Beyond the Ice Palace is a multi-scrolling arcade adventure game, developed in 1988 for the major 8bit and 16bit home computers.
STORY / GAMEPLAY The story is pretty similar to the Ghosts 'N Goblins game; a mystical land (somewhere in the north) has been taken by a demon and you are the chosen one who must get rid of him once and for all. You’re initially armed with your bare fists and later use a variety of weapons like Daggers, a Sword or a Mace. Your quest is tough since you have to fight ghosts, demons and goblins that either fly or walk towards you and are very "willing" to protect their precious master from your blades. A funny thing on the CPC version is that, the hero looks like he's wearing sunglasses! The gameplay is interesting though typical (as in most 8-way scrolling arcade adventures) but, depending on the kind of gamer you are, you can also end up beating the hell out of your CPC in frustration as it can be very easy to lose lives with a single slip. A minor thing here is that the instant dying routine is getting annoying at times when you reach tricky areas (i.e. jumping over a deadly hole while a flying being attacks you!). I must confess that the control is a little awkward since you have to move in all eight possible directions to avoid enemy hits. You can climb on ladders to get at higher or lower grounds, duck enemy fire, jump etc. So, you must be careful and patient, as only 9 lives (presented as...hearts at the top) are available!
GRAPHICS / SOUND Graphically the game is good with decent backgrounds and nice colors but still not much to be impressed at. The sprites move nicely in all eight directions and it's hard to avoid enemies from hitting you as the color-clash problem on the ZX version is making things worse. The game offers a great intro tune (as in all 8bit versions) composed by the renowned David Whittaker. However, there's no sign of in-game music at all, rather than a few "basic" sounds effects.
CPU: Z80 @ 3.5 MHz MEMORY: 16 KB / 48 KB / 128 KB GRAPHICS: Video output is through an RF modulator and was designed for use with contemporary portable television sets, for a simple colour graphic display. Features a palette of 15 shades: seven colours at two levels of brightness each, plus black. The image resolution is 256x192 with the same colour limitations. SOUND: Early models (48k) had sound output through a beeper on the machine itself. This is capable of producing one channel with 10 octaves. Late models (128k) fetured a three-channel audio via the AY-3-8912 chip, MIDI compatibility