Robin Hood: Legend Quest logo

CodeMasters * £7.99 * 0926 814132

There's a free poster inside the box of this original game, but don't expect to see Kevin Costner (or Patrick Bergin film buffs). No, what in fact you get is a drawing of some smiling people in a woodland setting, which one presumes is Sherwood.

The idea is simple enough. Robin must rescue Marion,w ho is trapped inside a platform game. The Prince of Thieves must get through a castle to reach her, possibly enlisting the aid of the Prince of Persia who could be lost in the same castle looking for the same girl.

It's neat, simple, aimed at a younger audience (or user-ship as it should be) and it's absorbing. Well, for a platform game. The point is, how many more variations on platform games can there be? Well if you like your electronic gaming fun to be based around legends of the Dark Ages, this is a game you shouldn't be without.

For the rest of us, though, you'll find that Robin is better than many, even though it suffers a bit from jerkiness. Perhaps it's not worth getting if you've already got a lot of platform games, it's just another one, really.

Robin Hood: Legend Quest logo

Der vogelfreie Waldläufer im grünen Röckchen durfte sich bereits öfter am Screen austoben, meist in Adventures. Jetzt hetzen ihn die Budget-Profis von Codemasters zur Abwechslung mal über die Plattformen.

Damit ist der Vorrat an Abwechslung bei diesem Spiel aber praktisch auch schon erschöpft: Ständig müssen mit Pfeil und Bogen die gleichen Gegner beharkt werden, andauernd tauchen dieselben Mini-Rätsel (welcher Schlüssel öffnet welches Tor?) auf. Und wozu der ganze Aufwand? Natürlich weil der herrschsüchtige Sheriff von Nottingham Robins Herzdame Marian in seine finstere Burg verschleppt hat...

Um die Jungfer wieder ranzuschaffen, läuft und springt man durch multidirektional scrollende Gemäuer; gelegentlich muß auch mal eine Leiter oder Kette erklommen werden. Während der Suche zehren unablässig feindliche Bogenschützen, Gnome, Spinnen und anderes Gesockse am ohnehin knappen Energievorrat des Waldschrats - die drei Bildschirmleben sind oft schneller ausgehaucht als dem Retter der Witwen und Waisen vor dem Monitor lieb sein kann. Umso schlimmer, als es keine Continues gibt; lediglich Bonusherzen und Extrakisten können den Heldentod etwas hinauszögern.

Von spielerischer Klasse kann somit keine Rede sein, und wenn das game optisch zunächst an den Klassiker "Gods" erinnert, dann bei genauerem Hinsehen doch höchstens an eine PD-Version: Die Grafik selbst geht noch halbwegs in Ordnung, doch die Animation ruckelt mit dem Scrolling derart um die Wette, daß einem Tränen in die Augen schießen.

Musik bzw. FX können ebensowenig überzeugen, und die Steuerung läßt den Spieler meist gerade in den unpassendsten Momenten im Stich. Kurzum, selbst mit knapp 30 Eiern ist dieses Teil noch deutlich überbezahlt! (rl)

Robin Hood: Legend Quest logo

Okay, let's kick off with a quick joke:
Q: Where does Robin Hood buy this flowers?
A: Sherwood Florist!
Okay, let's get on with the review.

I've got a problem with my Amiga at home - I have to fight to get a go on it. It's very popular in my house is our Amiga, especially when Stack Up's in the drive. I tried to play Robin Hood - Legend Quest over a weekend at home. I carefully unpacked it and, in my excitement, I accidentally knelt on the cellophane wrapping jut as I slipped the disk into the drive. My brother (visiting for the weekend) came rushing in, grabbed the joystick from me and started playing.

I tried to recover the joystick, but I was thwarted at every turn. "Look, I've got to review that. Let me have a go."
"No, I'm doing really well here. It's a shame it's not in colour (you really should get that telly fixed, you know), but it's a nice little platformer."

"It's not that good, look at the way Robin Hood's animated, he moves like some sort of wooden puppet."
"Well, okay, he doesn't exactly glide along and he does look a bit awkward when he bends down. But that's cos he's so big, it'd be a lot better if he was smaller. I think you should five it a good review. It's really hard too, but watch! I'll show you where I can get up to."

"First I've got to collect all the keys, jump on all the chests and avoid all the arrows. It's like most things in life, just watch your step - take things one at a time and you'll be okay. Right, now this is the bit I can't do. Gently does it... ah... oh damn. It's impossible, I can't do. You try."

At last! Right, this is fine... dum de dum de dum... aha, it's the difficult bit, I bet I can do it. Okay, here goes... damn.

A whole two hours later and the Barker household still hasn't got past that tricky bit that's just ten minutes into the game. Maybe we should have persevered, but somebody put Stack Up in the drive and we forgot all about poor Robin.

Robin Hood: Legend Quest logo


Despite some god-awful scrolling, this is really quite a playable platform game. Taking much of its inspiration from the Bitmaps' Gods, Robin Hood - Legend Quest pits the player against the evil lackeys of the Sheriff of Nottingham who has imprisoned Maid Marion in his heavily fortified castle.

Standing between Robin and his girl are a series of rooms, tunnels and passages as well as a goodly number of trolls, fire breathing gargoyles, dwarves and axe men. Initially, only a small part of the castle is accessible but this is soon opened up by collecting some of the many keys that are scattered around each level.

Once collected, these will trigger hidden passageways or open locked doors through which our hero can proceed. There's also a skip load of hidden treasure to find along the way which must be collected and given back to the peasants.

Each enemy is taken out by firing a number of arrows in their direction, although the patrolling dwarves are too short to be hit, so they have to be avoided instead. After an initial exploration, various secret passageways open up through which more treasure can be accessed, and eventually these will lead to the dungeons where Marion is being held captive.

It's not a particularly fast-paced game, but there's enough in it to keep you coming back for more.