Amstrad Action

The Sacred Armour Of Antiriad

Author: Bob Wade
Publisher: Palace
Machine: Amstrad CPC464

Published in Amstrad Action #17

The Sacred Armour Of Antiriad

If prizes were awarded for game names, this would be a real winner. Fortunately the game shows the same imagination as the title and has the same attention to detail and graphic excellence as Palace's previous games. Once again they've managed to defy conventional game formats by not only having a well-animated character running and jumping around but also enabling him to fly in the sacred armour.

The game is accompanied by a comic-book that sets the scene nicely but can't compete with the delightful graphics within the program. The task is to find the sacred armour - which is in fact a highly advanced radiation suit. You then have to find and attach another four pieces of equipment that give you the power to attack an alien stronghold.

Tal, the character you control, is a muscular, well-animated man. He can not only run and jump about but also throw rocks to defend himself. The 2D flick-screen locations are composed of several areas, like forest, ruins and volcano, and contain many varied features. Getting about on foot can prove difficult: it requires platform-jumping skills and battling against many troublesome aliens.

The Sacred Armour Of Antiriad

Aliens come in many varieties. All can prove dangerous. Some patrol droids follow movement patterns; others will home in on your Tal if you give them the time. In the forest he'll find sloths that grab at him; elsewhere are acid drops that splash from the ceiling, gunners who sit in large chairs and blast plasma bolts, and flame dragons who breathe deadly fire. He can destroy some of these by throwing rocks at them, but others are invulnerable. Even the vulnerable ones may require several hits.

Once he's found the armour, Tal's problems are just beginning: now he's got to get the four attachments for it. These enable him to fly, shoot, withstand radiation and destroy the alien stronghold. They aren't easy to find. The simplest are the anti-gravity boots that let Tal get the armour into the air.

When he's inside the armour, any attacks sap its energy; more is eventually required to keep it flying. When he's outside the suit, it saps his own energy until he loses one of the five lives. The suit's energy can be replenished with power cells that are scattered among the locations, and his stamina can be restored by resting inside the suit. You'll quickly find these resources under a great strain, because the aliens reappear wher he returns to a screen where he'd already killed them.

The Sacred Armour Of Antiriad

As well as the marvellous graphics, there is an excellent title tune. The gameplay is a little frustrating at first but once you find the suit and the anti-gravity boots, it opens up into a game with many possibilities and lots of enjoyment. The animation is excellent for Tal; the seated gunner also looks good with only some small movements. Should be a tough nut to crack but you'll enjoy every minute.

Second Opinion

Remember seeing Sorcery for the first time? That's the kind of effect Antiriad had on me. Graphics, title music, sound effects, animation, gameplay - in fact everything! - is just perfect. It is a joy watching the game in progress. Tal is wonderfully animated - his heavy, plodding stride is very realistic. Once inside the armour he can fly, and many new breath-taking screens will be accessible. This is one game you won't put down till it's conquered.

Green Screen View

Most things are clear and easily seen.

First Day Target Score

The Sacred Armour Of Antiriad

Find anti-grav boots.

Good News

P. Excellent use of colour.
P. Great animation and graphic designs.
P. Good title tune.
P. Tough game to crack.
P. The suit and its extra features add important variety.

Bad News

N. Some situations are too difficult to escape unscathed.

Bob Wade

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