Skip to main content

Full text of "NH2021_Popular_Computing_Weekly_Issue861120.pdf"

See other formats


jii 


mpun 


EEKLY 


Movie 
Quiz 20-26 November 1986 Vol 5 No 47 
resul 


Commodore’ s new 
Amigas revealed 


Details on page 4 
FEATURES 


Tandy 1000EX: low 

cost PC compatibility 
Screenvision – turn your 
monitor into a TV 





supplement 


THE HARDWARE 
BUYERS' GUIDE 


The 'Big Ten' machines: 
which would suit 

your needs best? 

What you can get 

from a PC compatible 
Games consoles and 
bargain micros 




















"GAMES AT THE 
"^ . . SPEED OF LIGHT.: 


















LIGHTFORCE is for VENGEANCE...........- 
LIGHTFQRCE is the Punishment Arm of 

Galactic Fighter Command. 

When a Terran-settled system at the edge of 
thegalaxyisseizedbyanalienforceevenge — * 
comes in the form of a lone 
LIGHTFORCE fighter. 
LIGHTFORCE confronts alien in a dazzling 

battle above the strange landscapes of the 
Ice-Planet,the Jungle Planet, Alien factories 
and the impassable Asteroid Belt. 
LIGHTFORCE — at the speed of Light . 
from FTL. Ш D 








tw 
SHOCKWAY RIDERS are the pick ofthe » * 

street gangs - ATHLETIC, AGGRESSIVE & 
ARROGANT -as they cruise along the 

e 'iple-speed moving walkways that circle 
the great MEGACITYSofthe 2151 Century. 
THE ULTIMATE AIM OF EVERY RIDER 

isto go "FULL CIRCLE” - to do that,he must 

* fight off the Block Boys,the Cops and the 
Vigilantes - as wel! as negotiating the Speed 
Traps and Rider Ramps erected by the angry 


local residents! 
SHOCKWAY RIDER is the most ogiginal 


arcade gamé of the ygar - 
THE ULTIMATE FUTURE SHOCK!! 












LIGHTFORCE AVAILABLE SEPT. '86 ` 
SHOCKWAY RIDER AVAILABLE OCT. '86 
WI 


SPECTRUM £7.95 
AMSTRAD & COMMODORE £8.95 

FASTER-THAN- LIGHT 
L 


FTLFASTER THAN LIGHT, CARTER FOLLIS GROUP OF COMPANIES, 
SEDGLEY ROAD EAST, TIPTON, WEST MIDLANDS DY4 7UJ. Tel: 021-520 2981 (4 lines) 





-26 November 


Contents 





SPECIAL 





HARDWARE» 
12 Tandy 1000EX 


Amstrad is the not the only company 
in the low-cost PC compatible mar- 
ket. Tandy is fighting hard to attract 
the same users with its 1000EX 


John Lettice reviews the machine. 





13 Screenvision 

In the old days you used your TV asa 
micro monitor — now Screens has 
come up with Screenvision, which 
will turn your monitor into a TV. 
Duncan Evans reports. 


«SOFTWARE 


14 Public Domain 
Games 


In the second of our series on public 
domain software, Marcus Rowland 
looks at games available for the PC 
compatibles. 





GAMES» 





16 Reviews 


Plenty here for the discerning games 
player: Avenger, Gremlin's follow-up 
to Way of the Tiger; Ocean's latest, 
Mailstrom; Terra Cognita, from new 
budget company Code Masters; and 


Novagen's highly acclaimed Merce- 
nary reaches the Atari ST. 


19 Adventure Corner 
20 Arcade Action 


Tips for Piranha's Strike Force Cobra, 
plus the Gallup Top Twenty 





SUPPLEMENT 


THE HARDWARE 
BUYERS’ GUIDE 


25 The Ten Best Buys — the defini- 
tive guide to this Christmas's ten 
most popular computers. 

28 Do you need a PC compatible? 
John Lettice looks behind the current 
fashionability of cheap PC clones 

















31 There are plenty of discontinued 
computers around in the shops for 
half price or less, but are they a real 
bargain? Christina Erskine reports. 
34 Suddenly everyone's talking 
about games consoles again — we 
look at the chances for a games 
machine comeback 











<PROGRAMMING 





36 Amstrad CPCs 


Xen Plus, the follow up to Xen, 
provides graphics commands 


36 QL 
Manipulate your images with 3D 
Rotator. 


37 Commodore 64 


Continuing UFO, the game with the 
stunning graphics. 


39 BBC 


The second part of R Groom's fonts 
program. 





REGULARS > 





4 News Desk 


Amstrad's 1987 plans 


10 Letters, Puzzle 


21 Competitions 

Did you win in our Grand Movie Quiz? 
Here's your chance to find out. Plus a 
chance to win English Software's 
ElektraGlide for Amstrad CPCs. 





40 Bytes and Pieces 
42 Peek and Poke 


Programming agony aunt Kenn Gar- 
roch answers more of your queries. 


44 Soundcheck 
52 New Releases 
54 Ziggurat, Hackers 


Editor Christina Erskine News editor Joha Lettioe Faetures editor Join Cook Technics! adlir Duncan Evens Production editor Mobile. 
Beauchamp Supplements. 


vents editor Christopher Jenkins 
advertisement manager David Osen Adve 


Langston 


‘Supplements designer Barbora 
‘executive Jon 


‘and Promotions. 
и Син y Dony. 


Annmarie O Dwyer Administration Geraldine Smyth eue MEE 
Paine зилди by Sun $3, 12-19 Little Newport Street, con CHR Ta ACE. rd 


Typesetters, 6 Parnell Court, East 


Hampshire. Dist 





ibuted Distribution, London SW9, Tel 01- 
Q Sunshine Publications LY 1986. ISSN 0285-0508 


How to submit articles Articles which are submitted for publication 
3. should be original. It is breaking the law of copyright to copy programs out 
‘guarantee 


accompanying programs, 
them here — so please do not be tempted. We cannot Ere dere Ta ed e fron ery 


ет тех 961643. aS 


Popular Computing Weekly. Tel: 01-437 4343. 


Hd ibn mone as ORG d. Te ibe. undae 


Weekly cannot accept any responsibilty for any errors in programs we publish, although we will always. 


try our best to make sure programs work. 








20-26 NOVEMBER 1986 


POPULAR COMPUTING WEEKLY/3 


News Desk 





| News Desk | 











Amstrad - plans for 1987 


AMSTRAD is planning im- 
provements to its current 
range of computers, to be 
launched towards the end of 
next year. 

Chief among the forthcom- 
ing products are new ver- 
sions of the PC1512 range 
and a follow-up to the PCW 
range. 

Amstrad hopes that the 
new PC clones will be even 
cheaper than the 1512s, and 
is planning to achieve this by 
designing many of the com- 
ponents in-house, rather than 


using existing third party 
components, particularly with 
the hard disc versions. 

“Amstrad is looking to de- 
sign its own components and 
while this would be a depar- 
ture for the company, it is a 
concept which needs to be 
looked at very closely,” said 
an Amstrad spokesman. 

