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Atic Atac

Moby ID: 14606
ZX Spectrum Specs
Conversion (unofficial) See Also

Description official descriptions

As the game begins, the player character falls through a trapdoor and ends up inside an evil castle with only one way to get out of it - find all the pieces of the great ACG key that unlocks the main door.

Atic Atac is an action game with adventure elements, mixing arcade gameplay with exploration of a large castle and light puzzle-solving. The player can choose to control either a Wizard, a Knight, or a Serf. Each character has access to a different secret passage, which means that the player will be navigating different rooms depending on the choice of character. Characters also possess unique skills: for example, the Serf can gain momentum when running, allowing him to traverse greater distances in less time.

Enemies appear in each room and would randomly attack the protagonist. The player can choose to collide with them, which destroys the enemies but also drains health from the main character. Some enemies cannot be killed by conventional means and must be either avoided or dealt with by using special items. Poisonous mushrooms will also damage the hero, and bosses will drain his health as long as he maintains close contact.

The player character's life meter gets gradually depleted. Health can be restored by consuming food scattered around the castle, but the countdown cannot be stopped. In addition, doors would sometimes close, trapping the hero in a room. Keys must be collected to open many of the castle's doors.

Groups +



Credits (ZX Spectrum version)

4 People

Designed by
Programming by
Graphics by
Packaging art by



Average score: 84% (based on 9 ratings)


Average score: 3.7 out of 5 (based on 20 ratings with 2 reviews)

Fast and Furious

The Good
Easy to pick up and play. Quick to load the next screen. I liked that though the way doors exiting a room may be closed on entry this would change the longer you stayed in the room.

The Bad
The Q & W keys control left & right, the E & R keys control up & down and the T key fires your characters weapon.

I found my fingers getting tangled up on the small Spectrum keyboard and I was quickly eaten / killed / zapped.

The Bottom Line
This is not a game that requires deep thought. Run into a room, get what's there to be got and get out.

ZX Spectrum · by piltdown_man (232164) · 2010

Ultimate masterpiece delivered to game stardom

The Good
When I purchased this game 25 years I couldn't believe what I had found...Ultimate Play The Game was totally unknown to me but I was captured by the cassette cover and even their logo was quite endearing. I was used to the blocky graphics of Atari 2600 but I always desired a game who could really present a haunted house in a 'believable' way. Atic Atac was a total blast! Finally a game who could immerse me in a real infested house with amazing and recognizable monsters, rooms, furniture etc.and even gameplay was of first rate and compelling. I spent hours and hours (along with my brother) trying to find out the elusive ACG key and escape from the mansion with an incredible satisfaction when I finally succeeded. All in all it was a great mixture of everything; graphics, sounds, gameplay that showed the enormous possibilities of videogames at the dawn of their life (and all squeezed in 41kb only!).

The Bad
I cannot say anything bad of this game; nothing was missing and its appeal is overall 'right' now as it was 25 years ago .

The Bottom Line
Ultimate created a masterpiece with this game; now there are lots of haunted houses games with zombies and evilness throughout but this game and its somehow tongue-in-cheek presentation remained forever in my heart as a perfect example of immersive videogame; something that made me feel I was there battling monsters trying to survive once more. The thrills of being in a sort of horror movie were seeded here and will live with me forever even with cinema-like games of modern games.

ZX Spectrum · by dan rexx (37) · 2008


Magazine map

Another innovation resulting from the game was that it was the first game to have a map published by a magazine (Crash!). This was contributed by a reader, and unusually as a result of a competition.


Some copies of the game exist where the message on completing the game is spelled as "CONGRATULATIONT" - apparently due to an error in the typing of the code, using 212 instead of 211 in an important place.


  • ACE
    • February 1991 (issue #41) - Included in the list Greatest Games of all Time, section Arcade Adventures (editorial staff choice)
  • Retro Gamer
    • September 2004 (Issue #8) – #51 Best Game Of All Time (Readers' Vote)


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Related Sites +

  • Retrospec
    has a Windows Atic Atac remake.
  • Wikipedia
    free Encyclopedia entry
  • World of Spectrum
    release information; additional material; player reviews; magazine references; magazine adverts

Identifiers +

  • MobyGames ID: 14606
  • [ Please login / register to view all identifiers ]


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Contributors to this Entry

Game added by EboMike.

BBC Micro added by Terok Nor.

Additional contributors: Terok Nor, Martin Smith, Macs Black, Patrick Bregger, Jo ST, ZeTomes.

Game added August 31, 2004. Last modified February 14, 2024.