Mask of the Sun by Brøderbund


mask_of_the_sun_01Publisher: Brøderbund
Developer: Ultrasoft
Release Date: 1984
Code: Scott Shumway
GFX: Scott Shumway
Music: Scott Shumway
ZZAP!64 Game Rating: n/a
Our Game Rating: 84%
Completed & Reviewed by Brendan Phoenix
> CLICK HERE to Download emu file
> CLICK HERE to view the YouTube ending video
Just given this little text adventure a go and I have to say that it’s bloody good! Would even go as far to say it is the best ending I have seen from a text adventure. Let’s be honest, that isn’t saying a lot. The majority of them always seem to end rather abruptly with a curt ‘congratulations you completed the game in 56 moves’ – or something similar – which I have always found rather strange given the descriptions of rooms and items, etc. Then there are the graphical text adventures that give us the same. I’m thinking the CRL ones like Jack the Ripper and Dracula with no end game piccy at all – pathetic.
However, this time we have a graphical text adventure where the graphics play a great part in the game. Admittedly they are basic, but they match the mood of the game. We have animation of cat statues turning into living jaguars, demonic reflections in pools, and also some okay spot FX too. Thought was put into them and it comes out in the game…
maskofthesun1
“Kick his ass!”
maskofthesun2
“HANDS UP”
maskofthesun3
“Erm… nope. Don’t have the mask. Anything else you need – a diet Coke?”
maskofthesun4
“Yeah – I’ve heard about you and your ‘passages’!”
maskofthesun5
“There’s that mask thing again. You really want that mask don’t you?”
maskofthesun6
“Okay – I give in. Here you go…”
maskofthesun7
“Ah fuck off!”
maskofthesun8
“WTF?!?!”
maskofthesun9b
“Oo-er, missus”
maskofthesun9c
“KILL HIM!”
maskofthesun9e
“Here kitty kitty. Good puss puss…”
maskofthesun9f
“TFFT!”
maskofthesun9g
“BYE!”
maskofthesun9j
“Phew!”
maskofthesun9l
I skipped a few screens, but this is finally The End.
HOW WAS IT COMPLETED?: Although I followed a walkthrough I still got into the storyline of the game and enjoyed playing it – although I was thinking that the end would follow the usual rubbish text adventure endings we see, which would make me really mad given the game pictures that came before it. However, I am happy to say the ending is great. I have saved it from the point in the labyrinth where you are confronted by your rival who wants the Mask of the Sun that you have found. You just need to type ‘Give Mask’ and then ‘Play Flute’ when the jaguar approaches you. I think it would be unfair to show the ending after these scenes – this is the true ending.
SO WHAT HAPPENS?: Lots going on in this ending. It’s best you see it for yourself via the download, video or screenshots above. But basically – the baddy dies and the goody wins 😉
COMMENTS:
Brendan: I felt really good seeing this ending and I did it with a walkthrough, so would be even more happy if I completed it without one.
Given that it is from 1984 and it’s head and shoulders above most other text adventure endings I have seen, I would stick my neck out here and give it 7/10.
Vinny: I’m really impressed with this ending because it maintains that level of excitement that is originally created by the game. It really fits in well and is executed with style. Obviously there are elements that could have made it a more polished offering, but it certainly is a good’un for 1984.
Andy Vaisey: That is actually pretty cool for such an old game! Shame they didn’t ‘know’ about anti-aliasing back then though…
Andrew Fisher: Very impressed by this ending, not played the game as I didn’t play many text adventures back then.
Some nice touches of sound and I liked the shimmer effect. 7/10.
Guerilla: Superb ending: It really presents a sound plot, rounding off the game in a truly rewarding way. And the graphics are stylish and look nice, especially considering the age. A clear 8 from me – and I might go as far as to claim that in 1984, this would have been a 10 indeed! Excellent!
Gaz Spence: Broderbund always tried to inject a little extra thought into their releases, which set them apart from many of their contemporaries. I suppose the game is influenced to a degree by Raiders of the Lost Ark and the ending is quite cinematic. Thumbs up!
FINAL SAY: A very good effort for such an old game.

G.E. RATING: 7 / 10

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