The new word processing 
micro is due to be released 
towards the end of 1987. 
Amstrad would give no de- 
tails about the machine, but it 
would appear that it will take 


The PCW 8256 — due for an upgrade? 








the form of a substantial 
redesign and upgrade — both 
hardware and software — to 
the existing machine. 

“Given the success of the 
PCW range, there is no ques- 
tion of us saying that's it. 
Their sales warrant further ex- 
amination of the range,” the 
‘spokesman continued. 

At the lower end of the 
market, Amstrad is concen- 
trating on the Spectrum Plus 
2 to cater for the games 
playing sector, and has not 
Tuled out the possibility of 
Price-cutting in the face of 
Potential competition from 
the forthcoming games 
consoles. 

"The Plus 2 is currently 
competitively priced, but if 
market conditions changed, 
then we would look at that 
option," concluded the 
spokesman, 

Of course, if games con- 
soles were to take off in a big 
way, as Atari certainly be- 
lieves is on the cards, Am- 
strad could compete in that 
market by producing its own, 





Atari goes public in US 


THE Atari Corporation is cur- 
rently raising money to pay 
for expansion, and a deter- 
mined effort to raise its pro- 
file, as new Atari machines 
are due to be launched at the 
beginning of next year. 
Chairman Jack Tramiel has 
sold 4.5 million blocks of 
Atari treasury stock at $11.5 


per share, raising $52 million 
for the company. Jack Tra- 
miel and his son Sam, Atari's 
president worldwide, still 
however, own well over 5096 
of Atari 

“At the moment it's just a 
one-off sale,” said Atari UK's 
boss Bob Gieadow. “Tramiel 
isn’t going to the bank to 





Sir Clive Sinclair is 
alive and kicking 


SIR Clive Sinclair may not be 
in the public eye so much 
these days, but he is still very 
much involved in the market. 

The founder of Sinclair 
Research has set up two 
companies since selling all his 
Spectrum and QL rights to 
Amstrad. The first, Anamar- 
tic, is working on research 
into wafer scale integration 
(see Popular Computing Week- 
ly, July 17). 

The second company is 
Moduliser, based in Cam- 
bridge, and working on devel- 
opment of Pandora, the por- 


table computer project which 
Sir Clive retained after the 





Pandora will no longer be 
Spectrum compatible (this 
would run against the terms 
of the deal struck with 
Amstrad) but will run CP/M, 
and the flat screen display has 
also been abandoned. 

Moduliser, which is head- 
ed, after Sir Clive, by former 
Sinclair Research directors 
Jim Westwood and Dave 
Chatten, hopes to launch the 
portable at February's Which 
Computer? Show. 


borrow money; rather he's 
making an offer to the public. 
The money will be used to 
expand our activities — there 
are quite a few new products 
in the Atari pipeline.” 

Gleadow confirmed that 
the long-awaited Atari 
520STFM (with a built-in disc 
drive and TV modulator) 
would be available from Jan- 
чагу onwards: "It's now de- 
finitely in production and on 
its way,” he said. 

Second of new Atari prod- 
ucts next year is the (equally 
long-awaited) 7800 games 
console (see Popular Comput- 
ing Weekly, November 13) 
Atari is convinced that the 
games console is due for a 
‘comeback. 

"We cam see a distinct 
separation in price between 
computers and video games 
machines," Gleadow contin- 
ued. “The 7800 will be sub- 
‘stantially lower in price than 
the 130XE, close to £80, 
and, of course, it can use 
800, 130 and 2600, the pre- 
vious games console's 
software.” 


New Amigas 
- further 
details 


FURTHER details are now be- 
coming available about Com- 
modore's new Amiga 
machines (see Popular Com- 
puting Weekly, September 
18), which will eventually re- 
place the current А1000 
model. 

Top of the range is the 
A2500. Upwardly compati- 
ble with the existing Amiga, it 
will have one megabyte of 
Ram, and will continue to use 
the 68000 processor, not the 
more advanced (and more ex- 
pensive) 68020 as was first 
hoped. No hard disc will be 
included, to help keep the 
price down. 

The A2500, which is being 
manufactured in Germany 
rather than the Far East, will 
also accept up to seven 
Amiga and IBM plug-in cards 
— for extra Ram, second pro- 
cessor and custom boards. 
Commodore is producing an 
IBM emulator for the machine 
which will be its equivalent of 
the A1000's Sidecar. The 
А2500 is expected to cost 
around $1400 (around 
£1000), but in UK will almost 
certainly be more expensive 
than its direct dollar 
equivalent. 

The second new Amiga is 
the ‘cut-down’ model, and is 
to be aimed in direct com- 
petition with the Atari ST, to 
be priced at around £500. It 
will have a built-in 33 inch 
disc drive, with the PCB con- 
tained in the keyboard case. 
Memory is likely to be 512K, 
expandable to eight 
megabytes. 

The A2500 is scheduled 
for launch in the US early next 
year, with the cheaper ver- 
sion two or three months 
later. 

No details of availability in 

the UK are ready; a spokes- 
man for Commodore UK com- 
mented, “We have no launch 
date yet, and no firm plans. 
The new Amigas will be here 
in due course." 
@ The court case between 
Commodore and Atari over 
the Amiga machines (see Po- 
pular Computing Weekly, Sep- 
tember 18), which was due to 
be heard this month, has been 
postponed until March. 








4/POPULAR COMPUTING WEEKLY 


20-26 NOVEMBER 1986 

















Third party support 
grows for PC1512 


THE Amstrad PC continues to 
attract support, even though 
the machine itself is some- 
thing of a rarity 

The latest developments 
include software, printers, 
and special offers from the 
new user group. 

The software is Tasword 
PC, an upgrade of Tasman's 
best-selling word processing 
package on the Spectrum, 
Amstrad CPCs, and the 
Amstrad PCW machines. 

Apart from the usual 
word processing facilities, 
Tasword includes a data 
merge feature which allows 
addresses and other informa- 
tion to be automatically 
included in your documents. 
At £24.95, it is one of the 
cheapest packages but Tas- 
word may find the going, 


tougher in this market than in 


its earlier incarnations. 

Extra printer support is 
offered by Brother, through 
retailer Wilding Office Equip- 
ment. Buy your Amstrad PC 
from Wilding's, and you can 
get a cut-price printer at the 
same time. 

The models covered by the 
offer are the HR-20 daisy- 
wheel, for £400; the 1509, 
1409 and 1109 dot-matrix 
machines for £500, £400, 
and £200 respectively. 

Further support comes in 
the form of the 1512 Inde- 
pendent User Group. 

Its first discounts are a half- 
price copy of the NewWord 3 
word processor, and a 20Mb 
"hard disc on a card" for 
£400. 

Membership costs £20 per 
year. Details from 09592 
4955 or 09592 2595 








Trivial Pursuit - 


DOMARK has announced the 
release of extra questions for 
its highly successful micro 
implementation of Trivial 
Pursuit. 

