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Beyond the Ice Palace

3,927 views 0 comments

Released: 1988

Genre: Platformer

Format reviewed: Atari ST

Publisher: Elite

Developer: Elite

Submitted by: Gavin Miller

No matter how many times I play this game I never get tired of finishing it. With 3 different weapons to choose from and only 3 levels don't be surprised when you complete it in 20 minutes. Still it does offer a challange and learning enemy and boss patterns is a must if you want to see the end credits. The game is a simple platform affair with a good variety of baddies such as bats and goblins etc. The first level scrolls up, down and right while the last two levels scroll up and see you making your way to the top for a small boss battle.

The game actually takes place beyond an ice palace in a land that has become overun with evil spirits. If things get a bit hectic while playing you can summon a good spirit that clears away the enemies on screen.

Overall a great little game with some good music. Would have liked a few more levels though.

Beyond the Ice Palace

3,900 views 0 comments

Released: 1988

Genre: Platformer

Format reviewed: Amstrad CPC

Publisher: Elite

Developer: Dave Perry / Nick Bruty

Submitted by: Gavin Eke

I guess it's not surprising after the popularity of their Ghosts'n'Goblins conversions, that Elite decided to commission another title in a similar vein. In the capable hands of Dave Perry & Nick Bruty, this popular publishing house was hoping for some more stella sales success.

The game follows your characters escapades in ridding the land of evil within three levels of platforming action. At the beginning of level one, you are presented with a choice of three weapons, each with different strengths & weaknesses. The dagger has a quick fire rate but weak when dealing damage, whereas the Mace is powerful but slow to unleash with the Sword occupying the middle ground to both extremes. It's then that your character descends into the depths of platforming hell to exterminate all manner of beastly errr, beasts & flying bats. Together with throwing sharp implements, our hero can also summon a spirit that zigzags across the screen, dealing out some righteous justice upon the hapless hordes. You'll only have two chances to summon a spirit at any time so learning when to use them is essential because the difficulty level is high. Fortunately, you'll happen along additional Spirit power ups upon your travels.

Eventually after much jumping, shooting & dying (at first!) you'll meet the boss who looks like a 2D version of that end of level dragon in Space Harrier. If you can summon a spirit, now would be a good time! After defeating the boss it's only two more levels of jumping, shooting & yes, dying to go.

It's safe to say there are many similarities between this title & a certain Capcom game. High difficulty level, lots of jumping, shooting together with floating platforms & frustrating “I never saw that coming moments”, litter the game. However, despite many early deaths, you'll notice that progression is apparent with each play. Enemy attack patterns don't vary, leaving the player a chance to plan their route carefully & summoning spirits when absolutely necessary. However, there are still sections of the game where lives will be lost more often than not. This will be apparent when traversing the floating platforms for the first time. Fortunately, the old trick of granting the player several lives from the off, means that unlike Stormlord, you can see plenty of the game.

Graphically, BTIP is colourful & smooth. The enemies demise is shown in a shower of colour whilst the screen scrolls smoothly, both horizontally & vertically. There's not much to crow about sound-wise but the effects do their job. If you are a fan of G'n'G, then you may like to try this title. Sure, it's difficult & initially extremely frustrating, but get through those initial teething troubles & you'll garner some reward out of this flattering tribute.