This amazing Commodore 64 port of the 1991 Amiga/MS-DOS RPG classic, Eye of the Beholder, was released on 21st November 2022 and is one of the best homebrew remakes I think I’ve ever played. It was written by “Jack Asser“, with the help of a number of other talented individuals, and comes as a CRT (cartridge) file for quick-loading.
It supports mouse control and quicksaves and I think that it’s the entire game, although I’ve not yet played through it all yet to confirm that. I have played pretty far into it, though, and must say that it’s definitely a superb effort and seems to contain almost all of the interactivity, puzzles, items, monsters and detail of the original.
It has the animated introductory sequence from the original, and the same character creation process, and is playable using both keyboard and mouse. The mouse movement is not ideal, however, and it does take some getting used to. As someone who actually had a mouse for their C64 back in the mid-Eighties (I bought Neos‘ “Mouse & Cheese“) I can confirm that mouse movement back then was not like it is now. The mouse pointer in this does have a weird inertia to it and it can go flying around the screen if you’re not careful (which might be a bug, to be honest, but I’m not sure what causes it). Picking up small items from the ground, or clicking to activate a spell, can be tricky as the area you’re aiming at is very small. But these are relatively small issues that you eventually get used to.
Gameplay-wise, this is just as gripping and as tense as playing the original, although it is a little slow compared to the Amiga/PC versions. Which is to be expected, really. This is the Commodore 64, seemingly doing the impossible, and not a 16-bit computer with processing power to spare.
The re-made (de-made?) graphics are excellent, as is the sound, which adds greatly to the scary atmosphere. I can’t recommend this release highly enough to be honest. It really is quite brilliant.
Whether you’ve played the original or not, Eye of the Beholder on the Commodore 64 is a must-play game. Especially if you like RPGs. And it automatically goes onto the list of ‘best C64 RPGs ever made’. It’s a remarkable achievement.