Conan the Cimmerian. (computer adventure game) (Evaluation)
by Alfred C. Giovetti
Thirsting for vengeance? Perhaps you should try venting your spleen with Conan the Cimmerian, an adventure game in which you assume the role of a fantasy hero.
When the game begins, Conan, your alter ego and the game's namesake, is a young blacksmith. He finds his town overrun by the evil forces of Thoth Amon, high priest of the snake god Set. Conan's village is raided, and his wife is brutally killed. Conan seeks vengeance: the death of the evil high priest.
Virgin has brought Robert E. Howard's popular hero to the microcomputer with this new adaptation of the game engine used in Excalibur. The four levels of play include a top view world map, an oblique top view city map, a dungeon map, and interior side view scenes. The top view world map and the side view interior scenes are similar to the earlier Virgin efforts of Spirit and Vengeance of Excalibur.
Mouse, keyboard, and joystick work smoothly to control Conan's movement and combat, except when Conan gets stuck on buildings or on the inhabitants who walk the street. When Conan contacts ingabitants, an interior scene pops up for conversation or combat. Conversation is brief and is terminated quickly unless you bribe for more information. Conan needs to break into homes and steal gold to buy training and equipment. Thievery gets Conan thrown into jail, where all his hard-earned gold--but no equipment--is taken.
Combat and exploration are in real-time, and many of the inhabitants are tougher and faster than Conan. The world of Conan is a very lethal place. As Conan, you'll need all your wits and reflexes in order to survive. You'll need to take notes on conversations and map your surroundings (the game has no automapping). In order to compensate for the difficulty of the game, Conan is reincarnated automatically when he dies.
Whether you're simply a fan of Conan, an adventure gamer who appreciates arcade action, or a bloodthirsty brute looking for a socially acceptable outlet for your aggression, Conan the Cimmerian could be the game for you.