Fish! logo

Dave Eriksson follows Ingrid home, looks at some dungeon history and relaxes with an aquatic adventure.

MAGNETIC SCROLLS has a reputation for brill adventures. Its latest, Fish!, is no exception. You play the part of an inter-dimensional espionage agent currently on a month of rest and recreation or to be more precise - in voluntary vacation mode.

Your boss, Sir Playfair Panchax VC DSO FRT, suggested a holiday, after all you had been working for an extended period without a break. You have earned the highest rewards within the service - one month inhabiting the body of a goldfish. Oh the peace, the tranquility of it all. You can have a whale of a time.

But it was not to be. Having just started to really relax, you are called back to solve the worst crime of the century. The Seven Deadly Fins are a pretty gruesome lot, their list of crimes is already as long as your arm and, unusually for a fish, you do have arms.

The Seven are planning to sabotage a whole planet inhabited entirely by fish. The world is being battered by a gross attack of evaporation. To combat this, a project has been set up to replace the lost water. But the Seven Deadly Fins have stolen the focus wheel - a vital part of the mechanism.
The whole concept of the inter-dimensional espionage section revolves around their ability to "warp" an operative's persona into a host body anywhere in the universe - how did you think you became a goldfish anyway?

Sir PP pops three warps into your goldfish bowl, so that you can skate off to the possible hiding places of the parts of the missing focus wheel. Find all three and you will get a further warp to take you to the city of Hydropolis and put an end to this dastardly plot.

These initial three warps will take you to mini adventures where you have a host of human forms. You may tackle them in any order and you are looking for a ring, a grommet and a spindle. There are various ways of returning to your goldfish state, but strive for the one that occurs after you have found what you are looking for.

To find the ring you will travel to a wooded area and meet Micky Blowtorch, an ex-operative, and his exploding parrot perched nearby, (cod be a red-herring). This is quite a tricky little puzzle, with only a few locations but timing is everything. Mistakes can be sole destroying.

The grommet is in an old abbey, at present occupied by hippies. You must look like one of them and take care not to attract their attention, as one or more of the Seven Deadly Fins may be among the group. There are only a limited number of locations to explore - just keep your eyes peeled.

Finally, the spindle is found in a recording studio where the deadly Seven are cutting their latest hit. Your first task here is to find a way of supplying the producer with copious amounts of coffee. Without this regular intake of stimulant he will make your life hell and you cannot get on with your investigation. Take a leaf out of his book and delegate!

When you reach Hydropolis you will take over the body of fish scientist and project leader, Dr Roach. Arriving in his apartment you will receive a reminder of his appointment with the university's principal at 10 o'clock. Just check that out in your fishofas (is this a Guppie adventure?) before you leave.

Travelling by underground during the rush hour can prove un-nerving, especially when you realise that the Seven Deadly Fins are probably all out to stop the project in any way they can. This is the largest section of the adventure, and getting your device working will involve some Heath Robinson efforts. With a bit of luck you'll end up with a bout of R and R (sorry VVM) back in that goldfish bowl.

There is plenty of delicious text to read and the graphics are up to Mag Roll's usual standard. It just seems a pity that apart from the initial brilliant screen all the fishy citizens of Hydropolis look like us. That loading screen is great, and the watery bubbles of the loading tuna must have taken some time to synthesie.

YOU can't carpt at the command interpreter, but I do get fed up with having to type whole words instead of just the first four or five letters so some single letter abbreviations help a bit..

Another first class adventure from Magnetic Scrolls, suitable for all adventurers with a sense of humour. Cypheric hints are given for the confused - even if the code does take an age to type in! Great value for 25 quid.