The first set available is the 
Young Players’ Edition, which 
can be bought either as a full 
Trivial Pursuit game for 
£14.95, or for those who 
have already bought the 
micro version, as a cassette 
‘of supplementary questions 
for £7.95. The Young Players’ 
Edition contains two sets of 
questions, one for seven to 
12 year olds, the second for 
12 years and over. The pack- 
age comprises around 3,000 
questions in all 

Further packs of extra 
Genus Edition questions — Ge- 
nus Il — and a Baby Boomer 
question tape will be released 
‘around’ Christmas, probably 
early next year. 

The stand alone extra ques- 
tion packages are not micro 
specific, and will load into any 
computer. Trivial Pursuit is 


more questions 


currently out on Spectrum, 
Amstrad CPCs, and Commo- 
dore machines, while 
Amstrad PCW, IBM PC and 
Atari versions are due out 
shortly. 





Orbix the Terrorball 


@ Domark has also released 
the first game of a new label — 
Streetwise. The Streetwise 
label will concentrate on 
arcade games, and with Orbix 
the Terrorball, you must 
rescue a stranded space crew 
from within the Orbix space 
ball, which you must control 
as it bounces around the 
screen. 

Available initially for the 
Spectrum, Orbix costs £7.95 





Software 
Hotlines 


(expansionist, imperialist, 
dogs) from 273 BC. Out late 


us computer magazines. 
Usually, the early weeks of 
January are very lean times 
for us Journos — as nothing is 
ever released after Christmas. Annals of Rome 
Not this year, though, as pro- The latest Audiogenic| 
duct after product has its re- press release (always a glit-| 
lease date set back. The lat- tering ray of sunshine in the 
est benefactor is Firebird, usual banal haze of blurb —| 
who announced this week thanks to well — weird Henry 
‘that it won't be launching Smithson) concerns a heart- 
Cholo until after the rending story of Psycastria 
festivities. programmer Gary Partis 
Steve "Interesting" Wilcox (aged 19) and his (now ex) 
of Elite isn't silly, though. fiancée, Tracey. Large scroll 
He's proved that Space harrier ing declarations of love had to. 
is going to be out on time by be excised from the game, 
sending us some nice screen lost they torment the lad to 
shots (Spectrum version be- his grave. Hopefully this will 
low). Now then. It looks just put an end to those yukky 
that in the arcades. Really. dedications. Take my advice 
"Ever fancied running a lads — say it with freesias. 
software distribution com- Finally, the search for Lever 
pany!" chirps the introduc- and Jones goes on (see Hot- 
tory blurb of A&F's Wibstars. lines, Nov 13). Where are the. 
Are they kidding? Have you zany duo? Who knows? Who 
‘ever seen these sinister Shy- cares? 
lock type characters, sucking See you next week Pop 
their profits from the very life Pickers. 
blood of the Working Classes John Cook 








20-26 NOVEMBER 1886 


POPULAR COMPUTING WEEKLY/5 











Amstrad dominates 
Christmas shopping 


THE main High Street chain 
stores have noticeably re- 
duced their computer ranges 
for the Christmas selling 
period. 

Amstrad machines will 








dominate the shelves, while 


Commodore, with its Con- 
noisseur's Compendium, has 
a much lower profile in the 
largest stores. 

Boots is concentrating on 
the Spectrum Plus 2 for the 
games sector. It is selling the 
machine with a joystick, six 
games, and six Boots C15 
blank tapes for £159.95. The 
store also has the Kempston 
mouse plus Art Studio pack- 
age for the Spectrum at 
£69.95, 

At the other end of the 
home market, Boots is stock- 
ing the Amstrad PCW 
8256/8512, at their usual 
prices of £458.85 and 
£573.85 respectively. 

Commodore's only pres- 
ence in Boots will be through 
a Boots exclusive Compen- 
dium, which comprises the 
old-style 64, C2N tape deck, 
joystick, Currah speech 
synthesiser, Trojan light pen, 
a programming book, five 


games, and six blank tapes — 
all for £199.99. 

WH Smith is stocking Am- 
strad products exclusively 
the CPC 464 and 6128, 
PCWs 8256 and 8512 and 
the Spectrum Plus 2. "The 
Spectrum Plus 2s are selling 
very well indeed,” John Row- 
land, Smith's merchandise 
controller, commented; W H 
Smith is not, however, selling 
the Amstrad PC. 

Rowland feels that the 
Commodore Connoisseur's 
Compendium containing the 
64С is "too expensive" 
"However," he says, "We 
are selling off some old 64s, 
in Music packs." 

The John Lewis Group is 
stocking the full Amstrad 
range from the Spectrum Plus. 
2 up to the PC1512 range. 
The group is still uncertain 
about Commodore's comput- 
ers and is not stocking any 
from Atari. Lasky's is selling 
two versions of the Spectrum 
Plus 2 — in a joystick plus six 
games bundle for £159.99 
and the computer on its own 
at £149.99. 

Lasky's has one of the wid- 
er ranges this year with the 
BBC Master 128 at £499.99 
and the Master Compact at 


£459.99, Amstrad's 6128 in 
both colour and black and 
white versions, the PCWs, 
and single disc versions of the 
PC1512. It also has the 
Commodore Connoisseur's 
Compendium at £249.99. 

Finally, Dixons is also going 
for a wide range and has a 
number of older computers at 
special offer prices: the Atari 
800XL, plus joystick, soft- 
ware and a data recorder at 
£69.99; the Electron, with 
software and a data recorder 
at £79.99; the Spectrum 
Plus, software, data recorder 
and joystick at £109.99; the 
Spectrum 128, with a similar 
pack at £139.99; and the QL 
at £119. 

Of the newer machines, its 
Spectrum Plus 2 comes with 
a 10 pack of software and a 
joystick for £ 159.99. It is also 
stocking the CPC464 and 
6128, the PCWs, and, of 
course, the PC15 12s. 

Dixons is selling the Com- 
modore 64C at £249.99, and 
selected branches have the 
‘Acorn Master Compact 

For further details of comput- 
ers available this Christmas, 
tum to our Hardware Buyers" 
Guide, which starts on page 
23. 











Microprose at Commodore show 


THE 9th Official Commodore 
show, in the words of the 
organiser, Database, is 
"shaping up to be quite a big 
event," with more than 70 
exhibitors expected to be in 
attendance including, for the 
first time, US simulation ex- 
perts, Microprose. 

A popular feature of the last 


show, the Amiga Village, will 
be making a comeback, 
showing all the latest devel- 
opments on the 16-bit front. 
Other attractions include 
regular question and answer 
forums over all three days, 
run by the Independent Com- 
modore Products User Group 
and a separate special area 


devoted to computer gener- 
ated music. 

Interested parties (and 
there were over 20,000 last 
time) should make their way 
to the Novotel Hotel, Ham- 
mersmith between November 
21-23, 10am-6pm (4pm on 
Sunday) and have ready £3, 
or £2 for under 16s. 






*Waggle' test 
for Konix 
Speed King 


PERIPHERAL manufacturer 
Konix is running a competi- 
tion, open to everyone, to 
promote its Speed King 
joystick. 

People are invited to guess 
the strength and resilience of 
the Speed King, judged by a 
test devised by Konix. 

