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A Review of GODS by Keith Hollis

When Gods was released for the Amiga/ST in 1991, it was instantly regarded as one of the most polished platform games around, and one of the Bitmap Brothers finest games.

Set in Greece over four levels, (each consisting of up to three 'worlds') the player takes control of a warrior capable of jumping, throwing weapons climbing ladders and picking up and carrying items to aid him in his quest for immortality, a reward from the gods should he succeed. Typically an item or items are required to be carried from point A to point B, often resulting in the reward of the world key and access to the next world. Sounds simple? Gods is anything but a simple platform game.

Firstly finding the required items isn't always easy, some head scratching moments are usually in order before the solution presents itself. Secondly, the numerous levels in Gods are inhabited by all sorts of weird and wonderful monsters. These are not dumb clones either. The Gods monsters are blessed with some of the most sophisticated A.I anyone had seen in 1991. They can even dodge your attacks and figure out a better strategy for attacking you, (very impressive). (This intelligence can be turned to your advantage though) As if that wasn't enough already, the game itself also monitors your progress and alters the difficulty level accordingly to suit your skills. Complete a world convincingly with a lot of lives and energy, and the chances are that you wont find it quite so easy on the next world.

The graphics are also truly wonderful. The main character is represented by a muscle-bound hero who is very well animated and moves responsively. The monsters are also very well designed and are beautifully realised, ranging from strange ape like creatures who walk on their hands, to flying fiends who defy classification! Backgrounds are typically Greek looking in design suiting the theme of the game perfectly and are always gorgeous.

Sound effects are also used brilliantly in Gods. Platforms slamming shut in the distance, (as a result of a lever) grinding traps, screaming monsters, creaking doors and the swoosh of weapons as they fly through the air towards their victims are all just some of the aural treats to be experienced. There is no in game music, but there is an excellent intro tune that you will return to listen to again and again.

Gods is the sort of game that you will return to over and over to discover the hidden features and areas (of which there are plenty) or maybe just to beat an old highscore. A true classic among platform games that will be enjoyed by anyone with even the slightest interest in the genre. This game is simply one of the Bitmap Brothers greatest ever, and is not to be missed.

Keith Hollis 06.04.02