90: Solomon’s Key

Genre: Puzzle

Developer: Tecmo
Publisher: Tecmo
Year: 1987

Basic Idea:  Build blocks.  Get keys!

Review: A game similar in spirit to Lode Runner, you must collect keys (instead of gold) on each level to get through the exit.  And instead of digging holes, you can build and tear down blocks to misdirect enemies or create your own staircases to get to hard to reach places.  The level designs can be tricky (perhaps too early even, before the player has a good grasp on things) but are generally satisfying to complete.  The controls could be a little tighter, and I always hate time limits, but these are mild frustrations.  Solid, but not great, puzzler.


4 thoughts on “90: Solomon’s Key

  1. Yeah, time limits in games are asinine. They’re one of those things that carried over from the arcade where time limits are essential for the game to make money, and they didn’t think about the fact that they aren’t necessary for home consoles.

    Similarly, Final Fantasy XII had MMO elements like a certain chest only being there 10% of the time, and if it was there, only having a 1% chance of containing the best weapon. I tried for a while, all the while cursing the game for putting in that gimmick. They already had my money – what’s the point?!

    Although I know of this game, I never played it. I’m not sure how that happened – it was pretty popular.

    • I’ve played several RPGs that have ridiculous luck percentages like that as well, but thankfully, it’s always been for some crazy awesome equipment not needed to complete the game. There are people who will play obsessively for completions sake. I did when I was a teen, but no time anymore.

      And yeah, the NES had a lot of issues about carrying over arcade stuff. When was the last time any game had a time limit unless it was local?

  2. I played Fire and Ice (which is hopefully ranked much higher) and Adv. of Lolo (ditto) before I ever played this . Only played 1 or two levels of Solomon’s before saying, “screw this”.

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