Sands of Egypt

reviewed by Alexander Kells


Issue 10

Jul/Aug 84

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Sands of Egypt is a disk-based text adventure with full-colour graphics. It will run on a 16k system as data (mainly the graphics) is loaded in, and cleared out, as and when it is needed. The adventure itself is in the familiar two-word command format and starts with you being lost in the middle of the desert. You are Lord Charles Buckingham Ill and are searching for the secret treasure chamber within the lost pyramid. Your first problem is to find water, and something to store it in, as you are soon told that you are 'dying of thirst'. It took me a few nights before I found the oasis but I'll say no more for fear of spoiling the Adventure for other intrepid explorers.

As a text adventure Sands of Egypt is easily up to Scott Adams' standard and has some devilish traps for the unwary. What sets it aside however are the graphics. This is, quite simply, the best 'classic' style adventure with graphics that I have ever seen. Unlike, for instance, the Sierra On-Line Hi-Res adventures which use Graphics 8 and in the U.K. produce only two-tone pictures, Sands of Egypt has full colour images of high standard. In addition the scenes are partly animated. Clouds scud across the sky, and the whole desertscape scrolls as you wander through it and, having been camel riding through the edge of the Sahara, I can vouch for the accuracy of the simulated camel-ride in this Adventure!

Tough Adventures can be very frustrating but because of the excellence of its graphics, Sands of Egypt is totally addictive. You keep coming back to it to see what the next scene will be. To date, I've found the treasure chamber, and even managed to escape again, though I still haven't finished the Adventure. If you have a disk drive, Sands of Egypt is simply an essential purchase. If you don't have one, it is, along with the Infocom adventures and programs such as Way Out, a very convincing reason for getting one!