The last few hours have been rather exciting for me. When I was about 11 years old, my ‘then’ brother in law had managed to pick up a 48k Spectrum computer. For several weeks throughout the summer holidays I’d go round my sisters and have a game of Saboteur II. Remember it? The sequel to Clive Townsend’s masterpiece, Saboteur.
By todays standard you probably wouldn’t appreciate the impact it had on me, but it brought me and inlaw closer together although being a bellend he was still full of front and bullshit. I digress. We enjoyed this action adventure where we played some kind of stealth assassin. (The sister of the previous Saboteur). Starting off on a hang glider was origional to say the least, and you had to wait a certain amount of screens for a safe enough leap off. Jump too soon and you’ll fall several hundred feet onto a craggy cliff.
Once you have leapt off safely, the adventure begins. You need to infiltrate a huge enemy compound (much larger than the origional) fight your way past armed guards and viscous pumas (wtf), locate a dozen or so bits of paper hidden about the complex, deactivate a huge silo, find the lower levels while you dodge vampire bats, and escape on a motorbike. What a rush!!
Canny players will draw a map or direction list as they play. I do remember managing to escape, but only my inlaw found all bits of paper and deactivate the silo. It took him three hours apparently and even then his friend lent a map to him.
This game had everything, even the graphics improved on the origional, the pace of the hero, the flying kicks and somersaults and general flow were all nice and smooth. The pumas were especially fun to watch, and when you killed them left you feeling a wee bit guilty. (If you have any conscience at all)
It was a great privilege to chat breifly to Clive Townsend himself and if you are also a fan then check out his website clivetownsend.com for news and the saboteur goody shop. He is currently working on bringing Saboteur II to an app format having already released the first. I will certainly be waiting in the shadows for this! Goodluck Clive.
Ive been avoiding reviewing this far too long as my laptop was elsewhere at the time of launch. I am a huge fan of Fighting Fantasy books and have been so since 12 years old.
When the crowdfunding campaign was launched for the production of this version of The Warlock Of Firetop Mountain I knew id be in safe hands with Tin Man Games at the helm. They had released several text based versions of a few FF titles but nothing of this calibre. I HAD to back it, earning myself a TinMan pinny in the process. Did they deliver? Of course they did! TinMan overlord Neil, whom I met breifly in 2014 was a big fan like me so could only ever do it justice.
The mountain dungeons look incredible, the avatars of the monsters look like they have sprang right out of a copy of Out Of The Pit (the FF bestiary) and Russ Nicholsons artwork looks as good as it ever did. To make gameplay even longer, TinMan have cleverly integrated several subplots and and army of new monster and characters… including more than one hero character.
I cannot recommend this game enough. Gaming nerds from the 80s who dabbled in Dungeons & Dragons or Warhammer will especially love the floorplan/miniature feel, but anybody will enjoy playing this game at all.
Well done to Neil and all at TinMan.
Ok so not quite. But after the success of Jonathan Greens steampunk based Alices Nightmare In Wonderland he has now launched a follow up Kickstarter campaign. This new work, The Wicked Wizard Of Oz, is once again a playable adventure story. You can play as either Dorothy, The Scarecrow, The Tin Woodsman or The Lion, making this one of his most ambitious projects to date. Once again the incredible talents of illustrator Kev Crossley will be gracing the pages to convey the nightmarish Steampunk atmosphere we also met in the aforementioned Alice book. Check out this crowdfunder project packed with greay backer rewards clicking this link here http://tinyurl.com/h944yua
Just recently I read the book The House On Cold Hill by Peter James. This is unusual for me as it’s a novel. Something I dont usually get along with. But what can I say? From chapter one I was hooked. What’s great aboutthis tome is James keeps a pace going which never really slacks off, and also, he manages to keep the chapters quite short rather than long winded and dozens of leafs long. (The latter being the reason I give up on many a book. With this work you feel like you’re actually getting somewhere.)
The characters are kept to a minimum. Probably less than twenty which means youdont get huge amounts of character development padding out the pages and distracting you from the actual plot. Another gripe of mine. It turns out that James has based this story on personal experiences, and on his YouTube video, you hear him telling of these experiences and where they show up in the book.
My only real gripe is, the ending isnt all that origional. Its been done before and will doubtless be done again. He does keep you guessing for a long time but you fathom it out before reaching the end few chapters. Id have loved to have had something fresh.
All in all, I’d happily say this is the best novel I’ve ever read. 350 pages in less than a week is unheard of for me. I would advise anyone who loves a good creepy book to seek out The House On Cold Hill and aquire it. You will not regret it.
With season 6 on the megahit TV show AMCs The Walking Dead almost drawn to a close, I’m taking time out to rate it as I see it. Has it been the best season so far? IMHO, no… but it has produced the best episode yet, even topping my favourite episode Season 5 episode 1. This is not to say it’s been bad, I would certainly give it 2nd place next to Season 3. In order of my personal favourite to least favourite they go 3,6,5,1,4,2 !
The make up and SFX continue to improve and thrill in every way they should in season 6, and the storylines still surprise, delight, disturb and leave you gobsmacked with nail biting cliffhangers. Next monday sees the season 6 finale here in the UK which is a nice 90 minute long special. I can almost guarantee we will see the deaths on more than one major hero character, and whilst I don’t know who… I am pretty certain I know who.
Thankyou AMC , Robert Kirkman, and all the cast and crew for keeping The Walking Dead the best show on television to this day!