Gift From The Gods, ZX Spectrum

Gift From The Gods is a mythology-based maze game – with impressively-animated, large figures – that was only ever released for the ZX Spectrum. Its origins lie in the infamous cancelled Imagine Software game, Bandersnatch.

Back in 1984, when Gift From The Gods was first published, games-player’s jaws hit the floor when they first saw this game. Which seems a bit hard to believe these days, but it’s true. I was among those impressed by the visuals of this game as a teenager, back in 1984.

I was also among the majority of kids who – after having played the game at home – wondered what all the fuss was about… Sure, the graphics are excellent, but the game itself is arguably a little empty and boring…

Playing Gift From The Gods now: it’s slow and confusing. You’re basically trying to find a specific set of Euclidean shapes to take back to a central wooded area called The Guardian’s Chamber. This is in order to allow the central character – Orestes – to kill the ‘evil’ Clytaemnestra, avenge the death of his father, and escape the catacombs. The problem is: the real Euclidean shapes (that you are after) are hidden among a number of fakes. Electra – the sister of Orestes – can show you the real ones. Also: killing any of the monsters found inhabiting the maze will temporarily make the fake shapes disappear, which is useful.

If you’re going to play Gift From The Gods properly with a view to completing it, you’ll either need a map, or a very good sense of direction. It can be completed quite quickly (in under an hour), if you know what you’re doing.

More: Gift From The Gods on Wikipedia

Bob Wakelin's classic Gift From The Gods artwork for Ocean Software.
Bob Wakelin’s classic Gift From The Gods artwork for Ocean Software.

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