Curse of Enchantia

Moby ID: 2409
DOS Specs
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Description official descriptions

Little Brad didn't believe in witches until he met one. The evil hag torments the fantasy land of Enchantia, and has just summoned Brad from the Earth as an ingredient to her potion of eternal youth. Brad doesn't like this plan. And who would be better suited to rid Enchantia of the sorceress than a tender teen?

Curse of Enchantia is a graphic adventure game with an icon-based interface. The game contains almost no text: there are no object descriptions, and the purpose of most items is apparent. In the rare occasions of interaction with other characters, symbols in balloons substitute words. If there is text on the screen, it usually consists of either signs or comic phrases.

Starting in a prison cell, Brad will have to free himself and find his way on the ocean floor, through a medieval city, a junkyard and an ice castle. The player commands Brad via an icon bar that pops up if the right mouse button is pressed. The hero can perform a variety of actions, e.g. wearing, inserting, combining or fighting. Apart from steering Brad around, there is no need to click on the screen. Brad has to stand next to the object he wants to interact with, which will then appear as an icon in the command bar. It is impossible to die in the game: in fact, doing potentially deadly things is often rewarded with funny animations.

Screenshots

Promos

Credits (DOS version)

14 People (12 developers, 2 thanks)

Producer
Game Design and Puzzles
IBM Programming
Amiga Programming
Backgrounds
Sprites
Music & Sound
Playtesting
Documentation
Special Thanks To
  • Rob Northen
  • Everyone at Core Design for their ideas and help in producing this game

Reviews

Critics

Average score: 72% (based on 19 ratings)

Players

Average score: 2.4 out of 5 (based on 33 ratings with 5 reviews)

Hi! HELP! Open Sesame!

The Good
Surrealistic LSD-enhanced fantasy about a boy, a monster, some garroting, and a giant condom. Some might complain about the supposed "illogical nature" of the puzzles, but we heartily disagree. We recently ran an experiment wherein we attempted to place a fishbowl on our heads and breathe underwater. It worked very well. Additionally, we have seduced troll-like creatures by applying mud and sticks to our child-like bodies. Therefore, we would like to thank the creators of this game for teaching us so much about life. Oh, and I have not yet mentioned the best part: stuffing pubic hair into a giant condom, causing it to seize and explode into the air. Game design at its best.

The Bad
Here are the top 10 things we did not like about this game: 1. Not enough shipwrecks 2. Witch not eternally-youthful 3. Bug musicians use antiquated magnetic tape recording system. Should be recording directly to CD like any self-respecting bug musician 4. Robot not life-like 5. Aerosol deoderant not environmentally friendly. 6. Skeleton in dungeon is uncommunicative. 7. Primative undersea bartering system. 8. Inappropriate use of computer monitor. 9. Bug musicians do not hold exclusive rights to "game bugs". 10. Application of rubber gloves makes some players nervous.

The Bottom Line
FISH = ROD

DOS · by Elder Bug (2) · 2002

The worst Amiga adventure I have ever played.

The Good
The advantages of this game are barely visible and frankly speaking even those that exist are difficult to be found. Maybe the lack of text might be one of them but after a short time spend with this game, I found it a problem due to its myriad of other disadvantages.

The Bad
Let's be honest - this is one of the most annoying and illogical adventure games. First of all - the interface. It is original but it is a curse at the same time. Number of possibilities that you can do with an object does not correspond with logical solution that is really needed. Because of this the player is perplexed why things do not work and he resigns looking for another solution.

The next problem lays in the fact that you don't know what is on the screen until you get close to the object and only then it can be visible from the interface perspective. Bearing in mind that there is no text in this game it is very difficult to figure out what is really needed and what is in the location. Maybe you don't get stuck but certainly get irritated.

Graphics are reduced version from PC and unfortunately it lost a lot - starting with lack of colours and visibility of crucial objects on the screen. Sound is also ridicilous. Some small samples of background sounds and stupid words "Hi" and "Help" spoken by the main character is all you will hear. There is absolutely no music which is an original sin when it comes to adventure games.

Next thing is the existence of arcade sections. Dogdy mouse pointer and blocky scrolling make some pixel perfect sections almost impossible to get through.

The game does not have any introduction (unless you read it in the manual). Basically the player has no clue where he is or what he should do. Puzzles and location seem to be a mixed collection of different styles and tales that does not go together and sometimes are completely out of place and out of time.

The Bottom Line
This is clearly one of the worst adventure games I have ever played on Amiga. Much overhyped by Amiga press back in the day.

