Showing posts with label games. Show all posts
Showing posts with label games. Show all posts

Monday, December 23, 2019

Gaming Memories - December 1989

Looking back at what I was reading and playing exactly 30 years ago this month, December 1989 was a good year for racing games on the Commodore 64. My Amiga owning friends might have had the eagerly awaited home version of Hard Drivin', but I had the Commodore 64 versions of Turbo Outrun and Stunt Car Racer, both of which scored higher than their Amiga counterparts between both Zzap and Commodore User reviews.

It was however around this time when I decided to ditch Commodore User in favour of the more C64 friendly Zzap 64/Amiga as my primary source of C64 news and goodness since Commodore User was aiming more for the Amiga market. Shame on them, as the C64 still had plenty of life left in it to last a few more years.




Saturday, June 22, 2019

Game Covers - Agent X II The Mad Prof's Back (Commodore 64)

The second encounter between super sleuth Agent X and his old adversary the Mad Professor.  There's no peace.  Even though you foiled the Mad Prof's attempts to kidnap the President, you failed to defeat him totally, and he is back with a vengeance.  No more small fry for him, this time it's total world domination, and beyond!  Only you can foil the Mad Professor!

A thrilling fight against his minions followed by a climactic confrontation for the future fate of freedom.  Long awaited sequel to the classic Agent X

A fun three stage game, featuring an amazing soundtrack, especially on level 1 by Tim Follin

 Main Cover

Inlay (Featuring handwritten codes for the levels!)

The Tape!


3D View (hold and move to rotate)

Monday, April 01, 2019

Game Covers - Action Biker (Commodore 64)


Click to enlarge

Click to enlarge

Click to enlarge


Our handwritten guide, written way back in the 80s! (Part 1)

Our handwritten guide, written way back in the 80s! (Part 2)


3D View (hold and move to rotate)

Saturday, August 18, 2018

Gaming Memories - "Dark Side" for the Commodore 64

I've been having a look through a 30 year old Zzap 64 magazine from August 1988 and saw this review for the fantastic Dark Side on the Commodore 64. 
 
This game was my first introduction to the amazing Freescape 3D system by Incentive Software, and along with Mercenary by Novagen, was probably what got me so interested in modern day 3D/VR FPS games and defined what I would play some 10 years later. 
 
Of course Dark Side was a sequel to Driller, and preceded Total Eclipse, Total Eclipse II Sphinx Jinx, Castle Master, Castle Master II The Crypt and the amazing 3D Construction Kit - all of which I spent many hours of my childhood and young adult years playing.
 
 
 
 

Sunday, February 21, 2016

Retro Game Boys Episode 7 - Trashman (Commodore 64)

Are you getting tired of flight, train, lorry, farming, and goat simulators?  How about a Rubbish Man Simulator?  Stuart and Kieran play "Trashman" on the Commodore 64 and try hard not to burst out in to song and sing "My old man's a dustman"...

Enjoy :D


Sunday, October 18, 2015

Retro Game Boys Episode 1 - Action Biker (Commodore 64)

Well, it's been a long time coming but episode 1 of Retro Game Boys is now online.

The idea of our new YouTube channel is for me to introduce Kieran to some of the games I was playing when I was his age and growing up, and to see what his opinion are of them in a world of XBoxes and PlayStations.

"Join the Retro Game Boys as they review and play games from yesterday.  In episode 1, Stuart introduces his son Kieran to the wonders of Action Biker - A classic Mastertronic game on the Commodore 64 from 1985.  Grab yourselves a pack of KP Skips and enjoy!"


 
To be notified of future episodes, please subscribe to us on Youtube, follow us on Twitter and like us on Facebook!
  
TWITTER : https://twitter.com/RetroGameBoys
YOUTUBE : https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCyrzqpPlew1UqDlUyCQN0qg (we'll get a custom address when we have enough views)
 
We also have a web site at www.retrogameboys.co.uk

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Sitting on my bum... Because I have to.

Here's an interesting article in the news today...

"There has been "an alarming increase" in the number of working-age people suffering strokes, with unhealthy lifestyles being seen as the main cause." They mention television and computer games (as they always do).

These news reports annoy me.  They're very quick at criticising those who sit on their bums all day, watching TV or playing computer games.

The problem isn't watching TV or playing computer games.  I love playing computer games...  I always have and always will, and that will never change.  I'm a computer nerd, however I spend 8 hours of the day sat in front of a computer not playing computer games because it's my job.  YES, THAT'S RIGHT, the majority of my day is spent in front of a computer because I have too - I make a living from it.  Is that any different to sitting at home playing games?  Why not mention that when writing these articles since so many of us have to sit at work?

So if the chances of me suffering a stroke are increased because of that, maybe I should get danger pay?  After all, what they are saying is that my job is dangerous to my health.

Also, if they're going to whinge at those watching TV as well, why not have a go at those who sit on their bums and read books....  play board games....  draw/paint...  etc.?

Sitting on our bums doing things is a part of life!  How easy it is to single out TV and computers for the health problems of today.

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Games that remind me of my childhood Number 28 : Ghost Town (Commodore Plus 4)

There are a few games that we had on our Commodore Plus 4 computer back in the 1980's that will always stand out, and in that memorable list, it features all games created by legendary C16 and Plus 4 programmer Udo Gertz.

Ghost Town is one of them and is a wonderfully simple adventure game released in 1986 by Kingsoft and published by Anirog in the UK.

Looking back at the game now, it's quite a simple affair with only a small handful of rooms to explore, but I remember spending hours playing this game and trying to complete it - something I never managed to do until only recently.  It's crazy that I can now finish it in under 10 minutes, but that is one of the reasons why I love playing old computer games - for their simplicity, and the ability to complete them in such a short space of time - ideal for killing a few minutes to spare.

