Floppy hats 'n' bullwhips ahoy

Indiana Jones 4: The Fate of Atlantis: The Graphic Adventure logo

US GOLD * £37.99 * 1 meg * Mouse/Keyboard/hard drive installable * Out now

It's hard to imagine the atmosphere and comic strip action of the Indie films translated into the fairly slow and pedestrian confines of the graphic adventure with any success, but given that we're talking about the team responsible for Monkey Island 2, the proposition begins to seem less absurd.

Atlantis (for so shall I abbreviate the game's unfeasibly long name) is, happily, based not on a story designed for film, but written and storyboarded from the ground up by the LucasFilm boys as a computer graphic adventure.
Had the company decided to cash in on The Last Crusade, we would probably have been dealing with a tatty commercial spin-off (Yuletide domestic fowl to you and me). Atlantis is far from this, and is in fact a chompingly good game.

The plot, briefly, puts Indie at the heart of yet another Nazi scam, and this time the matter race is after not a radio for talking to Gott, but nuclear power - the power of Atlantis.
Well, OK, it's not really nuclear power, it's a sort of romanticised ancient energy locked up in a strange metal called orichalcum, discovered by the Atlanteans, but the principle's the same. If Indie fails, we're all sausage-meat.

The story begins with Herr Kerner, a Nazi agent who escapes from Indie's office after a hilarious intro sequence. Indie, having been force-fed several blindingly obvious clues (just to get you started, you understand) realises that the teutonic tearaway is interested in a dig he was once in charge of in Iceland, which means Kerner will be after Indie's old female sidekick, Sophia, who was on the same dig.

Jones sets out to warn Sophia and the action begins. To begin with, Atlantis has a very similar look and feel to Monkey Island 2, with the usual bank of a dozen or so action screens and a space to the right for whatever Indie happens to be carrying. The top half of the screen is the action window and all user input can be in the form either of mouse clicks or key presses. Easy, eh?

From the outset, Atlantis's storyline unfolds in much the same way as you'd expect. There's an initial section, after which the player has a choice of 'paths' to follow (more on this later), then the scene changes to a variety of locations including Monte Carlo, North Africa, Crete, and Atlantis itself.

At all times, the player is in no doubt as to what is happening and, which way the plot will go next. This is probably my only major complaint about Atlantis. There's no real mystery about the game, and even the movements of the enemy are reported at regular intervals through the medium of cut scenes.

In other games, there's a certain element of figuring out both what to do next and how to do it, but in Atlantis, Indie is never in any real doubt as to his aims. The challenge is based purely around the clever solutions the player must find to the problems which litter the well signposted path. I'm not saying the game is predictable or boring, it's just that it can become a little too much like reading a puzzle book rather than a computer novel.

The puzzles themselves are very tricky in parts and should pose enough of a problem to keep most players up at night for at least a few weeks, but one particular, at which I'm completely stuck, is very silly.

Three stone disks must be collected before the player can enter Atlantis - a worldstone, moonstone and sunstone. When all three are used in the middle of the map room in the caves under a certain location (don't want to give away too much, but you'll be steered toward it anyway by the plot), Indie must position them in accordance with a clue - different every time the game is played - in Plato's Lost Dialogue.

My problem is that there are dozens and dozens of combinations, and the only one I've managed to get to work after hours of messing about leads to a dead end.

The impasse, after a pretty logical and middlingly difficult set of puzzles, is irritating and off-putting, though guaranteed to lengthen the life of the game - something which is of prime concern to many graphic adventure fans these days.

The paths I mentioned earlier are the game's really innovative feature. Players complete an initial section of the game, after which it becomes clear where the plot will go, and a choice of three playing approaches must be made.

There's the wits path, where Indie carries on alone and attempts to think his way through the game, the team path, which sees Sophia tag along as a second team member, and the action path, which involves Indie in lots of punch-ups with Germans (otherwise known as the lager lout path).