The company intends to 
hook the joystick to a 
machine which will simulate 
the moves needed to reach 
qualifying standard in the 100 
metres event in Ocean's 
Daley Thompson's Decathlon 
game. 


Rather than stopping after 
12 seconds or so, however, 
the machine will continue to 
‘waggle’ the joystick until it 


breaks. This test will take 
place in early February, 1987, 
and entrants are simply 
required to estimate how long 
the joystick will last. 

Further information about 
the competition can be 
obtained from Konix, c/o 
Solution Public Relations, 
2 Wellingtonia Court, Varn- 
dean Park, Brighton BN1 6TD, 
which is also the entry ad- 
dress. The closing date for 
entries is January 31, 1987. 


US for Piranha 


PIRANHA, the games soft- 
ware arm of MacMillan Pub- 
lishing, is set to launch in the. 
US through Spinnaker 
Software. 

Spinnaker has acquired the 
rights to Strike Force Cobra, 
and plans to release it in time 
for Christmas. 

According to Piranha's 
publishing director Tony Feld- 
man, Spinnaker is also keen 
to take Rogue Trooper and 
Nosferatu the Vampyre on 
board: “We expect those to 
be in the US market by early 
spring" 











POPULAR COMPUTING WEEKLY 


20-26 NOVEMBER 1986 




















Screen shots from Arcade version 


Coming Soon for 
SPECTRUM £7.95 
COMMODORE 64/128 CASSETTE £8.95 DISC £14.95 
AMSTRAD CPC CASSETTE £8.95 DISC £14.95 

MSX CARTRIDGE £15.95 





Available from all leading retailers and 
in case of difficulty send cheques or 
postal orders to: 

NMC LTD., PO Box 67, London SW11 185. 
Tel: 01 228 6730 



































NewWord safe with New Star 


mmm FOLLOWING the takeover by NewWord on CP/M and 
 ——— NEW training courses are Місгорго of New Star prod- PCDOS formats. After Febru- 
being set up for PCW ucts in the US, the compan- агу 1987, however, Micropro 
8256/8512 users, by ies’ respective British arms (UK) will take over selling the 





Amstrad Distribution. are finalising agreement over PCDOS versions, while New 
Under the aegis of Amstrad which will sell which product Star will continue supply and 
Distribution's training consul- in the UK. support for the CP/M 


tant Roy Curtis, trainees will New Star (UK) currently implementations. 
spend one day at the com- Supplies products such as 
pany's Newcastle-Under- 
Lyme being taught about 
both the PCW's hardware New company leases next year at two price 
and software. Numbers are to sell on points of £2.99 and £4.95. 
limited to six per group. = The Great Arena Challenge be- 

Amstrad Distribution is mail order longs to the latter category. 
also planning to launch an All titles will be sold on mail 
аіво planning 10 ee User VONSOFT, a newcomer to order. 

entertainment software, is to Further details from Von- 

EXISTING — or potential — Course, to begin next year. ү 
owners of the Poon Organ- The current training course [bs ite pis game, m soft, 5 Knockholt Road, Hal- 
iser will no doubt be interest- costs £79, which includes niae na meek ceed wit! cepa near Sevenoaks, Kent 
edinanewbookfromKuma, lunch and refreshments. ‘he temptation ofa cash prre 14 7ES. 

iina new Book rom KT. further detala can Ше ob- ‘or the frst person to абын DS NS Cash prizes for campit- 
‘gramming the Psion Organiser tained from Amstrad Distribu- question posed about the er games are nothing new, 





ala a - gameplay. but they have met with vary- 
ft and the tile just about says ton, PO Dos 209 de Wo  Thecashprizecomprisesa ing success. Domark estab- 
al. Pica is £9.05, оаа lump sum plus Op for every lished itself as a software 
should be avaiable fr copysold."Thereis £10,000 company with Eureka! 
good bookshops, but failing for the prize in the bank (£25,000 up for grabs), but 


that you can contact Kuma on 


07387 4335. now," said Trevor Dowie of Haresoft, with its prize of a 





Vonsoft. golden jewelled hare orna- 
Vonsoft has some grand- ment for its game, failed to 
scale plans for its launch into capture the public's 
Atari ST the games market — 20 re- imagination. 
Space Shuttle 





MICRODEAL's latest package 
for the Atari ST, a machine 
the company is strongly sup- 
porting, is Space Shuttle. 

Space Shuttle is а simula- 
tion, with you as the 
astronaut 

It costs £24.95 and should 
be available now. Details from 


Mac programs for the ST 


ADD-ON manufacturer Rob- Why this should be contro- 
tek claims it will be shipping versial is unclear, since 
its ‘controversial’ McEmulator Robtek says no problems are 
by the time you read this. expected from Apple. 
For £170, the gadget will — Contact Robtek at О 
allow you to run software for Isleworth Business Comple 
the Apple Macintosh on your St Johns Road, Isleworth, 
























































Microdeal on 0726 68020. Atari ST. Middx. (01-847 4457). 
Diary Dates 
NOVEMBER (ld Halls of the Royal Horticultural Organiser: Database Exhibitions, 17-20 February 
Society 061-456 8835 Which Computer? Show 
Details: Show for the Dragon and NEC, Birmingham 
21-23 November Tandy Colour Computers Details: Mainly business exhibitors; 
The Commodore Computer Price: £2.50 adut, £1.75 chidren, 29 November - includes Commodore, and low-cost PC 
Show reduction for advance purchase Wight Computing Fair clones 
veka; Hanes Гаа WO OE 1. Peda Това TUB OM: MUN Price: £5 Я 
Details: Hardware, software and Шо) Details: Local show covering wide Organiser: Cahners Exhibitions, 01- 
peripherals for the Commodore range € of Tea 891 5051 
of computers E я 
Organiser: Wight Computing Users. 
dais £2 cian £1 Тһе Atari Christmas Show Group, 10 John Steet, Re Isle of 
Organiser: Database Exhibitions, Now Horticultural Hall, блесок: Wight P033 2PY 
061-456 8835 ‘Street, Westminster, London SW1 
Details: Hardware, software and 
peripherals for the Atari range of 
computers 
22 November Price: £3 adult, £2 children, £1 FEBRUARY 
6809 Show discount for advance booking 











8/POPULAR COMPUTING WEEKLY 20-26 NOVEMBER 1986 














DOMARK 





FOLLOWING OUR GREAT 
SUCCESS WITH 


“SPLIT PERSONALITIES” 


AND 
“TRIVIAL PURSUIT” 


WE HAVE LOTS OF NEW. 
IDEAS AND WOULD LOVE TO 
HEAR SOME OF YOURS 


IF YOU RUNA 
PROGRAMMING TEAM, WHO 
CAN PRODUCE A GAME FOR 

MOST (IF NOT ALL) OF THE 
HOME COMPUTER RANGE — 
THEN WE WOULD LIKE TO 
MEET YOU. 

TOP RATES WILL BE PAID, 
SO... RING RICHARD ON 
01-947 5622 


AND LET'S SEE IF WE CAN 
DO BUSINESS TOGETHER! 