The story goes that some wizard called Belegro has cast a spell on a once prosperous town, turning it in to.....  Yep, you've guessed it - a Ghost Town.  Having arrived in town, you must explore the 19 rooms featuring as stated on the game box "High Resolution Graphics" (yeah, 156x192 was hi-res back then!), utilising various objects which can be found scattered about to complete the game.  Once you've solved the simple puzzles and kill Belegro, you can free the town from the spell once and for all, and collect the treasure awaiting you.

The title screen.

Your mission, should you choose to accept it.

There's a glove in the tree, but how can I reach it?

Oooh, a hidden key.  Does touch the bush, but I need the cutters.

Ahh, the ladder will be useful to reach the glove in the tree, but I need a key.  Find a key in the potion AFTER you've killed Belegro

Simple enough....

Which door should I enter?  Perhaps the "?" on the previous screen might help?

Another simple room, but some breathing apparatus is hidden somewhere here.  Just need a spade.

Erm, which door should I use?

Avoid the Sacred Column at all costs, but look for something useful so you don't get electrocuted later on.

That spade will be useful, but how can I breathe under water?  And I need to smash the jar to get the boots.

Boris the spider makes a guest appearance from Tom Thumb.  Don't touch him

Don't touch the laser beam.  Also, be careful not to get electrocuted

The little axe will be useful for smashing something.

A lightbulb can be found here.  It's needed to illuminate a room.

Ouch...  I think I need some boots to stand on the nails

These traps can only be seen with some additional light.

Easy enough to avoid

Don't be tricked...  Just head for the top item.  The secret code is 06138

Kill Belegro and avoid the rock

Get the treasure (but you'll need the key from an earlier screen)

This is how you're rewarded for all that hard work, and wasting 10 minutes of your life on this game!

Commodore User didn't rate this game much in its May 1986 (Issue 32) magazine, and only gave it a measly 2 stars out of 5 overall, but I don't care.... I love this game.  It's simple, has memorable graphics and sound, and will always remind me of fun days when I was younger trying to complete this.  Hey, I was only 8 years old at the time!

Commodore User's Review - Issue 32 (May 1986) - Click to enlarge
 
The box art - Click to enlarge

The tape - Click to enlarge


AND finally, for those of you still interested, here's me playing (and completing) Ghost Town on the Commodore Plus 4...


Saturday, November 29, 2014

Castle Master - A Walkthrough

I love castles...  Wandering through ruins and taking in the history.  Well, today I've been revisiting one of my favourite castles from my childhood.  It was a place I loved to visit after a long day at school...  No tourists....   No entry fee....  And no pushy English Heritage representative trying to get you to sign up for a subscription.  Just spirits to destroy, and a twin sister to rescue.  Welcome to Castle Eternity, a virtual castle stored within 64kb of RAM as seen in the classic Commodore 64 computer game, Castle Master.

Now, I'm not going to talk about this game here - I've already done that in a previous post which you can view if you click here.  Instead, sit back and enjoy me playing through this wonderful game. 



 
 
Since it's the first time in awhile since I last played Castle Master, it took me a respectable 1 hour and 10 minutes to complete.  However, due to the slowness of Freescape on the Commodore 64 I have sped it up to a much faster frame rate.  Also, I completely forgot where the key to the Spirits Abode room was, hence why it took me a little longer than planned.  I remembered in the end though!
 
Still a great game.  I think I'm going to replay Castle Master 2 - The Crypt next.

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Games that remind me of my childhood Number 27 : Mission Mars (Commodore Plus 4)

One of the (many) good things about spending a few days back home in Laindon is the opportunity to rummage through the family game collection and to reminisce on old Commodore Plus 4 classics.

So for this visit, I bring you Mission Mars, from 1985

Mission Mars...  The type of game where the box art makes the game look reasonably good (complete with a tagline saying that the game is 100% machine code!), but upon getting home and loading the game, you realise that you've just blown a good sum of money on a rather naff game.

That said, I do have fond memories playing this game which is why I have included it here.  The game is very simple and has you control a small space ship through vertical tunnels, avoiding various obstacles that get in the way.

That's it! 

Ok, the game description is as follows.

You have been sent on a mission to raid the caverns on Mars.  However, these caverns are known to be filled with booby traps.  Your task is to reach the centre of the caverns and land your ship.  Each cavern has 5 stages to survice and you will need a lot of skill to do so.
 
Hmmmm.  Basically the game has 5 stages which repeat over and over again once you reach the end of stage 5.
Stage 1 - Fly down the cavern, shooting enemy installations.
 
Stage 2 - Fly down the cavern, shooting randomly generated spaceships

Stage 3 - Fly down the cavern, avoiding randomly generated bouncing balls!
 
Stage 4 - Fly down the cavern, avoiding what I assume are comets.
 
Stage 5 - Fly down the very narrow cavern, avoiding the walls.
 
Sounds exciting eh?
 
Once you reach the end of Stage 5, you don't even need any skill to land the ship - just let it hit the wall at the end and then you're greeted with the following message...
 
!! MISSION COMPLETE !!
WELL DONE YOU HAVE
RAIDED THIS CAVERN
 
Once you press the fire button, you get to do it all over again!  No change in the game difficulty, no change in stage order.  You can literally finish this game in 5 minutes.
 

End of the game?


Oh yeah....  That was worth it!
 
Now, for the reason why I have included the game here....  I remember playing this game once on a little black and white portable television in the corner of our living room at my parents house, amassing a huge score just from playing the game from start to end, and restarting again with each completion on stage 5.  I wish I took a note of my final score
 

The box cover

The tape