Compendium (Gremlin) Review | Amstrad Action - Everygamegoing

Amstrad Action


Compendium
By Gremlin
Amstrad CPC464

 
Published in Amstrad Action #30

Compendiums have been around for a long time. Few Christmasses went by without one turning up amongst the presents. They usually looked cheap and were played with a few times and then put in a cupboard and forgotten about. Now you can play some of those old games in a slightly modified form on your computer.

Up to four people can take part in the game with each player being represented by a member of the Wink family. There are four games in the box: Ludo, Snakes and Hazards, Shove-a-Sledge and Tiddly Drinks. Ludo and Snakes And Hazards are the standard games with only minor differences. In both games, the pieces used are Ralph, Victoria, Tiny Tim and Sniffer. The differences being that if you bump into one or other, any other character on the board your turn will end and next player's begins. In Snakes And Hazards there are also some objects that stop your movement because you piece likes it. Sniffer the dog likes lampposts and bones for example.

In Shove-a-Sledge, you push Tiny Tim on a sledge and try to make him stop in each of ten different zones in the snow. The first player to stop him in all ten zones wins the game. In Tiddly Drinks the family is in the local pub. Dad is out on a drinking spree and you have to catch the glasses that he throws into the air - after draining them of the contents. The winner is the one that caught most glasses by closing time.

Every game has at least one tune. They're all very good and it makes a change for a game to have such variety in the music. The graphics are a little simple, but they do their job well enough in showing what's going on.

This is definitely a game that only young players will find enjoyable. There's so little skill needed and such a lot of luck that it provides virtually no challenge.

Second Opinion

Not exactly my idea of nostalgia or of long-lasting entertainment. A few giggles may be had, particularly in multi-player games but hardly the sort of thing you'll play for long. I'm getting bored of saying it but where's the lasting challenge to keep you at the keyboard for weeks, months and years, never mind minutes?

Green Screen View

Everything's easy enough to see.

The Verdict

Graphics 54% P. Background graphics look good. N. Not much detail on the characters.

Sonics 87% P. Lots of tunes and they all sound good.

Grab Factor 56% P. Initially, it's a jolly piece of nostalgic fun. N. Rapidly loses its challenge.

Staying Power 43% N. Does anyone still play games like Snakes and Ladders? N. Even four different games doesn't hold you for long.

Overall 49% It's more fun sitting around the board playing a game rather than doing the same on a computer.

GBH