Personal Compuer Games

The King/Donkey King
By Microdeal
Dragon 32

Published in Personal Computer Games #1

The King

This is a version of the curiously named arcade game 'Donkey Kong'. The scenario is an old warehouse where a huge gorilla (clearly a relative of King Kong) is holding a young woman prisoner. Each of the four frames has a different configuration of horizontal girders linked by ladders, with the belligerent ape and his terrified captive at the top.

To start with, your job is simply to climb from the bottom of the screen to the top and rescue the girl. This is complicated by the endless supply of barrels which are consistently hurled at you by the gorilla.

You use the joystick to control a little character who leaps when you press the fire button. Apart from jumping over the barrels, your only defence is to smash them with a mallet, of which two are available at different levels of the screen.

The King

These mallets will destroy the fireballs which wander about the place. But possession of them is temporary, and you cannot climb any ladders while holding one.

If you reach the top on the first frame, the scene changes. Now you run over eight 'plugs' symmetrically positioned in the structure. These then disappear - causing the girders to collapse and the gorilla to fall to the floor. This time there are no barrels but plenty of fireballs.

As the game goes on, all sorts of further hazards appear. These include conveyor belts, furnaces and lifts, each demanding a different strategy.

The King

I have always felt this game was one of the most interesting and challenging around, and this version is one of the best you'll find on a micro. It offers two different playing speeds, for one or two players, with the option of a 'practice' game in which you get 12 men instead of three. Full instructions are available at the beginning.

Three copies of The King are included on the tape, giving three colour schemes. The third is in the highest resolution graphics. It is thus less colourful than the other two, but was my favourite, with crisp detailed graphics almost up to the standard of its arcade peer.

If I had to recommend one arcade type game to a Dragon owner, this is the one I'd choose,

Dick Olney

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