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You might be mistaken for thinking that the "treasure hunt in a mansion full of secrets" theme had been played out -- if not in text adventures, then surely in interactive CD-ROMs. And yet here is a text adventure that puts us squarely in that familiar setting, but one which siphons out the worn cliches and tired pretension and shores up the fragile framework with a vigorous injection of healthy, red-blooded absurd fun. One magical Christmas you visit your grandfather's estate at Attervist Manor, only to discover him mysteriously caught in an unwakeable slumber, suspiciously bearing a letter from the solicitors of the sinister dentist who lives next door regarding his purchase of Grandad's estate. You will travel the length and breadth of this estate in search of a cure to your grandfather's condition and buried treasure to ensure the estate's financial independence. But that's not what this game is about: it's about the particle accelerator in the bedroom and the Viking longboat stuck in the pond ice; it's about the clockwork shark (Grandad's contribution to the war effort) baking goodies in the kitchen; it's about needing the gloves so you can pick up the hedgehog. No, these don't make sense -- but as games are about fun we can overlook that and hide it beneath the Groucho Marx-glasses of "whimsy."

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