Fantastic Voyage (AMSOFT) Review | Amstrad Computer User - Everygamegoing

Amstrad Computer User

Fantastic Voyage
By Amsoft
Amstrad CPC464

Published in Amstrad Computer User #9

Fantastic Voyage

Fantastic Voyage by J. R. Edwards is another drive around the maze game. The plot consists of your being the microscopic doctor implanted in an incredibly sick human; your task is to fight the infection that periodically threatens the human's life. On loading, the game informs you of the keys to use and asks you to press enter. The screen then clears to an option menu of Keyboard, Joystick, Redefine the keys or Start the game and your Arnold begins to play a melodious version of the theme from Dr. Kildare.

You start your mission in the patient's mouth where you find the first part of the seven that make up your submarine and offers you a route out of medicine. This submarine has to be built in the patient's brain which requires moving the various parts, as they are found, through the body. As you move through the body you encounter various minor infections that threaten your existence but not the patient's - these can be easily shot with your laser.

The main aim of the game, apart from escape, is to prevent the patient from dying. The patient's death can come about from various diseases but, by means of a map of the whole body, your information display shows you the exact position of the infection. If you do not reach the infection in time, the patient's temperature rises slowly at first but increases the longer you allow the infection to build up until he dies, ending the game. If you have tackled enough illnesses to reach the high score league you are presented with an option to enter your initials.

The movement through the body consists of a graphic display in mode I that shows your current position, for instance, the right hepatic vein. There is always a definite route through the section of body that you currently reside in but it may be blocked with cholesterol, in some places this can be shot, in others it presents a block to your route resulting in the need for a detour. The main comment about the display is that the patient seems to be "wired up" very strangely indeed. If you proceed down the hepatic artery then turn to the left, you enter the left kidney; if you then return to the hepatic artery and proceed downwards and take the next left, you enter the right kidney. There also seems to be two bladders since you cannot exit from the left kidney into the bladder and then exit from the bladder to the right kidney, but you can enter another bladder from the right kidney. A point I disliked about the game was that if you did not bump into enough red blood cells, rather than just losing a life, you went first red then invisible which in a maze game makes it very difficult to drive around, I would have preferred to have been docked a life, which I tended to do deliberately to restore myself from invisibility.

Another annoying aspect of the display was that a beep was issued at each change of screen. There appeared to be no means to turn this off, although, as a redeeming feature, the screen display scrolled very quickly as each new area was entered. Also, on the subject of the screen presentation, there was the status display which showed with a single pixel marker where in the body you were currently situated and when an infection appeared with a character marker, where the infection lay.