Best UK-made 8-bitter, games-wise

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madcrow
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Best UK-made 8-bitter, games-wise

Post by madcrow » Mon Sep 29, 2008 5:57 pm

As a clueless American, I've long been interested in the "strange" world of UK home computers. While from a technical standpoint, both the Amstrad CPC and the Acorn BBC Micro both appear to have FAR outclassed the ZX Spectrum, lots of folks (including many writers for your fine magazine) seem to have had the fondest memories of the Spectrum. My question is simple: which of your three "homegrown" systems actually had the best games available and what were those games?

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sscott
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Post by sscott » Mon Sep 29, 2008 6:02 pm

Oh god you've started something there! As you're a yank however you would appreciate that in fact the Atari 800XL was the best 8-bit (essentially a 5200 with keyboard and no crap controllers!) :)

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Matt_B
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Re: Best UK-made 8-bitter, games-wise

Post by Matt_B » Mon Sep 29, 2008 6:03 pm

Without getting into a big debate as to what was the best system, the Spectrum was a lot cheaper than the other two and sold a heck of a lot more. As such, there was much more game development for it, and almost all the best BBC and CPC titles were ported to it, whilst the reverse was a lot less common.

Anyway, some of my favourite Spectrum games are:
Lords of Midnight
Chaos
Tau Ceti
Vulcan
Nether Earth

Some good CPC ones are:
Spindizzy
Sorcery
Get Dexter
Starstrike II
Head Over Heels

Some good BBC ones:
Elite
Revs
Exile
Firetrack
The Sentinel

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SirClive
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Post by SirClive » Mon Sep 29, 2008 6:11 pm

I don't want to get into a flame war, so I will remove all emotion and opinion and just give you the facts.


Spectrum Rules!
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Post by markopoloman » Mon Sep 29, 2008 6:19 pm

As a Commodore 64 man...............


I will buckle under some heavy weight strain and say :arrow: :arrow: :arrow:


SPE :shock: CT :x RU :evil: M :o


OMFG! Did I just say that :shock:
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gman72
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Post by gman72 » Mon Sep 29, 2008 6:24 pm

spectrum for games
c.64 for music.
As for the games...
Elite - c.64 or spectrum
Paradroid - c.64
Wizball - c.64
Underwurld - spectrum
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Scapegoat
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Post by Scapegoat » Mon Sep 29, 2008 6:29 pm

While the Spectrum was the lesser computer on paper, it had some genius programmers making games for it. The Amstrad at seems consisted of a lot of ports from the Spectrum rather than software made from the bottom up to play to it's own strengths.

The BBC had a few killer apps, but was too expensive to hit the mass market.

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Post by madcrow » Mon Sep 29, 2008 6:29 pm

gman72 wrote:spectrum for games
c.64 for music.
As for the games...
Elite - c.64 or spectrum
Paradroid - c.64
Wizball - c.64
Underwurld - spectrum
As an American, I already know all about the C64 :P I was aking about the local stuff ;)

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Spector
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Post by Spector » Mon Sep 29, 2008 6:30 pm

British 8-bits? The Spectrum by a country mile. The question is whether it's the best 8-bit for games in the world, not the UK.
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Post by Gnome » Mon Sep 29, 2008 6:32 pm

As a non-UK European I have to agree with most and vote for the Spectrum too. It was after all the only truly working-class computer I can think of. It even shows in the games, really.
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gman72
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Post by gman72 » Mon Sep 29, 2008 6:38 pm

As an American, I already know all about the C64 :P I was aking about the local stuff ;)[/quote]

Yeah, sorry. In that case ZX Spectrum wins hands down.
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TMR
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Post by TMR » Mon Sep 29, 2008 7:28 pm

Scapegoat wrote:While the Spectrum was the lesser computer on paper, it had some genius programmers making games for it. The Amstrad at seems consisted of a lot of ports from the Spectrum rather than software made from the bottom up to play to it's own strengths.

The BBC had a few killer apps, but was too expensive to hit the mass market.
[Points at Scapegoat] What he said, sums the entire situation up in a nutshell that does.

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Post by madcrow » Mon Sep 29, 2008 8:19 pm

Well, now that the question of "what" seems to be settled, the question becomes "how". Any emulator suggestions? Is Fuse any good or would folks reccomend something else. I mainly live in Linux (or more accuartely, in emulators running on top of Linux) but I can do the Windows thing too...

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Post by Coopdevil » Tue Sep 30, 2008 3:51 am

IMO the CPC never really got software support to show what it was capable of because of a deliberate design decision (alliteration!) to use the Zilog Z80 to enable mass ports of Spectrum software giving it a big library of games at launch. I remember Amstrad staff pretty much admitting this in a launch feature in Your Computer magazine many years ago.

Even after that games developed on the CPC were often hamstrung because of the need to do a quick port to the Speccy which had to be accomodated in the original CPC designs.

This is perhaps why the CPC always seem to be the red-headed stepchild of retro machines, very few non-owners remember them fondly because it never had any killer apps.

I was always a Speccy man and of the reasons it seemed to bring out the best in UK/Euro coders was that the machine was simpler and easier to get to grips with than the C64. Nearly everyone I knew with a Spectrum "in the day" had at least dabbled with BASIC, some of us gone on to experiment with assembler but none of my C64-owning mates had ever got very far with coding.

The modern UK software industry (not just games) was built on the Spectrum which is why for me it will always be the best of the 8-bits regardless of what I owned!
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pantal00ns
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Re: Best UK-made 8-bitter, games-wise

Post by pantal00ns » Tue Sep 30, 2008 4:30 am

madcrow wrote:My question is simple: which of your three "homegrown" systems actually had the best games available and what were those games?
The Spectrum is easily the most well known in UK shores, as for the best game suggestions look at the thread below:

http://www.retrogamer.net/forum/viewtopic.php?t=11302

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