Imagination (Firebird) Review | Commodore User - Everygamegoing

Commodore User

By Firebird
Commodore 64/128

Published in Commodore User #43


In yet another game from Peter Torrence, you find a dusty old disc under a pile of games in the corner of a shop. Playing the four games on the disc leads into four mini-adventures which combine into one whole. The last thing I would do is to insert a dust-covered disc into my computer, but then do the people who write the inlay blurbs know anything about computers?

I reckon an American device can legitimately be spelled the American way. I will forgive the program for not accepting the American spelling of disc (DISK), as the Ed slavishly changes all the Ks to Cs in anything I submit to him [You betcha, KC - Ed] It is annoying, nevertheless, to find it is not an acceptable alternative in the game.

The four games within the adventure are a sort of satire on existing computer games. The first one takes you inside a small AA Box with an AA Timelord, who gives you your quest and a couple of pointers to help you on your way. Discover the number of stars in the universe with the help of a computer part and a spacesuit.

Well, I soon found the spacesuit, but could not get it. Nor could I discover how to get out of that game and start another, suspecting that the missing RAM board for which I was searching might well be hidden in one of the other games.

So I quit and started searching for the frozen landscape of Lords Of Half Past Nine. Here I discovered what I consider to be a fundamental flaw in Imagination. I came across a cow and having nothing much better to do, tried MILK COW. "Well... you can IMAGINE that... but you can't do it!" came the reply. Next, I decided to EXAMINE COW and discovered a new object was revealed: cow's udders. I now tried to milk the cow again, and although I didn't have much success for another reason, I was allowed to attempt the action.

To my mind, this is an example of adventure writing at its worst, and here I gave up in disgust. At no time during play should a valid action be discounted as permanently impossible, as implied by the reply.

If something is not possible for the moment, the reply should encourage the player by letting him know he is on the right track and, perhaps, give a gentle clue as to why the action cannot be performed.

Scott Adams had it about right with his "You can't do that - yet!" reply. Peter Torrence in Imagination comes nowhere near. The only redeeming feature of the game is the price.

Keith Campbell

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