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(c) 2000 James Burrows

   
 
   
  Review by
Kati Hamza
(Chuck Vomit)

 

 
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!

Police Quest --
In Pursuit of the Death Angel
1987 Sierra On-Line
Programmed by Greg Rowland, Al Lowe, Scott Murphy & Ken Williams

 
Most text of the present article comes from the review published in the fiftieth issue of the British C64 magazine ZZAP!64 (street date: May 18th, 1989).
 


The days are getting longer -- loads more hours to go out stalking billy-goats and bashing them over the head. Loads more time to pick lizards out of the mud under Ludlow Bridge and roast them really slowly over a charcoal fire. Whoarr! Good job we didn't get many games in this month 'cos I've been far too busy chasing all those cutey little, baa baa lambs. Beat 'em, bash 'em, roast 'em, fry 'em, mash 'em, grill 'em -- anyway you like 'em -- EAT 'EM. Schlllurrrp!

In fact there's one of them really stupid looking little jumped up namby pamby billy-goats coming down Chuck's slimy way right now. Think I'll lust tell you lot to slope off and jet down to a bit of serious afternoon snacking . . . Bit of an unusual looking billy-goat that. Funny shaped head. Looks a bit like a helmet, actually. Still, might as well tuck in -- I've only had a slop bucket of lizard's stew and pile of lizard plop today and I'M STARVING. Yeah -- FOOD!

BANG!

. . . AAAAAAAAAAAARRRRRRRGGGGGGG GHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!
.

 

 

POLICE QUEST
Sierra/Activision, Amiga 24.99

 

nd you thought life in the good old US of A was all donuts and MacDonald's -- even for cops? Yeah, well, you shouldn't believe all those cute things they tell you in Sesame Street (Who ever heard of a talking bird, anyway?) On the other hand, no one in their right mind would believe all that screeching tyre and designer jumper Miami Vice stuff either.

So what's it really like for your average, ordinary cop wearing out shoe leather on the streets? No lizard's toenail, bumper Christmas party, I can tell you. There's loads of driving around and performing petty traffic duty for a start. And when you do finally get called to the scene of a crime, you've got to be pretty sure you follow the correct procedures for arresting, searching, calling for backup. Oh yeah -- and you hardly ever end up shooting . . . Bah! Spoilsports!

Well, now you can have a go at being one of these well hard routine sort of street cops yourself -- in a combination of glorious Sierra interactive 3D and typed in verbal commands.

It all starts out at police headquarters in Lytton. This is your comfy as a troll's hole base: come back at the end of the day for a shower (bleuch!), change back into civilian clothes, use the computer to follow up leads (you can actually type in data), get your daily briefing from the captain -- the usual routine.

Your patrol car's just outside and most of the action involves manoeuvring it about an aerial view map of Lytton's streets. The idea is that once you're out of the station, you're free to investigate some of the city's locations, pull people up for driving offences and respond to radio alerts. Once you get good enough at that, you might even be promoted to going undercover and helping to rid the city of the notorious drug-dealer, Death Angel, for the good of the force!

That's the idea anyway. In practise, the actual driving around is so awkward that if you survive long enough to get to the scene of more than one incident, you're so brilliant you should be given a life-long supply of lizard legs and promoted to Chief of Police immediately. It takes just one tiny mistake with the mouse on the map for your car to career into the sidewalk and that's the end of the game. Oh yeah -- and if you mess up one bit of police procedure (like not walking round your car first before you leave the car park), that's the end of your police career -- dead realistic that. I know there's a save game option but it still seems like a pretty big cop out (geddit) to expect you to keep on saving every five seconds just in case you get thrown out of the game -- again.

Survive long enough to actually get to any action and you're in for a big disappointment. The parser doesn't always understand the most obvious investigative questions (say about a number plate) and all you end up doing is performing a few routine actions. Maybe it gets more involved later on but I doubt you'll want to stay around that long.

Maybe if you like Sierra games and can ignore all the sudden death situations they bung in as a matter of course and don't mind some pretty basic graphics, you might get a fair bit of fun out of this. As for me, I can do without loads of really annoying death scenes, uninteresting gameplay and not-very-exciting interactive graphics -- especially for 25 quid. Think I'll buy myself a policeman's hat and start looking important down Ludlow Bridge instead -- it's cheaper and there's a lot more scope for violence. Huaaargh!

 
Atmosphere 49%
Puzzle Factor 51%
Interaction 59%
Lastability 40%

Overall

48%
 


If you want 8-bit walkthroughs, visit
Jacob Gunness
' Classic Adventures Solution Archive or
Martin Brunner's C64 Adventure Game Solutions Site

Some more Police Quest screenshots:

Htmlized by Dimitris Kiminas (13 Oct 2007)
Only the first two of the review screenshots existed in the original.

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