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Mutant Monty

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Released: 1984

Genre: Platformer

Format reviewed: Amstrad CPC

Publisher: Amsoft

Developer: Artic Computing Ltd

Submitted by: Lee Tatlock

Mutant Monty follows a similar routine as the honourable Manic Miner. Many people will now produce a sigh as this type of game was ten a penny back in the day, but oh how I miss them. Sure once Manic Miner kicked off the craze it was difficult to sort the wheat from the chaff in most peoples eyes but I love them all, no matter how flimsy or graphically inept they may be they all hold a massive amount of charm for me. Within them, for me at any rate, lies the pure crystallisation of what makes retro games still so attractive. Whenever I find one that eluded me in my youth I am always anxious to play it and Mutant Monty was one such beast.

Not the most graceful of his brethren, Mutant Monty may not have the credentials of a certain Miner Willy but I had a blast in his company. The premise is a familiar and simple one; Monty must traverse 40 rooms of peril to perform a double header, by which I mean: get rich by collecting all the gold in every room which in turn will aid him in making his way to a damsel in distress at the other end of these 40 hazardous environments. Of course the majority of these levels are fiendishly set out and there is often only one sure way to reach the goal which must be performed with pixel perfect precision or else…well, you’re screwed. Each room has its own name displayed at the bottom, just above your lives (of which there are initially five) and your score. This is another element of these games that the scrolling platformer killed off; it always felt like each room had hidden meaning to the creator and was given enough attention to warrant a name, and of course the rooms are rife with mental enemies such as little green snot monsters which must be avoided at all cost.

Overall it may be typical, it may not be the prettiest game around but it is a sure fire winner in my eyes.