(Oscar Sanchez, 2007)
Reviewed by Missas
Magical Drop finally arrives on the CPC thanks to Oscar Sanchez. In this fast-paced puzzle game, a mass of coloured bubbles descend from the top and the player is defeated when they hit the bottom. However if colours are matched, bubbles disappear, thus gaining some time to continue playing. The graphics are cute and brightly coloured, although they are not very detailed. A catchy tune plays in the options menu, but there are only some sound effects in the game. The gameplay is great; Magical Drop is a game that a player can become addicted to. The two-player mode is a mega bonus, since the progress that one player achieves causes trouble for the other! Thus, the grab factor is very high. In summary, a great puzzle game that every CPC fan should try at least once.
(Code Masters, 1990)
The evil wizard Zaks is back and has done some strange things to the Yolkfolk – Denzil is trapped in a block of ice, Dylan is in a slumber, Dora has been turned into a frog, Daisy has turned into a giant, and Grand Dizzy is stuck behind a mirror! Dizzy managed to defeat Zaks before, so can he sort him out another time? This is the fourth of Dizzy’s adventures, so you know the score by now. As well as rescuing the Yolkfolk, you must also collect 30 diamonds. Unlike the first three adventures, Dizzy now has an energy bar as well as three lives. Nice graphics, nice tune, nice game – what more can I say?
See also: Bubble Dizzy, Crystal Kingdom Dizzy, Dizzy, Dizzy Down the Rapids, Dizzy Panic, Dizzy: Prince of the Yolkfolk, Fantasy World Dizzy, Fast Food, Kwik Snax, Spellbound Dizzy, Treasure Island Dizzy.
This isn’t strictly speaking a mahjong game; instead, it’s a version of mahjong solitaire, in which 144 mahjong tiles are arranged randomly in a turtle-like formation, and you have to match two free tiles at a time. A tile is considered ‘free’ if it is not surrounded by tiles to its left and right, and there are no tiles on top of it. It sounds simple, but towards the end of a game, there may be tiles that you can’t remove – and there’s no way to undo your moves. This isn’t the only mahjong solitaire game for the CPC, and the tiles are drawn using the CPC’s low-resolution Mode 0, which makes the decorations look somewhat messy. The pseudo-3D viewpoint that is used means that you often have to spend time revealing tiles hidden behind other tiles, which can become an annoyance. It still offers a challenge, but it would have been better if it used the CPC’s four-colour, medium-resolution Mode 1.
(Ubi Soft, 1987)
- Knowledge of French is required in order to play this game properly.
The Kingdom of the Unicorns has fallen under the malign influence of the Master of Souls. A team of four brave heroes has travelled from afar to defeat him and restore harmony to the land. This French role-playing game is heavily inspired by Dungeons & Dragons, and it features all the typical elements of the genre – exploring dungeons, conversing with friendly characters, engaging in combat with not so friendly characters, gathering objects, and finding secret passages and keys to open doors. However, right from the moment you enter the dungeon, you’ll find that making any progress is painfully slow. Nearly every action, no matter how minor or trivial, results in the game having to read data from the disc. It’s a shame, because the graphics are very nice indeed and there’s a lot of exploring to be done and secrets to be uncovered.
- Knowledge of French is required in order to play this game properly.
A long time ago, the sorcerer Xarton cast a curse on the family of a man who had witnessed him using his book of spells. Now only one descendant of that family remains – a man called Tom. While exploring a cave, you stumbled upon Xarton’s diary, and read that he wanted to create a machine which would allow him to meet a race of aliens. Your task is to build this machine, but first you must heal Tom, who has become ill, and then find seven keys which will open the stone coffin where the book of spells is stored. If you’ve played French text adventures, you will know that while the graphics are often well drawn, there is not much actual text to read, leaving you to guess what objects might be in the rooms you visit. This game takes this concept to extremes, and getting anywhere is frustrating. For me, this is probably the worst game that Lankhor released.
For centuries, the kingdom of Neptune has fought with the Atlanteans for control of the oceans. Now the Atlanteans have cast a spell on Neptune, and unless this spell can be overcome, the world will suffer catastrophic storms and floods. Can secret agent Karl Adrix succeed where the Neptunians have failed? This is the fourth in a series of six games starring Karl Adrix, and if you’ve played any of the previous games, you’ll know what to expect – colourful graphics, the same music, exploring rooms and collecting objects. Like the third game, 20000 Avant JC, there are too many areas where you can fall and become trapped because you can’t get access to a backpack to enable you to swim upwards, and this basically ends the game. Many of the exits are also arranged in a confusing and illogical manner, which some players may find annoying.
The mysterious Cosmic Sisters have sent Mambo to a military base deep within the Amazon jungle where he must disarm some nuclear missiles that are ready to be launched. You can’t help laughing at such a daft plot, but you won’t get a great deal of fun from playing this game. As Mambo, you must find and beat up four captains who hold the target codes for the missiles, and there are also two switches which need to be activated before you can disarm the missiles. You must also watch out for mines; if you step on one, you’ll become stuck and must use some precise timing to deactivate it, or you’ll lose energy – and you can’t jump over them! The game is an obvious Spectrum port and it looks unappealing, and while the sound effects are OK, the tune at the beginning of the game is terrible.
(Krisalis Software, 1990)
Here’s a football game based on one of the most famous football clubs in the world. The game is noteworthy for mixing both arcade and strategy; you play matches like any other arcade-based football game, but you can also buy and sell players on the transfer market, and train them in certain techniques and increase their fitness. Some people might like this, but I felt that this is rather technical and adds an unnecessary level of complexity. But even if this was omitted from the game, I still wouldn’t like it. The action during the match is fast and there’s nothing wrong with the graphics or scrolling, but controlling the players is really difficult – they seem to have a mind of their own – and getting hold of the ball while it’s in the air also seems to be impossible.
Our hero Mandarino has been recruited by the resistance to infiltrate a secret enemy base called the Dying Orange, where a small creature is being held captive. Mandarino must explore the base and rescue the creature, but he will need to find some energy cells as well, in order to activate an emergency walkway that will enable him to escape from the base. Behind the rather crazy plot is a nice little platform game. There’s nothing remarkable about it – there is the usual range of enemies to shoot or avoid, traps to dodge or jump across, and locks to be deactivated. The graphics are colourful but functional, although it has to be said that the music isn’t great and becomes a bit annoying after a while. Mandarino is easy to control, particularly when jumping, and it’s not a bad game overall.
Reviewed by Guillaume Chalard
This is a role-playing game, much like the Ultima series, in which you lead a party through forests, swamps and dungeons. The map is huge, there are many places to explore and monsters to fight. Well, the graphics are really awful, but it isn’t a problem in this kind of game. The parser helps you find the right commands (for instance, A means ‘attack’, D means ‘enter dungeon’, and so on), so it’s rather easy to play. A good and complex game. Try it if you love killing dragons and unlocking chests, and don’t mind blocky graphics and poor sound effects.