Arthur: Quest for Excalibur Review

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Graphics: 5.0
Sound : 2.0
Gameplay : 6.0
Multiplayer : N/A
Overall : 5.5
Review by
Arthur: Quest for Excalibur (c) Infocom

Genre: Adventure
Year: 1989
Size: 1.10 mb

To be perfectly honest I've never been a real fan of text-adventures, and I'm not even sure why. Probably because it involves more strain to the fingers than with a point & click adventure. But even so, I found the game Arthur: Quest for Excalibur on a backup cd and thought I'd give it a shot.

You know a text based adventure is in some ways like a book; the author gets to show the story in a very different way than in modern adventures, as the player has to do a fair amount of reading. Some find this annoying/alot of work, while some really enjoy it. Not being a 100% bookworm, but being a 100% enjoyer of good games I fell down somewhere in the middle. The bottom line is, you don't need to be a bookworm to play a text based adventure, you just have to set off some, err alot of spare time.

I do suppose that most of you are somewhat aware of the story about Arthur, you know the guy who took the sword out of the rock, and his bud Merlin. In this game you start at the beginning of that story,
by the church which is next to the rock with the sword. And naturally there's trouble from the start, you see there's of course another guy who'd like to get his hands on the sword so he could rule the town.
And that guy had put a curfew out, and being out past it would mean being put in prison for a while, hence game over. After you've hidden from the soldiers who go to search the church for people, you notice that the rock (with the sword) gets removed, and you fall asleep out there on the graveyard (now that could easily become some really heavy sleeping ;P). Mr. Badguy announces the next day that he's taken the sword out of the rock, so he should be the supreme ruler of the place, but what he doesn't say is that he didn't use his hands to get it out, rather his servants equipped with machinery. Certainly this has to be stopped, and this is where our bud Merlin gets into the action. You will need to move around some and locate his cave up by the hills, and after being told what to do and in somewhat degree how you're given the power to transform into various animals such as an eel, a turtle, an owl and some others. And now, the fun begins =)

The Graphics:
Text based adventures have a tendancy of becoming very black & white, and to make this better ANSI art got implemented. Unfortunatly not everyone have built-in ansi support in their dos, so it can be a pain at times.
Arthur: Quest for Excalibur takes text adventures to the next level, by implementing "images" of your whereabouts, so now your imagination won't even get too strained, hehe. The graphics look good, and so do
the "images". Good work!

The Sounds:
Hehe, well.. Very little to say here I'm afraid, the only sound I can think of is when you press something you're not supposed to and a little beep pops out of your speakers.

The Music:
Even less, none.

The Gameplay:
In some text-adventures it can be really tough having to guess what the correct command is, and this has been improved in Arthur. You can also see hints by typing Hint twice. One thing is for certain, you will have to switch on your brain at times =P