THIS, the latest game to be marketed by the people who wrote and Revenge of Doh, was programmed in Germany by Sorem Grunbech with graphics by Torben Larsen. The package comes with manual and four discs, indicating just how much programming has gone into it.
Hero or heroine, you must learn the five offensive moves that are possible with your sword. To begin with the gameplay is similar to Rastan Saga - you move through a series of parallax scrolling landscapes destroying beasts and devils as they come into view.
If you complete a level a scroll detailing the next mission appears while the next level loads.
To help you avoid hazards like rolling barrels and trapdoors you can collect extra weapons and potions. The list includes magic zapper, power shield, extra life and increased hit strength. The first two enhancements are essential if you are to achieve real success in the game and venture far into the castle.
The animation is impressive. Each image is at least four inches high and two inches wide. With all the processing power used for animating the characters, I expected the scrolling to be slow and jerky, but to my delight the parallax scrolling is super smooth. A programming marvel, no less.
The sampled speech is atmospheric, it interacts with the game and is more than just an aesthetic delight. When you enter the game a voice shouts, "Halt stranger" alerting the player to the presence of enemy guards. Sampled cries and shrieks of death are all very much a part of making the game more playable.
The graphics are on a par with Cinemaware on a good day. Throw in the odd special effect - the stunning thunder sequence in the graveyard is just one - and you have covered every area of graphical excellence that a game like Sword of Sodan could have.