All subsequent events will depend on which path was chosen, and there really are radical differences between the three routes. For example, on the wits path, Indie can simply walk up to M Trottier in Monte Carlo and get a stone disk off him. On the team path, he must set up a seance with Sophia at which Indie and Sophia attempt to convince M Trottier of their credentials. This is far from easy, and the point at which I failed miserably.

In short, Atlantis is a very good graphic adventure which should contain enough puzzles for most seasoned fans, and last long enough to justify the money spent on it. With its three different solution paths, superb graphics, and touches of humour, it sets a standard at which other graphic adventures must aim.

Had there been slightly more mystery and investigation as opposed to simple puzzle solving, I would have dressed the game in PJs and taken it to bed with me.

Indiana Jones 4: The Fate of Atlantis: The Graphic Adventure logo

After Monkey Island 2, the Amiga world has waited with bated breath for the next adventure from LucasArts. Indy's back, and time he's brought SCUMM with him...

In the last couple of years LucasArts have made rather a good name for themselves with their graphical adventure games, ever since the success of Loom, followed by The Secret of Monkey Island and then the awesome sequel Monkey Island 2. Following on from the runaway success of the latter game, they have taken SCUMM and iMUSE (the story and music systems from Monkey Island 2) and applied it to a film licence.

"Film licence!", I hear you cry. Well, yes - not all of them have to be disks worthy of nothing better than reformatting. For one thing, it's not really a licence, because there isn't actually a film that it's based on - Lucasfilm enjoyed doing the previous Indy games so much, they thought they would make up a plot for another one.

And though previous Indy games were less impressive, this is just what you would expect from LucasArts.

iMUSE-ing storyline
The game begins with a classy film-style introduction and then a bizarre rendition of the Indy theme tune plays in the strange-but-excellent iMUSE system. While this goes on Indy makes his way down through several levels of an abandoned college, trying to locate a missing statue. You control Indy at this point, but you don't have to solve anything just yet.

The reason he's after the statue is that it contains a small bead made from a special metal, which can be used in a similar way to Plutonium. If this bead gets into the wrong hands, a bomb might be made which could level out the odd country or two.

When the game proper starts, the similarity to Monkey Island 2 becomes apparent straightaway. Because the same story system is used, the screen layout is very similar, and the same keys are used throughout. This is a good thing, however, because the original system was great to use, and Monkey Island 2 players will feel instantly at home.

One addition to the story system is the fist-fight. Several manoeuvres are available should you get into a scrap, and these are operated via the mouse or keypad - if your Amiga has a keypad, that is. If the idea of fistfighting doesn't appeal to you don't worry, because you can take three different paths through the story and only one of them has you constantly bashing your way through the adventure.

Each path involves different actions on your part, and meeting different people, but all three paths have the same ultimate goal - to reach the lost continent of Atlantis. The first is the 'Team' path, where you team up with the lovely Sophia, ex-colleague turned psychic, and combine your skills to reach the end. At some points during the game you will need to control Sophia herself, and the inventory display automatically switches to Sophia's possessions - another great touch.

The next path is 'Wits', which is where you must use all your intellectual powers (not humour) to overcome various puzzles during the game. The final one is 'Fists' where - yes, you guessed it - you must rough your way around the world, fighting your way out of troublesome situations. The paths do cross at various points during the game, in true time-line style, so even if you choose the Wits path you will sometimes need to fistfight; or if you plump for Fists you will occasionally need to use a bit of nouse.

It's imaginative, well constructed and the gameplay is smooth and slick

Action adventure
Whatever path you choose, a huge variety of scenes and challenges await you. These are sometimes funny, sometimes frustrating, but never, ever dull. The puzzles are very well thought-out, with some exquisite, subtle elements that give you a real kick when you solve them. Also, some action elements are mixed in with the adventure, such a controlling a balloon across a desert, and guiding a submarine through murky waters. Those of you who are horrified by the thought of arcade scenes in your adventures, don't be - they are few and far between, and merely serve as a break from the puzzles.

