Flight of the Amazon Queen
Developer: Interactive Binary Illusions | Publisher: Renegade Software | Release Date: 1995 | Genre: Point & Click Adventure | Website: N/A | Purchase: Free
Flight Of The Amazon Queen takes place in the 1940’s and is the story about Joe King, pilot for hire. His latest job is to take a famous actress to her photo shoot but on route manages to crash land his plane in the middle of the Amazon. This triggers a massive adventure filled with phantom primates, 6ft tall pygmies, Amazon woman, dinosaurs and a whole lot more weirdness. As you can see in the tradition of the best B-movies this game doesn’t take itself too seriously.
After playing this game for a while it becomes very clear that classic Lucasarts titles like Monkey Island and Indiana Jones had a big influence on it. Even the interface is reminiscent of early SCUMM engine games with your selection of actions and inventory along the bottom of the screen.This looks a bit dated compared to recent titles which uses the entire screen to display the graphics. Speaking of which, the graphics in Amazon Queen isn’t too bad and there are plenty of varied locations to explore. The game starts out with Joe trapped in a hotel room with some goons guarding the exit and right off the bat you’ll notice this game is very tongue in the cheek. What other game allows you to strap on some “fake boobs” and dress up like a woman to sneak out unnoticed. While there’s plenty of scantily clad Amazon babes the game never quite sinks as low as Rex Nebular or Leisure Suite Larry, although the humor is a bit risqué at times.
The makers of the game all seem to have comic book backgrounds so it’s no surprise that the game feels like one. There are loads of characters to talk to and most of them have something funny to say. One of the great things about this game is the fact that you cannot die, nor do something wrong, which allows you to explore and try out everything without fear of wasting something or getting stuck in a dead end.
None of the puzzles are overly obscure either and while there are none that really stand out as impressive I was stumped a few times. The game definitely features some of the strangest things you’ll ever see in a game inventory. Towards the end the game becomes very Indiana Jones-ish with Joe exploring an ancient trap filled temple. This reminded me strongly of Indies’ adventures in Atlantis. Other locations like the valley of the dinosaurs show a bit more imagination.
While there is a CD-ROM version out that has full speech I only had speech during the intro and judging by the quality of the voices I don’t think I missed out on much. The music is very low-key and most of the time you won’t even notice it’s there at all. Apart from a few nice sound effects the game seems to be pretty quiet. The interface can feel really cumbersome, but at least the default actions for each object can be triggered with your right mouse button. Items also show their names if you move your cursor over them, but the whole thing still feels very dated compared to more recent games.
If you enjoy a good laugh and have fond memories of the older Lucasarts games, then Flight Of The Amazon Queen will definitely bring a smile to your face. If it was released a few years earlier it might have fared better, but even though it has been surpassed it’s still a quality title that any fan of the genre should enjoy.
*Review originally published 1998.
- OS: Ms-Dos 5.0 or Higher
- Processor: 386 33Mhz
- Memory: 4 MB RAM
- Graphics: 256 Color VGA
- DirectX: N/A
- Hard Drive: 87 MB available space
- Sound Card: SoundBlaster, AdLib and Roland LAPC1