Friday The 13th
By Domark
Spectrum 48K

Published in Computer & Video Games #52

Friday The 13th

We're not trying to shock, protests Domark at suggestions of bad taste surrounding the advertising of Friday The 13th, just trying to get attention.

Really? Their advert, featuring an ice hockey mask in a pool of blood with a knife thrust through the eye socket, certainly works on both counts.

EMAP, publishers of C&VG, originally had doubts whether to publish the ad. Menzies, the newsagent chain, even insisted the cover art work be changed before it would be displayed.

Friday The 13th

Of course, Domark, while appearing suitably shocked, love the fuss. It's great publicity. A game based on the exploits of a psychopathic killer who hacked, slashed and stabbed himself into film notoriety, is bound to attract the odd criticism. And well they know it.

But what has this to do with the game? Not a lot actually. The packaging and publicity may be sickeningly bloody and gory, but the game isn't.

Blood-curdling screams - at least on the Commodore version - are as bad as it gets.

Friday The 13th

Jason - such a nice name for such a fiendish killer - is wreaking havoc at Crystal Lake holiday camp where you have arrived on holiday.

He appears to be just one of the normal holidaymakers at the camp - until he attacks you/or the others with an axe. You have to find a sage sanctuary where Jason cannot go and then persuade the other holidaymakers to join you or kill him.

Weapons are scattered throughout the game which you can use in a bid to destroy Jason.

Friday The 13th

Most of the screen is taken up with a 3D scrolling view of the holiday camp, covering rooms, walls, fences, etc.

Your panic rating - and Jason always attacks the person with the highest rating - is shown by the height of hair on the character's head at the bottom left-hand corner of the screen. Strength is indicated by a dumbell.

The other characters at the camp are shown in the bottom right corner. If Jason or you kill one of them they are replaced by a tombstone.

Friday The 13th

The mask shows how close you are to going mad and, therefore, the amount of time you have left before the game is over.

The graphics on Friday The 13th are surprisingly crude and chunky on the Commodore version. The character you control also makes a noise like a machine gun when he walks. Quite why, we can't work out.

Friday The 13th is not a computer "nasty" and contains no more violence than most other computer games. If that disappoints you, Domark have thoughtfully provided two foaming blood capsules for you to chew and spit blood at the computer.

Such as the marketing skills of the Domark team that Friday The 13th will be successful.