Mission Elevator

Reviewed by John Davison jnr


Issue 31

Jan/Feb 88

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Distributed by Ariolasoft

Foreign secret agents have hidden a time bomb in a big hotel. The bomb is hidden somewhere on the sixty second floor. It is your job, playing the part of agent Trevor, to enter the building on the ground floor and work your way up, collecting clues and hints to crack the code.

I have a feeling that this is similar to the arcade game 'Elevator Action', which was popular in America but rarely seen in this country. The game is, however, very playable and quite addictive. The screen layout is similar to most platform games, with various floors above you with enemy agents roaming about dressed in long black raincoats and their wide brimmed hats. Between the floors are elevators, which must be used to reach higher floors. On each floor of the hotel there are various doors which can be opened with the key from reception, and other things such as clocks, tables, plants or statues.

The various doors each have someone behind them, be it an enemy agent or a punk rocker! Appropriate digitized sounds accompany some people as they appear at the doorway, for example, when the Nun answers the door, she is accompanied by a church organ! Behind one of the doors you should find the porter who will give you the emergency door key. The hotel is split into eight levels each containing eight floors, and to move onto the following level you must go through the emergency door, using the key obtained from the porter.

The whole game appears quite simple at first, but if you set out to retrieve all of the hints and tips it can become quite complex. Having a notebook handy might be necessary as you get more involved with it. You can obtain hints from various places throughout the game. My favourite is in the bar, where if you buy the correct drink from the barkeeper, he will give you part of the secret code, however you become drunk and the game's controls are reversed. If you try to do any more than move, you are informed that "you are shtill drunk"!

My only dislike of the game is the `computer printout' which slowly comes up on the screen informing you that you have failed. It then clears the screen and prints another message. This becomes very tedious after a few times, and there is no way of skipping the section. If you get to a point where you have suddenly worked out how to do something and you are then killed off before being able to do so, you normally want to go straight back to the game. You probably won't want to hang around for some silly cosmetic feature to repeat itself yet again.

Other than this minor quibble there is nothing else I can say against the game. The graphics are fairly good, and the sound effects are equally pleasing. Overall I think that Mission Elevator is a game where the programmers have taken a little more care and it shows!