Infocom released Lane Mastodon, the world's first "interactive comic book" in 1988 with little fanfare and even less of a reaction from the gaming public. Apart from being the first electronic comic book, Lane Mastodon, as all subsequent Infocomics, allows the viewer to change perspectives between characters, thus providing excellent replay value. |
Three more stories followed before Infocom decided to halt the unsuccessful venture. The lackluster response was perhaps due to the fact that the comics – with the exception of ZorkQuest, are based on original premises created by Infocom designers. Furthermore, the then-primitive graphics technology was not conducive to engaging animations. But then again, the dismal sales of Marvel Comics CD-ROM comics today may suggest that comics are best suited for a printed medium after all.
Written by Steve Meretzsky, the first Infocomics story is like watching a decent B-movie, complete with stereotypical aliens, a bumbling superhero, and tongue-in-cheek humor in the style of Meretzsky's earlier Leather Goddesses of Phobos. Fun for a good laugh or two, but the illogical plot and sophomoric humor may turn some off.
Reviewed by: Underdogs