Another Lifeless Planet and Me With No Beer

Adventure 1989 Dos Science Fiction Multimedia novel

No beer!?

Even without the gloriously bonkers mouthful of a title, this neat little text adventure is one piece of interactive fiction that is well worth a look. Fans of science fiction games in the genre like Planetfall and The Tracer Sanction should get a kick out of this one, thanks to its mix of puzzles, humour and general all-round solid design.The story here finds the player crashlanded on an alien planet, far from home, in the unenviable position of being completely out of beer. Worse still, the planet is full of hostile lifeforms that would sooner see you dead than lend a hand. However, instead of venturing forth yourself to find a way out of this mess, you have linked yourself telepathically to some handy drones. These can be controlled via simple commands to explore on your behalf, collecting items and solving puzzles as they go, with the ultimate aim of activating an ancient rocket ship which is your only ticket out of here. This really is quite a neat little adventure that scores a lot of points by simply not taking itself too seriously. There are some limited ASCII graphics along with the text, which are used to represent the alien lifeforms, and which help lend the game some visual interest. The adventure itself is well written and generally engrossing, with plenty of decently written descriptions that tell a simple but solid story. The puzzles are quite straightforward stuff, certainly challenging and occasionally frustrating but enough to keep hardened genre fans hooked. This might not be the best game for genre newcomers but if you are an old hand, it's well worth a look.

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