Skull & Crossbones

• Publisher: Silvertime
• Developer:
Walking Circles
Release Date: 1986
Carleton Handley
GFX: David Fish
Music: Matt Furniss

ZZAP64 Game Rating: 81%
Our Game Rating: 85%





• Completed & Reviewed by Neil Collins

Skull and Crossbones is a conversion of an arcade game. I played this a few years ago on MAME as I had seen it in the arcade as a kid, but never played it. The arcade game is pretty bad in my opinion, and the C64 version isn't any better...

As the title suggests, the game features pirates. You control one of the swashbuckling vagabonds through various levels in search of a wizard, who has stolen your treasure (Surely you stole it first? Good on him I say). It's like Double Dragon with swords. The game is a tad untidy, plays a little quirky, and suffers from very repetitive action - just like many of the games in this genre.

"Die Scum!"


The End.

HOW WAS IT COMPLETED?: Using an infinite lives cheat.

SO WHAT HAPPENS?: You get to fight the wizard at the end of the game, which is quite tricky as the blighter keeps teleporting all over the place. After a few well placed swipes of the sword, the evil old thief is killed. You then get to see all of your treasure piled up against the side of the cave. A message then appears reading 'WELL DONE: YOU HAVE DEFEATED THE EVIL WIZARD AND WON BACK ALL YOUR TREASURE.' Above it you see the Skull and Crossbones logo. The game then ends.


  • Carleton Handley (the coder of this game!): We did a lot of work for Domark at this time, four of my five published games were for them. We used to get the arcade cabinets in the office and this was a disappointing one. I'm not sure I ever saw it in a real arcade. The ending will be based on the arcade version without much leeway for us to do anything else. There is a rather tired text message, notable only for using 'you have' presumably because our font - or character set as they were back then - didn't have an apostrophe.
  • Neil: A poor ending. I'd guess the arcade version is quite similar. 2/10.
  • Vinny: I remember playing this game back in the day and actually enjoying it. I think I still own it on budget release somewhere :)

    Though the ending does appear to be small, it's nice that you get to see a pile of treasure right at the end, as well as the ending message and Skull & Crossbones logo. 4/10 from me.
  • Gaz Spence: It's always nice to get an insight from the coder and I suppose we can't be too harsh given the ending just replicates that of the original arcade game.
  • Andrew Fisher: I actually prefer the C64 version to the arcade, as the controls are a bit easier to get to grips with. A pretty solid conversion by Carleton.

    As usual, because it echoes the arcade ending it does come across as disappointing that there is not more to it.
  • Brendan Phoenix: Similar ending to the arcade, so props for that.

    Have to admit, not mad on a lot of the Tengen arcade games - originals or the conversions. Even the arcade version of this plays like a dog.
  • Andy Vaisey: A disappointing text type ending, that usually I would slate. However, on this occasion, with an appearance by and input from the coder himself explaining the reason for 'you have' instead of 'you've', this adds another dimension. What a fantastic story!

FINAL SAY: It could have been so much better if the arcade game was any good!

G.E. RATING: 3 / 10

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Copyright İVinny Mainolfi