The rare coleco version is quite good, a shame it didn't have a higher profile.
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Messages - Spector
One of Laird's posts in the Chase HQ thread linked to an interesting rip-off called Miami Cobra GT from 1991. It made me realise how little I know about the Spectrum in the 90s because by then I was following the consoles, so I'd like to hear your suggestions of games I should try for the Spectrum from 1991-1993.
What else from that time is worth playing?
One thing i thought odd about the machine was the sprite movement in some games; I think Robocop II (or III?) is a good example. It just looks unnatural somehow, like it's been taken from another game, though that could be a case of bad programming rather than a fault with the machine. The 4096 colour palette was rightly trumpeted as a reason to take it seriously, but the machine is unevenly balanced in specs, and console gaming was being played by companies far bigger than Amstrad; it never had a chance.
Quote from: "The Laird"
I came across this amazing quote a while ago and just realised I had forgotten to post it!
A breathtaking piece of bullshit, even by Amstrad's standards. Remarkable.
Fascinating and disturbing at the same time, this advert has the mark of Sugar all over it: like so many of his "products", it tries desperately to be something it clearly wasn't. Quite what the R2D2 rip-off droid in the picture is supposed to represent is anyone's guess since there was no Star Wars licence on the machine, but I think the Batman character with the "A" symbol is the naffest of a very naff bunch. Grim, just grim.
I've asked this very question to the developers regarding batteries, and they have confirmed to me that it takes sixteen "AA" batteries for at least two hours of unbroken play! You can also use a solar powered back pack to charge it up, easily carried over the shoulder, like this one:
PORTABLE GAMING IS BACK!!
The Speccy version, once you got over the fact it had none of the atmosphere of the arcade game with those mono graphics, was quite playable. The collision detection didn't favour you, but it was always predictable, and I had a lot of fun completing it at the time. The C64 version was a disaster. Some great presentation effects, but the actual game itself was a complete fail. C&VG gave the C64 one 48% or thereabouts when they reviewed the budget re-release in 1989/90, so that tells you what they thought of it.
The NES version scored a massive 35% in The Complete Guide To Consoles Book III. I still chuckle at the summary box comments: "Sound- "A sad mockery of the title tune booms forlornly during play" :21:
Surprisingly, the Gameboy version played well. The GBC remake was much worse. The Lynx was closer to the source, giving you Easy Street, Middle Road and Hard way to choose from, and it was tasty. I hear that the Master System version though was the best at the time. Never played the Megadrive one.
US Gold decided in their infinite wisdom to make the proportions of the car and screen the same as the arcade on the Spectrum version, as opposed to the others (haven't looked at the amstrad version: it's against my religious beliefs), and the end result was stunningly predictable. A slo-mo shambles that reminds us of the bad side of the 8-bit era. Should we have expected any more from the company that blessed us with World Cup Carnival?
[IGNORANT POST ALERT]
I read the Jaguar article in Retro Gamer magazine by El Laird, and there was a little box about the CD add on, saying that the first production of 20000 units sold out, but they never got round to making any more. Since homebrews are coming out on CD, does that not make it very difficult to play them when there was only 20000 of the drives ever sold? I'd imagine quite a few of them are in the scrapheap now too after all these years.
Switchblade got 91% in Mean Machines Issue 4, and it looked as if it took good advantage of the extra colours in places. Apart from that, I really don't know. Robocop II got mixed scores, and one reviewer in Mean Machines said that it could have you "literally screaming in frustration." Still an essential console though, as is anything branded with the Sugar Seal Of Quality