Amiga · by mailmanppa (5960) · 2016

A game with no text? What an idea!

The Good
Curse of Enchantia is Core Design's first attempt at an adventure game, and it is a game that works in an unusual way. In COE, you control Brad, a teenage boy who is chosen by an evil witch to use as an ingredient for a potion of eternal youth. To make matters worse, the evil hag plans to torment the fantasy land of Enchantia, where Brad is transported to.

The first thing that I noticed about the game is that COE uses absolutely no text, just pictures, and this technique is carried throughout the game. There are situations where if characters want you to give them something, they will often display what it is that they want in a speech bubble located above their head. Using pictures as a substitute for text is really suitable for people who cannot read or write. One of my assignments at uni required me to create a story that does not contain text, and with a very good plot in mind, I created a 5-page story where I was able to use no text very easily than the other students in the class. The story was my highest mark ever for the subject. It is a shame that other companies did not use Core's approach.

Actions are performed by pressing a series of icons on a bar, located on either the top or bottom of the screen, depending on where on the screen you bring it up. With these icons, you can insert an inventory item in an object on the screen, attach things, use things on other things, and several other tasks. You can also fight characters, and jump over things, plus important things like saving and restore games, as well as deleting those games that you no longer need.

COE uses VGA graphics, and they have the same type of detail as Sierra's point-and-click adventures. The icon bar itself looks good, with icons on a red background, which are separated by a silver border. I like how each character throughout the game is drawn. The first rule to creating characters for an adventure game is you have to draw them on paper first, scan them into a computer, then use a paint program to color them in. Core took this into account, and as a result, each character is drawn nicely and their looks reveal the type of personality that they have. The backgrounds are well done, with many of them set underwater, in icy areas, and in prisons, as well as in towns.

The game supports Sound Blaster, as well as the Roland MT-32/LAPC-1 sound cards. These two sound cards can be used for both music and sound effects. The music would sound good with SB, but it is greatly enhanced with the MT-32, mostly because the music is composed using real instruments like chimes, bells, percussions, cymbols, etc., and Core composed the music in such a way that it sounds really good. Furthermore, by using MT-32, you can listen to a few more tunes rather than just the one tune that you would hear if you are playing through SB, and these tunes will be heard depending on the environment that you are in, whether you are in outside, inside, or underwater areas. As for the sound effects, the SB is more suitable for playing these, as well as a few pieces of speech. Yes, there is speech throughout the game, and will have Brad saying lines like "Hi!", "Help!", and "Open Sesame!". The sound effects are rather funny, and the best ones that I recall is when Brad goes "Ah" when an idea pops in his head, and when Dracula appears at the end of the game, and scares Brad by shouting "Ah-ha!", and when he gets destroyed numerous times.

The Bad
The meaning of the icons are unclear and lack some text at the bottom of them that tells the user what they are. Sure, Core would have done this, but this only defeats the "no text, just pictures" rule, so you are expected to identify the purposes of these icons, and try different combinations of these to find out which is the right one to use.

If you perform a certain action, you have to repeatedly click on several icons, rather than just two or three like Sierra's adventure games. As far as I know, this bad thing is repeated in another of Core's adventure games, Universe.

When you use different sound cards, other than a specific combination that I used to play this game, the graphics get corrupted, but you can fix this by walking to a different area and coming back to it.

Some of the puzzles are ridiculous and you solve them using bad methods. I am not the one who does not give spoilers in a review, but how can you put something on the wall and attach something to it in order to make a button that will lift something, and what is the purpose of using marbles if you do not need them in order to get across to something?

The ending is disappointing as well. It is basically "The End" without any end sequences.

The Bottom Line
People who cannot read or write will be glad that there is actually an adventure game out there that contains no text. COE is a game with nice graphics, and excellent sound effects and music. If you are planning to play this game, my suggestion to you is to use the Roland for music and the SB for sound effects and speech. This game will be enhanced this way.

Rating: ***½

DOS · by Katakis | カタキス (43092) · 2005

[ View all 5 player reviews ]

Discussion

Subject By Date
The game crashes when I enter the door Nowhere Girl (8680) Dec 18, 2017

Trivia

References

In Ben's costume shop, even the caped crusader (or Batman to you ordinary folks) outfit is on display. Check the screenshot to see it.

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Contributors to this Entry

Game added by -Chris.

Amiga added by Rantanplan.

Additional contributors: Roger Wilco, Jeanne, Patrick Bregger.

Game added September 16, 2000. Last modified February 22, 2023.