Voodoo Nightmare logo

PALACE £24.99 * Joystick

Not all of this black magic is mumbo jumbo - just ask Boots Barker. After a marital dispute left him stranded deep in the deepest deeps of the Congo, he awoke to find he had been cursed. An evil withc doctor had snuck up on our poor hero and attached a magic mask unmovably to his head. Boots was now the proud owner of a real Voodoo Nightmare.

There is one chance - a long shot but it might just work - for Boots to remove his headgear and get back to civilisation. You must guide him through eight tasks which, when complete, allow a final showdown with the Doc who will then remove the mask. Can you help Boots discover the secret of the black magic hat box?

The jungle is a strange and dangerous, isometric 3D wilderness. And, just as one would expect, it is littered with temples, beasties, shops, natives, traps and cansions. Casinos? All this is not immediately obvious, though, as Boots comes to. He is one man lost and alone in the land that Strimmers forgot. Discovering what to do is the first task, so some sundry adventuring, wandering and generally nosey is the order of the day.

Boots can jump over obstacles and on the creatures he meets, killing them with his 58-hole DMs. He can collect stuff to sell or use and stand over energy-giving food to eat - large wooden masks apparently inhibit more normal methods of consumption.

Near where Boots awakes is a small pyramid with a paving slab in front. What quickly becomes apparent - because there is nothing else around - is that you have to enter it, on the first of five temple-clearing exercises. Once in, the aim is to dash about the place desperately grabbing jewels. This requires much stomping, use of the spider's web teleports and satisfying a big, bad, god-like figure's demands.

This earns the player not points, but pins, to stick in boots' very own witch doctor Voodoo doll. Get eight of these and you earn a crack at the good doctor himself. Unfortunately, there are only five temples to raid for pin purposes, so to gather the other stickers you need to fulfil three other missions as well.


An eerie soundtrack runs continually in the background - spooky! This offsets the overly cute graphics. The creepy crawlies creep and crawl just the way they should, while some dubious 1930s caricature natives pop up unexpectedly from the foliage. The foliage is solid enough to avoid confusion over passable routes, while ging enemies a place to hide in and surprise you from.

The isometric design is at its best in the temples, allowing the maximum view of each room. The size of the characters and the interaction between them and the scenery is good. Moving blocks by pushing is easily accomplished, while the introduction of the teleport allows for some really fiendish puzzles.


Voodoo Nightmare is big, with eight small adventures crammed into the first half. The Temples are complex and require repeated attempts, while the need to solve them in the correct sequence, carrying the right kit, makes game-saving vital. Yet the game is hamstrung by an over-responsive control system which takes considerable patience and playing time to master. You will find Boots falling off bridges and missing jumps just because of the lightness of touch required. Voodoo Nightmare is a large game that would take many attempts to ebat if control was perfect, but hampered by such a control system it will take twice as long. Such is the incremental frustration factor of dying needlessly, that many give up before the game really gets its addictive hook in.


Voodoo looks the part and sounds the part. Mercilessly big and with an emphasis on a correct sequence of play, it has real lasting potential. This is marred, though not irrevocably, by the irritating control which causes needless suffering for players who die when they least deserve it. This is a crying shame as Voodoo could have been one of the true greats of the isometric 3D genre. If only Boots would drink less coffee and was less prone to leap maniacally around ath the merest thought of a joystick command.

Every now and again Boots stumbles across a helpful zombie storekeeper. Selling his bananas can get him more powerful stomping boots, a jungle cutting machete, a bush road map or an extra life to help stave off those dying blues.

Voodoo Nightmare logo

Als noch die 8 Bit-Rechner das Feld beherrschten, zählten Action-Adventures mit schräger 3D-Perspektive zu den beliebtesten Games. "Treasure Trap" hat erst unlängst gezeigt, dass auch heute noch etwas aus diesem Spielprinzip zu machen ist - allerdings nicht so...

