Storm


by Simon Freeman, Mike Talbot, Kevin Shrapnell, Sean Martin, Ray Owen
Mastertronic Ltd
1986
Crash Issue 34, November 1986   (1986-10-23)   page(s) 20,21

Storm the warrior is your actual everyday superhero. Bold, tearless, heroic righter of wrongs, and he even remembers to put his Y-fronts inside his trousers! But, while he was off doing daring deeds, some bloke by the unlikely title of Una Cum has made off with his old lady and locked her in his lair.

Storm is a bit put out by all this, and pausing only to enlist the aid of the equally oddly named Agravian the Undead, he legs it over to Una's place to free his beloved.

To free Corrine, three snake brooches have to be collected. The action is viewed from above, and each location is a mini-maze. As the hero (or heroes if the game is being played in two-player mode) leaves the current location, the next room flips into view. A scrolling message below the status area describes the location and lets the player(s) know if a character's strength is getting dangerously low.

As soon as a room is entered the baddies come swarming at the rescue party and contact with them, like magic use, gradually saps a character's strength rating as shown on a counter at the top of the screen, Individual baddies can be zapped with magic, while scarce scrolls, masks and amulets which have to be collected zap all the baddies in a location. If possible, the generators that produced the evil minions should be destroyed to stem the flood of pasties.

Various items can be collected in the dungeon, including foodstuffs to boost flagging energy meters, extra scrolls and amulets, and armour. Two player mode gives twice the fire power, but then strength replenishing objects have to be shared out between the two characters.

Cabbalas are very useful, and change the layout of walls in a location, opening up a previously inaccessible pan of the room, or possibly blocking the exit...

COMMENTS
Control keys: Storm: N turn left; M turn right L forward: P fire; ENTER fire amulets. Agravian: X turn left; C turn right; Z forward; A fire; CAPS use scroll; U use mask
Joystick: none
Keyboard play: a little tricky, but responsive
Use of colour: colourful and attractive
Graphics: unremarkable - indistinct with minimal animation
Sound: no tune, raspy effects
Skill levels: one
Screens: 48


'As budget titles go, Storm is a passable effort. If it hadn't been for the rather blocky characters and the poor playability, it would have done better. The way screens can be cleared and made safe gives a good sense of progress, and the playing area is pretty vast. With just a little bit more work this game could have been much better... as it is, Storm isn't very compelling.'

'Boring, boring, boring. As you can tell I absolutely loved this game. I have never much liked playing this sort of birds-eye-view, run-around-the-screens shoot'em ups and this game does nothing but justify my convictions. The graphics are slow and jerky and the characters are, how can I put it, mind numbingly boring. The control method is awkward, and takes a lot of getting used to before you can get out of tricky situations quickly. The only nice thing I can say, is that the colour is not bad at all'

'There seems to be a trend towards the mystical 'collect the treasure and dodge the dragons' type games at the moment, which is all well and jolly good fun. Storm isn't the best. The graphics on the whole are ugly, the characters are chunky but colourful and fast moving and the playing area is a bit drab. The sound also leaves a lot to be desired: what there is of it isn't really worth listening to. The two player mode is probably the best option the game has, but it takes a little practice not to get in each other's way. My main moan is that controlling your man is very difficult, so it is hard to nip out of trouble or go through doors. I can't really recommend this game as it contains very little worth experiencing.'

Use of Computer: 45%
Graphics: 38%
Playability: 39%
Getting Started: 45%
Addictive Qualities: 48%
Value for Money: 58%
Overall: 44%

Summary: General Rating: A budget Gauntlet variant that doesn't quite come off.

Transcript by Chris Bourne

Your Sinclair Issue 12, December 1986   page(s) 66

Storm is an attempt to implement a Gauntlet-style game on the good old Speccy - yes another one. Unfortunately, whilst I admire the sentiment, the game itself falls decidedly short of the mark. Briefly, the idea of the game is to penetrate an underground labyrinth and rescue Storm's wife. The game can be played by either one or two players. If two players are playing then both Agravain the Undead and Storm can be used simultaneously, each being controlled by different parts of the keyboard.

The game is fairly standard aracade adventure format with items to find and baddies to kill. Unfortunately the action is viewed from above and the graphics are a bit too
chunky to make the game special.

Overall, a nice idea but poorly implemented.


Graphics: 5/10
Playability: 5/10
Value For Money: 4/10
Addictiveness: 4/10
Overall: 4/10

Transcript by Chris Bourne

Crash - Run It Again Issue 43, August 1987   (1987-07-30)   page(s) 41

Issue 34 (November 1986) Page 20

ROBIN: Una Cum the wicked one has made off with fearless Storm's wife, the delectable Corrine. She's been locked up in Una's laboratory while he's off looking for a box called The Fear.

As soon as Storm heard of this, he set off to retrieve his sweetheart from the castle, stopping en route to enlist the help of Agravian The Undead (who only appears in two-player mode). To free Corrine they must collect three snake brooches.

