Critic Score User Score
Amstrad CPC
Commodore 64
ZX Spectrum
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Thanatos is a side-scrolling dragon action game with a dragon protagonist named Thanatos the Destroyer. The large on-screen dragon was animated with a lot of detail on the head, wings and legs, and the background had a semi-3D parallax scrolling system, akin to the semi-3D systems seen in other Durell games such as Fat Worm, Combat Lynx and Turbo Esprit. The game's title music, composed by Julian Breeze, is multi-channeled on the Spectrum's single 'beep' channel, using the same multi-channel engine as some other Durell titles. On Spectrum 128, the title music has actual multiple channels.

In the game the player must guide the dragon through the land flying towards the right, and fight its way through a multitude of enemies, both humans and fantasy creatures: sea snakes, giant spiders, a hostile two-headed dragon. They can be burned with the dragon's fiery breath, or they can be grabbed with the dragon's claws and dropped onto other enemies. Boulders can also be picked up and dropped on enemies. To win the game, the dragon's mission is to pick up an enchantress for a ride, then safely deliver her to find a book of spells, and finally take her to a magic cauldron so she may cast her spell. The enchantress brings extra challenge to the task, as she must be kept safe from harm. If Thanatos turns around too fast while flying, she may fall off and must be picked up again. If the sorceress is slain or Thanatos dies, the game will end.

The dragon makes its way through a few strongholds, whose gates must be burned through (apparently the castle walls are too tall to fly over). If the dragon runs out of fire breath, it must backtrack to find a virgin strapped to a pole, land nearby, and walk closer to eat the virgin. This will restore the dragon's breath. However, be wary as a knight is waiting in ambush and attacks the dragon while it's landed and vulnerable.

The dragon's health is indicated by a beating heart in the bottom of the screen. As the dragon takes hits from enemies the heart starts beating faster and faster, and near death it starts flashing blue. The dragon must withdraw to safety to rest and recover.


Thanatos Amstrad CPC Loading screen.
Thanatos ZX Spectrum Last Mission.<br>
A vulnerable situation for the sorcerer while she tries to put the scroll in the reading support.
Thanatos ZX Spectrum A volcano erupting and an arrow. Turning over to avoid being hurt.
Thanatos ZX Spectrum The Virgins.<br>
The dragon wants the virgin. It's not precise how is she needed, but she will be inside the dragon's mouth making him recover his fire capacity.

User Reviews

An atmospheric fantasy adventure, well playable even after 28 years. Amstrad CPC Marios Amontaristos (14)

Critic Reviews

Crash! ZX Spectrum Dec, 1986 93 out of 100 93
Your Sinclair ZX Spectrum Jan, 1987 9 out of 10 90
Computer and Video Games (CVG) ZX Spectrum Jan, 1990 69 out of 100 69
Computer and Video Games (CVG) Commodore 64 Jan, 1990 68 out of 100 68
Computer and Video Games (CVG) Amstrad CPC Jan, 1990 67 out of 100 67


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Contributed to by Peter Hajba (60) and Kabushi (148188)