Wednesday, December 05, 2018

Clever And Smart

Fancy something weird?

Magic Bytes released Clever & Smart back in 1987 and is a peculiar puzzler that is based on an original Spanish comic strip. Now, if I'm honest, I've never heard of that comic strip before nor have I ever played this Atari ST game. I'm hoping that being new to something is going to be a good thing. I can but hope! Let's see and take this weird game for a spin.

So, we begin at an odd city and are two special agents - who are controlled at the same time. Okay, they're hardly Mulder and Scully but these guys have been informed about a gifted scientist, Dr Bakterius. He is being held prisoner by a terrorist organisation called OMP. Yup, I guess it's our job to free him but why is there always an evil scientist on the loose?

Folk, brace yourself. This is going to be a bumpy ride so let's check out a couple of screenshots...

Terrorists are causing trouble again so let's plod through the city looking for clues... I think?

I must admit, the graphics are quite shocking but the character sprites are kinda cool.

Let's play something different, you said?

The city is viewed from above and exploring is quite a weird experience. Watch out for odd characters lurking in the streets - it usually ends in a brawl for some insane reason I cannot figure out. Finding a cop won't help because they just disappear (like in real life). I wandered around for a while until a car suddenly appeared with the sole purpose of running us down!

By chance, I entered the sewers through a manhole and found myself in a place that reminded me of an old ZX Spectrum game, Maziacs. I pottered about, dodging rats and silly cats, but there wasn't much else of interest other than to seek out an exit. Also, bumping into the walls displays a menu with two useless options, so I assumed I needed to previously hunt down items from in the city above? However, I found nothing in the three games I recorded. Yes, three.

Aesthetically, this sucks. It's almost like my Atari ST has been transformed into an Amstrad with such poor visuals. The animations are suspect and whoever created that shuffling walk (during the sewers scenes) should be shot!! Saying that some of the sprites are kinda cute and those brawls are a neat cartoon-like touch. However, this isn't a game you'll boot up to show your friends (lol). Sadly, the YM2149 blurts out little more than the odd scratchy effect and footsteps.

However, this now leads me to a couple more screenshots with humorous sprites like this cat...

Wow, the sewers are bad but not as much as our shuffling walk which is quite odd.

Hey, look is that a baby trapped in the wall or just hilarious graffiti. Love it!!

The CryptO'pinion?

Well, that was certainly one of the most unusual Atari ST games that I have ever attempted to play. It's quite confusing with lots of careless walking about. Little makes any sense so you basically wonder, wondering what to do and where to go. But then be prepared as you'll probably get mowed down by a car for no reason! Nah, this game didn't give a good vibe.

Those willing to torture themselves can grab the floppy and hdd versions for instant fuji pain. Good luck and enjoy it!

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