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Game info
Amiga

Knightmare

Knightmare
GenreRPG
Developer / PublisherMindscape
Released1991
Media2 x disk
Rating
Graphics:8.0
Sound:8.5
Gameplay:8.0
Overall:8.0
Reviewed byndial
Knightmare is a classic first-person dungeon crawler (RPG) which resembles a lot the Dungeon Master series, offering plenty of atmosphere, loads of fighting and puzzling to be done, and with four fair-sized quests that will keep you busy for quite some time. It also offered a few innovative assets to the genre, such as travelling with trains, boats, as well as fully stereo sound effect. The game starts hard and gets tougher though as you progress which is probably the downside of its release. It was released only for the Commodore Amiga and Atari ST computers.
 
Review
KnightmareThe game is designed around the Captive adventure system and has cracking credentials, uniting an excellent license with a proven code. Captive players will immediate feel in control of Knightmare. The system that drives the game essentially uses the same icon and keyboard commands as Captive, of course with improvements and tweaks where necessary. The four men team can be driven either by clicking on directional icons or keyboard combinations. Clicking on anything with the left mouse button, gets or activates it, while the right is employed to initiate party actions. It is a simple system to learn, but offers enough flexibility to fill four huge dungeons with tests of precise control. Of course the four members of the team all have different skills and specialties. All have an empty backpack in which to carry the kit they find and two hand 'slots' for those all important items (say, weapons). Roaming around without a compass gets confusing. It is not difficult, especially if you map from the word go, but sudden action or changes of focus can leave you disorientated, which is something common for all these Dungeon Master-style RPG games. Every square of corridor must be checked on all sides at all times, each character must be watched to ensure that they are ready for unexpected combat. All the puzzles and riddles that inform your quest must be analyzed and solved.
One of the innovative aspects of this game, is the novel use of transport! The player whizz around in a mining cart at the beginning and then row a small boat in shark infested waters!
Knightmare plays fast and hard. As dungeon romps go, few can match it for the continuous ferocity of its assault in your party's lives. Each encounter is tailored to suit your team's status, so the game runs in a state of perpetual high tension. It is huge, it looks marvelous and it's extremely difficult, although there's a sort of wizardry fellow to help you out a fair bit.

Graphically the game is slick with fine details to create both tests and atmosphere. The Amiga version sport 32 color screens, with nicely detailed corridors and sprites wrapped up in a nicely animated pseudo-3D environment, with moody atmospheric tones and decent animation on the monsters. But objects are painted in the same shades and are therefore often difficult to see.
Although more than half MB of RAM is needed to get the best out of the game, the results in sound are fabulous here, offering plenty of high quality sampled SFX and an atmospheric introductory music at the main menu. The fully stereo effect plays a significant role here, as it allows you to trace monsters very simple by following the sound of their footsteps! If you could spend money for an extra half-megabyte of RAM (or owning at least an A500+) back then, you would be surprised at the difference in atmosphere.
 
Screenshots
  • Knightmare
  • Knightmare
  • Knightmare
  • Knightmare
  • Knightmare
  • Knightmare
  • Knightmare
  • Knightmare
  • Knightmare
 
Gameplay sample
Some videos belong to retroshowcase.com (indicated); others not
 
Comparable platforms



32 colors
Commodore Amiga OCS/ECS



16 colors
Atari ST
 
Hardware information

Amiga 500/500+

Amiga 500/500+CPU: Motorola MC68000 7.16 MHz
MEMORY: 512KB of Chip RAM (OCS chipset - A500), 512 KB of Slow RAM or Trapdoor RAM can be added via the trapdoor expansion, up to 8 MB of Fast RAM or a Hard drive can be added via the side expansion slot. The ECS chipset (A500+) offered 1MB on board to 2MB (extended) of Chip RAM.
GRAPHICS: The OCS chipset (Amiga 500) features planar graphics (codename Denise custom chip), with up to 5 bit-planes (4 in hires), allowing 2, 4, 8, 16 and 32 color screens, from a 12bit RGB palette of 4096 colors. Resolutions varied from 320x256 (PAL, non-interlaced, up to 4096 colors) to 640x512 (interlace, up to 4 colors). Two special graphics modes where also included: Extra Half Bright with 64 colors and HAM with all 4096 colors on-screen. The ECS chipset models (Amiga 500+) offered same features but also extra high resolution screens up to 1280x512 pixels (4 colors at once).
SOUND: (Paula) 4 hardware-mixed channels of 8-bit sound at up to 28 kHz. The hardware channels had independent volumes (65 levels) and sampling rates, and mixed down to two fully left and fully right stereo outputs
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The Amiga 500/500+ (default) color palette
12bit RGB 4096-colors palette
(32 to 4096 colors on screen)
 
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