(Code Masters, 1987)
Nightmare Mansion is well-named; it’s home to some of the scariest creatures and monsters you can imagine! You’re a macho muscle man who’s been sent out to rescue your brother Buster from the mansion, but the mansion is too frightening even for you. Exploring the mansion reveals objects which you need to collect to gain access to other rooms, and you must also shoot any monsters which appear, otherwise the ‘terrometer’ will increase and you’ll lose energy fast. It’s not easy to get the hang of the game initially, but stick with it and you might well like it.
Reviewed by Chris Lennard
Save New York and the entire world from a disaster of biblical proportions in this spin-off from the hit film. Ghosts are converging on the evil Temple of Zuul, and the only way to stop them is by forming your own ghostbusting franchise with which you must make more money than you started with. Only after this and much ghost killing can you reach the final confrontation at the top of the temple. This is quite a poor game with crude graphics and annoying gameplay, and although the music (including speech) is good, it is nothing more than an excuse to cash in on the film.
Reviewed by John Beckett
Pretty closely based on the movie of the same name, Ghostbusters II has some of the best graphics and sound you’ll ever see or hear on the CPC. From the intro screen to the digitised scenes straight from the movie to the gorgeous levels, the graphics are simply awesome, and the spooky sound effects and spot-on version of the Ghostbusters theme tune complement the graphics nicely. There are only three levels, which is disappointing, but the sheer difficulty of the first level, which sees you descending down a manhole to investigate a river of slime, means you’ll have to be a gaming god to see the other two levels – which are awesome. All in all, a great game in all respects except the stupid difficulty of the first level!
(Moonmist Entertainment, 2023)
The novelist Thomas King and his wife Cora have emigrated from New York to live in a remote Scottish manor that they have recently purchased. Thomas is planning to write his next novel, but as he learns about the history of Blackwood Manor, he uncovers a dark secret dating back centuries – and he has some rather peculiar dreams as well... This text adventure features large amounts of extremely well-written prose, almost like a novel in itself. You can converse with other characters, including ghosts, but unlike other text adventures, you are presented with a choice of topics to discuss, much like a point-and-click adventure – a nice innovation. The game isn’t particularly difficult to complete, and it’s fairly linear and narrative, but it’s full of atmosphere, and there are three different endings to experience. Just make sure you examine and search your surroundings thoroughly!
This is a straightforward platform game that sees you, as a knight, fighting off numerous ghosts, zombies and other monsters. The first level is set in a graveyard, where you have to jump over gravestones and several rivers. The second level sees you on a ship, with more platform jumping involved, and the third level is in a dark cave. After that, the levels start repeating. This game really hasn’t stood the test of time well. The graphics are fairly basic, the concept is unoriginal, the collision detection is poor, and above all else, it’s too hard.
Reviewed by Missas
This is a remake of the original version of Ghosts’n Goblins. Despite the game being considered a decent port of the coin-op at the time of its release back in 1986, this remake goes one step further. First of all, it has a very smooth frame rate and it features hardware sprites. The sound is pretty good and the playability is high. It is clearly a game that uses the Plus’ hardware in an efficient way. Everything looks arcade-like and overall it is a remarkable game, as well as a reminder that the Plus and GX4000 machines might have been more successful if more programmers back in the day had exploited their enhanced features.
See also: Ghosts’n Goblins (Elite).
(Micro Power, 1984)
This is essentially Pac-Man transformed into a platform game. You are trapped in a haunted mansion and have to eat all the jewels on the screen before you can go to the next level. On each level, you may encounter ghouls, moving platforms, spikes and springs, and you’ll also have to jump between platforms. So why does the game score such a low mark? Well, it’s because this is perhaps the most impossibly difficult game I have ever played. Platforms and spikes are positioned so that you have to be pixel-perfect when jumping over or between them. Furthermore, it’s very difficult to get into exactly the right position. This is one of those games that will make you want to smash your computer in a rage of frustration, and it is best left well alone.
(US Gold, 1989)
Reviewed by Chris Lennard
Once again King Arthur must take on and defeat the evil forces in his kingdom in this, the sequel to Ghosts’n Goblins. A simplistic platformer, you jump around, avoiding obstacles and traps, while shooting the various nefarious supernatural monsters that come at you from all directions using a variety of weapons. Large bosses have to be defeated at the end of every level and as before, you only have your set of knight’s armour and your pants to protect you! It looks only slightly nicer than its prequel but it lacks that game’s excellent music and original gameplay. If anything, it’s not the conversion of this game that makes it poor but the actual arcade original itself.
See also: Ghosts’n Goblins (Elite).
Secret documents belonging to NATO have been stolen by another country, and you have been parachuted into the jungles of that country, along with Killer, your dog. However, you have become separated from Killer, so you must find him first, and then you need to find the heavily armed enemy camp and the helicopter base. You also have a cypher which receives satellite communications, and a torch for seeing in the caves, and you’ll need to pick up magazines to refill your gun. Most of your time is spent trudging around the jungles and the underground caves, and shooting any soldiers that cross your path, and before long, the game becomes boring. Furthermore, it’s an ugly Spectrum port, and the text is littered with spelling mistakes.
(Again Again, 1989)
Four pieces of Gilbert’s dustbin have been scattered across his home city on the planet of Drill, and if he can’t find them all within the time limit, he won’t be able to travel to Earth to sign a new contract for his TV show. To find the parts, you must find a Milk Bar, go to an arcade cabinet and play a mini-game; if you win, you’ll get a clue to the location of one of the parts. You can shoot aliens by firing snot at them (yuk!), and if you shoot enough aliens on a screen, a Hoverjelly will appear; shooting it allows you to collect either a tin of beans (allowing you to float – guess how!) or a slice of cake (which cancels the floating effect). However, some of the mini-games are very difficult to complete and rely more on luck than skill, and unless you win, the parts won’t appear. The Spectrum-like graphics also reduce the game’s appeal, although the music is quite good.