Ratings and Reviews by Paul O'Brian

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Camel, by Heath Users Group

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful:
80s flashback, and not in a good way, May 24, 2008
by Paul O'Brian (Thornton, CO)
Related reviews: retro, port

Camel reminds me of nothing so much as one of those games that used to appear in COMPUTE! magazine and such places. They were in BASIC, and you'd type them in yourself. The fun wasn't so much in playing the game, but in seeing a programming language in action for some nominally enjoyable purpose. If someone were to actually sit down with one of these demo games, they'd be more bewildered than delighted, and indeed, that was my experience with Camel.

The goal: make it two hundred miles across the desert on a camel.
The obstacles: pursuing pygmies, random kidnappings and sandstorms, dehydration, camel exhaustion.
The commands: a menu of six options -- two for travel, one for hydration, one for rest, one for status, and one that automatically loses the game.
The randomness: RAMPANT

Basically this game is a minor exercise in keeping rhythm, reminiscent of the accursed hop-clap-kweepa maze in Leather Goddesses of Phobos, except with a bunch of random events thrown in that frequently make the game unwinnable. It's a few minutes of fun figuring out the optimal rhythm, a moment of pleasure winning for the first time, and the rest of it is boring, frustrating, or both. Only by the most generous of definitions is it any kind of text adventure.

The Last Laugh, by David Cornelson
Paul O'Brian's Rating:

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