is, by no doubt, a classic. After playing for a while,
you get a real sense of isolation, probably intended
by the designers. The landscape is sparse, it seems
as though there isn't much to do in this game, but that
is just on the surface (of both the gameplay and the
gameworld!) You really do have to give it a chance,
and if you do, you might find yourself hooked in trying
to either escape from the planet, or looking for some
of it's hidden features.
graphics are very basic by today's standards (hey, it's
a C64!!!!), but when you think about it, look at how
smooth they are. At least you do actually get a real
feeling of motion. Occassionally you don't even get
that in games today! You begin by crashing into the
planet, you have no vehicle..... yes, you can get out
and walk around, always nice in a game I think. You
wander around a bit... what's this? another vehicle....
you get a message... you can buy the vehicle and fly
around! Time to explore....
flying around a bit, you might get a job offer. Just
the thing for someone who is marooned, and spent over
half of his cash on his new vehicle. You read your console,
and note down where to go for your briefing. The location
is given as co-ordinates. Off you go! Communication
is provided via your console unit. You can receive and
reply to messages here and view your speed, altitude
and location. Like the rest of the game, simple, but
you take up job offers and explore a little more, you
realise that you are becoming more and more tangled
within a local conflict between 2 warring factions.
You are sent on spying missions and asked to steal certain
technologies. These missions help you explore the gameworld,
supply you with needed credits, and give you more incentive
to do your own thing and find new areas. Never forget
your primary objective though... Escape from Targ!
puzzles in the game are quite simple, but can, on occasion
take some thought. It's only when you have explored
do you realise that you have stumbled upon an item that
could get you into a certain area, or solve a puzzle
you came across earlier.
back, explore and enjoy Mercenary. It may seem simple
and too basic, but as I mentioned before, give it a
chance and you will discover it has so much more to
offer! If you enjoyed Mercenary, there is a follow up,
The Second City, and a sequel on the Amiga called Damocles
(one of the greatest games created IMHO).
yes..... try and find 'the cheese' :)
by Tony Peters
- a.k.a "Red Snapper" (20 July 2000)
"Games of the Week!"