William Wobbler (Wizard Developments) Review | Crash - Everygamegoing


William Wobbler
By Wizard Computer Games
Spectrum 48K

Published in Crash #26

William Wobbler

William is a very strange looking character indeed. The bendy legs and arms with a short body but very long neck and a boggle-eyed, reptilian head would definitely make him stand out in a crowd. Except that William lives in a world where such abnormalities seem to be the norm. Pink clouds hang in a blue sky above pink and yellow trees that are dotted between craters. The whole place is riddled with cave networks ripe for exploration by William.

Hence the plot for the game. William has to wander around the cave systems trying to piece together ten clues in an attempt to solve a puzzle. William can climb, jump duck and walk to achieve this. Scattered around the caves are objects which when used properly help him to achieve his goal. Keys open up hitherto inaccessible sections, or even allow William to return to places explored earlier. Certain objects need to be carried in order to access game features such as having to find and carry a disk before you can save a game. An inventory of objects is available by pressing I. When William uses an object, it appears in his hand automatically.

Strange looking snakes, flying toad-like creatures and mysterious blobs also hinder William's progress. Touching any of these results in the end of the game. William Wobbler provides you with only one life. William also suffers from aquaphobia, if he enters water he sinks never to reappear! A useful item is some kind of ladder that allows William to reach higher levels. He's rather a large chap and can't jump that far.

William himself is made up of several sprites so his head can wobble up and down on his long neck whenever he walks or jumps. Other creatures are made up of single colour sprites. The background uses limited perspective to add depth to the view and is drawn using hatch-worked and block colours.

Very little in the way of a proper scenario is provided because Wizard have made this a competition game. The first person to collect all the clues and subsequently solve the puzzle will win a mystery prize said by Wizard development to be worth £1,000. The Commodore version of the game has been around since about October last year but according to Wizard, nobody has solved it to date.


Control keys: Z/X left/right; K/M up/down or duck; ENTER to jump or pick
Joystick: Kempston
Keyboard play: straight forward and responsive
Use of colour: lively enough but too many attribute problems
Graphics: good, inventive sprites
Sound: poor

Comment 1

'I think someone's tried to copy Tir Na Nog and made a complete hash of it. William Wobbler is a pretty boring fellow, slow and obviously a mute as I didn't catch much sound coming out of the speaker. It's nice and colourful but this seems to have caused a lot of attribute problems. The total lack of instructions makes starting off very hard, so I'm afraid Wizard are going to have to do a little better than this to book a space in my games playing sessions'

Comment 2

'Wizard certainly seem to have put a lot of effort into the packaging of this one. The first impression of the game is reasonable, with a very nice animated Bill (of wobbling fame). Unfortunately, the bad points of the game seem to make more of an impression as you progress. The lack of sound takes an element away: I think a continuous tune would have made it more fun to play, and the single lift makes it frustrating. You can wander for hours, and unless you save the game, can be forced to re-start again just for coming into contact with another life-form. Colour is used profoundly, but this makes for an abundance of clashes. An admirable first effort from Wizard, marred by the bad points which, although few, spoil what could have been a good game'

Comment 3

'William Wobbler is a different kind of arcade adventure which we Spectrum owners have never experienced before, and it's not bad. The graphics are very colourful and as a result the screen is full of attribute problems but other than that the graphics are reasonable. The name itself is very playable and, if you like the approach, is reasonably addictive. If you like arcade adventures but nothing too tough then this one will probably suit you but I think that the asking price is a bit much. The problems are very devious but with some brain power it doesn't take long to get involved. Overall, quite a good game with the emphasis on arcade rather than adventure.'

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