Schlechte Papier für Boots Barker: Erst stürzt sein Heissluftballon über dem Urwald ab, und als Boots dann wieder zu sich kommt, hat er eine Voodoo-Maske auf, die nicht mehr ab geht. Zu allem Unglück wimmelt es in der Gegend von ekligen Spinnen, Skorpionen und Schlangen! Schuld an der Misere ist ein bösartiger Medizinmann, den Boots nur vernichten kann, indem er eine Voodoo-Puppe mit acht magischen Nadeln bestückt.

Die Nadeln bekommt er, wenn er für Dschungelbewohner wie Löwen, Affen und Tempelgötter bestimmte Gegenstände heranschafft. Manche davon liegen einfach in der Gegend herum, andere können in einem Shop gegen eingesammelte Kristalle und Bananen eingetauscht werden. Der Dschungel-Supermarkt hat aber auch Extras wie Macheten und Sprungstiefel im Angebot.

Voodoo Nightmare bietet mehr als 100 Screens und neun Unterspielchen, wo man beispielsweise ein riesiges Labyrinth voller Zombies und Skellete erforschen darf. Die Grafik ist niedlich, und es gibt sogar Tag- und Nachwechsel, aber trotzdem kann das Game nicht überzeugen: Die Steuerung ist viel zu hektisch, der anfangs gute Sound nervt auf Dauer gewaltig, und in vielen Bildern passiert einfach überhaupt nichts. Dass man das unübersichtliche Terrain unbedingt kartographieren muss, ist leider auch nicht abendfüllend - der Voodoo-Alptraum ist in seinen (durchaus guten) Ansätzen steckengeblieben.

Voodoo Nightmare logo CU Screenstar

Voodoo Nightmare represens the latest and last release from Zippo Games (famed for Cosmic Pirate). Although they will still be turning out products in console form, it seem that they will never produce Amiga software again.

The downtrodden Boots Barker has not had a good day. While he was ballooning with his girlfriend and best mate he was thrown overboard as excess bagga. He regains consciousness well and truly up the jungle without a clue as to his location, and to top it all off a witch doctor has gone and superglued a voodoo mask on him which won't come off for love nor money. His only form of defence comes from his faithful pair of steal toe cap DMs with which he can mercilessly mash insects and snakes into a pulp.

The instruction manual gives you some rather cryptic clues about where you have to go and what you have to do. To remove the mask you need to find the witch doctor and destroy him with a voodoo doll, into which you stick eight pins. Finding these is not altogether easy. The first give are secreted in the temples of the Eagle, Ape, Lion, Monkey and Spider and each one is around forty screens big, containing puzzles, traps and dangerous wilflife, and once you are inside the only way out is to offer gems to the temple god.

Should you survive you then have to complete three 'missions' to earn the last of the pins. These involve returning a lost lion cub to its mother and finding dinner for a monkey. Although they might seem a bit strange, these missions inject an important does of variety, preventing the game from feeling samey.

Even when you have collected all the pins the game is not over. Boots then has to go through part two, which is in the same style as the previous levels and where, if anything, there is even more to explore. This time you face the undead and they cannot be bought off with a mango.

The most remarkable feature about Voodoo Nightmare is that it comes on just one disk. Amazing when you consider it is over seven hundred screens big, with still shots, an intro and plenty of sound.

My only criticism is the controls. I found moving Boots around the screen often difficult and frustrating. Although I initially failed to make hand and joystick into an effective combination, I practised moving Boots up and down long paths until I eventually discovered how to make him go where I wanted him to.

Voodoo Nightmare is an excellent game, a kind of thinking man's 3D Sabre Wulf (if anyone can remember that far back). There is plenty to do, a generous dollop of arcade action and puzzles, a huge playing area, colourful graphics and enough features to keep it interesting, even if some of the puzzles are a bit obscure to begin with.

It will be a long time before anyone can reveal Boots to the world. I suggest starting your jungle trip today.

THE JUNGLE is made up of two-hundred-and-fifty something 3D screens which features such as chasms, rivers, rope bridges and wildlife in various forms. When night falls everything turns into a pretty shade of blue and the jungle animals retire to bed after a hard day of giving you grief. Your only supply line comes from the various jungle shops, and the friendly, if somewhat elderly, shop keeper. When the shops close the casinos open. Inside you can gamble the jungle currency of bananas and gems on the fruit machine, although more often than not the machine wins.