|Classification:||Game / Platformer|
|Publisher:||Double Sided Games|
|Disk:||L'Abbaye des Morts|
Here's a review of game that I've been looking forward to do for a few months, now. L'Abbaye des Morts is a platformer game, which was first developed for the PC back in 2010. I never played this version of the game, but from what I can tell from the screenshots that I've seen, Double Sided Games did a wonderful job adapting the game for the C64. In fact, I think Double Sided Games actually improved on the game and has made a fantastic platformer game for our favourite 8-bit computer.
In this game, you are a cleric monk, fleeing the church's crusaders. You take up refuge in an old church, 'the Abbey of Death', unaware of the ancient evil that lies in wait. The game contains twenty colourful screens of challenging platform fun. All the graphics are hi-res and the enemies are interesting and well animated. I really like how the graphics designer, Saul Cross, made use of shading to bring the illusion of depth to the two-dimensional layouts.
The goal of the game is to collect the twelve crosses distributed throughout the abbey, which you will need to battle the game's end boss. In order to access all of the rooms in the abbey, you will need to find certain mechanisms that open the locked doors. Some locations, however have hidden passages, but there are clues that you can find that will help you find your way.
I think that the game is really well done. I found it challenging, but not so frustrating that I wanted to give up. I struggled, trying to get the last two crosses, but I was finally able to figure out the solution at getting to them. And the last screen, before the end boss, was a real challenge to navigate. However, with some practice, I made it.
The controls are very responsive and forgiving. Unlike some other platformer games, like Soulless, you do have some control in your jumping. So, there is some room for error, which helps this game's play-ability. The soundtrack is also very well done. It suites the game perfectly and really adds to the game's atmosphere.
Another nice feature of the game is that there are plenty of progress markers, where your character re-spawns if you happen to make a mis-step and lose a life.
I really enjoyed playing L'Abbaye des Morts and was glad that I pre-ordered the game, back in October. If Double Sided Games can keep up this level of production, they should do well in the Commodore retro market. I suppose one thing that is lacking in this game is something to help replay-ability. Perhaps a timer or some other kind of scoring system, to encourage you to play again and improve your time/score.
If you are a hard-core gamer or a master at platform games, you may find this game to be a little lacking or on the short side. But, for a now casual gamer, like myself, Abbaye was a nicely balanced game.
For the very affordable price of the download version of the game, $7.99 CND, you really can't go wrong. If you liked Sydney Hunter and the Sacred Tribe, (which is also a fun platform game published by a Canadian company) then you'll certainly enjoy L'Abbaye des Morts.
Now, if someone from Double Sided Games is reading this, is it possible that a part two be developed in the future?
I should also mention that the game plays perfectly on theC64Mini.
Composed on my C128 with Free Base