Publisher: Melbourne House
Developer: Beam Software
Release Date: 1984
Code: Russell Grahame
Music: Neil Brennan
ZZAP64 Game Rating: n/a
Our Game Rating: 83%
Completed by Brendan Phoenix
Reviewed by Vinny Mainolfi
> CLICK HERE to Download emu file
> CLICK HERE to view the YouTube ending video
Zim Sala Bim by Melbourne House is described in Gamebase 64 as a ‘move and type’ adventure game, as opposed to ‘point and click’. This is because there’s still the element of a text adventure in the game where you have to type in your commands as opposed to selecting them from some form of menu. It was quite a unique concept back in 1984, but obviously took a few years before people really took to the idea…
As for the game itself… it’s a sluggish, blocky escapade that literally took me 30 seconds of gameplay before I was bored stiff. It’s one of those games where you have to make a point of reading through the instructions and understanding what you need to do before you do it – which doesn’t float by biscuit.
I won’t be playing this game again, and judging by the ending, I don’t think it’s worth the effort…
HOW WAS IT COMPLETED?: Brendan completed it using a walkthrough but kept having his gold pinched by Nomads on the way to the cave’s at the end… “The walkthrough never mentioned you had to pick up a pistol along the way! Grrrr.”
SO WHAT HAPPENS?: Once you drop the gold, the ending message appears, which reads: “THE VILLAGERS REJOICE AS THEY TAKE THE GOLD. YOU HAVE TRIUMPHED !!!“. The game then hangs.
Brendan: Nice looking (for it’s time anyway) graphical adventure by Melbourne House.
Some nice little tunes – I swear Living on the Ceiling is played in there somewhere.
Just a pity the ending is a little bit poor, I expected something better. I know it’s an oldie but can’t remember too many text adventures where you can control your character with a joystick – especially from 1984.
We get a little message but then the screen just hangs! Very annoying. 3/10.
Vinny: I’m not really impressed with the game, and I’m definitely not impressed with the game ending. 1/10 from me as it just appears to be a simple bit of text 😦
Andy Vaisey: Wow, there’s a blast from the past.
Unlike most of my originals where I can remember when and where I bought them, Zim Sala Bim is in my collection and I have absolutely no recollection of how. Or why. I’m guessing it was probably free with something else, maybe in the old days of the computer and video club.
The game? Well, although it’s boring with pretty awful GFX, it was quite novel at the time – a kind of combined arcade and text adventure. Nothing excuses that ending though. Poor.
Andrew Fisher: An interesting approach that did not quite work, with a very poor ending.
FINAL SAY: Very annoying!
G.E. RATING: 2 / 10