Saturday, 17 September 2011

Alcazar: The Forgotten Fortress (ColecoVision)

Seems like this is another game made by only one person. It's got a bit of a Zelda look to it, but it apparently came out a year earlier.

How am I supposed to judge the game fairly when the box looks like that? It's setting me up for a huge let down. This is why NES games like Super Mario Bros and Metroid used in-game art on their box, so that they wouldn't raise expectations that the games couldn't match.

It's got a world map! I honestly wasn't expecting that. That giant castle on the right seems to be where I'm going, and I'll have to get through at least four other castles to get there.

Onwards to Castle Pink then.

Damn, it's pink on the inside too. This... is not the guy on the box. For one thing he's green, and he's carrying a pistol. He's carrying a lot of pistols.

The screen isn't scrolling as I walk around, but I can live with that. I might as well check that door out before I go any further in.

Well, fuck. My green adventurer disappears into the depths, and a fresh one appears at the entrance ready for another go.

Got to remember not to go in that room again.

I tried door number two instead and found myself a spider. I'd shoot the bastard if I could figure out how. The fire button just makes him shuffle through his pockets.

Time to run off and regroup I think.

Son of a BITCH!

I can't believe I just went into that room again.

Yes! I have figured out how to shoot the gun. All I do his hold the button and tap the direction I want to fire in. It's not a perfect system, I won't be able to run while I gun, but it'll do.

Ah, it seems that the squares at the bottom of the screen are a map of the castle. The white spaces are the places I've been, and the entirely green square must be another floor.

Oh, also I just got stabbed by a one-eye'd psycho with a knife and now my guy's spinning to his death. I'm not even going to make it out of Castle Pink at this rate.

Son of a bitch. Stabbed by the same enemy in the same room as I was looking at the corpse of my last dude.

Killing the serial killer took the last of my bullets, but got me a key. though I haven't seen any locks lying around.

But I have found another gun with six more shots and a bottle of, uh, orox? I'll grab it; it might come in useful and there's no point carrying empty weapons around. Still haven't found a sword yet.

Awesome, I have finally made it to the other side of Castle Pink! Next stop on my journey to the forgotten fortress... another pink castle.

I really hate these bastards. Well that's it, I'm out of lives. Game over. There's no saves or continues.


I'm doing pretty damn bad on this run too. I've already lost two lives.

At least I managed to shoot a spider, yay.

Ah, I knew the other green box must be another floor. I've finally found a staircase to get there.

Once is expected, twice is carelessness, but falling down a bloody hole three times is just plain ineptitude. I should know by now not to rush into rooms.

If I'd just stepped into the room I'd be standing in doorway next to the hole right now, totally unharmed. Thinking 'wow, I'm glad I didn't rush into this room like a damn idiot'.

Oh I like this room though. This is my new favourite room in the whole game. Well, to be honest I'm not too keen on the skeleton, but the rest of it is pretty awesome.


There's no hit points or health bar in this, and I can run past enemies just fine without being hurt. These assholes have to get a good hit on me to kill me, and I'm not going to give them a chance this time.

Fuck, he's got friends! And they can go through doors!

I just need to get a lead on them so I can turn around and start firing. It shouldn't take that many shots to kill them.


This is it, I'm at the final fortress. Well it's the biggest fortress at least, I have no clue if it's actually the end of the game.

I can return to castles I've already visited, so the entire map is still open to me. My true destination could be anywhere.

Awesome, I've found oil! Actually, after giving it some thought I've decided to stick with the guns and the keys. Oil's a bit of an unknown quantity with no obvious use, and guns have a very obvious use.

Like for shooting this fly.


Crap, the guns ran out! And now I'm being chased by a fire breathing lizard thing and it won't leave me alone.

Oh shit, wrong turn. These genies are as annoying as the serial killers.

Though I'll have to come back and get past him somehow. There are locked doors and I have a key; there must be something valuable in here somewhere. Like the end of the game perhaps.

I got past the genie and found a flashy thing! Though annoyingly the genie followed me in, and he brought a friend. How am I supposed to figure out what this thing does when I can't stop for a moment?

Damn, I get rid of the genies, then come back and immediately get murdered by a monster hiding in the gate. My hero spins into nothing for the final time. Game over, final score: FAILURE. 

I actually kind of liked this one, for what it is. I mean yeah I didn't know what the hell I was doing and totally failed to achieve anything, but going through dungeons, finding stuff and killing monsters is a formula that works.

Not that I ever want to play it again. Next game.

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