The story is littered with elements that are genuinely funny, far more than just being there to break up the monotony - check out the scene at the hotel in Monte Carlo where Madame Sophia is holding a seance. The lights have suddenly gone out, and you must make yourself into a ghost by using a bedsheet, a scary mask and a flashlight. The ensuing scene is nothing short of hilarious, one of those points when you're really glad that youbought the game. We didn't feel, though, that it was a good idea to include a picture of the scene here - it would spoil the surprise for those of you who will play it.

There's no doubt about it, LucasArts have done it again. Fate of Atlantis is a huge, stunning graphical adventure based on the already tried-and-tested SCUMM format. The story is imaginative, the puzzles are well-constructed, and the gameplay is smooth and slick.

As with all multi-disk graphical adventures, it's necessary to swap disks constantly when playing from floppy disk. This is unfortunate, but it shouldn't put you off the game, and it's yet another good reason for saving up to buy that hard drive you've been promising yourself.

If any criticism were to be made it would probably be that the storyline is quite linear, in that each puzzle must be completed before moving on to the next. This is noticeable here because we were spoiled with Monkey Island 2 and its highly non-linear approach. It's a minor point, anyway, and shouldn't put you off buying what is one of the best Amiga adventures ever.

Indiana Jones 4: The Fate of Atlantis: The Graphic Adventure logo Amiga Joker Hit

Gemäß unserer Leserbefragung müßten rund 53 Prozent von Euch den größten Teil des letzten Jahres damit zugebracht haben, den Amiga-Auftritt ihres Lieblingsarchäologen herbeizusehnen. Entspannt Euch Leute, Dr. Jones ist endlich eingetroffen!

Tausende von Einsendungen und deren nächtelange Auswertung haben uns zu der Erkenntnis verholfen, daß über die Hälfte von Euch Grafikadventures heiß und innig liebt. Und wer Grafikadventures mag, der ist auch Indy-Fan - das sagt einem der gesunde Menschenverstand und der phänomenale Erfolg der PC-Version dieses Spiels...

Da trifft es sich natürlich gut, das Joker-Leser mehrheitlich ein Zweitlaufwerk und 1 MB Speicher ihr eigen nennen. Fast ein bißchen tragisch dagegen die relativ geringe Verbreitung von Festplatten: Schlappe 19 Prozent besitzen so ein Teil, weitere 28 Prozent planen zumindest die Anschaffung.

Damit sollten sie sich mal ein bißchen sputen, denn auch diesmal hat Lucas Arts (neben einem Poster und einem kleinen Lösungsheftchen) wieder ein knappes Diskettendutzend in die Box gezaubert, und da ist ein Zweitlaufwerk bekanntlich gut, eine Harddisk jedoch besser. Ja, und solange nicht mindestens 1 MB RAM unter der Abdeckhaube steckt, bleibt Atlantis am Amiga sowieso unentdeckt. So, jetzt wißt Ihr also, was Indy IV von Euch erwartet - aber was dürft Ihr von Indy IV erwarten?

Eine ganze Menge: Obwohl die sonst übliche Filmvorlage diesmal fehlte, hat die Computerabteilung von George Lucas; Multimediaimperium auch hier wieder alles reingepackt, was man an dem Leinwandhelden so kennt und schätzt! Peitsche, Hut, nette Damenbegleitung und viele böse Nazis zum Beispiel. Einer dieser braunen Gesellen besucht Indy inkognito in seinem Institut und erbittet dessen fachkundige Hilfe bei der Öffnung einer geheimnisvollen Statue.

Kaum hat er ihm den Gefallen getan, macht sich der Bursche hastig aus dem Staub - natürlich mit dem Statuen-Inhalt, aber ohne seinen in der Eile vergessenen Mantel, der unserem Hobby-Detektiv den ersten entscheidenden Hinweis darauf liefert, daß seine Standard Gegner mal wieder was furchtbar Schreckliches planen. Es geht dabei um eine unerhört gefährliche Substanz, deren Hauptlagerstätte sich angeblich in dem untergegangenen Atlantis befindet.

Selbstverständlich will Indy dort vor den Nazis eintreffen, aber zunächst trifft er sich mal mit Sophia Hapgood, einer anerkannten Atlantis-Spezialisting und seiner Reisebegleiterin bei diesem Abenteuer.

