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Spectrum is 30

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The very first time I saw a spectrum, I think I was pretty much underwhelemed.  My Aunty had bought one which had one game with it. It was sort of a 3D maze game, with the aim of avoiding walking into a dead end with a dragon in it.

At the time I had seen Pac Man and Space Invades in pubs, and with my Dad being a tight wad (just kidding dad) we never really played on them. We never played on them but we would stand and gaze at them though as the demos cycled through over and over.

So for me, my first experience with the old speccy was all that great. The game we played was really hard, and there was nothing to zap, the screen took for ever redraw and it took an age for the games to load. Kids today don't know they're born.

Back then though home computing was only just starting, and these things were advanced. I'm talking 4 colours in block, with a screen resolution of just 256x192

Spectrum Screen Res 256x192

But with all of this limited technology (still - state of the art at the time) a generation of coders was born, creating some truly amazing games in the space of just 48k during hte early days. To put that in perspective one game would take up about 0.0002% of a DVD.

The games on the specturm were just captivating, hard, really hard, unforgiving, but they were so good, you didn't really mind the crappy graphics and limited sound  or jibes from mates with C64's. 

Games such as Ghostbusters, IK+, Hulk Adventure Game, Stunt Car Racer, Rainbow Islands, Sim City, Back to Skool, Elite, Lemmings, Lords of Chaos, Lords of Midnight, Operation Wolf, Manic Miner, Chuckie Egg, Dizzy (fantasy island was my favorite game), Robocop, Laser Squad, Head over heals, Jet Set Willy, Football Manager, Matchday, Smash TV, Guantlet, Spy Vs Spy, Jetpac, Tetrus, Wonder Boy, Golden Axe, Arkanoid, Bubble Bobble, Wiz Ball, R-Type, Moon Strike, Boulder Dash, Chase H.Q, Turrican, Commando, Carrier Command.

Games cost anywhere from £1.99 to £9.99.

If you still want to relive some of the glory dayes there are a huge number of online versions of the spectrum games and emulators out there, most of which can be played by allowing your browser to accept Java to run.

Want to know more?

World of Spectrum
Your Sincalr 

Crash Magazine


Emulator on your iphone 



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