Four Player Fantasy Fight Fest from Atari
The Warrior (red), deals big damage with his spinning axes but is slow, has no armour and is terrible at magic.
|The Valkyrie (blue) is the token girlie of the game, sporting flying swords but holding off damage with her chain mail and shield, her magic isn't much better than the Warrior's.|
|The Wizard (yellow), shoots fireballs from his fingertips and clears a whole screen of enemies with a single potion.||The Elf (green) is the quickest of the characters and is armed with a bow and arrows, his magic skill is second only to the Wizard's.|
Gauntlet features dozens of maze-like levels, thousands of ghosts, grunts and sorcerers to slay, transporters and even the Grim Reaper himself puts in an appearance at least once a level. Treasure chests and potions are your reward, the latter being kept until you press the magic button, triggering a massacre of enemies, the number depending on your chosen character's magic skill. Later levels became increasingly maze-like, slowing the party's progress, but if genuinely lost all you had to do was avoid battle for long enough, and all walls would turn into exits. To be avoided at all costs was the Thief, who would steal from the richest player...
Apparently, Gauntlet was a rip-off of a game called Dandy for the Apple II.
Update: Thanks go to Brett W Derby who emailed to say that Dandy was a game on the Atari 800 not the Apple.
Maybe this game meant so much to me at the time because I this was when I discovered Dungeons & Dragons, but never really had anybody to play the game with on a regular basis. Well, its no RPG but down at Starship Enterprises (my local arcade) there was always a fellow adventurer waiting.