Who doesn’t know Journey to the center of the earth, the novel by Jules Verne, in which several characters travel underground and find a lost world filled with extinct creatures and plants still living. This is one of the games made after the book and it let’s you chose from one of four characters that will have to travel solo to the center of the earth after finding a note from Arne Saknussemm who has apparently actually been there. He has left clues and breadcrumbs but they are few and far between so you will have to find your own way down.

Each of the four characters has different statistics depending on their fitness, age and occupation. The plot has all four characters going on the journey but soon a rockslide seperates you from the group and you will have to find your way to the next part, a giant mushroom field, according to Arne’s notes. There are several actions you can perform apart from walking in four directions like looking at the rocks which will give you information about it’s age and gives you an idea where you are at. Also there are actions like resting, medical attention and trying to locate water which are vital if you are to survive for longer than a few days. You can’t actually see yourself walking around or on the map and you will only get text messages about what you see and things that happen like slipping on rocks and hurting your leg. Often you will come across landslides and the game will switch to an minigame where you have to dodge rocks, mammoths coming at you or fighting off an angry pterodactyl. Once you reach the giant mushrooms you find a carving from Arne which says you have finished your first part of the journey but you will still have to find your way to the next few stops.

I find myself in a twist about the game there are some point I quite like but others are just horrible, the cavein scene where you dodge rocks is used way too much and it just gets annoying after a few goes. The fact that you have no idea where you are going doesn’t help either with almost nothing to go on except for some cryptic messages, I don’t actually know if the path is different each time or if you can map it I simply didn’t have the patience to try that but you might. There are some nice points as well like the survival part, though simplistic, where you heal your wounds, fetch water and ration up your supplies. The archeological bit could have been used better as know you don’t really get what you’re supposed to do with it. Dispite all the flaws I found myself quite drawn to Journey to the center of the earth as the idea of the game is quite good, the execution leaves a lot to be desired though.

Overal rating: 5/10

Erde Kaiser

This game was released for several different systems here are some notes:

Amiga Released in 1989.
This one has digitized sound effects but they can get annoying at times also.
Atari ST Released in 1988.
C64 Released in 1989.
This version is horrible, the graphics are very bad, there’s pratically no music or sound and loading times are huge. I can’t even imagine playing this game on an actual C64 as it would take way too long to load even simple things.
Date added Sep-17-2010 21:29
Name Journey to the center of the earth
Developer Chip
Publisher Chip
First released 1988
Genre Adventure