Professional, Originally Released On Cassette Only
Game Type : Strategical Overhead Maze Game; Great Graphics
Standalone Release(s) : 1985: XOR, Logotron, £9.95
Compilation Release(s) : None
Stated compatibility : Electron
Actual compatibility : Electron only
Supplier : LOGOTRON, Dales Brewery, Gwydir Street, CAMBRIDGE CB1 2LJ
Disc compatibility : Unknown
There are no random events in XOR's labyrinthine palace, and there is no premium on hand-eye co-ordination. You have all the time in the world to wrok out the precise nature of the hazards you encounter. Logical thinking, strategy and tactical problem solving are all part of XOR experience. And XOR is not simply about finding solutions. If you can solve the entire puzzle (15 levels plus an encrypted anagram), you qualify to be a member of the Order of XOR. With a certificate and a badge to prove it.
"...this is one of the most compulsive, cunning and attractive programs I've seen for some time! ... the game is superb - a very classy original twist on the basic maze theme."
- A & B COMPUTING
* 15 graded mindbending mazes; each maze approximately 16 screens
* super smooth high speed scrolling
* high resolution quality graphics
* high speed or step by step replay feature
* intriguing logical problems
* interactive dynamic puzzles
Magus, Questor, Forcefield, Fish, Fat dolls, Chicken, Transporter, H'Bomb, V'Bomb, Door, Map, Mask, Switch
The introductory screen will load, then press space bar to continue onto the menu screen.
P - Piano (softer) F - Forte (louder)
L - Level (cycles through levels)
The music is optional. You can reduce the volume or turn it off by pressing P, or increse the volume by pressing F. The levels of play run from 0-15 although 11, 13 and 15 are not accessible until you have discovered how to reveal them! Once you have selected a maze, press the SPACE BAR to start to the maze.
Become A Member Of The Order Of XOR
If you solve all fifteen levels you qualify to become a Member of the Order of XOR, with a Certificate and Badge to prove it. We plan further competitions with major prizes for Members of the Order of XOR. A and B Computing will be running a regular XOR Club spot with hints and tips for desperate puzzlers.
XOR Maze Generator
The XOR Maze Generator is a truly professional utility, in fact it's the very generator we used to create the first collection of XOR puzzles found in this package. The package is fully menu driven and simple to use, the user simply places any of the selection of predefined icons onto the maze screen. Walls can be created simply by selecting the wall icon and driving it around the maze as required. Included in the package is an ICON DESIGNER so that you can change the appearance of the game characters to baffle and delight your friends. All purchasers of the maze generator are invited to submit mazes for inclusion in XOR II.
Z - Left, X - Right, : - Up, / - Down, E - End Game
Y/N - Action Replay/Restart, P - Stepper (Replay), H - Hold (Replay)
There are two heroes on the screen represented by two shields (MAGUS and QUESTOR). These shields can be moved around the maze, picking up masks - by moving over them - and endeavouring to solve the puzzles with precise combinations of moves, sometimes involving both heroes.
The Objective of the Game
Complete all 15 levels! As you go through the door of each level you will be given a letter, note down the 15 letters. These letters will make up an encrypted clue to XOR's true nature. By the way you cannot pass through the door until you have collected all of the masks at each level.
Note that you cannot enter maze 11, 13 and 15 until you have completed levels 10, 12 and 14 respectively.
In your exploration of the mazes, you will encounter: falling fish, two kinds of forcefield, spring loaded chickens, fizzer bombs and pressure bombs, BMUS (Beam Me Up Scottie), dolls, doors, maps and masks which aren't quite what they seem.
We won't tell you any more - becuase half the game consists of discovering the properties of these different features. Needless to say, you often need both your shields. The games are graded, and the bottom levels are suicidal!
There are three windows on the right of the game screen.
The top window is the MAP window. In each level you will find four Map Quartiles. As you collect them you will discover the layout of the maze, where the MASKS are laced and the position of the DOOR. However, the map does not show up any obstacles or force fields, so beware!
The middle window is the MOVE and HERO window. There are two heraldic shields, MAGUS and QUESTOR. Each shield is placed in a different part of the maze. To switch from one shield to another, use the <RETURN> key. The shield in use at any one time is denoted by the shield displayed in this window.
The number next to the shield is the number of moves you have made - you have a maximum of 2000 moves on any level.
The bottom window is the MASK window. The figure on the right tells you how many MASKS you have to collect on that particular level, the number on the right tells you how many you have already collected.
Instructions' Source : XOR (Logotron) Inner Inlay
Review (Electron User) - "A Range With Mysteries"
XOR is a maze game that is played over fifteen levels with the option of beginning on any - though I suggest you cut your teeth on the first. Each maze has a name which often has a connection with its contents or construction. The aim is to collect all the masks held within the maze. The number of masks varies from maze to maze, but the total present and the total collected are always displayed on the screen.
Also shown is the number of steps you have taken while exploring the maze - you are allowed up to 1,999. This system is used instead of a time limit.
The maze walls are constructed of brick and cannot be walked through, and some of the passageways are filled with two other types of material, known as Dots and Waves. Dots can only be passed through when travelling in the horizontal plane and Waves in the vertical: In this way parts of the maze can be cordoned off until approached from the correct direction.
The maze also contains four special characters - as each of these is found a quarter of the maze map is drawn to the right of the screen. This shows the position of all masks, but not the dots, waves or yourself.
The first maze should pose few problems - the fun really begins on level two. The dots and waves are still there, but they have been joined by fish and chickens. The fish act in a similar way to the boulders in Repton, falling when unsupported. The chickens are a different kettle of fish - they "fall" horizontally from right to left.
A blow on the head from either of these characters is fatal, so a path through a pile of both types must be planned carefully. Maze number four, entitled Explosive Mixture, sees the appearance of bombs and nitro glycerine. The starting point for this level is inside a completely sealed cell - you soon learn that dropping fish or chickens onto bombs causes them to explode, blowing a hole in the nearest wall.
A few words of warning at this point: Don't stand too close to a bomb when detonating it, and always try to clear away any masks that may be near the bomb. You have to collect every mask to proceed to the next maze, which is pretty difficult when you've atomised half of them.
The Dolls House, maze six, introduces the dolls - harmless characters which continue to move in the direction in which you push them.
Unfortunately they don't detonate bombs, but I found them to be most useful when I wanted to manoeuvre a fish directly above a bomb before dropping it. This is done by lining them up to create a makeshift bridge across which the fish is pushed.
Some of the maze's nastier characters are the frowning masks, which render the maze walls invisible when collected, though all other characters are still displayed. The situation remains this way until you collect another frowning mask.
Very soon you begin to think twice about moving any character at all. The game's designers have quite ruthless and some of the most harmless looking moves have dire consequences. There have been dozens of occasions when I have just sat there, staring at the screen, trying to convince myself that there has to be a logical explanation for every puzzle.
Thoughtfully, Logotron has provided an abort key, especially for those occasions when you muck it up. One very clever feature of the game is the Replay mode which comes into operation when you've lost your second - and final - life, and retraces at high speed every move that you made on the current maze. It can be used to determine at which point you made a wrong move.
What at first appeared to be a very ordinary game is an absolute gem. The number and complexity of the puzzles is overwhelming. Every Electron owner who wants more than zap and blast should buy this game.
Sound ........................... 7
Graphics ........................ 8
Playability .................... 10
Value for money ................. 9
Overall ......................... 9
Anon, ELECTRON USER 4. 8