Demon Stalkers

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Demon Stalkers: The Raid on Doomfane
Demon Stalkers
retail cover art
Developer(s)Micro Forte
Publisher(s)Electronic Arts
Platform(s)Commodore 64, DOS
Release1987, 1988
Genre(s)Action, role-playing video game
Mode(s)Single player, Two player

Demon Stalkers is a top-down action, role-playing video game. It was released in 1987 on the Commodore 64 and DOS. It's a dungeon crawler based on killing monsters during the descent, it had a sequel named Fire King released on the same platforms that played in a similar style.

Gameplay[edit]

The game can be played in either single player mode or two player co-operative mode, using two joysticks, or a joystick plus keyboard. Players can choose to control either the hero, armed with throwing knives, or the heroine, armed with a crossbow. During the game, players will find various relics which permanently increase attack power, defense, or magic power, as well as an arsenal of magic scrolls, and special amulets that create temporary effects. Food can be picked up to heal damage, but occasionally turns out to be poison which hurts the player. Similarly, some scrolls turn out to be a "slow death curse," which takes a way the player's health continuously until death, unless the exit from that level is found. Enemies in the game include rats, ghosts who can walk through walls, dervishes who can steal a player's possessions, snappers who remain dormant until disturbed, and mad mages, who shoot fireballs; these monsters emerge from special spawning areas called vortexes, which can be destroyed by the player with several shots, except for the rats, who emerge from indestructible sewer grates.

The dungeon consists of many interconnected maze-like levels which rooms, hallways, and doors. There are several multi-level mazes, where the player must ascend and descend between levels several times before finding the correct path; the collecting of keys to open doors is a fundamental part of the game, while fighting against a horde of monsters. Most of the levels entail some sort of puzzle solving, involving clues in the form of scrolls that are picked up along the way; these scrolls also tell the story of an unsuccessful group of adventurers who journeyed through the dungeon before the current players. This ill-fated party included members Arthur, Bloodaxe, Grindlewald, Furrowfoot, and Imelda, as well as Mellack, a mage whom the previous adventurers met along the way. Correctly answering some questions after each story section yields bonus health points.

Level 100 is unique in the game, as its geography includes large, irregularly shaped caves, rather than straight or diagonal walls as in the other levels. Level 100 also only features one enemy, the demon boss, Calvrak. Demon Stalkers includes its own level-editor, allowing the player to modify all levels except 100.

Reception[edit]

A review in Computer Gaming World, comparing the game to Gauntlet, noted "Gauntlet seemed to have ten times more monsters than Demon Stalkers. Thus, despite the similarities, Gauntlet is primarily an action game and Demon Stalkers is a search game with action thrown in."[1] The review concluded by saying neither game would disappoint.[1]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Choi, Yung Min (April 1988), "Ramparts and Rodents: A Look at Two Action Adventure Dungeons", Computer Gaming World, pp. 40–41

External links[edit]