18 


TWO NEW PROGRAMS TO ENHANCE 


— THE QUILL — 
Adventure Writing System 
for the Spectrum 48/128/Plus 2 


THE PRESS £6.95 

Beside giving up to 50% text compression with 

extremely smooth screen output of compressed 

text, in both graphié and text adventures, also 

provides a Database Expander and most of the 

routine previously available in the PATCH along with 
other new ones. 


CHARACTERS £3.99 


An easy to use character set and UDG designer. 
Also includes over 20 pre-designed fonts both 
upper and lower case. 


Available from. 


FT INTERNATIONAL LTD 
2 go ШО 


SOUTH GLAMORGAN CF6 HD 
Tel: 0446 732765 


Credit card orders welcome 


611580! 


STOP 
PRESS! 





The Quill and Illustrator now reduced in price - £8.95 
roni program pack ot £188 111 








ackage from two of Britain's most 
d computer authors takes the lid off the 


‘everything you always wanted to know about 


templates, layouts, stand: 
of LocoScript to the sophisticated techniques of the modem office 
© CP/M: sensible working methods for a secure and efficient system 


ised forms, odd-sized formats — from the ABC 


© GSX: complete details of how to get presentation-quality graphics from 


straightforward Basic programs 
'aphics and list processing for the first time user 


@ BASIC: your own suite of business programs including a database, 


‘accounts program, bank account record, invoice creator and many more. 


Practical Amstrad Word Processing and The Amstrad Companion — 440 
pages of ideas that will turn your PCW into the power house it was meant to 
be! You can obtain the books at only £6.00 each or an 

price of £10.00 for the two including p&p. 















































[ “To Theresa Lacy, Sunshine Books Tenclose a cheque/postal order for £. payableto — 1 

| 12/43 Little Newport Street Sunshine Books | 
London WC2H 7PP Alternatively please debit my Visa L] Access C 

| American Express | 

| Please sename copies Account Number Expiry Date | 
of practical Amstrad Word Signed 

| Processing and Amstrad Companion Name (capitals please). ————— — j 

L... (both for £10 nc. p&p) Address x 

20 


-26 NOVEMBER 1986 POPULAR COMPUTING WEEKLY/9 








lam not 
totally sexist 


am sure that women, with 

their much-envied 'multi- 
tasking’ abilities, could easily 
equal men in numbers of com- 
puter hobbyists/program- 
mers, given sufficient 
enthusiasm. 

However, it takes concen- 
trated singular effort to meet 
each challenge in computing, 
and generally, men are more 
prone to rising to challenges. 

1 would suggest that 
women who wanted to suc- 
ceed in computing would do 
so, but they would not likely 
be of the category that would 
take offence, or would be put 
off, by knowledge of the exis- 
tence of two or three male- 
orientated games/cassette 
covers. 

Programmers need to be 
single-minded, not narrow 
minded. | mean no offence 
to your correspondent. | am 
not totally sexist and 
microchips are definitely 
hermaphrodite! 








George Payne 
Bushey 
Herts 
гапа I'm 
still fighting 


n reply to your Ziggurat of 

Popular, October 23, enti- 
tled Where are the Women 
Users?, | can assure you that 
we are here, fighting away at 
the system (and hitting our 





heads against many a brick 
wall on the way). 

1 have young children at 
school, and might have ex- 
pected that this would give 
me an ideal opportunity to re- 
educate myself into the com- 
puter field (mistake number 
one). 

1 wrote to every college 
within travelling distance, but 
all the courses were full-time 
and did not finish until 5.00 
pm, impossible for picking up 
my children from school. | 
eventually got on to a man- 
power services course in In- 
formation Technology, which 
taught me the basics, and | 
took an EMFEC II certificate in 
computer programming. So 
far, so good. 

I had now been well and 
truly bitten by the bug, and as 
my tutor said | had potential 
and must not give up now, | 
once again began the endless. 
round of telephone calls. The 
best | could come up with 
was a night-class in City and 
Guilds Cobol programming 
(and me with all that ‘useful’ 
time to spare during the day!) 
The first three weeks saw us 
with a lecturer who did not 
know Cobol, and when we 
eventually got someone who 
did, he said that he did not 
think we would have the time 
to put in enough work to take 
the exam, and | am only on 
the course to get a 
qualification. 

Despite everything | am still 
fighting, and | hope to get a 





job in the industry, but when 
you have to push so hard to 
get anywhere there must be 
many casualties on the way, 
and can you blame them? It 
should not be made so 
impossible for women with 
responsibilities to their fami- 
lies to re-educate themselves. 
into computing. 
Vicky Easton 
Market Harborough 


No Sony MSX 2 
here 


[епо tno recent core- 
spondence from Peter Nijs 
of Belgium (Popular, October 
16) in which he describes the 
Sony MSX 2 computer. | 
would be grateful if Mr Nijs 
would write to me at the 
address below with the mod- 
el number and full details of 
this computer, for as a dedi- 
cated MSX user (Sony Hit 
Bit), | would dearly like to 
purchase the Sony MSX 2 
described. 
Steven Potts 
10 Lemon Close 
Liverpool L7 5QU 


One word of caution, 
Steven. As the Sony MSX 
2 is not available in the 
UK, you will need to hook 
it up to a monitor rather 
than a TV as the TV stan- 
dards are different, and 
you will need a trans- 
former to deal with the 
power supply. 





Stabilising 
the jellies 


hank you for your recent 

letter concerning my pro- 
gram, Wobbling Jellies, for 
the 128 Spectrum which you 
printed in Popular, September 
25. 

There are some bugs in the 
program which can be cor- 
rected as follows: 

Change line 50 from: 


БО FOR = 0.1 TO 7 STEP (7/13) 
to, 
50 FOR t = 0.1 TO 7 STEP (7/12) 


Then change line 270 from: 


70 NEXT h 
to, 
70 NEXT t 


1 have now thoroughly test- 

ed the new version and it 
appears to work correctly. 

M D Lancaster 

Hounslow 

Middlebex 


Booking into 
QL 


wonder if you or any of 

your readers can assist 
me. | have recently bought a 
Sinclair QL and serial 8056 
printer, which | am using with 
a Ferguson monochrome 
monitor. | am very much an 
amateur computer hobbyist, 
therefore | find that the user 
guide supplied with the 
machine difficult to under- 











Puzzle No. 234 
Jamie was making a list of the Fibonacci 
Series. This is the series of numbers beginning 


1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21, 


ing two. 


Jamie noticed that the fifteenth number in 

з an exact multiple of ten, the 
number being 610, and this set him to 
wondering if there are any higher numbers 


the series 





and so on, 
subsequent numbering the sum of the preced- 





9. As each card will be moved at some stage 
to the right-hand end of the row, any of the 
other digits will result in a number that would 
be either even or divisible by five, and would 
therefore not be prime. 

These four permissible digits are held in the. 
array N(4) and are called by the five For/Next 
loops to create a sequence of five-digit 
numbers for testing. The left-hand digit is 
moved to the right-hand end a total of five 


ach 


which are multiples of 100 and 1000. 

