President is Missing

Adventure 1988 Dos Dosbox Cosmi Corporation Mystery

Intriguing and original but ultimately dull conspiracy adventure

This is something of a departure for Microprose, best known for military sims like Gunship and F15 Strike Eagle, and is a text-based adventure that should offer no surprises for anyone who has read the title, at least in terms of premise. While not up the standards of classics like Zork or Countdown to Doom, it remains an intriguing slice of interactive fiction, if only for its unusual subject matter which makes a change from the usual fantasy and sci-fi stories. As the title suggests, the President has been kidnapped, along with various other heads of state, and it is your responsibility to track them down, along with those responsible. Most of your work is done from behind your desk, where you have access to dossiers on known terrorists but you can also send out several special agents to interview suspects and follow up leads. If you piece together enough clues from the reports which get sent back and are able to determine where a hostage is being held, you can send out a strike team to rescue them, but as you proceed through the game, you will find an intriguing conspiracy developing, with the CIA and FBI involved and all sorts of mysteries to uncover. Unfortunately, while The President is Missing must be applauded for its sheer originality in terms of plot and ideas, it really faults flat as a game. There is simply not enough happening at any given time to keep you interested and while your enthusiasm will start off high, it will soon wane when you realise that sitting behind a desk waiting for reports really isn't much fun. Check it out if you want something a little different, but until someone remakes this, it's going to remain nothing more than a curiosity which could have been so much better.

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