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Time logo

Empire
Price: £29.95

T Time he year is 2047 and you have been summoned to the Historisat satellite which is orbiting the Earth. As the game starts that is all you know but you will soon discover that a scientist has seen the future and only you can save mankind. A prototype android, called Mek, will mutate and start to replicate, eventually destroying all but a few members of the human race.

As the leading Mektech in the galaxy it is up to you to destroy the mutant. In order to do this you must find the five time machines on the satellite and travel back in time. You must collect five pieces of amulet from powerful people from history including Merlin, Leonardo da Vinci, Florence Nightingale, Caesar and Confucious. I can see a case for four of these characters, but Florence Nightingale?

It has been ages since I have seen a good arcade adventure on the Amiga and Time fits the gap nicely. Control is via the mouse, instructions to your agent, Hillman Hunter, are given by clicking on various icons at the bottom of the screen. The action is viewed in a small window just above the icons. It is easy enough to enter commands but at times the mouse can be a little unresponsive. I think the whole system could have been much improved by using joystick and a few keys.

There are a large selection of characters with whom you must interact if you are to make any progress, some of which must be won over with gifts whilst other who should be avoided like the plague.
There are just over forty locations in the game, each of which scrolls horizontally; there is not an enormous playing area but believe me, you will be thankful when you attempt some of the devious problems.

The graphics in Time suit their purpose but they are not especially dramatic, especially when compared to games like Future Wars. It would have been nice to see just a little more effort put into the characters. Having said that, the backdrops are excellent, occasionally featuring some nice little touches like the space shuttle landing.
Sound is very limited, a short tune plays before the game starts but after that there are very few effects at all, and what there is, is not up to much.

Time is a game that arcade adventure fans will be able to get their teeth into and chew on for many months but you really must be a fan to fork out the ridiculous price of thirty quid.
Mark Mainwood

CU Amiga, January 1990, p.59

SOUND
GRAPHICS
PLAYABILITY
LASTABILITY
50%
72%
72%
79%
76%


Time logo

Empire, Amiga £29.99

Time Ever since the marvellous Macbeth was released (the adventure game, not the play… I may be no spring chicken, but have a heart!) I've taken an interest in the doings of Oxford Digital Enterprises, the Time programming team. One of their later games, Sleeping Gods Lie, I thought was particularly good and so it was with anticipation that I sat down to study this, their latest venture.

You've been summoned to the orbiting satellite, Historisat, to attend a top secret meeting with The Director. Once you successfully reach him he informs you that one of the Meks (androids) will shortly begin replicating at such a rate that human civilization could be threatened with destruction. It's up to you to find a way to destroy the Mek and save the world.

Time is set in the year 2047 but to succeed in your mission you have to travel to five other time periods using machines found on Historisat. You need to collect a magical amulet, charge it up to full power by giving it to various historical figures, return to the satellite, and use the now fully charged trinket to activate a friendly Mek so that it may destroy the rebel Mek…

An animated adventure, Time is plated using the mouse to click on action icons (such as Left, Right, Talk and Look) and so control the hero. Unfortunately, Empire's system is slow and poorly animated compared to that used in Future Wars or Indiana Jones. Worse, the reality factor is low: for example, you heed to give Dr Delaney's wife a fish for her cat before she'll let you in to see her husband. The piscine you offer is made of rubber, which Mrs Delaney doesn't notice until she's fed it to her moggy and it chokes to death. Not only is it unlikely that neither you nor she would notice it was a false fish but one would think the pussy might smell something… unusual.

You are only allowed to save and load your game position when at computer terminals situated throughout Historisat; this is a dated idea and does nothing but annoy. In fact the whole adventure appears dated (except for the opening them, which is nice) and is incredibly linear.
Oxford Digital Enterprises are capable of much better games.

Zzap! Issue 59, March 1990, p.22


ATMOSPHERE
PUZZLE FACTOR
INTERACTION
LASTABILITY
OVERALL
54%
58%
51%
48%
55%