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After hearing the excellent music and seeing the jolly graphics I thought that the game was going to be a really good one. Unfortunately it's bo-o-o-oring, with screen after screen of the same action. It never seems to get much harder either and with extra lives coming thick and fast it's possible to go on for ages before the game ends -- dullsville! Oh well, good graphics and sound maketh not a game, as the ancient Chinese proverb goes . . .
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Comic Bakery looks and sounds delightful, but that's about it. Colour is used to good effect, the sprites are appealing and the Martin Galway soundtrack works well, but unfortunately a game is lacking to complement these features. Comic Bakery is one of the most boring games I have ever played. Purchase at leisure and repent with haste.
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Welcome to Game of the Week! Each week there will be a new featured game on this page. The game may be good, average or diabolically bad, it really doesn't matter! Just look at the pics, read the text and enjoy the nostalgia! :-) Game of the Week! is open to contributions so if you would like to contribute a game article for this page you're more than welcome to! Every article we receive will be considered!
Comic Bakery
1986 Imagine/Konami
Programmed by Colin Gretsy
 
Most text of the present article comes from the review published in the twelfth issue of the British C64 magazine ZZAP!64 (street date: March 13th, 1986).
 

COMIC BAKERY
Imagine, 8.95 cass, joystick only


Latest in the saga of Imagine's acquisition of 64 conversion rights to Konami arcade games is the release of Comic Bakery. The scenario, as with a most Japanese originated ones, is a bit strange. Joe the baker has to bake as many loaves as possible and get them to the baker's shop before the five o'clock van leaves. What's so strange about that you ask? Well, for some totally unaccounted and probably strange reason, racoons have broken into old Joe's bakery and have taken it into their heads to disrupt, disturb and generally hassle the old man. Obviously not an animal lover by any degree, Joe has equipped himself with a stun gun to cope with the pesky Procyon lotor. Any racoons passing Joe's path get a stun blast and are kicked off the screen before they get a chance to reawaken.

The main trouble caused by the racoon invasion is their pre-deliction to interfere with the automatic baking machines, of which there are three. In the normal course of operation, loaves are churned out from the first machine and progress along a conveyor belt towards the awaiting van. Two other machines are placed along the conveyor that perform baker-like operations on the travelling bread. The racoons' favourite pastime is turning off the bread processing machinery, causing it to pile up.

Another annoying habit of one particular animal running up and down a gantry above the bread-carrying belt is leaning over and swiping the odd pre-baked loaf. Come five o'clock and the baker van leaves, carrying any loaves that may have got through, distributing them to the shop to feed any fasting customers. Each tasty snack delivered gains handy bonus points.

The screen is split midway to display the strange goings on in Joe's place. Joe constantly sits in the middle of the lower screen, which shows the background around him. Moving left and right causes the bakery to scroll around the corpulent baker. Fat though the sprite undeniably is, there's still life left in the porky old bloke since pushing upwards sends Joe skyward in a surprisingly athletic jump. This is most handy for leaping errant racoons, the touch of which is deadly to fat bakers. Another defence against racoons is the stun gun. This is not an infinite weapon and too much zapping depletes its charge, indicated at the top of the screen. After a brief pause the charge builds up again.

Racoons trot on from the left or right of the screen and a quick stun from your gun knocks them senseless to the floor. Walking into a racoon in its defenceless state sends it careening from your foot and off the screen. The kleptomaniac animal that steals the bread can also be zapped with a stun ray, but there's no way of knocking it off screen.

Above the main action a scanner is provided that also includes a clock counting towards five in the afternoon. The scanner shows the whole length of the bakery, with the awaiting van at the far end. Racoons aren't detailed on the scanner, though their positions are fairly constant. Throughout there's the now ubiquitous Martin Galway music. There's even the Hypersports music on the loader, though it's been slowed down into a reggae version.

     

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Despite the very pretty graphics and nice sound, Imagine have been stuck with an awful game all along and there can't have been much they could do to change it.
Comic Bakery is so dull. The main reason for its yawn appeal is that it's so easy. I'm no mega gamester but progressing up through the screens is not a task I'd place on my top ten hard things to do list. It's a real shame since the people involved do seem to be talented -- to make them produce boring tat like Comic Bakery is really a sin. A little tiring is the now 'essential' Martin Galway; his work is getting as boring as Hubbard's, not because of the musical content but just because of the 'instruments' he uses. I find it hard to say anything good about Comic Bakery except the programmers have made the best of a bad job.
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Presentation 88%
Very jolly attempt that manages to appeal.

Graphics 89%
Lovely racoon sprites coupled with some very nice Art Deco looking machinery.

Sound 91%
Typically cool Martin Galway music and effects.

Hookability 39%
This is where things get bad. Comic Bakery is instantly boring, which means . . .

Lastability 30%
. . . play it once and you won't want to again.

Value For Money 31%
With gameplay like this it should be budget. The price asked is near ludicrus.

Overall 35%
Just not worth anyone's money or time, especially Imagine's.

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Htmlized by Dimitris Kiminas (27 Jan 2005)

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