by Anjana Soft: Jose Miguel Saiz Gomez, Manuel Rosas, Jose Antonio Carrera Merino
Dinamic Software
Crash Issue 81, October 1990   (1990-09-20)   page(s) 41

Demons have taken over your world and it's your job, brave warrior, to find three magical scrolls and destroy the satanic hordes. As a member of the Army Of The Divinity you're blessed with magical powers, an essential requirement as you leap and bound around in the dank, dark caves of the first load.

Sadly, your magical powers don't extend to blessing you with a decent weapon at the start of the game. With only an energy bolt for protection, you fight against hellish looking monsters with names likes Trows, Kelpies, Nairbs, Glaistigs and Tam Lins. But, but, but! You laugh in the face of danger, because magical icons are scattered about to aid you: Coins boost your score, Elixirs increase flagging energy. Clocks add time (the game is played against the clock), Power-Ups improve your weapon and Lightning acts as a smart bomb.

Prolonged contact with the various denizens drains your energy, but with boosted weapons the creatures are toasted, and some drop power-up icons with their dying breath.

The three magical scrolls are guarded by a Tam Lin. If you thought the other creatures tough, wait until you see what this dude can do! The only way to kill this Darwinian nightmare is to first blow its heads off and then shoot it in the heart (simple, eh?).

When all three scrolls are collected it's off to the other half of the game in load two. Using the powers collected by the warrior, you now control a wizard with the objective of freeing your wizardly comrades and destroying the evil forces forever.

Again, Satan and his evil creatures are after you: tough to kill, but with each one destroyed, coins are awarded which can be used to purchase goods at the shop of Brownie The Wizard. So buying Teleport Cards, Satan Scanners, Energy Rechargers, Magical Axes and Shields Of Fire increases your chances of rescuing your friends and killing Satan once and for all.

Although the main and background sprites in Satan are detailed, your character sprite is so small he's almost lost. The scrolling is also on the dodgy side with the screen moving a fraction behind your joystick movement. Despite that, Satan is a reasonabl play, especially load one which reminded me of Black Tiger. Sound is a disappointment, with only standard blasting effects and no title tune. Satan is an average hack-'n'-slay style game which didn't hold my interest for long.

MARK ... 72%

'Finally, Dinamic has got it right! Games from this Spanish software house are always good looking but usually impossible to play! But here's Satan and it's really playable (thank heavens!): classic platform action as you control the hero leaping around the depths of the underworld, and there's plenty of action to keep you playing - monsters wielding axes, flying spooks and a whole host of demonic opponents line the treacherous route. The scrolling scenery on each level makes up a huge map, one that'll keep cartographers up late at night! Plentiful and well designed graphics abound, occasionally so much so that it's difficult to tell exactly what's going on! You'll be grabbed with addiction as soon as play begins, there's so much in it - but don't get over excited as a wrong move could prove fatal. So, there you have it: playable, addictive, good looking and plenty of it, it'll bring out the devil in you!!'
RICHARD ... 87%

Presentation: 67%
Graphics: 75%
Sound: 65%
Playability: 81%
Addictivity: 77%
Overall: 80%

Summary: Immediately playable and long term engrossing due to a huge playing area.

Transcript by Chris Bourne

Your Sinclair Issue 58, October 1990   page(s) 56

Judging by all the skulls, axes and blood all over the box and, of course, the name, I thought we were going to be in for a crappy heavy metal game or something. But I was wrong (and not for the first time this morning). The game's all about beating up Satan, not shouting about him. So that's interesting Fact No. One. Interesting Fact No. Two is that Satan is the latest from Dinamic, those cheerful Spanish programming people. (Thats enough interesting facts. Ed)

From what I can make out (the instructions are a bit 'Spanish') the plot goes something like this - you're a warrior, and you've got to become a wizard in order to duff up the forces of evil. To do this you ye got to collect three thingies, and then you'll have the necessary power to take on Satan who has probably taken over the world or something.

Being a Dinamic game, this means two separate loading parts with a code to get into the second bit. It also means that I looked forward to playing it about as much as a punch in the face, as I've never really 'got on' with these Spanish games. They've all tended to be a bit messy and off-puttingly hard. So what did I think of this one? Well, you'll have to wait a bit longer because there's a bit more description coming up.