Der Spieler kann im weiteren Verlauf zwischen Indy und Sophia hin- und herschalten, falls er glaubt, in bestimmten Situationen mit geballter Weiblichkeit eher weiterzukommen als mit einem peitschenschwingenden Rauhbein. Daß er damit gar nicht mal so falsch lieft, beweisen die drei beschreitbaren Lösungswege: Der erste stellt gewissermaßen den "Weg des Kämpfers" dar, bei dem unser Held bevorzugt, seine stahlharten Archäologenfäuste sprechen läßt; der zweite wäre dann der wesentlich zivilisiertere "Weg des Denkers", und auf dem dritten latschen die beiden Hauptdarsteller gemeinsam im Team.

Dabei muß es keineswegs immer harmonisch zugehen, ganz im Gegenteil, die gepfefferten Dialoge zwischen Indy und Sophia besitzen enormen Unterhaltungswert und tragen viel zur dichten Atmosphäre dieses Adventures bei.

Gut, damit ist also schon klar, daß hier wieder kräftig geboxt, geknobelt, hinterher gejagt und im Multiple Choice-Verfahren gequasselt wird. Besonders erwähnenswert ist dabei der logische und lebensnahe Aufbau der Rätsel, was Fantasy-Geschädigte wahrscheinlich stürmisch begrüßen dürften.

Ein gutes Beispiel dafür ist die Schlange, die dem eingefleischten Reptilien-Hasser an einer bestimmten Stelle den Durchgang versperrt. Man muß nur das dort "zufällig" herumstreunende Schwein vor sich her treiben, schon hat die Schlange was anders zu tun, und der Weg ist frei! Bei aller Lebensnähe kommen aber auch Spannung, Dramatik und atemberaubende Situationen nicht zu kurz, schließlich führt die Reise nach Atlantis (mit Zwischenstationen bei etlichen mehr oder weniger gesprächigen Professoren) kreuz und quer über den ganzen Erdball.

Es sind über 200 Räume, Inseln Höhlen und Labyrinthe zu besichtigen, und als Fortbewegungsmittel dienen so aufregende Gerätschaften wie Heißluftballons, U-Boote, Kamele, Autos und Schuhe.

Mit der Technik haben wir begonnen, mit ein paar technischen Anmerkungen wollen wir unseren Bericht auch beschließen. Steuerungstechnisch wird wieder die bewährte Point & Click-Benutzerführung a la "Monkey Island 2" mit Verbenliste und "gegenständlichem" Inventar geboten; selbst in puncto Geschwindigkeit nehmen sich Dr. Jones und Mr. Threepwood nicht viel. Bei den deutschen Bildschirmtexten hat man sich offensichtlich Mühe gegeben, nicht alle Übersetzungsfehler der PC-Version zu übernehmen.

Soundmäßig gibt's dafür etwas weniger zu hören als auf der DOSe, aber was man hört, klingt gut - vielleicht sogar einen Tick besser als die Musik von der Affeninsel.

Die angeblich komplett neu gezeichnete Grafik war wohl einer der Hauptgründe, warum wir so langer auf die Amigaversion warten mußten; doch im Nachhinein muß man den Konvertierern schon recht geben, wenn sie statt einer schnell rübergezogenen 08/15-Umsetzung lieber Qualität abgeliefert haben. Und genau die kriegt man hier pfundweise serviert: Qualitativ hochwertige Bilder, gelegentlich etwas Scrolling und beeindruckende Animationen, bei denen die Perspektive und überhaupt jedes einzelne Detail stimmt.

Summa summarum als eine gewaltige Präsentation, eine gewaltige Konvertierungs-Leistung und last but not least ein gewaltiges Spiel! (C. Borgmeier)

Indiana Jones 4: The Fate of Atlantis: The Graphic Adventure logo

Who is that craggy. Handsome man with a whip, a leather jacket and a battered old hat? It is Indy. He's back, back! BACK!

