Page 1: V – VENOM Strikes Back
Page 2: The Vera Cruz Affair – Village of Lost Souls
Page 3: The Vindicator – VS4
Screenshot of The Vera Cruz Affair

The Vera Cruz Affair

(Infogrames, 1985)

Reviewed by Guillaume Chalard

Vera Cruz, a pretty young woman, has killed herself. As a police inspector, you inspect her flat and find several clues that make you think it’s a crime rather than a suicide. This is one of the first murder mysteries on computer. The plot and the whole investigation are very realistic (the programmer himself was a policeman!). The first part takes place in Vera’s living room. You must collect clues (e.g. cigarette ends, a gun and a matchbook) that will be decisive in finding the murderer. The second part is in your office, where you can hear witnesses, contact other police officers or examine evidence. The few graphics are really good and though it’s hard to progress, this is a great game for those who like to investigate.

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Screenshot of Viaje al Centro de la Tierra

Viaje al Centro de la Tierra

(Topo Soft, 1989)

Reviewed by Javier Sáez

In this three stage game you take a journey to the centre of the Earth. The first stage consists of a puzzle and the third one is a side scrolling arcade game in which you make your way through a prehistoric jungle. The second stage is a game in itself. You take control of three characters at the same time, each with different attributes and objects, in their way down the inside of a volcano. Forget about the first level; go straight to the second level, and enjoy great graphics and gameplay right from the start.

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Screenshot of Viaje Fin de Curso

Viaje Fin de Curso


(Microbyte, 1986)

It’s the end of the school year, but your teacher has forgotten to give your report to you, and your parents won’t allow you to go with them on holiday unless they see it. The school is in a bit of a mess right now, with objects randomly strewn around the rooms and corridors. You have to retrieve some numbers that represent the marks you received in certain subjects, but some doors can only be opened, and some objects can only be collected, if you are carrying another object that is related in some way to the room it is located in. For example, in order to enter the library, you must be carrying a rubber stamp. The graphics are simple but colourful, but that’s about the only positive thing I can say about this game. An annoying, and very short, ragtime tune plays continually, your sprite flickers a lot, and moving around the school is slow, tedious and dull.

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Screenshot of Victory Road

Victory Road

(Imagine, 1988)

Reviewed by CPC4eva

It’s hard to believe that Victory Road is the sequel to Ikari Warriors, but unfortunately it is a poor coin-op conversion. You’re a warrior on a mission. Armed with grenades and a rifle, you can tackle the foes along the road to victory by yourself or with a friend. With six lives you should be able to progress quite well, but beware, as not only will you encounter a competing military, but also monsters, which is really strange. The road winds on and on, through tombs containing the bones of former seekers. Collect icons to build up the firepower necessary to fight off your aggressors. The graphics are overhead like Ikari Warriors and there’s limited sound. It really is an uninspiring and boring game. You’ll have more fun playing its predecessor.

See also: Ikari Warriors.

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Screenshot of Video Card Arcade

Video Card Arcade

(Blue Ribbon, 1990)

Three card games are on offer here – poker royal, twenty one, and high or low. In each game, you start with 20 credits and must score as many points as you can. Certain combinations of cards score more points than others. In poker royal, five cards are dealt, and you can change any or all of them, hopefully producing a winning combination of cards. In twenty one (better known as blackjack), you must try to score less than or equal to 21 without your opponent beating you. In high and low, five cards are dealt one at a time, and you must guess if the next card will be higher or lower in value than the current one. The graphics are very colourful and well drawn, and all of the games are reasonably entertaining if you want a few quick goes.

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Screenshot of Video Poker

Video Poker

(Entertainment USA, 1986)

This version of the card game uses slightly different rules – it’s a one-player game, for a start. First you bet some of your money, and then five cards are selected at random. After choosing which cards you want to keep, the remaining cards are changed, and it is then that you will hopefully win some money. You can also look at the odds of winning for each combination before you insert your money, and there are five skill levels as well. It goes without saying that you can’t win or lose any real money, and you have to wait a long time between each turn; you’ll soon get bored.

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Screenshot of A View to a Kill

A View to a Kill

(Domark, 1985)

Reviewed by John Beckett

The first CPC game based on the adventures of James Bond is a very run-of-the-mill affair indeed, comprising of three levels, based on scenes from the film, each of varying styles of gameplay. There is a reasonably fun platform level where James must escape from a mine before it caves in, an Impossible Mission-style level where James must explore the many floors of the City Hall, searching for objects, collecting door-passes, rescuing the girl and escaping before the place sets on fire, and a very poor driving section set in Paris, which is extremely confusing to navigate around. The graphics are pretty awful, but there is a nice rendition of both the Bond theme and the View To a Kill theme by Duran Duran, and the difficulty is set about right.

See also: Licence to Kill, Live and Let Die, The Living Daylights, The Spy Who Loved Me.

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Screenshot of Vigilante


(US Gold, 1989)

Reviewed by John Beckett

You’re the Vigilante and it’s your calling in life to beat up the scum on the streets. One day, however, the evil skinheads kidnap your girlfriend Madonna (nice name) and take her to their den. The Vigilante must fight his way through endless gang members before he can destroy their boss and reclaim his girl. I’m a big fan of scrolling beat-’em-ups and the coin-op version was the daddy of them all. But how does the CPC version compare? Well, the graphics are detailed, colourful and downright excellent, but the gameplay is crippled by the slowness of the character, the unresponsiveness of the controls and the sheer difficulty as horde after horde of thugs attack you from all angles! That said, though, it’s quite good fun, and poor Madonna’s plight will keep you playing until she’s safe in the Vigilante’s arms!

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Screenshot of The Vikings

The Vikings

(Kele Line, 1987)

Reviewed by John Beckett

In this top-down shoot-’em-up, you play as a lone Viking washed up on a hostile land. Your aim is to explore the vast land and locate the parts of your Viking longboat, before setting sail once more – but first things first, you’re completely weaponless until you find your lost sword. A task that is not made easy by the hordes of enemy warriors intent on putting you in a shallow grave! The graphics are awful and tiny, the music is shrill and repetitive, and although the controls are responsive, the enemies are far too fast and plentiful for you to consider making any serious progress. Akin to Commando or Ikari Warriors in its concept, I don’t want to insult those two great games further by comparing them to this ugly, below average effort.

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Screenshot of Village of Lost Souls

Village of Lost Souls

(Robico Software, 1987)

Reviewed by Pug

Village of Lost Souls is the first part of The Realm of Chaos Trilogy. You play a warrior who emerges from the mists of a powerful spell to take on a quest. The words of your master echo in your ears – aid the Lord Talent of Dinham to destroy a portal to the Thirteenth Realm. The adventure starts with a series of obstacles that need to be removed before your main quest can commence. For example, there is a hut that is on fire that contains something important. Solving problems like these instructs you in how to play this adventure. It’s a pretty large text adventure, too, meaning this one will take weeks to crack. Location descriptions are brief and scroll upwards. This can be annoying at times, waiting for it to finish so you can read it. Overall, a bland-looking text adventure that doesn’t offer anything outstanding.

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