Long, long ago. in a land where people were cursed with the most preposterous names there was a ruler named Jorma. Jorma ruled the Teia people, who - amazingly enough - were peaceful and contented.
Jorma had two sons, Kyle and Nemesar. He favoured Kyle, which irritated Nemey no end. Now. the problem with trying to bring up a family in such early times is that it's so difficult to teach the social graces. I mean, it must be pretty tough to persuade the kiddies not to vomit at dinner when all round them are scenes of barbarism and unbridled hiccupping. Such behaviour has obviously worn off on poor old Nemesar. as he has become really quite unsociable.
He bumbed-off his mum. and then took control of the Mindstone. which holds the power to do amazing things. When in the hands of the Good, it can do wonders for crops. healing and the weather. In the hands of a malicious soul, however, trouble will brew quicker than you can say "Oh crumbs'"
Taking the role of Kyle, it is your quest to seek out your brother and return the mindstone to a safe place.
The game takes place in the relative desolation of the Shadowlands. You guide a party of three warriors, each possessing different attributes From time to time, your path will be blocked by on obstacle of some kind. These are rather diverse - you could encounter anything from a wall of ice, though a leopard to a crocodili on your travels. Usually you w be given a hint as lo how you should approach each problem.
Should you find yourself without the suitable object with which to bribe or despatch the obstacle, you can always try to kill it (providing it is an animate life-form).
Often in combat, a member of your party will be killed. Usually, though, they do manage to defeat their opponent, so the sacrifice is generally worthwhile.
The graphics could not be described as all that amazing. and there is very little animation. The characters move around when attacking or trading with other creatures.
but are essentially static. The second is far from exciting, which leads this reviewer to the question "So what is the appeal, eh?"
Well, fortunately for all at The Edge, the program has great game-play!
It's all done with the joystick. Although they claim that it's all "icon driven" is porhaps a little tenuous - you highlight words instead of pictures 60% of the time - it's easy to get started.
You can select your movement direction by pointing at a specific arrow, and itting fire. Alternating character control is handled in the same way. and is a "joy" to use.
You can barter with the wandering tradesmen which litter the landscape, but you can't attack them.
Mindstone is quite good, and the price is reasonable. You get a map on the back of the considerably extensive instructions, though I couldn't decipher the decidedly arty script.
Jim, Computer & Video Games - Issue #60