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Vengeance of Excalibur logo

Alrightish, unspectacular (and back!)

Publisher: Virgin
Price: £30.99
Author: Synergistic Software
Release: May

B Vengeance of Excalibur ack in May last year we less-than-eccstatically reviewed this game’s predecessor, Spirit of Excalibur. This one is no better - Vengeance of Excalibur is just as slow in access time and there is still lots of disk swapping. In addition the game is not compatible with the A500 Plus – a ridiculous state of affairs with the Plus having been in the shops for a good six months, and one not helped out by a handy sticker or anything warning you of the fact on the box. Oh dear...

The plot goes something like this: the evil Shadowmaster has imprisoned King Constatine (the ruler of England after Arthur died) and carried him off, together with the Court Sorceress and an assortment of the land’s most prized treasures, to the Iberian peninsula of Spain. This new exotic location is the main selling point of the game – your job is to select four knights (from a wide selection, including Lancelot, Bors etc.) and then set off on a mission to set everything to rights.

Gamewise there is certainly plenty to do – lots of characters to control, people to meet, land to cover, treasures to find (you need to finance your mission), murderous dwarves to avoid, gypsy fortunetellers to consult, unfriendly basques to flight and so on. Nothing is for free though, and you will find you are spending a lot of time conserving your gold supplies - or trying to find new dosh – as you play. Even the old priests who you may encounter on your quest will expect a price for information – they won’t settle for religious relics or a measly holy cross.

The game is a mixture of multi-screen map (with your knights depicted as icons) and much more detailed screens for combat, trading and the like. Graphics are generally quite bold and attractive with minimal but pleasing animation effects in combat and battle screens, though sound is limited to a jingly jangly medieval tune that is best switched off after a while to avoid nausea.

It all sounds okay really, doesn’t it, but that is before you realise the amount of disk swapping involved throughout the game and the frustrating length of access-time needed. This is sloooow stuff alright. Better paced, better programmed, and perhaps with a bit more imagination shown throughout, this could have worked. As it is it merely makes as shallow an impression as its predecessor. For shame.
MATTHEW SQUIRES

Amiga Power, Issue 13, May 1992, p.96

THE BOTTOM LINE
Another attempt at medieval adventure/RPG/strategy thing that shares exactly the same faults and strengths as its predecessor. Not awful, just uninspiring
60

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