Solomon's Key for the NES was released in Japan on this day in 1986.

Gobliiins (DOS)

70
MobyRank
100 point score based on reviews from various critics.
3.7
MobyScore
5 point score based on user ratings.
Written by  :  *Katakis* (37795)
Written on  :  Oct 17, 2003
Platform  :  DOS
Rating  :  4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars

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Summary

The French know how to create great games, especially involving Goblins.

The Good

Coktel Vision intended to make a spelling mistake in the game's title, and anyone who has played the game will see why it has three I's. Gobliiins is an usual adventure game with puzzle elements, but it also has a fair dose of comedy.

The game starts off with an excellent introduction that made me laugh the first time I watched it. The king is enjoying a peaceful lunch with his family, and everyone is behaving as if they are pigs. Suddenly, someone who has a grudge against him uses a voodoo doll to attack him in so many creative ways. There are separate intros for the CD and Disk versions of the game; and I like the Disk version's more. But I like in the CD version how everything is high-res. Gobliiins is a family game, so there is no blood or gore.

Unlike many adventure games that I played, this is the first one that features three protagonists. The heroes in this game are all Goblins (whose names differ from the US and European releases), each one of them blessed with a certain ability that the others don't have. For example, the bearded one can cast spells while the one in the red hat can pick up objects and use them. There are twenty-two landscapes in the game. Each Goblin has do their bit around the landscapes, and a certain number of tasks are required to proceed to the next one.

The game gives out passwords that can be used to start at a particular landscape, and this is great because it saves you from restarting from landscape one. The passwords consist of seven letters, and they are structured in such a way that most of them could be words that can be pronounced. There are separate versions for the US and Europe, but I don't think the passwords are different between these.

Gobliiins is supposed to be a humorous game, and there is nothing wrong with trying out certain things just to see what happens. Try to walk past a monster and it will frighten the Goblin was under your control. What's even more humorous is the other goblins that curse at you for making a mistake. There is a long, horizontal bar near the bottom of the screen, that decreases every time a goblin is hurt or gets scared. Once that bar runs out, you have to restart the scene, so it's best not to go over the top.

The landscapes look wonderful, especially the second, fourteenth, seventeenth, and eighteenth ones. Every foreground object is well designed, and the animations of the goblins and the other character is superb. As I said earlier, the intro in the CD version is beautifully designed, and the table featured is laid out nicely. There are occasional cut-scenes and these help build up the climax.

The sound effects are excellent, adding that comical effect to the game and blending in with what you are doing. There is actual background music in the CD version instead of nothing, and most of the music is relaxing and reflect the landscape you're in. Coktel was one of the few companies that actually managed to make the PC Speaker sounds more like Sound Blaster than beeps and squeaks, So, anyone who didn't have a SB at the time could hear what it sounded like through the Speaker. Really impressive.

The Bad

There are four special items you need to collect during the game. Once you get one of them, you hear an annoying mixture of short and long beeps that seem to get worse the more items you get.

The Bottom Line

I believe that Gobliiins is the very first game to feature more than one protagonist, and it is an excellent adventure game with puzzle-solving elements. The highlight is trying different things that produce funny responses but at the risk of depleting your energy bar. The landscapes are wonderful, and the graphics and sound is great. There are versions for both disk and CD, so take your pick!