Sunday, 12 October 2014

100 More Gruesome Games ( 33 & 32 )

So....this year's blog curse of choice has been a rather nasty cold that has seen me having to deal with the usual nastiness of a runny nose, sore throat and feverish headaches for the last few days, which has been oodles o' fun, but not very many games! And games is what we want isn't it!? So I'll ignore this lingering yuckiness and just get on with it.....

33 - Ghost Battle (Amiga) :

If there's one set of terrifying fiends that people seemed to be a lot less scared of back in the day, it's lawyers! Thalion clearly weren't frightened of them at all, as this game blatantly steals most of its ideas straight from Capcom's Ghosts 'n' Goblins series...

You play as a chap who has had the unfortunate (and yet seemingly very common) upset of his lady friend being nabbed by some great-big-nasty sort, and have to wander through the platform-filled levels defeating zombies, witches, demons, creepy crawlies and all the other usual suspects from these types of games...and it's so blatant in its thievery that there's even those Venus Flytrap type nasties to get past!  There's spikes that pop up to hinder your progress, moving platforms to navigate and you'll be needing a key for coming in at the end of level one too! 

It doesn't quite live up to the task of properly emulating Capcom's success though. There's a lot more awkward jumps, the collision detection can be a bit iffy sometimes and some enemies can't seem to be killed and have to be jumped over to be avoided...which just ends up with you getting jostled annoyingly back & forth as you attempt to clear them.

And yet despite its problems, it remains a fun platformer, with a groovy soundtrack and pretty good graphics, even if the main character's arms do look like they should be his legs ...and vice versa! Still, it's worthy of at least a couple of plays on a cold, October night...and so far I've gotten a tiny bit further every time I play it's keeping me going back to see just how far I can get! It's a grower, I reckon...

32 - The Astonishing Adventures of Mr Weems & The She Vampires (C64 / ZX Spectrum):

Mr. Weems had reached that moment in life where he found himself unhappy in his profession. An accountant for many years, he felt he needed a little more excitement....he'd always fancied running off with the circus as a child, and so he packed up and left to enjoy life on the road as a fearless lion tamer! But alas, even that failed to live up to his expectations...what could he possibly do to find that elusive thrill he so sought? Poor Mr. Weems....

One day, he heard tales of a certain spooky mansion....a spooky mansion populated by the ever-so-scary she-vampires! He decided there & then to hunt down these fiendish femmes & got to work gathering his arsenal! Now armed with a rapid-fire garlic gun and a single smart-garlic pill to be used in emergencies, he entered the mansion, finally excited by what he was about to face....

...which is a fairly standard Gauntlet clone where you, as the brave Mr. Weems, traverse a flip-screen maze collecting keys and battling bats, Frankenstein-types and the She-Vamps themselves! An ever decreasing blood count can be topped up by swigging blood bottles that have been handily left lying around, and there are a few extra garlic bombs littering the place too.

Eventually you'll need to face the Great She-Vampire herself, and to prepare for that epic battle you'll have to find the vital weapons hidden in a box on each level. Only when you've collected all of these will you be able to face the mother of all bloodsuckers!

It took me a while to work out that to stop monsters from spawning and be able open the coffins you have to kill every single enemy and destroy every pot on the screen! There are some places where this is impossible, so ignore those screens and move on! There are also a few hidden walls that have to be found in order to progress, which can be frustrating if you fail to find out where they are.

The Spectrum version is the one I'm most familiar with, but having now played the C64 version I have to say that it's a lot easier on the eye! The colour scheme and movement on the Speccy game can be a bit headache inducing and sometimes it all gets a bit cluttered. Both versions have minimal sound effects, which are nothing to write about really, but they do the job I suppose.
Both games are fairly okay to play too, but unfortunately for Mr.Weems, aren't overly he'll probably be looking for some other career path again once he's done with the Great She-Vamp....


  1. Weird, your blog posts aren't popping up on my "feed" thingy, ah well...

    Mr. Weems is a fun game - I'm biased toward ANY sort of Gauntlet clone, mind, but it's the kind of plot that you'd only get on a home computer, so that makes it great.

    Ghost Battle sounds fun too, but after five years of trying I've never managed to get an Amiga emulator running successfully, oh no!

    1. Yeah, I miss the bizzare plots in modern games! Not enough lion-taming, vampire-hunting accountants as stars these days!

      Amiga emulation can be a bit fiddly...I use both WinFellow & WinUAE, depending on what PC I'm on..think I bought the Kickstart Roms, but can't for the life of me remember where from!?