What a dilemma (Great cars, them Dilemmas - Ed). The one I am in is bigger than anything Indy has ever become involved with. You see, I just cannot decide how to rate his latest adventure. It is almost excellent, but it is the variable state of the 'almost' that is the problem. For a start, Indiana Jones And The Fate Of Atlantis: The Graphic Adventure (hereinafter referred to as IJATFOA:TGA comes on 11 disks. But before I delve any further, let me enlighten you as to Indy's predicament... The Jeermans have discovered the devastating potential of an ancient mineral called orichalcum. And if they can find its source, the legendary city of Atlantis, the world will become their lobster.

This, however, is not apparent when the adventure begins. An interactive introductory and credits sequence sees Indy falling through holes a lot, but basically it all serves as a taster and almost serves to generate a film-like atmosphere.

Indy has acquired a mysterious statue for a Mr Smith, who turns out to be a Nazi piece of work (Ho ho ho. - Ed) called Klaus Kerner. He hotfoots it when this is discovered. A clue then leads out intrepid hero to a former assistant, Sophia Hapgood, who now works as a psychic. She offers to help disbelieving Indy find Atlantis. But first they need to locate Plato's Lost Dialogue which will provide clues as to Atlantis' whereabouts.

The character animations are smart

Once Indy has acquired the tome, the adventure splits into three paths: Fists, Team or Wits. These are essentially difficulty levels, though I must say I found myself completing the Wits part first and struggling with the Fists path. The locations used for each path are by and large the same with subtle differences (omissions or additions), but the problems presented are quite different.

There are times when a little role reversal is in order. Assuming the role of Indy's psychic sidekick Sophia is the only way some problems are solved, but it must be said that the sex change is not as good as the rest of the adventure. It is a shame more was not made of this split personality business.

The exploration and puzzle-solving is punctuated by animated intermissions (or 'cut-scenes'), which you can skip. Sadly, you cannot avoid the disk accessing or swapping, which is 'AAAAAARRRRRGH!' to say the least. Disk requests crop up in the strangest of places. You find yourself jumping around from disk to disk just to move a single object on screen, and the story's carefully created flow and atmosphere is often destroyed.

Top notch plot with the flavour of the three films

The pace is a little too sloth-like at times. It takes a while to update the minor animations on the close-up scenes, and there are occasions when the action slows down to a near unbearable crawl. A pity, as most of the character animations are smart. The interface is sometimes sluggish to respond, too, and often the urge to explore and experiment is suppressed as you do not feel inspired to spend the time trudging around, swapping disks.

The scenery is rarely as attractive as Monkey Island II's, and the LucasArts' scrolling is as shoddy as it has ever been. Sound-wise there is little to write home about. This iMUSE system certainly does not work on the Amiga. Here, the soundtrack is always ill-fitting - even the familiar Indy theme tune seems out of place. Surprisingly, there are virtually no spot effects to accompany the action. A compromise was obviously made there.

There are some divvy inconsistencies - I stroked my beard with disbelief when I was not allowed to knock a book down with Indy's whip. A few of the solutions are a little too hit and miss for my liking, but the satisfaction of solving most of the others is ample compensation.

And if I was being supremely pedantic, I would say that the dialogue is not entirely convincing but it is good enough. IJATFOA:TGA is a more well-rounded adventure than Monkey Island II, and that is saying something.

Hell, I would even go so far as to say that it is simply the best adventure of this type available on any format. Well, I can if you have a hard drive, but, to be honest, everyone else had best think twice before shelling out. There, problem solved.

The screen layout and interface is that of a generic LucasArts Games adventure. Most of the picture is taken up by the action screen, where the - no! - action takes place, animated sequences are shown, dialogue is spoken and from where all objects are viewed, moved or picked up.
Indiana Jones 4: The Fate of Atlantis: The Graphic Adventure
  1. Indy is told what to do by combining these verbs with objects selected in the Action Screen. Appropriate verbs are highlighted when an object is selected. Objects of no significance are not described in the Sentence Line.
  2. The Sentence Line shows what you are telling Indy to do.
  3. Indy's inventory. My, what big pockets this man must have. There is no limit to the number of objects Indy can carry, which is handy as he collects a fair few during his travels. The inventory can be replaced by your IQ - Indy Quotient - i.e. the points you have earned for solving puzzles.

