Product: Best Of PCW: Software For The Electron
Publisher: Personal Computer World
Compatibility: Acorn Electron
Reviewed by: John Crane
Originally published in EUG #58

After doing such a good job reviewing Brainteasers in EUG #56, I've received the follow-up in the EUG compilaions for review, PCW Games For The Electron. So here goes.

As before, bang in the disc, SHIFT-BREAK and you're presented with an introductory screen explaining the origins of these programs, one "Personal Computer World" magazine book from long ago when Beebs ruled the Earth. Well, it seemed so to me at the time, but I digress. You just have sufficient time to read this before you are presented with a menu of 24 games.

On this, : takes you up and / down, although this is not stated. Personally I'd prefer a number or letter allocation for each menu item. Or even being able to select an item just by pressing the first letter of its title, enabling a random selection [Weird feeling of deja vu here - Ed].

Not being a big gamer myself, when I do dabble I prefer Brainteaser-type puzzles, so perhaps I'm not the best to judge here. Suffice it to say that if you liked the 'type in games', which I assume these would have been, in those heady days of yellow pages and such, then you will not be disappointed.

There are variations on the shoot 'em up genre, such as shooting ducks (but not the sun, as this throws the land into darkness) and some more strategic games involving landing aircraft and manoeuvering helicopters. I found one I particularly liked called Micro Mouse. With this you first draw a maze and make it as complex as you like. You then sit back and watch while a little mouse (well, a dot - but please use your imagination) runs around all the routes before finally reaching the end.

It does say in the instructions for this that you must start top left and eventually finish top right but the program doesn't check for this. Thus, if you leave the end off, the mouse gets all confused and keeps trying over and over. Quite fun to watch. Perhaps an opportunity for someone of suitable knowledge to tidy up. All these progams are in BASIC so other things, such as time delays, can also be adjusted for those who like to fiddle.

To conclude, if you like games and perhaps fiddling with programming a bit, get this. I think it'll be worth it, even if just for the nostalgia feeling. Me, I'm off to get stuck into EUG #3, #4 and #5 on disk. Now they've definitely got to be worth seeing!