Amstrad Computer User
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An adventure game that takes a fun romp through a wacky Shakespearean world of witches and castles.

The blasted heath. The image of desolate mysticism is blessed with a swirling mist and cold, damp soil. A witch. Haggard and bitter. Another witch, old and draped in angst. Another witch makes three, hurly-burlying, bearded, acrid-faced wenches. Transported by complete misfortune into this world of Shakespearian scenes, I am confronted by this image.

An adventure, my mother always told me, should be dealt with head-on, like looking down the barrel of a cannon; this, it seems, is the only way the adventure game Avon can be played. You are manipulated, as an unsuspecting individual partaking in customary bouts of tourism, by the theatrical powers of Stratford-upon-Avon and the haunting words of the local bard. Consequently you are sent to the stage. It is here that you are prompted by the poetic eloquence of the Shakespearian word: "All the world's a stage and all the men and women merely players." The prompt offers you a choice of possible directions in which to move. If you write your commands, the computer will provide you with a description of the area you have entered.

Played as an on-screen story, Avon proffers no visual graphics. The game is a continual interaction between computer and player, with a series of questions and commands from each side. The opening sequence emphasises that a knowledge of Shakespeare is not a prerequisite for success in the game, although it states that a familiarity with the plays would add relevance to the scenes encountered. A certain level of common sense is required, as with all adventure games, to ensure that all details are investigated and that the maximum number of objects are collected. Problems arise that test the nerve; they can lead to considerable difficulties in your quest to return to your original era. When faced with a touchy asp, for example, quick and accurate commands are needed to keep you from the grave.

Forsooth, 'tis a distant road down which you ride for the fruits of home life, with many slanderous tongues along the way. Take heed to take care of your goods and return to the salad days when you were green in judgement. The game goes on.

Avon is packaged with another adventure game of the same style, entitled Murdac. The game is on the reverse side of the disc and commands the same format as Avon. The story however, is different and leans more into the sublime of a mystical fantasy. Isolation. A forest of confusion with paths heading out in all directions with nothing but the universe as an obstacle. The problems are just as great in Murdac with the Astrologer's sanctum, the old man of the sea, monsters and various other ethereal enigma's threatening death and hampering progress.

Both games are easy to load and operate and they actually have an on-line 'Help' system which can provide you with solutions to the more irksome obstacles. The pack also includes an introduction and technical guide, coded hint sheets and a somewhat grandiose postcard of Stratford-upon-Avon.

If you are a regular player of adventure games then the desire to take up a challenge may be enough to convince you to indulge. If not, Avon and Murdac will provide a simple introduction to a popular trend in computer games. The fact that there are no visual graphics may annoy many and as a consequence invoke boredom or frustration. Only the will to succeed can take you through such recreation. Our revels now are ended. These actors, as I foretold you, were all spirits and are melted into air, into thin air. Exeunt right.

Basil Bread , ACU #8912



★ YEAR: 1989


» Avon    (Postcard)DATE: 2013-02-04
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» Avon    (Release  DISC-Includes  Monsters  of  Murdac)    ENGLISHDATE: 2016-09-07
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» Avon    ENGLISHDATE: 2013-02-04
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L'Amstrad CPC est une machine 8 bits à base d'un Z80 à 4MHz. Le premier de la gamme fut le CPC 464 en 1984, équipé d'un lecteur de cassettes intégré il se plaçait en concurrent  du Commodore C64 beaucoup plus compliqué à utiliser et plus cher. Ce fut un réel succès et sorti cette même années le CPC 664 équipé d'un lecteur de disquettes trois pouces intégré. Sa vie fut de courte durée puisqu'en 1985 il fut remplacé par le CPC 6128 qui était plus compact, plus soigné et surtout qui avait 128Ko de RAM au lieu de 64Ko.