Indiana Jones 4: The Fate of Atlantis: The Graphic Adventure logo CU Amiga Screen Star

On hearing the latest Indiana Jones movie had just been released on the computer screen, Tony Gill grabbed a box of popcorn and set off in search of the man in the battered fedora.

It's just possible that Harrison Ford has blown the opportunity to star in the greatest Indiana Jones movie that has never been made. Lucasfilms has taken the now familiar ingredients of the Indy sagas and woven them into a top-notch adventure game which spans the globe. Nazi agents are hot on the trail of an extraordinary substance called Orichalcum, which could help Hitler's scientists create a Super Bomb and thus decide the outcome of the war. The clues point to the lost city of Atlantis and the only thing that stands between them and world domination is our laconic hero.

It's that old Greek philosopher Plato that we have to blame for the whole business. His tales of a mighty civilization which used Orichalcum to power huge machines, and even fuel flying craft, have sent Nazi spies sniffing around ancient burial tombs in search of Plato's missing filofax. The bad guys are convinced that Plato was not just a crazy Greek Kebab seller with an interest in fairy stories, he really did have the goods of an ancient power source and its location is hidden in his old papers. But where is Plato's old manuscript now? Could the writings pin-point the spot where Atlantis stood and perhaps lead to a hoard of the vital Orichalcum?

It seems that despite all the splendor and power which the ancients possessed, they were unable to save their city when the sea rose up and drowned its inhabitants. However, Indy suspects that although Plato was a dab hand at essay writing, his mathematics left a lot to be desired and in fact the calculations that placed the city in the middle of the Atlantic were wrong. If Indy's theory is correct the submerged city is in the warm waters of the Mediterranean where anyone who isn't afraid of hitching a ride in a German U Boat could prove the point.

But we are getting ahead of ourselves. Before we can go skinny-dipping in the Med we have to visit Iceland, The Azores, South America, France and the Sahara Desert. I trust you have been saving your Air Miles tokens?

The Fate of Atlantis has all the ingredients for the makings of a mega-adventure film which would top everything we have seen so far. We may never see the movie, but by combining the exciting storyline with an easy to use control system, we do have a great game. As well as exercising your trusty bullwhip, you will be called upon to steer a camel, drive a jeep, pilot a submarine and fly an air balloon. (You certainly get your money's worth when Indy is in the driving seat). Don't worry if you are not a fan of nimble fingered action, for these excursions into arcade action are fairly simple and won't cause too much pain.

Do you hate arcade action mixed in with your adventure, or does the addition of a punch-up add spice to your feast? Are you searching for a single-minded challenge, or would you welcome a partner who can offer useful suggestions when things get tricky? Whatever your decision is, this package is just right for you because it has all options in one game.

After battling your way through the initial stages you will come to the point where you may decide how you wish to play the remainder of the game. You may decide to take the Firsts path, which enables you to let your brawn rather than your brain take the strain. With this option you needn't waste time wondering which cunning option will get you out of a tricky situation, you simply opt to 'bop' anyone who gets in your way. In this case Indy will deliver uppercuts and haymakers at your command, and providing your sense of timing is right you can beat a path to success.

Alternatively, you can choose the Team path which lets the lovely Sophia tag along and lend her womanly wiles and helpful suggestions when things get tough. (That girl could charm the pants of Himler!). In this case, awkward customers tend to be more helpful than they ordinarily would be. In addition, when every way you turn seems to lead to a dead-end, and you've even forgotten what you were looking for in the first place, your beautiful assistant can sometimes come up with an idea which will put you back on the right track.

Finally, for those amongst you who enjoy doing things they hard war the game offers the Wits path. In this case you are on your own and the game will 'take no prisoners'! Steely determination and the will to succeed are needed here, but no doubt you're made of the right stuff.

Unlike other games which claim to have multiple gameplay built in, these options are truly different. Although the pats crisscross each other at key stages, there are many occasions where you have completely different puzzles to solve. For this reason you really can play the game more than once and get a second helping of fun.

