by Hans ten Cate
Sunday, 22 September 1996

In Daily Llama No. 3 [now llama017.html], we gave you a first glimpse into what was potentially one of the coolest CD-ROM products to ever hit the market: a computer game based on "Monty Python and the Holy Grail."

Well, now that the product is out and surely available at your local software stores, we feel it necessary to revise our initial impressions... it's even cooler than we thought! The game takes the funniest tidbits and scenes from the film (and generous portions at that!) and makes them even funnier... because now they're interactive!

Conceptually, the feel of the game is not unlike that of 7th Level's other Monty Python project, "Monty Python's Complete Waste of Time." Clues are revealed through a combination of exploration, clicking on hidden hot-spots, and by playing a series of Pythonesque arcade games. Games include things like:

  • Drop Dead (where you must stack dead peasants, Tetris-style. Pretty sick stuff! Watch out for those peasants who aren't quite dead yet!)
  • Spank the Virgin (how many virgins can you spank without getting carried away? A naughty Gopher game played in the beds of Castle Anthrax.)
  • Burn the Witch (A Simple Simon type game. Not only do you get to burn the witch, you get to burn... MORE witches!)
  • Knights in Kombat (the best use of the $300 you spent learning how to play "Mortal Kombat" at the video arcade. Don't be surprised if you lose an arm or two in the process.)
  • Catch the Cow (practice the ancient medieval art of "Running Away"...)

You control King Arthur, his trusty servant Patsy, and the Knights of the Round Table and guide them through the various and famous locales of Arthurian England. In each scene, you must search for clues or solve puzzles that will eventually lead you to the holy grail (what else!). Mind you, there's more than one grail-shaped beacon to thwart and mislead your band. There's the Holly Grail, the Goldy Hail, the Rolly Polly, etc., etc.

Upon completing your quest, the game will reveal the Never-Before-Performed King-Brian-the-Wild Scene. Owners of the "Monty Python and the Holy Grail (Bok)" may have noticed this rather lengthy scene halfway through the script. This sequence features the Knights of the Round Table, a sadistic king, and his penchant for close-harmony groups but the scene was never filmed. Together with 7th Level, the Python members dug up the script and created this animated sequence exclusively for the game. Now you can see entirely new Holy Grail footage, filmed more than 20 years after the film's original debut!

More than just being a hilarious game, the graphics are stunning - colorful, and highly detailed. A large number of movie clips are cleverly integrated into the game's backdrops. The sounds and music are, of course, first rate. The end-credits even feature a complete version of deWolfe's now very well-known Holy Grail theme, a rare treat for Python fans.

The Daily Llama is particularly excited about this CD-ROM because the Daily Llama's editor, Hans ten Cate, is mentioned in the credits at the end of the game. Talk about a complete suck-up! Hans managed to get himself on the Virtual Focus Group that helped pick some additional design ideas for the game.

PC-owners who hurry can still get the Special Signature Edition of the game. This version features images of the six Python signatures on the box, instruction manual, and even on the CD-ROM disc itself. So rush out, buy the game, and prepare to waste more time on your PC. Macintosh owners, don't despair! A Mac-version will be available this September! The game can be purchased at your local-area software stores or via PythOnline's very own shopping arcade. You can also order by calling 7th Level directly at 1-800-884-8863 (extension 77) [note: 7th Level is no longer in business - 16 April 2002].

For more information, be sure and visit 7th Level's Official Holy Grail Game website.