Monday, May 7, 2012

Dark Tower (Vectrex Game)

Dark Tower is an actual factual RPG/adventure game for the Vectrex that was completed but never officially released. It's one of a few Vectrex prototypes that lives on through emulation and multicarts.

Dark Tower seems like a decent idea, and it's actually executed better than you'd think. You wander through forests with different types of trees as you collect items like gold (no idea if you can ever spend it) and keys. The keys will eventually allow you entrance into the Dark Tower, which very few have had the patience to approach. As you wander through the overworld, you'll come across boxes which lead to a sort of underworld. Sometimes you'll find bags of gold in them, sometimes a wizard will tell you "be gone," and sometimes you'll be tossed into battle against minotaurs which peek out from behind walls and throw things at you. You need to throw things at them and kill enough of them to return to the overworld. Another way of getting out is to die. You'll respawn above and since you have lots of lives (seriously, I don't know how many you have, but it's a lot) it's no huge loss. You'll replay the minotaur thing a bazillion times before it's all done.

I never made it to the end of the game, so who knows what lurks in the later levels? Probably more monotony. Unfortunately, Dark Tower never seems to get more fun or interesting. It looks about as good as a Vectrex game can look, but with vintage games, looks are cheap and gameplay is everything. Ultimately, Dark Tower is a whole lot of promise and not much in the delivery.

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