The game closely follows a storyline which could be lifted word for word from an Indiana Jones film. Opening in Indy's University, we find our hero searching for a small statuette amidst the old collections of artifacts stored in the attics.

With this retrieved, we return to his office to display our find to the University Head and his visitor. No sooner does our mysterious visitor get his hands on the item, then he reveals himself as a Nazi spy and makes off with his find. Realising that there is dirty work afoot, Indiana decides to make contact with an old friend, Sophia Hapwood, in New York, who he suspects knows more about this business than she has admitted. Sophia convinces Indy that there just may be some truth in the old legend of Atlantis and the secret power source held within the weird mineral, Orichalcum.

The couple decide that the best course of action is to search for the Lost Dialogue of Plato, which legend has it pinpoints the location of Atlantis. Finding the book means a flight to Greenland and then to an Aztec Temple in South America. Following the clues, the couple eventually arrive back at Indy's University where luck would have it, the book is in fact another item which has been stored along with all the junk from previous expeditions.

The trail begins to heat up as Indy and Sophia head for the South of France where a French expert gives more information which sets them winging towards North Africa and a perilous trip across the desert in a hot air balloon. With their inventory of strange items growing even larger, the next step is to find a lonely island in the centre of the Mediterranean where a secret entrance leads to a long forgotten series of caves containing old statues and a wondrous model of the lost city.

At this point the Nazis begin to close in and Sophia is dragged away to a German submarine, which is preparing to dive to the very spot where Atlantis lies submerged. Smuggling himself aboard, Indy hitches a lift to the bottom of the sea and into a world where wonders beyond imagination are to be found. Huge Atlantean machinery must be operated to control forces which still could destroy the world. Underwater volcanos spout rivers of fire, which threaten hero and villain alike. Can Indy save himself, the girl and the world? You better believe it!

All of these considerable options and 'splendiferous' graphics do have a 'downside'. For a start, the game fills up 11 disks. If you are an old campaigner of the Lucasfilms games who has already won their spurs in the Monkey Island epics, then you'll know what you are letting yourself for. When contemplating playing games such as these, a hard disk becomes a necessity rather than a luxury. It can be played from floppy, but things can get a little wearisome. A second important factor is that the game is pushing at the limits of the Amiga's graphics-handling capabilities, and there are a few occasions where the strain becomes very obvious.

As well as making life more interesting by providing multiple paths through the game, the writers decided to let you solve some puzzles with more than one solution. The are also some amusing features which have been added just for fun. You may overcome a puzzle using the obvious solution, or can stumble on a tricky alternative.

The game awards you extra points for every crook and cranny you manage to shine the light of reasoning into, and these points are added together to give you an IQ rating. It is possible to bulldoze through the game and complete it, with all the finesse of a drunken elephant, or you can spend time experimenting with every situation until you pick up all the possible points which have been cleverly concealed there. Needless to say that if you choose the path of the Fist, you'll not be giving the Indy Quotient software much work to do in keeping the score!

Normally you will control Indy's movements and actions by means of the mouse pointer, but you can use cursor and keyboard controls if you wish. No typing is required to create a command line, you need only select the actions from the list of options below the main screen. If you point to an object in the main screen the game intelligently illuminates the likely command you'll want to use from the list of options available. Clicking the right mouse button instantly uses that option without you having to move the pointer off the main screen to select it. (That's what we call Ergonomics my dear Watson!).

Without doubt this is a brilliant graphic adventure. The setting of the difficulty level for the puzzles is just right for the person who likes the idea of playing an exciting adventure, but who doesn't want to be hassled with obscure puzzles. This is a huge game which sprawls over endless locations, all of which are beautifully illustrated. The designers have tried to cram in everything you could want in a game and in doing so have given the standard Amiga a huge task to cope with.

If you can forgive the occasional lack of sparkling response from your computer as it struggles with the large animation sequences, then you'll be rewarded with a game that will keep a smile on your face for weeks.


