Over the years, the heroes of many games have had stupid names. But in Spooky Castle from Atlantis, I feel they have gone too far. How do you fancy being called Gormless Gary?
Now for the story. The beautiful Princess Clare has been abducted and imprisoned by demonic ghosts deep within a castle.
Rather unwisely, King Michael has offered her hand, and only her hand, in marriage to the person who finds and brings her back.
The local village idiot — that's you — decides to undertake this hazardous mission. So you journey through the castle trying to avoid rabid bats which drain your energy and the deadly ghosts.
One thing not mentioned on the cassette inlay is that you can fall off the battlements if you get your jump wrong. There were times when I thought I had got it right but still died. A bug in the program?
But don't worry too much, there is always something to help you. Potions and crosses which give you extra energy and lives are scattered around.
The 17 rooms that you visit are locked and each contains the keys that will allow you to leave them. You start with five lives — and you'll need every one.
Even though this is a budget game, I found myself wondering if it was really worth the price. The graphics are below average and the sound effects are, to be honest, boring.
However, the main problem is that it is so difficult to play. Instead of getting steadily harder as the game progresses, this one starts by being difficult and rapidly becomes impossible.
I like a game that challenges my gamesmanship but I soon tired of this one.
It is another platform game in the same mould as Ghost Chaser but not as good. The ridiculous timing often required annoyed me and I'm sure there could have been a better title design than just a Graphics 0 screen with writing on it.
So, the masocists among you may spend your £1.99 on it — but don't blame me if you end up in a padded cell through sheer frustration.
Sound: 5 / 10
Graphics: 6 / 10
Playability: 4 / 10
Value for money: 2/10