He soon found that the numbers rapidly 
became too large to calculat 
value, but he was able to find the position in 
the series at which these two multiples would 
first occur. 

Can you find them? Note that we do not 
require the actual numbers — just their posi- 
tions in the series! 

Solution to Puzzle No. 229 

Answer: A second sequence of primes will 
be formed from the digits 37199 

37199; 71993; 19937; 99371; 93719. 
Solution: Clearly, the only digits that can 
appear on the cards must be either 1, 3, 7, or 











times, at each stage the resulting number is 


number is prime the variable TAL is incre- 
mented by 1 
variable is equal to 5, then each of the 
numbers will have been prime. 


If at the end of the te 





this 


This gives two sequences of digits: 11939 


Rules 
The 


and 37199. 

Winner of Puzzle No. 229 

The winner this week is Christopher Webber 
of Roath, Cardiff who will be receiving £10. 


closing date for Puzzle 234 is 8 





























tested for primality in the subroutine. If the December. 

their complete 
10 DIM мса 140 IF PR=0 THEN TAL-TAL*1 
20 NC1)=12N(2)=3:N(3)=72NC4 150 NS=MIDS(NS, 2)+LEFTS(NS, 1) 
30 FOR A=1 TO 4 160 NEXT W 
40 FOR Bei TO 4 170 IF TAL=5 THEN PRINT N$ 
50 FOR C=1 TO 4 180 NEXT:NEXT: NEXT: NEXT: NEXT 
60 FOR D=1 TO 4 190 END 
70 FOR E=1 TO 4 1000 Pi 
100 NS=STRS(N(A)#100004N |1010 FOR z-3 TO SOR(N)+1 STEP2 
(B) *1000+N(E)*100+N(D) #104+NCE) |1020 IF N/Z=INT(N/Z) THEN 
110 FOR W-1 TO 5 PR=1:2=N 
120 N=VAL (N$) 1030 NEXT 
130 GOSUB 1000 1040 RETUEN 








10/POPULAR COMPUTING WEEKLY 


20-26 NOVEMBER 1986 




















stand and generally of limited 
value. 

Could you suggest any 
book títles which would be of 
help in learning SuperBasic 
programming? 

My second problem is that | 
cannot get the printer to work 
outside the Quil software. 
would like to be able to print 
Out home-brewed listings, 
etc, but | cannot even get the 
printer to work with the other 
Psion programs. 

Any forthcoming advice 


will be very gratefully 
received. 

H P M Keegan 

Bristol 


On the books front, look 
in computer 'ctions of 
bookshops for Century 
Hutchinson's Sinclair QL 
ries of titles, one of 
Which is entitled /ntro- 
duction to SuperBasic on 
the Sinclair QL. For gen- 
al books on the QL 
micro, you can write to 
Sunshine Books, 12-13 
Little Newport Street, 
London WC2H 7PP 
(sounds familiar?) for d 
tails on its range of OL 
title 
As for the printer prob- 
lem, anyone got any 
suggestions? 





























I dream of 
Genie 


low that the former na- 

tional Colour Genie Us- 
ers Group has closed its pre- 
mises, perhaps you could let 
readers know that they and 
their friends with Colour Ge- 
nies can obtain support and 
an international software 
range from my address: 24 
Glaisdale, Thatcham, Berks 
RG18 4X). 

Membership is free, the 
only conditions being that you 
enclose an SAE with all corre- 
spondence and there must be 
no copying of software. 

A Ram-based phonetic 
speech system is available for 
all models (are we the first to 
do one for a 16K micro with 
АК still free to Basic?). A tape 
magazine will be available 
from January 1987. 

Gerry Huggins 
Berks (Colour Genie) 
Users Group 





Look it up in 
the dictionary 


W: would like to point 
out that due to what 
appears to have been a typo- 
graphical error in our adverti- 
sement last week for The 
Press. The compression abili- 
ties of the program have been 
greatly understated, text can 
in fact be compressed by up 
to 50% not by only 15% as 
published in the ad. 

As a further point of inter- 
est we noticed in your de- 
scription of the product in 
New Releases that the com- 
pression time can run from } 
hour to ten hours dependent 
on fast or slow mode. The 
reviewer appears in fact to 
have missed the Dictionary 
option which allows you to 
use the general purpose dic- 
tionary provided with the pro- 
gram with which even a full 
size database can be com- 
pressed by some 40% in only 
two minutes. The compile op- 
tions are designed to allow 
this figure to be raised to 50% 
by generating a game specific 
dictionary 

We feel this letter may help. 
to clear up any misunder- 
standing occasioned by these 
errors. 

Howard Gilberts 
Gilsoft International Ltd 
5. Glamorgan 





“The testing machine 


managed 
to score 2708935435 36 
02662406429778320 before 
the joystick broke” 


The Dictionary option 
was not overlooked. We 
concentrated on the 
"compile and compress: 
option because the docu- 
mentation says it pro- 
duces the better results. 





What price a 
conversion? 


lot of talk has been going 

on recently about the 
price of software, that, with 
the exception of budget soft- 
ware, sells in the region of 
£9-£10. 

Of course there have been 
complaints about the fact that 
software for the Amstrad and 
Commodore computers is 
very nearly always a pound 
dearer than the equivalent 
Spectrum product, but here is 
what | think is another side of 
the argument. 

The example I'm about to 
use, and I'm not being vindic- 
tive as I'm sure that there are 
plenty of other examples, 
concerns the fact that when 
Gargoyle Games released 
Dun Darach for the Spectrum 
at £10 a go, no-one com- 
plained, saying what a fabu- 
lous piece of programmin 
graphic design etc that it was. 

Exactly the same com- 
ments were passed when the 
Amstrad version was 
released. 

Now, you may think what's 
wrong with that? Well, con- 
sidering that the Spectrum 
version took around six 
months of development time, 
that may well justify the £10 
price tag, but when you dis- 
cover that the conversion 
form the Spectrum to the Am- 
strad took only a fortnight, 
how can a similar price tag be 
justified? 

Of course Gargoyle may 
say that the Amstrad version 
is likely to sell less copies, but 
then why, wasn't the Spec- 
trum version sold cheaper 
than it was? 

| would be very interested 
to hear what Gargoyle Games 
have to say about the matter. 

Martin Joyce 
Motherwell 








time referred to was the 
time spent writing with 


two machines in mind. 
With Spectrum and Am- 
strad the same type of 
used. 

“The fortnight you say 
was the Amstrad conver- 
sion time lag between 
п being fin- 
ished and the oth: 

This will hold true for 
many conversions — fre- 














mind, rather than entirely 
Where con- 





fully rewrit- 
ten, development time on 
us conversion can be 

it 
would be decidedly odd if 
those who owned the 
original destination 
machine for a game had 








to bear loi 
ment costs and pay the 
most. 


No such thing 
as collective 
genius 


have been following your 

Readers vs Colossus chess 
tournament with interest. | 
am afraid it only confirms that 
there is no such thing as col- 
lective genius. 

