I have never been much of a science fiction fan, but COUNTDOWN TO DOOM was always one of my favourite Acornsoft adventures. Now released in a totally rewritten form by its author Peter Killworth, this game is definitely worth a second look.

It is presented in a stylish black folder with an excellent hint sheet and superb pamphlet on playing adventure games.

The adventure has been greatly enlarged with extra locations and excruciating puzzles, a new parser and layered atmosphere at each location.

You play the role of a pilot of an interplanetary spaceship which has crashed on the planet Doomawangara, a world at its best inhospitable and at its worst your graveyard.

It has a weird climate that varies from desert to jungle, glacier to swamp, and is the home of many crashed treasure ships.

Your task is to find spares to repair your ship so you can escape from this galactic hell hole. The problems are manifold and even if you have solved the original Acornsoft version of this game, that is no guarantee you will be successful this time.

The discs still need to be collected and inserted in the order in which you found them, and the blob is still present, but is encountered much later in the game.

The goggles are essential protection and the rat must not be harmed. Other than that, everything else in the adventure has changed almost beyond recognition.

The beginning is complex, the main part of the adventure riddled with new problems and the end-game is quite novel.

The quest basically involves collecting an assortment of items and then deciding upon their correct use.

Even experienced adventurers will find themselves resorting to the hint sheet on more than one occasion and planning a new strategy or approach.

Peter Killworth has gone to great extremes to make the whole experience more polished and enjoyable. The constant disc-access slows down manoeuvres, but is worthwhile payment for a bigger and better game.

I wholeheartedly recommend this adventure, whether or not you have played the Acornsoft original. New versions of ACHETON and KINGDOM OF HAMIL are promised and I await them with anticipation.