This month in... Crash '86
Huge news arrived just hours before this issue went to press - Amstrad had bought Sinclair for meagre £5 million. What would this mean for Sinclair products? The QL and microdrive would be likely casualties, but it sounded like Amstrad had promising plans for the Spectrum. Overall it was taken as a positive happening, though the alternative would've been receivership for Sinclair. Sir Clive himself was to return to research. At the press conference where the sale was announced he said, "Nothing ever goes the way I plan it."
The team at Crash were celebrating after the Audit Bureau of Circulations announced the latest circulation figures which showed Crash was the biggest selling computer magazine in the UK and Eire (89441 magazines sold).
- "Sam Fox Strip Poker" Martech - 72% "Mixed feelings, obviously, but Sam's endorsement seems to conceal a well presented poker game worthy the attention of card players."
- "Max Headroom" Binary Design/Quicksilva - 85% "An original and entertaining arcade/adventure with plenty to do."
- "Starstrike II" Realtime - Crash Smash 96% "A brilliant game."
- "Attach of the Killer Tomatoes" Fatman & Dobbin & S Ruecroft/Global - 89% "A great game of a very bad movie."
- "Cyberun" ACG/Ultimate - Crash Smash 90% "A good arcade adventure shoot em up!"
- "Ping Pong" Imagine - 90% Crash Smash "A highly playable and enjoyable sports simulation." The sound was by Martin Galway and received much praise: "unbelievably good - Spectrum excellence"
- "Turbo Espirit" Mike Richardson/Durell - 88% "A driving game with a fair bit of gameplay behind it."
- "The Way of the Tiger" Chris Kerry, Shaun Hollingworth, Peter Harrap & Marco Duroe/Gremlin Graphics - 93% Crash Smash "An excellent development on the beat em up theme."
- "Green Beret" Jonathon Smith/Imagine - 88% "Quite a tasty fighting game."
- "Batman" Jon Ritman & Bernie Drummond/Ocean - 93% Crash Smash - "A neatly finished game which does batman proud."
- "Graphic Adventure Creator" Incentive Software
- "Equinox" Mikro-Gen
- "Dark Sceptre" Mike Singleton/Beyond - two versions were planned: a standalone game, and a play by mail version. The PBM would allow players to save their moves for each turn to a Microdrive cartridge and send them in to Mike Singleton who would play the part of the Shadow Lords. Mike would make his moves and send them back to the player.
- Martech on their history and their development process. "David Martin feels that the days when one programmer can produce an entire game from start to finish are over. 'Sure, there will still be room for a few Mike Oldfields in the software industry - people to design the game, implement the graphics, write the code and provide copy for the inlay. But people like Steve Crow (of Starquake fame) are very rare indeed.'"
- Stewart Green of Data Design Systems talked about his experiences with taking the plunge and setting up his own software company to sell his games. The company was run from his living room and he was struggling to find places to sell his games. "Advertising sells games - a good game with no advertising gets nowhere at the distribution stage it seems, while a grotty game with lots of ad money behind it is likely to do well." Things looked bleak, but the company has continued to this day (well, their site hasn't been updated since 2009, but still).
- A look at fanzines that had been sent in to Crash, all of which were produced by school kids.
The full issue can be found here.