Demoniak (Palace) Review | ST Format - Everygamegoing

ST Format

By Palace
Atari ST

Published in ST Format #23


You have to be pretty brave to release a standard text adventure nowadays, especially with games like The Secret Of Monkey Island about. But that's what Palace are doing with Demoniak.

Demoniak is the brainchild of Alan Grant, author of comic heroes like Judge Dredd. The plot concerns the efforts of four superheroes who try to prevent Demoniak from breaking through to our universe. The team consists of Johnny Sirius, a hybrid; Kyra Brand, a pyrokinetic; Madlok the wizard and Sondra Houdini, a psychic who can read other characters' minds.

You can also call on the services of the genetically-engineered super-scientist Doc Cortex. At any point you can become other characters - even enemies or people on another planet - and view the world through their eyes.


Demoniak is the first game to utilise the Pure Fiction system, Palace's much-touted new adventure framework. This claims to create a whole gameworld in which conversations, fights and so on and taking place no matter what you're doing. The artificially intelligent characters interact with you and each other, both on and off the screen.


There's a good graphic opening sequence, and at certain points you're presented with the odd full-screen picture, but there aren't many of them and the rest of the time you're staring at a familiar adventure text screen. The graphic screens themselves are fairly well drawn but nothing particularly special. Sound is only present during the opening sequence, except for a nice clicking sound every time you press a key.


If there's any justice in the world this game should shift in droves, but somehow it's unlikely. The plot is incredibly rich, the characters weird, and having Alan Grant write the story has certainly paid dividends. The Pure Fiction system works well too. Even so, it's hard to see quite why it's being hyped so heavily. The public just don't seem to be attracted to text adventures any more, particularly complex and innovative ones. Only imaginative punters need apply.

Ed Ricketts

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