It is possible for a software company to buy a big movie license and produce an 'Empty Box' game which will make big money. An 'Empty Box' game is one which the public will buy, and not even car if there is little or nothing inside it. Remember the Teenage Mutant Turtles game? The reviewers panned it and said it was rubbish, but it still made the number one spot in the polls and the kids fought to get their hands on a copy. Software houses know that if they produce a game with Bart Simpson or Batman on the cover they have a licence to print money. There seems to be a never-ending queue of punters who will spend their cash on anything connected with their personal passion. (I believe there is a fortune to be picked up by the team who get the rights to produce a Star Trek Pot Noodle!).
Knowing that you can fool 'some of the public, all of the time', it is all the more credit to Lucasfilm that it has gone to such extraordinary lengths to produce a game which is worthy of the Indiana name. Why does it bother to do it? It's simply because it is smart. It knows that sooner or later you will start linking the name Lucasfilm with quality and you will choose the box with that name on it - rather than the box with the picture of the latest comic hero which doesn't make any noise when you rattle it!

STONED IN ATLANTIS It seems that the ancient Atlanteans had a 'thing' about creating secret doors which could only be opened with the aid of circular stones rotated like a combination lock on a safe. You will spend a good deal of your time finding these hidden wheels and reassembling the mechanisms. Plato's lost Dialogue contains the clues you'll need to find the combinations, but it still can be a puzzle.

Three Indiana Jones adventures have made it to the big screen - Raiders of the Lost Ark, The Temple of Doom and The Last Crusade. The first film came about because the director Steven Spielberg had just made a financial turkey called 1941, which had flopped, and he wasn't sure what to do next. At this point his old friend George Lucas (who created the Star Wars movie) approached him with a script he had written called Raiders of the Lost Ark. The film was made for 20 million dollars and went on to make 200 million dollars at the box office. Because of this success, Spielberg regained his confidence and decided to make a film he had dreamt about making for many years. The film was about a small alien who came to earth and was befriended by a boy. The rest, as they say, is history.
College Lecturer on Ancient Civilizations and Exotic Antiquities. Expert with bullwhip, bare knuckles and the lightning one-liner. Brave, patriotic, but a sucker for a pretty face.
is a pretty face! Sophia is also an archeologist who has gone commercial. Having assisted Indy on archeological digs in the past, she now gives lectures on Atlantis to the general public, which she spices up by claiming she gets personal messages from a ghostly spirit guide. She owns a rare Atlantean necklace which she 'borrowed' from an ancient tomb. On occasions she can create wondrous effects with her necklace by placing a rare bead of Orichalcum into it.
Chief Scientist in Hitler's Reich. Warped, evil genius who has big plans for the Orichalcum. While the German Army hopes to use the power to fuel their tanks, Ubermann has wilder dreams of building the ultimate Atomic bomb.

There was a time when softwarehouses couldn't give away adventure games, but times they are a-changing. There is big money to be made out of high quality graphic adventures and most publishers are keen to have a stake in the business.
The Sierra Company ruled the rating for a few years with the highly successful 'Quest' and 'Leisure Suit Larry'-series, but their popularity waned with Amiga owners as their games became targeted more at the growing PC market. The number one publisher in this field is now undoubtedly Lucasfilm who has a long list of prize-winning games to its credit.
Maniac Mansion, Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, Zak McKracken, Monkey Island I and II and Loom. All of these have been greeted with praise and plaudits from gameplayers. French and British software houses have also had success with their efforts. Delphine is the French software house who produced Future Wars, Operation Stealth and Cruise for a Corpse and saw each of them hit the top ten in Britain.
Britain's own Horrorsoft Ltd. Brought creepy terror with its distinctive offerings of Personal Nightmare and Elvira 1 and Elvira 2, plus its soon to be released Waxworks. Other British offering include Core Design's Curse of Enchantia, and Lure of the Temptress from Revolution. The very latest contender who has thrown its considerable talent into the ring is Westwood Associates - the team which created the Eye of the Beholder games. Publishing through Virgin games, Westwoods has released Legend of Kyrandia as the first of a series of graphical adventures and it has been receiving rave reviews from most magazines.