Leather Goddesses Of Phobos (Infocom/Activision) Review | Computer Gamer - Everygamegoing

Computer Gamer

Leather Goddesses Of Phobos
By Infocom
Commodore 64/128

Published in Computer Gamer #21

Infocom tread the fine line between good and bad taste with their latest adventure

The Leather Goddesses Of Phobos

Any new game from Infocom is guaranteed to have adventurers everywhere licking their lips in anticipation although in The Leather Goddesses Of Phobos, licking your lips is likely to be the least of your problems. A spoof based on those pulp comics of the 1930s, The Leather Goddesses Of Phobos is most likely to be discussed for its three levels of naughtiness.

Depending on how broadminded you are (and how old) you can now read those superb Infocom descriptions in either tame, suggestive or lewd styles. Personally, I have little doubt which level everyone will choose and I suspect that it is the one most likely to cause Mary Whitehouse to put pen to paper. (Incidentally, if she's such a goody-goody as she claims to be, how does she know what all these naughty words mean?)

Suffice it to say that the only difference between levels is the odd extra descriptive sentence concerning some of the odder perversions and I shall say no more about them.

The game starts with you in a sleazy bar with the urge to reieve your aching bladder. The sex of your character is determined on the basis of which loo you choose to relieve yourself in. You are swiftly transported to some distant planet (Mars) where you find yourself in a cell wearing only bronze underwear to cover your modesty.

Escape is not too difficult (the door is unlocked) and you soon find yourself a companion, Trent, who tags along somewhat like Thorin in The Hobbit, although Trent does appear to play an important part in the game. Described as being strng and thick, he nevertheless comes up with plans to get out of your predicament and thus save the world. This involves manufacturing a Super-duper Anti-Leather Goddesses of Phobos Attack Machine and he gives you a parts list which includes a six foot rubber hose, a white mouse and an 82 degree angle.

The Leather Goddesses, by the way, are planning to capture the Earth and make everybody their personal pleasure slaves.

Moving round the game involves the use of black circles which act as teleport systems. You will have encounters with Venus fly traps on Venus (where else?) as well as hordes of travelling salesmen. There is a Sultan who asks you a riddle - instant death if you answer incorrectly or a pleasurable time with one of his wives if by some chance you fluke the right response. Secret messages must be decoded and you must also explore all the Martian docks. The author has great fun here. There's the Wattz-Up Dock and the Donald Dock, etc, etc.

The packaging with the game is, as you would expect from Infocom, excellent. There is the comc bok based on the story drawn in 3D, with a pair of 3D glasses to accompany it. Another unusual item is a scratch and sniff card. At various points in the game, you come across various odours and, by rubbing the appropriate spot on the card, you can sample the experience at first hand.

As usual with packaging, there are certain bits that you will need to be able to play the game so that piracy becomes pointless - an infinitely better system than any number of lensloks or colour-coded cards.

The game is great fun to play although, shock horror!, there is actually a spelling mistake! Be warned though, the game is about sex and some people may get very embarrassed by what they read. It is intended to be a spoof though and should not be taken too seriously.

Once again, Infocom have shown that there is no need to include graphics in an adventure. No pictures in an adventure. No pictures could ever do justice to their pages of atmospheric text, especially the one involving the yak!