Reviewed by Piero Serra
This is Othello or Reversi by another name. If you’re not familiar with them, it’s a classic strategy game that involves placing counters to enclose your opponent’s pieces between your own. The counters are dark on one side and light on the other. A line of counters of one colour that becomes trapped between two or more counters of the opposite colour is turned over and claimed by the other player. The winner is the player with the greatest number of their colour counters exposed once the board is filled. This version is simple but effective and actually plays a decent game, although it is a bit slow.
(LTS Games, 2015)
Reviewed by Missas
More Than a Prison is a maze game that genuinely represents the early- to mid-1980s games. You take control of an inmate and you must guide him to escape from the prison. Fortunately for us, the gamers, it is quite challenging and entertaining trying to do this. You need to grab the keys, open the doors and avoid some enemies that look like wheels with blades, but one type of enemy homes in on the poor prisoner until it kills him. Precision is essential if you are to escape! The levels are cleverly designed and the difficulty level rises reasonably from screen to screen. Both the tune and the entire game feel like they were written 30 years ago! I think the game deserved a better rating than it received in the 2015 #CPCRetroDev Game Creation Contest because I really enjoyed its overall presentation and gameplay.
(Team Moritz, 2022)
Moritz’s cousin has invited him to come to Portugal to meet him, but instead of flying from his home in Germany, Moritz has decided to travel across Europe in his Sinclair C5. You must guide Moritz around fourteen single-screen levels and collect hearts (or gold once you reach Ireland). This is the third in a series of games featuring Moritz the dog, and the level of presentation is a significant step up from the previous two games, with excellent graphics (including a map of Europe) and several renditions of songs by the German group Kraftwerk, although this also means it will only work on CPCs with 128K of memory. However, all of this is marred by the ridiculous, rage-inducing difficulty of the third level. It’s a real shame, because I had high expectations for this game and I wanted to enjoy it.
(Team Moritz, 2021)
Moritz the dog has travelled to Anfield stadium to do his bit to help Liverpool Football Club win matches. On each level, Moritz must retrieve a football and aim it into the net and score a goal. However, you may have to perform one or two other tasks first, and there are various characters and objects moving around the screen to be avoided; if you touch any of them, you’ll receive a yellow card. Receive eight yellow cards (eight?) and you’ll get a red card and the game ends. There are some beautiful screens displayed before the game loads, but the in-game graphics, while colourful, aren’t of the same standard, although there is a nice rendition of the “Here We Go” tune. Gameplay is what matters, though, and this is a nice, simple platform game that is much more entertaining to play than the official Liverpool football game for the CPC!
(Automata UK, 1984)
Morris the car is in a multi-storey car park and has to get out – but the Phantom, Phreaky, Phearsome Kamikaze Bikers from the constellation of Morris Minor are driving manically around the car park! Honestly, this is the actual scenario of the game! You have to use the lifts to collect ten coins, while warding off the Bikers with your horn, and avoiding the parking fees (represented by pink boxes) and other hazards. Because of the year the game was released, the graphics and sound effects are primitive, and the gameplay is very simple. It’s OK, but all the screens are the same, so it becomes repetitive.
(Dro Soft, 1989)
One of Professor Bacterio’s experiments has gone wrong and the offices of TIA have been overrun with chickens! It’s up to the bungling duo of Mortadelo and Filemón (also known as Clever and Smart) to get rid of the chickens. In the first part of this wacky game, you control Filemón, and you must run around the building collecting chickens and bringing them to the roof, where Mortadelo will cook them. You have to avoid touching the flying eggs that the chickens lay and watch out for pigs who will knock you down. In the second part, Mortadelo is being chased by his boss, El Súper, and you must use your powers of disguise to transform into a variety of creatures (a ghost, a frog and a snake) to avoid walls, cars and flying objects. The first part is dull and plodding, and it takes place in total silence, but the second part is much better, with gorgeous, colourful graphics, a really pleasant tune, and entertaining gameplay.
See also: Clever and Smart.
(Opera Soft, 1989)
Mot is a monster who lives with a boy called Leo, and he has the ability to teleport to other worlds. This game consists of three parts, the first of which sees you as Leo in his house, attempting to lead Mot around the house to the portal that will take you and him to Mot’s world while trying not to annoy Leo’s parents too much. In the second and third parts, you control Mot in a vertically scrolling beat-’em-up where you must fend off all sorts of weird and wonderful enemies. The graphics are beautifully drawn and very well animated; the reactions of Leo’s parents in the first part are particularly amusing! Unfortunately the first part is quite frustrating to play, although thankfully the other two parts can be played without having to complete the first one.
You’re cruising around town on a motorbike and the police are pursuing you. This is actually a Pac-Man-style game in which you must wander around the town collecting dots and pearls while avoiding enemies, and of course, police officers who attempt to close in on you and your motorbike on each screen. It’s a really simple game with colourful but basic graphics, and if you’re playing it on anything other than a CPC464, there is only silence during the game. That said, it’s still decent enough to play, and you can configure the speed of the enemies, police officers and your motorbike to adjust the difficulty, but I’m surprised that Loriciels published it when you compare it with many of their other CPC releases from around the same time.
(Code Masters, 1989)
Fancy testing your skills on an off-road scramble bike? Then try this. On each level there’s an obstacle course where you jump over logs, rocks and chasms, and a time trial section where you have to complete the course within a time limit. The graphics are all right, although the colours used are horrible, and the music is OK too. The sound effects are limited to the humming of your engine, and in fact, it looks like you’re doing about 10mph on the obstacle courses! It is let down by the game not being at all easy to get into – just getting your bike over the first obstacle can be a feat in itself.
(Gremlin Graphics, 1988)
Dr A. Noid has turned the Earth’s inhabitants into zombies by feeding them with the addictive food substitute Slu. A reward has been offered to stop him, so you decide to stop him. You must drive around three cities in your All-Terrain Vehicle (ATV) and explore buildings to find food, ammunition, extras for your ATV, and ultimately, a pass to enter the arena, where you participate in an all-out demolition derby and knock cars out of the arena. Survive this, and you can go to the next city. The graphics aren’t up to much, and for some reason, there are no sound effects on 64K machines (although there is a tune). There’s also quite a contrast in the difficulty; the city sections are easy, but the arena is quite tough, and making a single mistake in the arena can often mean the end of the game.