Lizard Breath, a small desert town in 1951. A meteor has just crashed down here. This is your chance to do some research! So you head over there and start working.
Suddenly, unusual things happen in and around the village. Animals are behaving strangely. On a nearby farm, a cow's head is bitten off and all the guts have disappeared. You examine some rock samples found near the crash site and discover one glowing piece of rock you've never seen before! Are there any links?
Of course there are! Would be a pretty boring game if there was nothing to discover, eh? The strange meteor has caused a tribe of ants to mutate! They're now as huge as whole buildings! And they begin to attack everything they can reach.
But because only very few people have actually seen them and survived it, nobody really wants to believe it. Your job is now to stop the ant invasion. You have to collect samples of their corpses to analyse them. Later you may be able to find out about their weaknesses then. And it's also your job to convince the army that they have to do something. But without much evidence the local commander doesn't even want to talk to you!
It Came From The Desert is constructed like a horror movie from the 50s. The plot, the characters and the setting seem to be taken from the script of such a film! This game proves that Cinemaware deserves its name!
The gameplay cannot possibly be described accurately. A bit of everything is in it: adventure (talking to people), action (shooting ants, flying), strategy (dividing your time) and even more! Basically, you decide where to go on a map and there you have some choices what to do. And all this takes place in real time. Each movement makes the clock move on a bit further and if you're too slow, the ants will simply eat you up before you've had the chance to stop them!
Completing the game successfully requires a lot of patience, some trial-and-error and much notetaking. But it's worth it!
This game could have been the birth of a whole genre! But unfortunately, Cinemaware disappeared a bit later (but it's back now!) and other companies didn't adopt this concept. Maybe they were too afraid of failure...
Deciding what to do with "Antheads - It Came from the Desert 2" was a tough decision. In spite of its name, it is not a standalone game, it even says "Data Disk" on the box. The game is in fact almost the same: Five years after the incidents of the first game, the inhabitants of Lizard Breath are suddenly mutating into giant ants themselves! It's up to you to save them - in exactly the same gameplay style. That is why I counted it as a data disk.
To play Antheads, you first have to 'install' it (can be done onto floppy disks or disk images respectively). The provided download contains images of the original disks which aren't in a playable state. You need additional data from disk 2 and 3 of the original game. Boot from the first disk of Antheads to start the installation.