess.

As introductions go, the above isn't too bad as at least you come out of them knowing exactly what you have to do. What I'm not so keen on is the break in loading where you have to press a key to read (or skip) the instructions. I wonder how many other people tend to go and make cups of tea while a game is loading?

I think me reviewing this game points out the folly of a company like CENTRAL SOLUTIONS releasing a great batch of games all at the same time. Because of the constraints of time (especially in adventure reviewing) the reviewer tends to pick one or two at random from the mass of cassettes, seeing as there is nothing to distinguish between those releases of some merit from those just thrown in to make up the numbers and create the impression of grabbing a fair slice of market share. What with choosing at random, and rejecting quickly those which wouldn't load first time so as to get onto those that would, I ended up reviewing Brian the Bold which is not a good adventure. The location descriptions are terse and inadequate. Examining and even picking up objects is met with a puzzled silence, and the pictures are simply awful (and slowly drawn to boot).


Difficulty: moderate
Graphics: awful
Presentation: Spectrum characters
Input facility: verb/noun
Response: Quill
General Rating: Poor.