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"Games of the Week!"

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I always thought Conan was big, strong and crude until I saw the 'sprites' used in this game: small, flickery and crude (well, at least they got something right!). The game itself wasn't a lot better than the graphics: a fairly run of the mill platform game with tacky controls and nothing to bring me back for more, other than to write this comment.



It's a shame that the graphics and game-feel are so abysmal -- otherwise this would be a good game. As it stands, it plays frustratingly slowly with fiddly control. Although some screens offer plenty of challenge and puzzles, the fact that there are only seven is very disappointing for a disk-based program. I found it too frustrating to be classed as a decent game.



This hunky hero doesn't look up to much, but he's a little deceptive. The action is quite compulsive and I wasn't put off too much by the yukky graphics. I enjoyed some of the ideas, like bubbles and the boomerang sword, along with the other
Bruce Lee-like platform action.



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 Datasoft
Programmed by Ron J. Fortier & John Butrovich
Most text of the present article comes from the review published in the third issue of the British C64 magazine ZZAP!64 (July 1985).

US Gold/Datasoft, 14.95 disk, joystick only

O Seven screens of platform action

The latest addition to US Gold's 'Famous Faces' range puts you in the surreal world of the film character Conan the Barbarian. In a similar fashion to Bruce Lee you have to work your way through various platform screens to seek and destroy the villainous Volta.

On each of the seven screens there is an exit. On the first two screens it is clearly marked and all you have to do is run and jump your way to it. After level two you start having to collect gems and put them in their holders before being able to go out of the screen. Sometimes a door may unlock or something may appear that you can ride on, which will take you to the exit.

The first few screens of the game are reasonably easy, but later on the going gets very tough, as you have to ride on bubbles and destroy dragons. On levels six and seven there are Van Der Graff generators and stars which need to be struck with your sword before turning into gems.

Conan has to get from the top right to the bottom
left using the tree platforms and ladders. Watch
out for the water and the spikes though.

You have three men and ten swords at the start, but you have a chance to earn more of these on later levels. You can do this by picking up the swords lying around and catching the friendly bird which flaps about the more inaccessible part of the screen.

The graphics are pathetic -- they wouldn't go amiss on a 1982 game. Indeed, they appear to have been designed by a ZX81 graphics programmer, as the main character features an annoying flicker. The sound is disappointing too: the actual notes are great, but voices used are unimaginative, reedy and grating.

Animation is appalling -- Conan looks more like a 70s trendy: he's wearing bell ends and has long hair. The various nasty creatures trundle about with hardly a pixel moving, and the scenery is drab with few colours and details.



There are various wicked creatures which lust after Conan's blood. There also exist some traps in which Conan can lose a life.

BAT: This flaps about and follows a distinct pattern. Earn 750 points by killing it with your sword.

DRAGONFLY: The same as the bat, with similar score.

LEAPERS: These drop from the screen and wander down to the bottom of the screen. Kill 'em and you'll get 1,000 points apiece.

DRAGON: Flaps up and down the screen and must be destroyed for you to continue. You also get a meaty 2,500-point bonus for each one destroyed!

EYEBALLS: These chase you about and have to be dealt with like the dragons. They too are worth 2,500 points.

CRAWLY THINGS: No, not Oric owners -- scorpions and the like. They cannot be destroyed but must be jumped over. They kill you on touch so don't go near them.

POOLS, LAVA and SPIKES: Jump these and don't fall into them.

76% A nice disk package and instructions but individual screen loading is annoying.
Familiar action from Bruce Lee and other platform derivatives.
38% Terrible main character animation, simple colours and unimpressive enemies.
Cracking screens is compulsive as ever.
58% Simple title tune and straightforward effects.
There are only seven screens and despite being tough they won't last long.
32% Can't figure out why it's only disk-based and for this type of game it's overpriced.


Htmlized by Dimitris Kiminas (12 December 2001)

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