Space Mission (Acorn Electron Cassette 50 Game 3)

This is more like it. This is the graphical style that I will always associate with Cassette 50. This one is simple. Press the Space Bar when you think your rocket (that red thing sitting on the blue bar) has enough fuel. If it does then you fly a…

03_space_mission

This is more like it. This is the graphical style that I will always associate with Cassette 50.

This one is simple. Press the Space Bar when you think your rocket (that red thing sitting on the blue bar) has enough fuel. If it does then you fly away safe. Hooray.

If it doesn’t the screen fills with evil green stuff. Arrrrrggghghghghhhh. This is supposed to be an explosion, I think.

Apparently if you get off the top of the screen you “survive for another mission”. Another mission where you get to do the same thing. I think I’d be looking for a new job after the first time I narrowly escaped from an exploding planet, thank you very much.

Look how much fun this game is. Look!

See the Amstrad version of Space Mission
See the Atari 8-bit version of Space Mission
See the ZX81 version of Space Mission
See the ZX Spectrum version of Space Mission
See the Commodore 64 version of Space Mission

Galactic Attack (Acorn Electron Cassette 50 Game 2)

Galactic Attack is actually one of the better looking games on the compilation. Yes, it still plays like a dog but, as you’ll see over the next few weeks, at least they’ve made this one colourful in comparison to the rest. The idea is to move a gu…

02_galaxy_attack

Galactic Attack is actually one of the better looking games on the compilation. Yes, it still plays like a dog but, as you’ll see over the next few weeks, at least they’ve made this one colourful in comparison to the rest.

The idea is to move a gun sight around the screen and shoot up some aliens while they fire what look like lemons at you. LEMONS. All that fear we’ve had that aliens will come down and abduct us and anal probe us and eat us turns out not to be true. All they really want to do is shoot citrus fruits into our faces.

After a bit your screen cracks for seemingly no reason. Game over. This is how quick a game of Galactic Attack lasted for me last night:

Update…I realised eventually that those lemons are mines and that the screen won’t crack if you don’t touch them. Even though you’re only supposed to be moving a gun sight so touching them shouldn’t be an issue.  Anyways, I gave it another go and saw this screen for the first time ever…

 

02_galaxy_attack2

…I did not complete Sector number 2.

See the Commodore 64 version
See the Dragon 32 version
See the Atari 8-bit version
See the ZX81 Version

Maze Eater (Acorn Electron Cassette 50 Game 1)

The first game on the cassette was Monster Maze. An unsatisfying and slow Pac-Man clone, but bereft of the power pills and excitement of that game. In fact, bereft of any enjoyment whatsoever. Despite this, it was actually one of the better games …

01_monster_maze
The first game on the cassette was Maze Eater. An unsatisfying and slow Pac-Man clone, but bereft of the power pills and excitement of that game. In fact, bereft of any enjoyment whatsoever.

Despite this, it was actually one of the better games on the cassette as you’ll discover over the next few weeks, so I’m not going to be as harsh on it as I’m going to be to some of (most of) the others. I think I managed to collect all the cherries once, and then turned the game off as the 2nd level was identical to the first and I had no intention of doing it all again.

Here’s a 29 second video of me playing this for the first time in about 25 years. You can hear me mashing the keys to try and get some kind of response from my little blue man. The game actually running at a speed about as twice as fast as it did on my real Electron, which gives you some indication of how frustrating it was to play:

See the ZX Spectrum Version
See the Commodore 64 Version
See the Atari 8-bit version
See the Dragon 32 version of Maze Eater
See the Vic-20 version
See the Amstrad version
See the ZX81 Version
Also similar to Ghosts on the Commodore 64 Cassette 50

Introduction…

I got my first computer when I was 5. An Acorn Electron, derided by some for being a cut down BBC Micro with worse graphics and sound. I didn’t care, it was mine and I loved it. Even when I got a much superior Commodore 64 a few years later I stil…

300px-acorn_electron_4x3

I got my first computer when I was 5. An Acorn Electron, derided by some for being a cut down BBC Micro with worse graphics and sound. I didn’t care, it was mine and I loved it. Even when I got a much superior Commodore 64 a few years later I still kept the old Electron around, and I still have it now in a box upstairs.

There were some amazing games on the Electron, particularly those produced by Superior Software. Striker’s Run and it’s sequel Codename Droid, the Repton series, Elite, Exile (my favourite game of all time, and one which I will complete one day. I will), and countless others.

This blog is not about them though. There are much better places to read about brilliant retro computer games. Instead, this blog is about the absolute worst casette of games I owned.

When I was at Primary School there weren’t many things much cooler than having a Calculator Watch. I desperately wanted one. Imagine how I felt when I saw an advert to get one FREE with a copy of Cascade Softwares’s “Casette 50”. The advert promised 50 fantastic games on one casette. I begged my parents. 50 games AND a calculator watch – how could it go wrong?

It could. Spectacularly. And you’ll see how.

50_games

(Yes, I know that’s the Commodore 64 inlay rather than the Acorn Electron one. I will scan my copy in when I rescue it from the cardboard box it is in. Soon).