These two levels, then. The first one features you as a muscley warrior-type who leaps about from platform to platform and climbs up things with the help of a bit of four-way scrolling. He can also shoot baddies, which is quite handy as there are plenty of them, and collect the little icons they leave behind. These give all the usual extra energy, weapons and stuff. It all looks strangely familiar. Being a bit thick, though, someone had to explain to me that Black Tiger is most likely the inspiration behind this bit.

On to Part Two, and our warrior has become a wizard. He can still do much the same sorts of things, although in a more outdoor environment. This time, however, he has to face the alarming prospect of a confrontation with Satan himself. From what I can work out this usually results in Game Over message in no time at all, but maybe that's just me being crap again. Oh, and there's a 'shop' bit on this level too, also nicked out of Black Tiger.

Right, criticism time. It's not too bad, actually. The first level's the best, nice and easy, while the second verges a bit on the hard side, and the way your character leaps about is most impressive. The graphics are quite good too. Okay, so they're not exactly slick (being in monochrome) and it does get quite difficult to work out what's going on at times, but apart from all that they're fine.

The only really snag is that Satan isn't exactly huge - I'd seen most of it after playing for only half and hour. Beating the game might be another matter but, hard as it is, once you've managed that you might feel ever-so-slightly short-changed.

However Dinamic fans should enjoy it (it's probably their best yet, or one of their best anyway) and others should find it fun while it lasts.

Life Expectancy: 69%
Instant Appeal: 77%
Graphics: 71%
Addictiveness: 78%
Overall: 77%

Summary: Quite a good leaping game. A bit naff in places though.

Transcript by Chris Bourne

Sinclair User Issue 104, October 1990   page(s) 72,73

You have to Dinamic, there's no messing around with their titles; this game isn't called "Satan Has A Cheese and Wine Party", or "Satanic Drag Racing Simulator" or "Satan Versus the Oogroids from Plenth"; it's just called SATAN, so you know exactly who's the star of this excellent sword-and-slashery arcade adventure.

It's interesting to compare Satan with Rastan, a similar concept just re-released on budget. In both games, the hero is a loincloth-bulging barbarian hero, who has to take on hordes of evil demons on a quest for, er, something. The main difference is that while Rastan has a rather large, colourful graphical style, Satan plumps for small, highly detailed but largely monochrome characters. Sometimes your hero tends to merge into the background, and the animation is a tad slow and jerky, but individual screens look very nice and some of the monsters are gratifyingly hideous.

The first section of the game is a straightforward arcade adventure in which you have to run, leap and swing enthusiastically through demon-infested caverns. The demons come boiling out of nowhere, and if you zap them with magical bolts they leave behind useful icons; shields which add protection, life-restoring potions, and extra weapons such as three-way shooters. But, if you leave it too long, the icons turn back into demons, and what nasty demons they are; armoured lizards, crab warriors and fire-spitting harpies to name but three.

Your main aim is to keep climbing upwards; this you do by jumping up onto stalactites, shinning up, then making mighty leaps sideways to the next handhold. The actual running/jumping/shinning/leaping animation is great, though not particularly smooth, and there are nice optical effects as you launch magic bolts and zap monsters. You can shoot sideways as you climb, but you can't shoot as you jump, so it's a challenge to bump off the monsters before you climb onto the next plateau.

Finding arched exits gets you into side caverns where even more dangers lurk, and a Satanic scanner at the bottom of the screen shows you where danger lurks and points your way to the eventual exit (which I haven't reached yet.) This is all very good, but the big gimmick of the game is that if you finish level one you get an access code to the second part of the game, which is loaded separately. Here your barbarian hero metamorphoses into a bearded sorceror, and the game assumes a more strategic aspect as you plot to use your magical powers to defeat old whiskery, chops Satan himself.

In this section (for which Dinamic thoughtlessly failed to give us the access code) you emerge from the caverns and explore Satan castle, again facing terrors such as hooded executioners, winged demons and ghouls. The difference is that in this stage you get to choose different magical spells and weapons to aid you in your quest. Oh well, eventually I suppose we'll get to see it.

Great stuff. I'm almost tempted to say magic.

Label: Dinamic
Price: £8.99
Reviewer: Chris Jenkins

Graphics: 85%
Sound: 80%
Playability: 82%
Lastability: 85%
Overall: 83%

Summary: Swords and Sorcery Spanish style should sell like got paella and chips.

Transcript by Chris Bourne

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