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It Came from the Desert

Moby ID: 610
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Description official descriptions

It Came From the Desert is an action-adventure game that derives its inspiration from the many cult-horror B-Movies of the 50's and 60's, the 1954 film Them in particular. The player plays the part of Dr. Greg Bradley, a geologist and the newest resident in town. Eager to satisfy his scientific mind, Bradley sets out to examine the crash-site of a mysterious meteor, but what he finds is not at all what he had been looking for.

The game takes place all over Lizard Breath, and there are several different types of action / interaction. The adventure part of the game is very linear, guiding the player in a fairly set sequence of action sections. These include first-person bug shooting, scrolling overhead shooting, and a chase sequence.

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Credits (Amiga version)

16 People

Additional Computography
Scripting Tools
Graphic Artists
Additional Art
Original Score
Production Coordinator
Executive Producers
Written by
Produced by
Designed and Directed by
Software, Manual and Package Design © 1989
  • Cinemaware Corporation



Average score: 86% (based on 24 ratings)


Average score: 3.9 out of 5 (based on 54 ratings with 1 reviews)

Another Cinemaware masterpiece

The Good
Yet another showcase for Cinemeware's outstanding artists: It just looks impressive. Cinemaware has managed to capture the feeling of a small town in the 50's. Even more than many other of their releases, this game has a true "cinema" feel to it.

The atmosphere is incredible. You can virtually feel the tension rising as the ants gain more and more ground throughout the fifteen days. In the last couple of days, when most of the locations cannot even be visited anymore because the ants have destroyed them, you really can't help but believe the world is coming to an end.

The Bad
Some of the action sequences are rather simplistic. The gaunlet-style hospital escape is graphically underdeveloped. The knife fights are real let-downs when you compare them to the superb Rocket Ranger fistfights (and that game was released before "desert"). And the chicken game? An action sequence in which all you have to do is move your car to the middle of the road?

The Bottom Line
This is a game that will keep you busy for a while. No matter how often you play it, you'll always notice new details when visiting locations at a different time. The game is wonderfully non-linear, you are free to do whatever you want. Although the characters may feel somewhat corny at times, and although you'll sometimes feel like smacking them against a wall because they don't do what you want (interaction is truly limited), the game is in the end rewarding and fun to play.

DOS · by EboMike (3080) · 2003



Game came with a poster-sized map for "City of Lizard Breath".


The game is loosely based on the movie THEM! (renamed into Formicula in Europe) from 1954.


  • A lot of places in the game are named after people who worked at Cinemaware. Two examples: Platt University Lab (Named after programmer Randy Platt) Godfrey's Hotsprings (Named after graphic artist Jeff Godfrey)
  • The Rocket Ranger, from another Cinemaware game, can be seen flying around on the movie screen at Beverly's Drive In.


  • Amiga Joker
    • Issue 01/1991 – #2 Best Adventure Game in 1990
  • Computer Gaming World
    • November 1996 (15th anniversary issue) – #10 Most Memorable Game Hero (Greg Bradley)

Information also contributed by Garcia, Ricky Derocher

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Contributors to this Entry

Game added by faceless.

Amiga added by EboMike.

Additional contributors: Jeanne, Der.Archivar, Patrick Bregger.

Game added December 22nd, 1999. Last modified November 11th, 2023.