You cannot expect the ma- 
jority to simultaneously agree 
On a new, innovative and 
sound move any more than 
you can expect a committee. 
to have an idea. Individuals. 
can have ideas, and collective. 
groups then adapt and/or ap- 
ply them. 

Brilliant chess players are 
few and far between, good 
ones are rare and competent 
Ones not that easy to find. 
We players in the poor to bad 
category are very thick on the. 
ground. 

Someone may well be 
sending moves of stunning 
ingenuity, but these will be 
swamped by the rest. Demo- 
cratic chess simply means 
that you find the lowest com- 
mon denominator. 

GJ Edwards 

Leeds 

Point taken, but the idea 

of the Popular chess tour- 

nament was never to 

make Kasparov gasp at 

the sheer brilliance of the 
readership. 

The idea is to let every- 
one get a chance at hav- 
ing a go at Colossus. 











20-26 NOVEMBER 1986 


POPULAR COMPUTING WEEKLY/11 


Hardware 











The Tandy in tandem with Amstrad |. 


John Lettice compares the new Tandy 1000EX to the Amstrad PC and leaves you 
to draw your own conclusions 


inosaurs may not have stalked the 
earth when Tandy first made it as 
a computer supplier — it just 
seems like they did. More recently, as 
newcomer IBM swept the board, it's 
seemed more a case of Tandy stocking 
dinosaurs, particularly in the UK. The 
Colour Computer and the TRS-80 series 
computers made some impression in the 
US but they were not big sellers here. 
More recently the company has made 
efforts to bring itself back into main- 
stream computing, first with the Tandy 
2000, similar to but not compatible with 
the IBM PC, then with the Tandy 1000, 
which was a cheap and relatively suc- 
cessful PC compatible, and now with the. 
1000EX 
The 1000EX is slightly pricier than the 
Amstrad PC, but is the cheapest PC. 
clone Tandy has yet produced, and has 
the advantage of being available now, 
rather than in 1987. Amstrad's new 
price for a 512K, single drive, mono- 


chrome monitor PC is £528, while the, standard, just to confuse matt 


entry level Tandy is also £528 for single 
drive, mono 256K machine. The Am- 
strad has bundled Gem, while the Tandy 
has bundled Personal Deskmate software 
plus a year's free software support. In 
terms of specification it's therefore diffi- 
cult to put a knife between the two. 

As far as design goes, however, there 
is a lot of difference. With the 1000EX 
Tandy has abandoned the "three box’ PC. 
configuration and has reverted to a sin- 
gle unit combining system and keyboard. 
plus detached monitor. 

The basic footprint is smaller than 
most PCs, but most of the space gained 
on the desktop is used up by the moni- 
tor. This will, just about, balance on top 
of the main unit, and the colour monitor 
tested here dwarfed it. Tandy sells a 
monitor stand for the machine, and in the 
interests of ergonomics buying one is 
advisable. 

There аге a few interesting side-ef- 
fects of the compactness of the system 
unit. There's only room for one 51 inch 
disc drive on board, and rather than 
being at the front, as with standard PCs, 
it’s tucked round the right hand side 
This makes it rather more difficult to 
access, and makes the disc drive light 
pointless, as you can’t see it. 

The expansion slots are another space 
saver, and are accessed through a small 
pop-out hatch at the rear of the machine 
They aren't IBM standard, taking instead 
smaller Tandy cards for extra Ram, 
95232 and internal modem. It's improb- 
able that you'll get much more in the way 


of expansion, but it's equally unlikely that 
you'll need much more. 

The rear of the machine, left to right, is 
taken up by printer port, expansion sock- 
et for a second disc drive (which can be 
either 51 inch or 3} inch), video socket, 
monitor output (standard for both mono 
and colour machines), the aforemen- 
tioned expansion slots and a fan. Tandy 
clearly doesn’t agree with Amstrad on 


anneal o Pi 
sort. 








ат de 
Sock ee 
Ы 


those software houses busily writing for 
the new Amstrad standard. 


Keyboard j 
The clicky bit is the most perplexing part 
of the machine. Because it had its own 
standard prior to IBM Tandy has tended 
tò do quirky things with its machines, 
even when it's producing an IBM compa- 
tible. The quirky thing here is that the 
layout, although basically qwerty, di- 
verges from the standard in several, not 
always logical, ways. 

‘Along the top of the machine you've 
got 12 function keys rather than ten, 
while the right hand side of the keyboard 
is — if you see what І mean — all over the 
place. The numeric keypad has been 
separated from the cursor keys, which 
are now tucked between the keypad and 
return key. Home and Print Screen are 
now separate keys, Num Lock has been 
moved down and a bizarre Hold key, for 
pausing a program, has been added... 

Delete has moved to the top of the 
keypad and Alt is just above return, 
making Ctrl/Alt/Del (warm boot) difficult 
to find, never mind execute. | can see 
logic in making minor adjustments to 
IBM's layout, but this sort of rejig is just 
plain silly. 


Software 

The bundled Persona! Deskmate soft- 
ware is one of the nicest things about the 
machine for a user on a budget. It's 
organised as yet another user friendly 
interface to applications, starting off as 


the Tandy Desktop, which presents you 
with several software options. These 
include an easy to use word processor, 
small spreadsheet, database, graphics 
package, calendar and communications 
program. 

Besides these you've got various ac- 
cessories, including notepad, smaller 
«calendar, calculator and phone list that 
сап be used from inside other Deskmate 
applications, The software clearly isn't 
big-league ‘power user stuff, but it 
should be attractive to users on a budget 
who want something cheap but effec- 
tive. My use of the programs was, 
however, hampered by the fact that | 
didn't have a mouse. Some ‘user friendly 
interfaces’ are fairly simple to use from 
the keyboard, duplicating mouse func- 
tions with the cursor keys and, say, 
Home, but this isn't one of them. 

Third party software is a bit weirder 
Most business applications software 
works fine within the limitations of the 
Single disc drive, and as there's a facility 
fo Switch round drives when you have a 
‘second drive fitted (ie, either drive can be. 
drivé A) you could add a little flexibility 
by using a 3} inch second drive instead 
Of a 51 inch 

mes software tends to test compa- 
у more, as games authors are less 
fussy about sticking to the manufac- 
[г s hardware guidelines, end here the 
andy doesn't come off at all well. 
Hacker, which Tandy had intended to sell 
for the machine, doesn't respond to the 
cursor keys, while Boulder Dash has 
cursor left as a default (take your hands 
off the keys and the figure moves left 
rather than standing still). Tandy inciden- 
tally insists that the machine will work 
with the PC Junior version of Hacker. My 
version of Hacker says it will work with 
the PC Junior. You tell me 

I tried about half a dozen, and the only 
ones that worked properly were World 
Championship Golf and Seven Cities of 
Gold. The latter was, however, an educa- 
tion, as it became apparent that Elec- 
tronic Arts had patched the program so 
that it checked to see if the machine was 
a Tandy, and if so produced very nice 
three channel sound. Now if Tandy could 
get everybody to do this it could use the 
machine's sound (much better than the 
PC's feeble beeping noise) as a selling 
point. 

