C64 Review of Nemesis The Warlock from Issue 26

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The very latest in licensing deals finds Martech transforming 2000 AD's Nemesis The Warlock from pen and ink into pixels.

Defeating evil is the name of the game, and taking the part of Nemesis, the idea is to stop Thomas de Torquemada by infiltrating his bastille. Not an easy trick, that, as Torquemada's deranged fantatics are on the loose. Being a sensitive, socially aware type of superhero, the warlock finds that the only way to get to the heart of the problem is to hack a few minions to bits. Not that Nemesis needs to hack them apart with his bare hooves - equipped with a swinging sword, venemous acid spit (look out Jan Leeming) and a death dealing firearm, our hero blows 'em away with the best of them.

A single platform-filled screen is the backing for the big man's heroic exploits. Killing an alloted number of denizens opens the passageway to the next level - however, this doorway is not obvious and must be found. As the corpses pile up it's possible and sometimes necessary, to use them as stepping stones to new heights.

Ammunition is collected, and sent in the general direction of the enemy by pressing the fire button. When the supply is exhausted, the fire button activates a head-cleaving sword.

A panel at the bottom of the screen shows the amount of ammunition remaining, the required number of terminators to be terminated, and a particularly gruesome depiction of a hand slowly squeezing a heart. This bloody graphic relates to Nemesis' strength, and each time he comes into contact with a terminator the hand squeezes a little tighter - eventually wringing all of the warlock's life blood and therby ending the game.

A visage of Torquemada slowly appears at the bottom right hand corner of the screen and dictates his spiritual presence. This effects his minions fanaticism, so that even after disembowelment, Torquemada's goons are often prone to transformation into scythe-wielding Zombies.

New hazards threaten our hero as he progresses through the levels - flying swords appear and bottomless pits open, waiting for a careless warlock to slip.

Torquemada's terminators are fanatical in their quest to purify the universe - so be pure, be vigilant ... but most of all BEHAVE!

This review was typed in/OCRed by Jianso

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In the spirit of ZzapBack, you can have your say about how the game reviewed above, stands up in the cold light of today. Has it aged badly or is it still worth a few plays? Read other peoples thoughts and post your own.

The current ZzapBack rating is : 55%

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CraigGrannell - 6 May 2005
2000 AD characters tended to fare poorly on the C64, and Nemesis was no exception. Pat Mills' high-concept futuristic nightmare vision was turned into this fairly basic shoot 'em up platform game. Pretty much all of the ratings were over-the-top at the time, especially Graphics, which should come down by about 15%—the characters were nice enough, but there was zero variety and the sprites got lost in the backdrops. The Sound, however, was decent, due to Hubbard's efforts. Overall: fun for a short time, but disappointing overall.

Rating : 55%
Julian Rignall
As hack 'em ups go this has to be one of the most grisly and violent. There's something very appealing about slaying sprite after sprite in this fashion. Perhaps it's the satisfying thud of sword and lead against pixel, or perhaps the subsequent dead corpse flying across the screen due to impact of the weapon on their insides. Whatever the appeal, it offers a good couple of weeks of bloody good fun and is well worth looking out for. The only sad thing is that these days companies think that they need a license to sell any sort of product. Personally, I think it's a gross waste of development money and if a program is as much fun as this I couldn't give a toss what I'm killing.
Steve Jarratt
2000 AD fans are getting a bit of a raw deal with regards to decent binary interpretations of their cult characters, and Nemesis the Warlock is no exception. Martech have taken a simple hack 'em up theme and dropped the characters in wholesale, rather than study the storylines from the comic and build a game around them. From a licensing point of view this games fails completely, but viewed as it comes, it makes a terribly good shoot 'n' slash game. There's loads of action and the effect of Terminators being blown across the screen is great. Interest may wane fairly quickly, but until then, go get 'em!
Paul Sumner
This isn't particularly marvellous, but it still captures some of the comic strips atmosphere. There are certain aspects which occasionally interfere with the action, such as not being able to shoot the terminators at close range, Nemesis' plodding pace and the fact that it is impossible to shoot and move simultaneously. Still, the action feels wonderful - hacking and slaying, drawing and firing, seeing the terminators recoil when hit and watching corpses pile up ... gratification beyond belief!
Presentation 87%
Competent in most aspects.

Graphics 81%
The screen surrounds, definition and animation are beautiful, which is more than can be said for the garish colour scheme that confuses the backdrops and sprites.

Sound 82%
Atmospheric and inspired title tune and sparse but suitably powerful spot effects.

Hookability 77%
Simplistic, aggresive and enjoyable shoot 'em up action tainted by a few minor flaws.

Lastability 57%
Not enough variety or long term challenge, but fun to pick up and play any time.

Value 68%
It's unfortunate that the price funds an unnecessary license.

Overall 72%
A waste of a potentially useful license, but a gratifying romp of binary violence.