This month in... C&VG '87
This month C&VG became the biggest selling games mag in the UK, shifting 106,571 copies monthly.
The Edge picked up the license for "Garfield".
Superior Software were launching a big spring recruitment drive, and had written a handbook for budding games programmers titled "Success in Software".
Beano-esque comic "Oink!" was to be turned into a game by CRL.
US Gold's home computer port of "Express Raider" was due any day.
Electric Dreams were to publish "Fire Track", a game written by Orlando M Pilchard (Nick Pelling) and the subject of considerable praise from Tony Takoushi some months earlier.
Domark got the rights to bring the Star Wars coin ops to home computers.
"Sun Star" from CRL for the Atari was released.
Gremlin's first foray into 16bit would be "Typhoon", a game developed in Germany for the ST. They were of course continuing to support the 8bit machines, with "Samurai Trilogy" announced.
Somewhat questionable research by Epyx found that using a Konix Speed King would give you an 84 per cent chance of improving your high score. (Epyx just happened to be selling the joysticks in the US under their own name)
History in Miniature released "AFV Combat Calculator" for military model wargamers.
Gargoyle Games delayed the release of "Heavy on the Magick II: The Trials of Therion" as they didn't feel the time was right. Sadly the game was never released (neither were the 2nd and 3rd parts of the "Marsport" trilogy). Greg Follis said they were toying around with an idea to make a game based on Lewis Carroll's "The Hunting of the Snark" (as far as I know, this never saw the light of day).
There was a non-sensical snippet about the movie and game "Short Circuit".
The top selling games of 1986 were:
- "Yie Ar Kung Fu" Imagine
- "Formula One Simulator" Mastertronic
- "Commando" Elite
- "Green Beret" Imagine
- "Thrust" Firebird
- "Ghosts and Goblins" Elite
- "Paperboy" Elite
- "Rambo" Ocean
- "Kik Start" Mastertronic
- "Ninja Master" Firebird
Frederick Forsyth's best seller "The Fourth Protocol" was to be turned into a game by Ariolasoft.
Marshal M Rosenthal took a look at Electronic Arts' "Make Your Own Murder Party" and some of the recent releases stateside.
There was a big adventure supplement.
A rather interesting article on a wargame "megagame" event called "August 1914" that took place in November 1986. "Model soldiers, no rules, up to 70 people and a good lunch afterwards" "Each game is usually played only once, and is no small commitment, taking typically a year to research and organise, and a day to play."
The Golden Joystick Awards ceremony was held, hosted by Jools Holland. The winners were:
- Game of the Year: "Gauntlet" US Gold
- Software House of the Year: Elite
- Programmer of the Year: Andrew Braybrook
- Adventure of the Year: "The Pawn" Magnetic Scrolls/Rainbird
- Strategy Game of the Year: "Vietnam" Strategic Simulations/US Gold
- Arcade Game of the Year: "Uridium" Hewson
- Best Original Game: "Sentinel" Firebird
- Best Soundtrack: "Sanxion" by Rob Hubbard for Thalamus
Tony Takoushi raved about "Penguin Adventure" from Konami for the MSX and tried to decide between an Amiga or an ST.
- "Grange Hill" Argus Press Software
- "Knight Orc" Level 9
- "Inspector Gadget" Melbourne House
- "GFL Championship Football" Gamestar/Activision
- "Pulsator" Martech
- "Martianoids" Ultimate
- "The Image System" CRL
- "Dogfight 2187" Ariolasoft
- "Imagination" Firebird
- "Auf Wiedersehen Monty" Gremlin Graphics
- "Challenge of the Gobots on the Moebius Strip" Ariolasoft
- "Gunship" Microprose - C64 10/10 Game of the Month "Gunship, the attack-helicopter simulator, is rapidly and deservedly turning into a best seller for Microprose in this country. How they managed to pack so much into a 64K program seems to be a mystery even to themselves, but after seeing this, any firm putting out a single-scenario wargame should be ashamed of itself."
- "Feud" Bulldog - Spectrum/Amstrad 9/10 Game of the Month "Brilliant value at £1.99 - you shouldn't fail to add Feud to your collection NOW!"
- "Greyfell" Starlight - Spectrum 9/10 C&VG Hit "Very mappable, extremely playable and very addictive, Greyfell is quite simply the cat's whiskers."
- "Shockway Rider" FTL - Spectrum 9/10 C&VG Hit "It's nice to see in these days of arcade copies, shoot-'em-up clones by the score that someone can come up with a well thought out, original and playable game."
- "Star Raiders II" Atari/Electric Dreams - C64 8/10 C&VG Hit "If you have got an Atari then rush out and get the game now, if you have only got a cassette based machine then buy a disc drive as well it is certainly worth it, with software like this appearing on the Atari scene."
- "West Bank" Gremlin Graphics - Spectrum/C64 10/10 C&VG Hit "The graphics in West Bank are highly detailed and realistic. There's real tension in the air as you wait for the door to swing open."
- "MGT" Loricels/Activision - Amstrad 9/10 C&VG Hit "MGT is yet another very playable, well designed, and graphically pleasing isometric arcade adventure from the Loricel stable that is gaining a growing reputation for turning out quality games, especially for the Amstrad."
- "Aliens" Activision - C64 8/10 C&VG Hit "Although no one of the six games in Aliens US is as involved or challenging as the single game in the European version, as a collection on one disk there is sufficient challenge, and gameplay to keep most gamers happy and frustrated for many a long night."
- "Delta" Stavros Fasoulas/Thalamus - C64 10/10 C&VG Hit "Original Delta isn't, fun it definitely is. Buy it and you and your Commodore will have a good time. What next we wonder from Stavros Fasoulas, Finland's top games programmer."
- "Leviathan" English Software - C64 10/10 C&VG Hit "Leviathan ranks high in the first division of space shoot-'em-ups."
- "Double Take" Ocean - Spectrum 8/10 C&VG Hit "Overall the game turns out to be one of Ocean's best releases ever on the Spectrum, and will probably be the most imaginative and innovative game of the year."
- "Hive" Firebird - Spectrum 10/10 C&VG Hit "Excellent game play and a mapper's delight. Enter the Hive and you're in an absorbing, sometimes frustrating nightmare world of creepy crawlies."
- "Bactron" Activision/Loricels - Amstrad 8/10 C&VG Hit "From the same team who produced MGT here is another full colour, isometric arcade adventure with smart graphics and an outstanding soundtrack."
- "Krakout" Gremlin Graphics - C64 10/10 C&VG Hit "All in all Krakout is an excellent and absurdly addictive game. You just won't be able to resist going for another brick in the wall."
- "180" Mastertronic - C64 9/10 C&VG Hit "Yes folks, Mastertonic's 180 is a gaming masterpiece if there is such a thing. It's a darts game which captures all the skill, tension, and pure fun of the real thing."
- "Escape from Singe's Castle" Software Projects - C64 8/10 C&VG Hit "Escape from Singe's Castle is far more playable than Dragon's Lair, eight very good mini-games, great graphics and brilliant sound. It's a huge improvement over its predecessor."
- "Killed Until Dead" Accolade - C64 8/10 "There are 20 different mystery plots to solve, each with its own clues and variations."