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Thursday, 25 February 2010

Aaargh! (Commodore 64)

I nearly missed my update for today, and when I realised I hadn't played anything, I just wrote "Aaargh!" in the title field. And then I remembered there actually was a game called "Aaargh!"! I remembered reading a review in ZZAP! 64, and I knew it hadn't got a particularly good score, but I thought that I might as well give it a go, seeing as I'd never played it before. Maybe writing that title was fate of some kind?

It wasn't, and I should have taken the time to pick a proper game, because Aaargh! is horrible.


Oi! Where are you going? The temple is over this way!

It's an odd thing... a one-player two-player game. OK, OK, I hear you saying "what?"... but really, it is! The game starts, and two monsters appear on the screen... one a giant horned man and the other a lizard. And you control them both at the same time, with a single joystick. Yep, weird.

Not just weird, but unwieldy, despite the no-doubt-honourable intentions of the programmers. There are objects littering the screen, and you have to manoeuvre the two monsters around them so that they can destroy certain obstacles and progress to the next screen. The monsters breathe fire, and this is enough to clear a path to the next level.


Hey, I think there are chickens in there!

Eventually, you'll pick up an object which results in the two monsters fighting each other. That's a weird thing, as well. If you're controlling the two protagonists, how do you then fight each other? How do you choose which one wins? Apparently you don't... I couldn't work out how the hell the game decided who was the winner.

There have been some good, or at least decent monster games in the past... Rampage was alright, Primal Rage served its purpose quite well... but Aaargh! is horrible. It's horrible now, and it would have been horrible twenty-odd years ago. I'll let this one serve as a lesson to me.

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