Magic (Macmillan) Review | Amstrad Action - Everygamegoing

Amstrad Action

By Macmillan
Amstrad CPC464

Published in Amstrad Action #5


This is the latest in Macmillan's rather strange software range. Strange, because the programs are neither games nor straightforward learning programs, but aim to combine the best of both these worlds. This program, unfortunately, seems to have ended up with the worst.

The program, with the accompanying booklet, is supposed to teach the young beginner the rudiments of magical skill; the booklet is useful and informative, but the program really is a waste of time.

In the booklet you get instructions and diagrams teaching you how to perform a number of classic magic tricks such as making a coin disappear, producing an egg from nowhere or finding a card chosen by a member of the audience. The program aims to let you rehearse these tricks with the aid of "a unique assistant - your computer".

Well, give me a person any day. The graphics represent a stage with curtains and flickering footlights. You rehearse the trick with the computer. For instance, in 'Number divination' a series of figures will appear. You, the magician, key in what you think should be correct. If you're right, a crocodile will emerge from a box and gobble up the number. It's pretty boring, but if you stick at it, it will probably instill the magical routine in your memory.

You can also sequence a complete show and choose the musical accompaniment from a number of tunes. Then you can go through the whole tiling with your "unique assistant".

The trouble with this program is that it will appeal only to those with a prior interest in magic and will pretty quickly exhaust even their patience and attention.

Second Opinion

This game didn't conjure up much excitement in me except for when I decided to make it do a disappearing act. Everything is so long and drawn out that it hardly seems worth finding out the secrets of the trick because it won't interest anyone for long as an actual show. Most of the graphics were uninspiring and even the varied tunes didn't raise much interest. If I were you, I'd just buy a book - the program is superfluous and too much like hard work getting through.

Good News

P. The booklet.

Bad News

N. Neither one thing nor another.
N. Very dull if you've no interest in magic.
N. Very dull even if you do have an interest in magic.

Peter Connor

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