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Complete Guide to Spectrum Games – Part 11

I�ve been resisting the temptation to check just how many more games I�ve got to get through until now. In fact, I was starting to feel quite pleased with how far through the As I�d got. Then I realised that I while I�ve got fifty-six more As to get through on my computer, there are actually another six hundred and sixty two more As to get through on WoS. And in thirteen days I�ll have been at it for nearly a year. So, if I want to finish the first letter in the first year, then that�s six hundred and sixty two divided by thirteen� carry the nine� um� 50.9 games a day.

Alright then.

Alcatraz Harry � Mastertronic, 1984

So, according to the dozen or so pages of instructions (that appear, shockingly, without any delays or elaborate sound effects) I�m supposed to escape from a prison, stealing some files along the way.

I'll get my coat. Please?

So I jump down the first grill I see, and it turns out to be the wrong thing to do entirely.

It's no good. You act like him, but you don't look a bit like the real Judge Dredd.

And after a short trial, Harry gets his head blown clean off. Anyway, this is actually quite a good game. An interesting predecessor to The Great Escape, and I some fun figuring out the map�s layout and trying to remember where the secret files were supposed to be.

Alcatraz Harry 2 � Scorpio Gamesworld, 1984

So, this is more of the same, but with better graphics and some basketball players to trade items with. That�s not the only addition � you can now search the buildings to gain extra items.

The graphical improvements are nice � Harry doesn�t look like Hammerman any more � but sadly the attempted improvement at sound consists of well, a beep. Not just one beep mind � it�s one beep played over and over at high speed, as though that would improve the utter crapness of it. And what�s more, it does it every time you look at the (absolutely vital) status screen to find out where you are and what you�re carrying. Sigh. Still, if you can forgive that, it�s still a bit of fun. (Quite worrying actually, considering the way this feature normally goes. Hm.)

Ale Hop � MicroHobby, 1985

Jump over wall. Wall gets higher.

Jump over wall. Wall gets higher. Jump over wall. Wall gets higher. Jump over wall. Wall gets� wait, what�s this?

Jump over wall. Wall turns into an interesting platform adventure. In 1985. Lawks!

There�s an actual game in here? Crikey� It�s even quite a modern-feeling game, despite it�s clearly BASIC origins. There don�t seem to be any lives or anything � if you fail too many times to complete the level, it simply gives you a different level to play. In 1985 this was an unheard-of idea � it�s the sort of player-friendly approach that�s only beginning to gain any ground more than twenty years later. I�m not sure what�s more shocking in fact � that this is such an entertaining little game or that I�ve had three decent games in a row�

Alfa 1 � Hicrodinamite

This game is crap, but in an endearing sort of a way.

After several attempts I gave up trying to get a coherent screenshot because the graphics are so flickery. About the nicest thing I can say about this game is that it�s inoffensively bad. Next.

Alger � MicroHobby, 1986

Hearing this on loading told me everything I needed to know about this game. Next.

Ali Baba � Suzy Soft, 1985

What the amoebatrons did next.

Ooh. This is different. It’s got colours, and it’s fast… It’s just a shame it’s a little bit Pacman, but you can’t have everything. The bad guys are trying to move all the money from the bottom of the screen to the top, and you have to stop them. You also have to stop them while listening to this.

Good luck.

Ali-Bebe � Future Stars, 1985

Another game that refuses to load. Still, probably a luck escape, eh?

Well, not quite 50.9, but it’s a start, eh? I’m going to get a pizza and then we’ll see what’s next…