Any game that promises "suggestive, detailed graphics" has got to be worth loading up. So I did. Unfortunately, with the possible exception of the Queen of the Red Coral Sea on the title screen, Swords And Galleons is decidedly tame, pointing to some ropey Italian-English translation on the back of the box.
Swords And Galleons - says it all, really. You've got a sword, and a galleon, and you've got to sail around collecting treasure, sinking pirate ships and finally rescuing the queen from the clutches of the evil Varisco. Having embarked on your travels, you'll find that you've also got five crew members and a few gold pieces. Barely enough to be going on with. You'll need to take on a few more men pretty sharpish, and some supplies if you're to avoid too much urine drinking!
Attacking a baddie ship takes you to an arcadey bit where you load and fire your cannons, and if you're successful you'll be able to board the enemy and nick all his stuff. (It's disconcertingly similar to an old MicroProse game called Pirates).
Got the general picture? The weird thing is Swords And Galleons is one of those games which looks completely crap on paper, but turns out to be surprisingly good fun to play. There's something strangely compulsive about sailing from port to port gradually getting richer and more powerful. Points against it are the constant disk swapping, no save facility (a heinous omission when you consider that games stretch over hours) and the likely ease of completion if you stick with it.
It's a very minor corker, then, which won't sell many but could conceivably inspire fanatical devotion from those who give it a go.
It shouldn't be any good at all, but for some reason I found it oddly unputdownable. (At least I would have if they'd put in a save game facility.)