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This game is crudsville. The graphics are boring and dull, the backdrops are boring and dull, the sound is boring and dull and the scenario is boring and dull too. There's not much more to say about it apart from steer well clear of it.



What a disappointment! I remember this being the first ever budget CRASH Smash (golly, was that a long time ago)! Not much has changed except that it looked so much better on the Spectrum than it does now, nearly two years later, on the 64. I'm sure it played better too, or has time made me see it through rose-tinted spectacles? Okay, so they released it on the 64 some time back too, but why bother now? Firebird can do better than this -- surely anyone can do better than this?




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!
1984 Firebird
Programmed by Kevin Moughtin
Most text of the present article comes from the review published in the fifteenth issue of the British C64 magazine ZZAP!64 (street date: June 12th, 1986).

Firebird, 1.99 cass, joystick or keys

Strewn across twenty decks of a ghostly pirate Galleon are various items of booty just waiting to be picked up by Jim the cabin boy. When Jim walks over one of the objects, it is picked up automatically. However, there are numerous colour-coded doors in the way and for these, Jim needs the correct colour key to pass through. Since he can only carry one key at a time, this can be something of a problem.

Each screen is four docks deep, and accessible via ladders. Some doors are placed behind Jim which require no key to pass through and lead to other screens. Sometimes it's necessary to exit from one screen, reach a lower deck on the next and then return to the original to finish collecting items there, such is the layout of doors and ladders.

Trapdoors hidden around the screens bring Jim to a swift demise should he fall foul of one, and some of the treasure is boobytrapped. After a short while the undead, ghost pirates wielding swords, ghost rats looking for a nibble and ghost parrots by the dozen, become disturbed and start wandering around. Bumping into one of them is bad for Jim's health.

Occasionally, the layout of the decks themselves are a problem. It becomes necessary for Jim to use fast moving lifts to get from one level to another and timing has to be very precise. Jim may look overweight, but he can easily slip through the slightest gap to his doom.

If all of the treasure from the galleon's twenty decks is collected, then Jim has 45 seconds to locate a bronze key and use it to get through to the next level. Clearing up the booty a second and third time requires a search for a silver or gold key respectively. On each level the speed and difficulty of the game increases, making the quest for loot considerably harder.


There's no doubt about it -- this game is dire. The graphics are thoroughly appalling in their simplicity. Little or no effort has gone into making them worth looking at and the overall effect is crude and unsatisfying. The rest of the game depends on playability. Well, it is easy to play (on the first level at least). In fact it's too easy. Hardly anything happens that could liven up this dull affair. The speed of the single-colour ghosts could hardly challenge the most inept players and you soon find yourself on the downhill road to monotony. The fact that this game is only cheap is no excuse at all. Mastertronic have already shown that cheap games can be superb, but this is something that has obviously escaped Firebird's attention.


Presentation 50%

Cheat mode, otherwise nothing much.

Graphics 35%
Very simple, awful colours.

Sound 24%
Pretty yucky tune and spot FX

Hookability 18%
Easy to get into but what's the point?

Lastability 15%
Instantly forgettable.

Value For Money 20%

Overall 16%
Not a good game for Firebird to release at any price.



Htmlized by Dimitris Kiminas (2 Mar 2006)

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