Sunday, October 23, 2016

Terry's Big Adventure


Released by Shades in 1989 it looks and plays with more than a pinch of Mario and I cannot help but wonder how moneybags Nintendo let them get away with it, but I'm glad they did. His adventure takes us through twelve playful lands and, just like his Italian cousin, he is also stuck within a 2D world. Get your joystick ready because this means lots of platforms, gaps to jump, magic mushrooms and many cute iddy biddy critters.

Terry isn't daft but doesn't like squashing any living creature so instead, he has brought a weapon. If you're expecting something like a shotgun or a laser then you might be disappointed because it's a yo-yo which is unlikely to impress the girls but it's whacky and actually works well. However, beware of its feedback which will knock you backwards, thus a problem when close to water or a platform's edge.

Power-ups are frequently available and you can exchange the yo-yo for pebble throwing by simply hitting the spacebar, Terry is such a badass! A kill will often throw out a random letter in a tiny parachute, collect it quickly to eventually make the word "terry". This earns you a temporary shield which comes in handy allowing you to plough through the enemy hoard. It's also worth collecting the mushrooms for juicy points and an extra life is awarded every 20,000. To help you further are bonus levels stocked to the brim with even more mushrooms. Don't get addicted!

Graphics are typically NES and the first thing you notice are those tiny sprites but this suits the console-feel and their level of detail is excellent. Scrolling is silky smooth and it's obvious the programmer took the time and talent to get beautiful results from a computer without hardware scrolling. Joystick controls are precise and feel perfect. However, Terry suffers the laws of physics once again and is subject to momentum as he walks, jumps or changes direction but this is only a minor learning curve and one easily mastered that positively adds to your experience.

Terry's Big Adventure is a super platformer and should appeal to those who enjoy Giana Sisters or either of the Stario games. It might very well be a total ripoff but Terry has enough personality of his own to make this feel interesting, fun and entertaining. I've always enjoyed playing yo-yo's with little spiky-haired Terry, and I'm sure you will too.

LINKS

 - Here is a video which I recorded over two years ago. Yowzers how time flies!
 - AtariMania features the little dude in their ST database website.
 - If you have the hardware, then download the hard drive installable version by 8BitChip.
 - But if you require a floppy disk image then Old Games Finder is for you.