Jewels Of Darkness (Rainbird/Level 9) Review | Computer Gamer - Everygamegoing

Computer Gamer

Jewels Of Darkness
By Rainbird
Atari XE/XL

Published in Computer Gamer #20

Jewels Of Darkness

This is a compilation of three of Level 9's earlier adventures. For the Atari, these games have been given a thorough re-working and are up to the current 'spec' of Level 9 adventures with pictures being drawn as the description and response is being processed, a thousand word vocabulary, and hundreds of illustrated locations - all is full colour.

The package includes three tapes for the three games, or a single disk. This is accompanied by a rather thick novella/instruction book, and the infamously notorious 'Lenslok' device (Cue clap of thunder, and discontented rumblings from the gods). However, in this game, Lenslok is even more of a pain to use. Usually, you have to go through the loading sequence a few dozen times until you guess the squiggles right, but with this game you have to use it every time you resume a saved game, and halfway through the game as well! After your 19th unsuccessful attempt to use Lenslok look up your rack of tapes/disk and see all the 'copies' sitting there and mull over the fact that the computer game buying public has brought the curse of Lenslok on itself. Doesn't mean I have to like it though, and the excellent packaging, presentation and the book would have been sufficient to make the original game desirable had it not been so expensive, but you gets what you pays for...

Out of soapbox mode now, perhaps I can comment on the game itself. As said earlier, there are three games in the package. These can be played as individual games or in a sequence. Maximum points can only be achieved if you play all three games in a row. The first is Colossal Adventure, which is also known by the names of Colossal Caves, or just Adventure. This is the first adventure ever written (in Fortran by a couple of American students in about 1973) and has been marvellously converted by Level 9. The book creates a plot around this adventure that the second one, Adventure Quest, picks up on, with the final destruction of the baddy. Dungeon Adventure is the last in the trilogy, with you trying to retrieve all his riches and wealth.

This pack will keep hardened adventurers at it for wees and ordinary mortals will be confused for years. Combined with the excellent packaging and presentation this sort of game will provide an excellent Christmas present for almost any games player, whether they like adventures or not.