By Elite
Commodore 64

Published in Zzap #22


Shaggy, Velma, Daphne, Fred and Scooby were driving along in the beaten up Mystery Machine when a strange rattling beneath the bonnet forced them to pull over. On examining the engine, they found the cause of the rattling - a secret stash of Scooby Snacks had blocked the distributor.

The gang were a mite miffed by this and were about to inflict untold damage on Scooby - when Daphne noticed an ominous looking castle on the hill and suggested they ask the occupant for help. So, leaving Scooby to guard the van, the foursome departed.

But little did they know that the castle on the hill was owned by a mad professor who chops people up into little pieces and stores them in specimen jars for future experiments. And surprise, surprise, that's exactly what happened to Shaggy, Velma, Daphne and Fred.


Scooby was hungry, so he decided to pop out for a bite to eat. He got lost and ended up inside the castle, where he found a Scooby Snack. It didn't take him long to realise that this meant his 'friends' were in trouble, and needed rescuing. Fast.

There are four levels to the castle and at the top of each is a member of the gang trapped inside a specimen jar. Scooby has run around the castle in an attempt to locate his chums and release them. As he moves, the screen scrolls with him.

Unfortunately, each level is inhabited by strange creatures determined to stop Scooby from releasing his friends. The only way Scooby can defend himself against these creatures is by hitting them. But he can only hit them if he's not moving. And if they get him, he faints with fear and loses one of six lives. When all his lives are lost, Scooby joins his friends as a future experiment for the professor. Fortunately, Scooby can gain extra lives by picking up Scooby Snacks, which are scattered around the castle.


On the first floor of the castle, Scooby encounters ghastly ghosts which jump out from behind closed doors. Hooded figures sneak up on him and try to knock him off his paws. The second level is full of deadly springy things which bounce out of dumb waiters. Skulls litter the floor and must be jumped over, and floors are separated by ladders which must be climbed.

Level three hosts more wicked-looking monsters. Ghoulfish float around exercising their huge elastic jaws. Ghosts from the first level make a re-appearance, and bats screech around at head height, causing Scooby to bend dwn and cover his eyes in fright!

The fourth and final level is guarded by monks with no faces, along with flying dumbells and rolling bowling balls.


If Scooby manages to negotiate these hazards and rescue his chums then, just like a bad dream, he has to start all over again...


It's funny how a Hanna-Barbera kiddies cartoon can suddenly become a Kung-Fu Master style beat-'em-up. But it has... and it's not very good.

If you took out the Scooby-Doo sprite and put in something else nobody would look twice at it. There were only four limited levels and once you've completed them the game starts all over again, without so much as a congratulatory screen - and it doesn't get any harder.

If you've been looking forward to Scooby-Doo and feel tempted to rush out and buy it, don't bother, it's not worth the effort.


I find it hard to believe that it has taken Elite over a year to produce a game of this quality. In eighteen months or so, Scooby-Doo has changed from a potentially exciting home computer equivalent of a laser-disc arcade adventure into a run-of-the-mill beat-'em-up.

It's quite playable, but far from impressive and I think it's a cheek to charge so such for so little - especially when you consider that when Scooby-Doo was first advertised, it cost £7.95!


The main problem with Scooby-Doo is that it hasn't inherited any of the humour from the cartoon series. All that's happened is that they've taken the characters, turned them into blocky sprites and made a tiresome bash-'em-up game out of it.

The creatures come at you too fast in relation to the speed at which you can turn to hit them, and this often resulted in a dead Scooby and a frustrated reviewer!

It's sad that Elite have spoilt such a great character by releasing a game as poor as this.


Presentation 81%
Attractive title screen, practice option and high-score table.

Graphics 53%
Chunky characters, simple animation and backdrops, and bland colour schemes.

Sound 51%
Uninspiring rendition of the Scooby-Doo theme tune, and a few simple spot FX.

Hookability 61%
Easy to get into, but not overly addictive.

Lastability 40%
Playable but monotonous with it.

Value For Money 32%
An expensive piece of budget quality software.

Overall 42%
A below average arcade game which fails to capture the flavour of the cartoon character.