Storm was one of the first Gauntlet clones, and it has many Gauntletesque features, such as keys to open locked doors and food to replenish energy.

The one distinguishing feature of Storm is the control method, Storm rotates either clockwise or anticlockwise, and another key is used to propel him forward. This method suits some of the 3-D isometric games, but I found it fiddly.

Graphically Storm is very boring; the graphics are big, but designed with little attention to detail. I found it immensely boring and not a patch on most of the other Gauntlet games. Even at its budget price, steer clear of this one.

RICKY: Storm was originally an Amstrad game - and it shows. The graphics are absurdly blocky, so movement is jerky. The control method is strange, because Storm could have been such a fast-moving game; Turn to the desired direction and move just adds to the frustration, making it almost impossible to enjoy the game. Avoid.

Then: 44%
Now: 39%


Overall: 39%

Transcript by Chris Bourne

Sinclair User Issue 55, October 1986   page(s) 56

Gauntlet fever has struck, and it looks as if at least two look-a-likes, Storm and Droids will be on the streets long before US Gold brings out the official game, licensed from Atari, in November.

Mastertronic's Storm is already out and though a little slow, you can see at a glance where the idea came from. Storyline aside, it's a one or two player game played in the now well-known Gauntletesque maze. You look down on a labyrinth of corridors from a bird's eye view, which gives the characters a strange stunted look. At first what you appear to be controlling looks like a pair of bull's horns. It was only a few confused moments later that I realised I was in fact looking at a pair of curved arms from above.

Once I'd adjusted my viewpoint the visual logic of the game fell into place. (Funnily enough though, a chicken leg, from above, looks exactly like a chicken leg from the side, but enough of the pedantics.)

Storm, given its budget tag is an excellent game. Rush round the maze killing off the nasties which spring from generators (familiar?) If you persist, you can blast the generators, or use a magic mask spell to get rid of them all in one fell swoop. The generators only reappear if you re-enter the screen. Other helpful objects to pick up are bottles for energy and amulets and scrolls which have a smart bomb effect on the nasties.

Unlike Gauntlet, Storm's not a scrolling game, each screen contains one section of the maze, with a number of exits to the next area. It looks like it needs careful mapping. To get into the wizard's laboratory, you need to collect three snake broaches, though what you do once you've got into the lab is anyone's guess. I didn't get that far.

Your ultimate quest is to rescue yet another helpless princess, who's been hidden somewhere in the wizard's lair. You've only got a few lives and time is limited. For a basic, up, down, left, right and fire. Storm offers a challenge and is great value.

Label: Mastertronic
Price: £1.99
Joystick: various
Memory: 48K/128K
Reviewer: Clare Edgeley

****


Overall: 4/5

Summary: The first Gauntlet clone, Storm is a challenging maze game which offers great value for money.

Transcript by Chris Bourne

Computer & Videogames Issue 62, December 1986   page(s) 50

MACHINE: Spectrum
SUPPLIER: Mastertronic
PRICE: £1.99

A couple of issues back we were raving on about a cheapie for the Amstrad called Storm. Now it's out on the Spectrum and is just as good. If you want to brush up your Gauntlet skills before the real thing turns up in time for Christmas then this is the game for you.

It's a one or two player arcade adventure in which Storm the Warrior and Agravain Undead the magician go on a rescue mission. The evil Una Cum has captured Storm's missus - and as there's no one at home to wash his barbarian furs our hero wants her back.

You enter the weird and dangerous world of Una's castle - populated by millions of his minions who'd love to carry your head to their master.

Fortunately, as you explore the dank, dark and dusty rooms you'll discover magic scrolls, food, armour and keys which will aid your quest. What you're looking for are the three snake broaches or torcs which will enable you to open the door to Una's laboratory where Storm's wife Corrine is imprisoned.

Like Gauntlet you get an overhead view of each room you enter, while a message about your current location - or about your statusscrolls along in a window at the top of the screen.

Each room is filled with baddies who attack and drain your energy unless you zap them, They'll keep on coming unless you wipe out the monster generators easily spotted in each room. Easily spotted unless they are hidden under "floorboards", that is. Trial and error - and blasting - will help you find the obscured bits and pieces. Some useful things could be hidden as well.

Find a magic scroll and activate it in a roomful of baddies and you'll temporarily clear an entire room.

For some reason the instructions say this is a keyboard only game. Well, my Kempston worked OK on both the one and two player games. Although player two obviously has to use the keys - and you have to wait for your mate to catch up before moving onto the next room.

The program is extremely well presented - with a useful set of on screen instructions which set the scene for the game and tell you what's what in the game. This was missing from the Amstrad version.

The graphics are chunky but acceptable. The whole game has a nice feel to it. It's also horribly addictive and very playable.

If you can't wait for Gauntlet to appear - and who can? - it's well worth shelling out a couple of quid to get in a bit of monster molesting with Storm and Agravain. Another budget winner from Mastertronic.


Graphics: 7/10
Sound: 7/10
Value: 9/10
Playability: 9/10

Award: C+VG Hit

Transcript by Chris Bourne

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