[dwoods.zip] - Dragon Woods
Featured Game: Dragon Woods
Date: Jan. 1, 1970
You play Lindor MacWellianson, a wizard whose powers include shooting little circles and getting drunk on one pint of beer; a member of an underground society called CATS dedicated to the overthrow of the evil king Asphalt. Your quest is to find the Minfannon, a jewel which will enable your society to control the tyrant king's mind, and enable Princess Salmonella to ascend to her rightful place on the throne.
Of course, it's never that easy, is it? The Minfannon is located in a volcano beyond Dragon Woods, near your hometown of Coaster. So, off you go to buy some magic (ammo), torches, health, and other such like, and begin your quest. Along the way you will meet with such perils as a group of druids performing a sacrifice, a stubborn troll who won't allow you to pass his bridge, a vampire named Cracula inspired by Zenith's Geography teacher, and ultimately, a dragon guarding the Minfannon itself.
Gameplay is based primarily on "find objects or information, find out what they're for, and get new objects or information in the process," but there's also a little exploration to do, and a few well-programmed shootouts (not to mention a turn-based RPG battle at the end). Effort is put into tried-and-true tricks of the trade (try saying that ten times fast). The jokes in general are funny and the whole game has a very lighthearted atmosphere, in spite of the perils of Lindor's quest.
The graphics are cute, as Zenith's style is wont to be, and in general are quite aesthetically pleasing. I am particularly impressed by his scenes in nature (which dominate the game) with trees and rivers, and such like. The programming is very sound, though I did encounter one or two small bugs, and the only really annoying ZZT clich? you'll find (apart from an entire board of cameos, which is actually really interesting from a historical perspective) is a small one of those darned invisomazes. Well, at least it isn't a whole board.
There's only a couple of noteworthy problems with the game; the music is nothing spectacular, and quite a few of the sound effects are shaky. There's also a little bit too much walking around to do, which can become tedious. The ending might leave you going, "Uh, what?" But aside from that, Dragon Woods has a lot going for it, and you should definitely play it, if you haven't done so already!