Bride of Frankenstein

by Viz Design (Paul Smith, Steve Howard), Timedata Ltd: Antony M. Scott
39 Steps
Crash Issue 43, August 1987   (1987-07-30)   page(s) 83

Tough luck. Night has fallen on Castle Frankenstein and its grounds. Within this foreboding stronghold lies an inactive Frankie, the organless monster of an evil creator, awaiting revival.

To make this imperfect brainchild whole, you must collect his essential parts - lungs, kidneys, liver, heart and brain.

The castle consists of 60 flick-screen rooms, dungeons, corridors, laboratories and courtyards. Wandering through its terrifying interior reduces energy levels, shown as elixir in a bottle which you must refill.

And within these nightmarish confines lurk floating ghosts, ghouls and skeletal monstrosities. Contact with these evil entities increases your thumping cardiac rate, shown by the pulsing heart at the bottom right of the screen - and you risk terminal heart failure.

Some doors are locked; there are seven different keys hung upon the castle walls, though. A spade and pickaxe can be found and used for excavating graves, and a lamp provides illumination for exploring darker areas.

Further complications arise in the castle's dungeons where distraught prisoners beg for release, and in the tower where electrical repairs may be required before Frankie can be stimulated into action.

Control keys: O left, R right, Q back, A front, SPACE to pick up/swap/use objects, SPACE and 0 or SPACE and P to dig/axe
Joystick: Kempston, Interface 2
Use of colour: monochromatic
Graphics: cute
Sound: spot FX, unattractive title tune
Skill levels: one
Screens: 60

'The appeal of Bride Of Frankenstein wears off soon. It has good presentation, and quite pleasant graphics (most of the characters are amusingly drawn). But it lacks content. And most annoying is the way in which, on some screens, you leave by the top exit and emerge in the next screen's top exit - an unprofessional and disorientating effect. Though there are some good ideas, such as the heartbeat meter, Bride Of Frankenstein could have been much better.'

'It's the middle of the night, the lightning is raging outside, and you're all alone. Can you revive Frankie? I think this type of game, where you have to hunt around a building searching for keys to get into other rooms, went out years ago. The graphics are above average, though there's jerky animation. And the ghosts and ghouls don't move in set patterns but home in on you, so if you stay still for a couple of seconds you die, which makes it quite frustrating.'

'Someone's actually done something original with a 3-D adventure game - the graphics in Bride Of Frankenstein give the old theme a new dimension. Action is fast and accurate, but the game is slowed badly when lots of people appear on the screen. Some of the backgrounds are very detailed and help the atmosphere tremendously. My only gripe is the strange way the character flicks from location to location - it's very distracting and off-putting. Bride Of Frankenstein is out of the ordinary, and definitely worth considering.'

Presentation: 68%
Graphics: 71%
Playability: 51%
Addictiveness: 58%
Overall: 59%

Summary: General Rating: Good graphics and atmosphere, but uninteresting gameplay.

Transcript by Chris Bourne

Crash Issue 73, February 1990   (1990-01-25)   page(s) 47

Gosh what a fun scenario for a game! Run around the haunted castle collecting bits of your dad and keeping away from skeletons, ghouls and ghosts, sew all the bits back together and stick 1,000.000 volts through the quivering flesh and bone to bring him back to life. Wow.

The inlay says this is an hilarious spoof and terrifically funny: sorry but I can't see the joke. The graphics are all in 3-D. The backgrounds are detailed and quite good, but the main sprites leave a lot to be desired. The whole game bears a striking resemblance to Bride Of Frankenstein. In fact the whole layout of the game is identical, with just the main sprite changed! There is a different colour monochrome on each screen to add some variety.

The way the game has been set out is strange. Exiting one screen by a door at the top makes you enter the next also by a door at the top! This means that by continuing to push up on the joystick you can flick from screen to screen in a very annoying way.

You could get some enjoyment out of Frankenstein Jnr if you've never played Bride Of Frankenstein and have the nack of getting about that game, and there are some puzzles that will keep ya playing for a while.

Overall: 50%

Transcript by Chris Bourne

All information in this page is provided by ZXSR instead of ZXDB