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Comments (13)
Atari A to Z (Pete Davison) - 16/07/2022
Necromancer from Synapse Software is... an unusual game, to say the least, but it's a well-established classic in the Atari 8-bit's library. Let's Play!
Wesley - 04/10/2017
It's unbelievable and a sad tragedy that this game is not in the top 25 all time. It's not even in the top 100? Those of you not giving it an 8 or better, please take the time to give this one another try!
Punkydudester - 18/12/2014
I remember this game being so different but neat. It was a little hard to figure out. This is a really good game.
Gwobby - 12/12/2012
Necromancer is an awesome game (and now playing in the High Score Club - link on

Almost eveyone will find Necromancer too hard and not be able to figure things out so it's a game where you really do need to READ THE INSTRUCTIONS!!

OK Here is a quick summary:
SCREEN 1 - Plant seeds, guard them, last out till the end. The more trees you end up with the higher the bonuses:
>Level 1 1-4 Trees @ 100pts
>Level 2 5-9 Trees @ 300pts
>Level 3 10-14 Trees @ 500pts
>Level 4 15-19 Trees @ 700pts
>Level 5 20+ Trees @ 900pts

SCREEN 2 - HOLD fire to move yourself. RELEASE fire to; stand still / move the wand to kill spiders / pick up a tree move it over the holes and press fire to plant it. You must crush the eggs using the trees and then *IMPORTANT: STORE THE TREES BACK IN THE TREE BIN BEFORE GOING DOWN TO THE NEXT DEPTH!* 5 depths 'levels' each with 2 rows of seeds. There is a big bonus for trees remaining when you've completed this!

SCREEN 3 - The Graveyard's difficulty is increased by any eggs you left behind & spiders you left roaming on SCREEN 2! Tread on all the gravestones to complete each round.

Zombie Spiders and The Salvating Spider from Sith eh?!!!

Have fun
Hillsy_ - 29/10/2011
Possibly the best Atari 400/800/XL game. Definitely in the Top 5 games. I actually managed to complete this game, and even now I can remember the end sequence. Haunting music, excellent graveyard fight, throwing disc like tron, building trees and trying not to get poison on them. Then later to be greeted with dancing trees...this game had it all. A classic! 9/10
jcat - 26/04/2011
Simply put: This was THEE greatest release on the Atari 8-bit series. The difficulty is way high so if your hand/eye coordination is not up to par - stay clear. Very addictive, excellent music - and a technical tour de force. Bill Williams was my idol back then. Rest in peace, Bill.
Wesley Connally - 19/01/2008
This game is magical. The music is captivating. The trees sparkle like magic. The plot is cool. I was ecstatic to find it had later been released on cartridge, so I recently bought it.
eppy2000 - 09/10/2007
A very magical, dreamlike game that holds up better than most games of today. For a 1982 game, it was ahead in many ways at a time when most companies were making 8-bit games that looked like they were written for the 2600 instead. I also strongly dispute the earlier poster's claim of Williams being under the influence of anything other than having a very strong imagination. Perhaps he's confusing him with someone else?
JSUK - 27/09/2007
The irony is, Bill taking theology took him closer to heaven in a literal sense - he moved to a city for the course, and the air made his lungs worse.
Chris M Barlow - 22/08/2007
This is the most underrated 8-bit game ever made. Everything about it is 10/10.
Once you've mastered the control then it is a delight and pleasure to play. If you can complete the final level you are rewarded with a burst of rainbow colours and the satisfaction of finishing the game, however this game is all about high scores and you just have to play it again. A true original arcade treasure.
J. Maynard Gelinas - 01/02/2007
No. There's no indication that Mr. Williams had a drug/alcohol problem at any point in his life. The Wikipedia entry for him does say that he had Cystic Fibrosis and that he decided to give up programming to earn a Masters Degree in Theology. Then, sadly, he died of his illness.

I remember playing this game as a kid and loved it back then. Great stuff.
Avram - 13/01/2007
Typical of Bill William's work, this is a classic (albeit a little difficult). Shows the same originality as his other essential game, Alley Cat.
Nick Di-Perna - 06/12/2005
I don’t approve of games getting better ratings due to questionable mental state of the programmer/s involved - Ninja Golf springs to mind. I will make the exception with this one. I don’t know if its creator was on anything but he was certainly evil! A truly bizarre and highly original concept which requires immense skill to master. It’s a mix of Eugene Jarvis and Jeff Minter with trees instead of Llamas. I would recommend using an arcade stick to get the most out of this game but an Atari 7800 Euro pad with thumb attachment is working just fine for me. An underrated classic 9/10.


Necromancer atari screenshot
Necromancer atari screenshot
Necromancer atari screenshot


GenreArcade - MiscellaneousYear1982
LanguageMachine LanguagePublisherSynapse Software

Williams, Bill

Graphic Artist(s)


MediumTape Disk


Cover Artist(s)[unknown]Serial-
Dumpdownload atari Necromancer Download

Additional Comments

Other version with the same title:


A cartridge version was announced but never released.


Necromancer Atari disk scan Necromancer Atari disk scan


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Necromancer Atari catalog

Book / Magazine Reviews

 Electronic Fun · September, 1983Rating: 3.5 / 4 

People who are fond of black magic but squeamish when it comes to the ingredients (eye of newt, tongue of lizard, wing of bat, etc.) will be ecstatic over Necromancer. This enchantingly original game allows you to weave perfectly respectable spells without having to deal with anything really repulsive.

You're a sorcerer doing battle against some rather voracious spiders. Your... [more]

 Electronic Games · October, 1983

Necromancer pits you, Illuminar, against the evil wizard Tetragorn. You must assemble a tree army and destroy Tetragorn before his evil reigns supreme.

The first level of Necromancer gives Illuminar the chance to grow his tree army, while he fights off deadly ogres. Once Illuminar's strength is depleted, he is transported into the larvae vaults where he must use the trees... [more]

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