You control a war hero named Brad Conrad, who visited his old uncle Milo down to Tijuana for the weekend. Milo had the obsession with Aztecs, and had lots of dry dusty academic things cluttering up his pad.One day, Milo was gone, and Brad found in his house an old 400 years-old map about the lost city of Quetzacotl (found in the South America jungle), and it's cache of gold. You prepare your bag, gun, knife and let's go to the adventure. But be warned: other people are also looking for the same treasure too. You fly a small airplane and armed with your trusty knife and a gun you parachute out in the jungle and this is where your adventure begins. Will you be able to get the treasure and get away with it or will you fall prey to the natives or the many traps set by the Aztecs to protect their treasures. Needless to say, life gets ever more hazardous when you need to cope with head hunters, poisonous snakes and spiders, nut-throwing monkeys, poisonous spikes and collapsing bridges!
You must go screen by screen to finish it, and each screen has its own traps and foes (pigmies waiting to strike you down) to avoid and/or destroy. Although interesting, the game is too difficult to play especially the awkward way of using weapons (you're equipped with a knife and a pistol of limited ammo). Timing is often critical, so you end up having to practice every precise robotic movement over and over again to get it right, instead of responding to the action naturally and instinctively with a user-friendly character. In each screen need to have good timing to avoid traps, etc. and this can get really frustrating. Things are getting tougher, as the game plays in flick-screen mode, thus there is not enough time to react when incoming foes i.e. spit poisonous darts on you!
Other than its difficulty, Gold of The Aztecs is a great game I think with masses of traps to avoid and loads of puzzles to solve. If you got used to its precise need of well-timed movements, the game is rather fun to play, coming back for more and more.
Graphics are nice with large detailed sprites and colorful scenery coupled with smooth (but rather awkward) animation. That is, the main character looks as if he's got wooden legs!
The Atari ST version looks like being the original release of the game. Graphics are identical to the Amiga and PC (EGA/VGA mode) versions with up to 16 colors on screen. According to the manual, the game offers 3MB of graphics and 600k of music which looked quite impressive for its time. Each screen is nicely detailed and with a few animated scenes at the background.
Soundwise, the game features a nice introductory theme and digitized (Amiga, ST only) sound effects while there is a spooky music during gameplay that adds atmosphere and sets the mood for your deadly quest.