Home Computing Weekly

The Wizard And The Princess
By Melbourne House
Commodore Vic 20

Published in Home Computing Weekly #11

"...This program will show you the extent of the possibilities for the Vic 20, both in terms of graphics and in terms of going beyond the memory limitations of the standard machine..." Thus begin the notes accompanying this five-part "adventure". Fortunately the program itself is better written.

In chapter one you wander slowly through some pretty countryside, looking for the wizard's castle. It is rather hard not to find it, and success is rewarded with a "Press SHIFT-RUN/STOP" message; on doing so you are propelled into chapter two. Here you are expected to stab a particularly handsome dragon in the throat, and unpleasantly easy it is too.

Chapter three is something else again; a three dimensional maze of great complexity and size. The program note suggests that you draw a map as the labyrinth is explored, and a good idea this is. The maze is very difficult to solve even so, but enjoyable all the while.

Chapter four lapses into mediocrity with a hunt for a blob (or "monster", as the program has it) in various rooms of the wizard's castle, and the program goes out on a low note with a very uninspired "poke the troll in the midriff" game.

Good use of program-defined graphics is not enough! Only the 20 x 20 maze redeems this adventure, but redeem it it does. Melbourne House is clearly aware of the great marketing potential of adventure games at present, but competition is stiff and standards high. Higher than this.


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