Classic Computer Magazine Archive COMPUTE! ISSUE 38 / JULY 1983 / PAGE 85

Castle Quest

Timathy G. Baldwin

This entrancing, well-designed game for any Atari offers you the best of both worlds. It has the drama, variety, and mystery of a good adventure game combined with the fast-paced excitement of an arcade game.

Your job is to rid the kingdom of the three evil wizards. All this would be easy if the wizards weren't so zealously guarded by servants whose names reflect their personalities: bat-wingers, blinkers, chokers, crushers, and stompers.

You are in love with the Princess Dilayna and have asked her father the King for her hand in marriage. Her father does not particularly like you. He challenges you to demonstrate your worthiness by capturing the three evil wizards that have been ravaging the kingdom for years. They each live in their own castle protected by their servants – the bat-wingers, the blinkers, the chokers, the stompers, and the crushers. The castle rooms are rumored to be deadly, with untouchable walls, fast-moving enemies, and no exits. You reluctantly accept the King's challenge.

Fortunately, a friendly magician gives you a cloak that makes its wearer invisible. But the cloak's power works only for a limited time in each room. Once the time is up, you are instantly destroyed. The magician also gives you a magic spell that temporarily freezes all servants in a room. But you must use this spell with care: it will consume a portion of the cloak's power each time it is used.

Armed with these aids, you leave on your quest. The King wishes you good luck — or did he say good riddance?

The Three Wizards

The object of "Castle Quest" is to capture the three wizards. To reach each wizard, you must pass through the ten rooms of his castle. The rooms are inhabited by the wizard's servants, who move about quickly in an unpredictable manner. The higher numbered rooms in each castle have more servants (up to 32). The servants move progressively faster as you complete more rooms.

You have three (3) lives to capture the first wizard. Capturing a wizard earns you three additional lives. Touching a servant or a room wall or failing to exit a room within the allotted time will cause loss of a life. You cannot exit a room until you capture both door keys in that room by touching them. One key is invisible until the other key is touched.

Once both keys are captured, the room's exit appears – unless you are in a castle's tenth room. In this case, the wizard appears, and you must capture him before you can escape. Also, once you capture the first key, your presence becomes known to the wizard, and he causes room wall segments to move to block your escape. You must move quickly to avoid destruction.

Secret Passages

A counter at the top of the screen signals the amount of "cloak time" remaining. Pressing the joystick fire button will temporarily freeze the action, permitting you to move safely past a tight corner, but you lose 50 units of cloak time each time you use the freeze option. The room number and the number of your remaining lives are displayed at the top left of the screen. Your score – a measure of your ability to elude the many dangers involved – is displayed at the top right of the screen.

Room patterns, key locations, servant locations, and wizard placement are randomly generated, so be prepared to touch keys partially embedded in walls, move through weird mazes, etc. Sometimes a secret passageway is created at the screen bottom or in a room's right wall. You may use these passageways for a quick, easy escape.

Searching for the keys to the hidden door on Atari's Castle Quest.