Title           Mercenary
Game Type       3D Adventure
Publisher       Novagen (1988)
Players         1
Compatibility   All?
HD Installable  No?
Submission      Mike Landers

Paul Woakes' vector based game was already a classic on the C64 before it's
conversion to the 16 bit machines, and the Amiga version was an exact match,
wireframes and all.  The plot involved you, the Mercenary of the title,
crashlanding on the planet Targ.  You could work for one or both of two
warring factions, the Palyars or the Mechanoids, who asked for items to be
collected and deposited in certain rooms for cash payment.  Once you had
enough money, you could buy a ship capable of intergalatic flight and get
off the God-forsaken planet.

There were two distinct sections, above ground and below ground.  Mostly the
game takes place in a maze of tunnels beneath certain locations in the city.
You could wander around the rooms in a first person perspective, and they
would contain objects that may be of value, or keys, or sometimes just there
for decoration.  Guiding you would be a computer, Benson, who would pop up
helpful messages from time to time.

What made Mercenary so great was that, like Elite, it had a definite sense
of being in its own self-contained world.  There was no time limit, and it
was very hard to die.  You could play the game with the intention of
completing it, or simply land in a location and wander around. The author
included items with his own sense of humour, the 12939 Reviving Liquid
(12939=PEPSI in mirror writing) and most memorably, the Cheese, which could
be picked up and used as a plane.  (Why?  Because it is a Kraft...)

The wire-frame vector graphics used the power of the Amiga's CPU to be a
whole lot quicker than the C64 version but didn't provide much more in the
way of extras over it's little brother.  The game, however, was memorable
and spawned a mission disk; Mercenary: The Second City, and two excellent
sequels, Damocles and Mercenary III.

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