Version tested: Retro
Creatures was a particularly obscure dichotomy in the life of the Commodore 64. At once a cutesy platformer rife with salacious humour and quirky, puzzle-based gameplay while also something of a blood-soaked gore and snuff fest.
Featuring the kind of adorable, fluffy, apple-cheeked comic urchin that all good computer game mascots seem to be, Clyde Radcliffe was the closest thing the C64 ever saw in terms of a sales symbol. Despite a realm filled with demons and a main character who breaths fire on his foes, this was a game set in the sugar-coated, cherry topped, rainbow and candy land of sweetness that would make Yoshi feel right at home - that is, until Clyde's kinfolk are placed in precarious positions of impending torture during the between level bonus bouts.
It falls to Clyde to rescue his brothers from grisly murder or stand impotently by and watch the blood-fest ensue - and players got a front row seat in the Technicolor gore-nography show! The bizarre combination of wanpaku characterisation and severely mature face-of-death carnival suggest a wonderful depth of severely black humour from the Rowlands brothers who developed the game.
Poking such cruel and spicy fun at a videogame industry that was beginning to taste so sickly sweet it was giving gamers diabetes was remarkably prophetic, and heralded in an entire generation of digitised kid's toy adverts with a defiantly two-fingered salute.
Despite such evidently sardonic contempt for the sickening desalinisation of their beloved industry, the Rowlands brothers still managed to work a damn fine platformer into their protest game which placed a permanent smile of wry rebellion on the faces of gamers old enough to appreciate the joke, yet young enough to enjoy a good run 'n' gun romp.
7 / 10