Elvira, the lady with the big reputation, wants a hand with her chest. She has opened up her old ancestral home Castle Killbragant and along with it a real can of worms - the really slimey ones. She has also reawakened an ancient curse, placed by her great, great, great, grandma, who it appears ws not so great after all.
The spooks and demons have come out of the closet and trapped Elvira in her own home. In answer to a small ad you are now her rescuer. Searching through the castle you must find six keys that will unlock an ancient chest and lift the curse. Easy? It would be if the ghosts did not carry loaded swords and were not able to use magic - not any of your Paul Daniels rubbish either, this stuff really hurts.
Carry On Elvira
Guided by the lovely Miss E' you roam around the castle killing guards, fighting monsters, receiving horrendous wounds abd being healed by Elvira's own sweet hands. As it is the family home of the Elvira clan the place is full of unexpected tunnels, guardians and other suprises. Nothing is what it seems and the level of innuendo and derision is along the lines of a "Carry On" film and are only ever a wobbling breast away.
Elvira, and her accompanying house, are beautifully drawn and the story created by all your wandering is well animated with arcade style sub-games around every corner: from sword fighting to breath holding feats, they are all yours to try. All you have to lose is your life, so why not give it a go?
Get Y'er Disks Out!
Elvira is flawed however, in many painful ways. The most frightening is the sheer number of disks; five to be exact. You get your moneys worth though, as virtually every movement between locations forces disk access. Irritation soon starts to get in.
The adventure though, is well thought out, with a strong side-line in role-play underpinning the plot. As you roam, most of Elvira's ghostly ancestors insist on sword battles. Seeing as your starting weapon is only a dagger, they are not easy to win. Yet victory earns you experience in handling the weapon and access to another room or area.
Two Strokes Are Enough
Sword battles are limited to two strokes on attack and two on defence. You have to select which blow the other guy is going to try and react accordingly. A simple sub-game of guess the sword stroke, it is at the heart of the game's earlier stages. Unfortunately, fighting with the dagger and no visual guides means that you take many more blows than you should. Elvira has given you masses of healing potions, but these cannot be used during the battle. Henceforth, and rather fittingly for a Gothic game, you spend large amounts of time dead.
The slowness and the repeated deaths ruin Elvira. It is simply no fun to play. The frustration is heightened by the graphics because so many remain unseen. Success is a matter of persistence and luck. Still, Elvira does have nice...