The problem with the games seems to 
be related to the scanning of the non- 
standard keyboard, but even some of 
the ones that didn't work all that well 
pointed up the Tandy's graphics, which 





12/POPULAR COMPUTING WEEKLY 


20-26 NOVEMBER 1986 








Hardware 





are very good indeed. The price paid here 
appears to be in terms of speed. My 
patent F- 15 Strike Eagle test (see Popular, 
September 25, 1986) took almost twice 
as long to execute as on the Amstrad PC, 
and other games also seemed fairly 
slow. This, of course, won't affect 
serious software so much, unless you're 
doing a lot of graphics work. 


Verdict 
The 1000EX does have defects in terms 
of speed and compatibility, although the 
latter could be worse, as Tandy is taking 
steps to sort it out, and in any event 
always carries a good range of software 
support for its machines. On the plus 
side its bundled software makes it a 
better ‘plug in and go’ deal than the 
Amstrad, and the addition of sound and 
improved graphics might make it a better 
deal for some people 

Is it better than the Amstrad? Probably 
not, although | find myself veering back 
and forth between yes and no. In terms 
of industry standard expandability the 
Amstrad is certainly better, but if you 
want something halfway between a 


PCW and a PC you might find the Tandy 
more to your taste. 











Product Tandy 7000ЕХ Price £528 
for 256K, single drive and mono mon- 
itor Supplier Tandy UK, Leamore 
Lane, Bloxwich, Walsall, West Mid- 
lands WS2 7PS (0922 477778). 









The first ever Atari Show last spring 
was an outstanding success. From all 
over Britain Atari enthusiasts flocked 
to London to find out all they could 
about their favourite machine. 


Now the record-breaking Atari 
Show is back - with three days 
devoted to the exciting developments 
now taking place in this expanding 
market. Make sure you don't miss. 
this great Christmas extravaganza! 














questions. 








* All the latest software from publishers in both the UK and USA. 
* New hardware releases from Atari and other major companies. 
* Experts from Atari User and Atari ST User to answer your 


* Experience the fascinating world of computer communications. 
+ Everything on show from stocking filers to complete Atari systems. 


Whether you're a new user or a seasoned addict, 


A clear vision 


he Amstrad idea of connecting 

your computer to a monitor 

instead of hogging the TV seems 
to have come full circle with this piece of 
hardware from Screens Micro Distribu- 
tion. The Screenvision is a TV tuner 
which allows your monitor to receive 
television pictures (and use a video re- 
corder with ít) for the bargain price of 
£70. If no one in your household has a 
TV licence, though, you'll have to budget 
for one of those as well, unless you want 
to run the gauntlet of the Home Office 
detector vans. 

Unpacking the Screenvision from its 
box reveals a grey and black plastic case 
adorned with eight channel selectors on 
the front and various knobs and sockets 
оп the back. These include brightness, 
sound, colour and contrast controls, 
linear RCB (not TTL), phono, composite 
video BNC and TV sockets, so you can 
use any comparable monitor. The casing 
is strong enough for everyday misuse 
but I wouldn't recommend you plonking 
anything heavy on top as a detrimental 
effect will probably be the outcome. 

Setting the tuner up is a fairly simple 
matter. First the monitor lead has to be 
plugged into the back. Then, the channel 
selectors have to be tuned in via the drop 
down panel on the front. Finally, connect 
up an aerial and away you go. 





An event NOT to be missed! 


Atari Christmas Show 


Royal Horticultural Hall, Westminster, London SW1 


Pus | у ан | 
Ag B 


: $ 
consoles. š 
Games 
machines 













A 
NARI 












you'll find the show overflowing with Ideas to 
help you expand YOUR computing horizons! 














Bring this coupon to the Show to get 50р per person off 
the normal admission price of £3 (adults), £2 (children). 


Valid for up to four people 
Friday Nov 28, 10am-6pm 
Saturday Nov 29, 10am-6pm 
Sunday Nov 30, 10am-4pm 


Royal Horticultural Hall, 
Westminster, London SW1 






Or maybe not. It all depends on the 
quality of signal you receive in your area. 
If you live in a very poor reception area 
then a portable aerial will be no good and 
you must connect the tuner up to an 
external one if you want to avoid wasting 
your money. 

To test the Screenvision we compared 
the pictures from it with those on a 
portable TV, using the same aerial for 
both. Allowing for the fact that the test 
site is well shielded from TV signals, the 
Screenvision's picture matched that of 
the portable (which produces a good 
display elsewhere) in clarity but had 
much more difficulty picking up colour. 
The instructions supplied do in fact point 
‘out that in low signal areas colour fade 
will be evident. 

However, bearing possible reception 
problems in mind, and assuming you 
have the licence business covered then 
the Screenvision is a cheap way of 
getting a TV, even if you have to pack the 
computer away while you use it 

Duncan Evans 











station: Victoria 
же кє кш em ee ss. 




















Having fun in public 


Marcus Rowland reviews public domain computer games 


wo weeks ago we looked at the 

I Possibilities of using cheap public 

domain PC software for business 

use. This time I'm going to discuss some 

of the games available from the public 
domain network 

Most commercial games are some- 
what expensive (for example £19 or 
more for a fairly run of the mill arcade 
game, compared to £8-£9 for a better 
Spectrum equivalent, or £1.99 if you're 
talking budget), but there's one interest- 
ing alternative; the cheap and free pro- 
grams distributed by special interest 
group (SIG) libraries. All of the software 
in these libraries is either public domain 
or Freeware 

For a full explanation of the salient 
differences between public domain soft- 
ware and Freeware, see the correspond- 
ing article in Popular, Novernber 6. If you 
don't have the article to hand, then 
basically public domain is 
available free of charge, and 
the user has permission to 
copy it, or modify it at will 
Authors of Freeware pro- 
grams generally expect 
some payment; if users reg- 
ister with the author they 
usually get free upgrades of 
the program. 

Many of these programs 
are available from the Ameri- 
can PC-SIG and PC-Blue col- 
lection, and Britain's 
PCBBUK (PC Bulletin Board 
UK) Library (see below for 
addresses). Prices for dupli- 
cation of one library volume 
to a 360K formatted disc 
varies between around 
£1.50 and £2, and a mem- 
bership fee is payable. 

The best way of finding interesting 
games is probably to club together with 
other people using the same machine, 
since large orders generally cost less. 
Remember that, to quote Sturgeon's 
Law, "90% of everything is crud”. This 
is unfortunately true of the vast majority 
of games available through these chan- 
nels. The discs are crammed with end- 
less versions of Mastermind, Guess the 
Number, and Tic-tac-toe (Noughts and 
Crosses), many of which don't use col- 
our. However, given several hundred 
programs, there has to be a few gems in 
there. The programs below are a small 
selection, ones l've liked enough to 
keep. Most of the volumes mentioned 
include several other games of varying 
quality. 

Programs were tested on a 640K IBM 
PC with a colour card and RGB monitor, 
and were tested in the same way as the 


business programs two weeks ago 
Most have also been tested (fairly briefly) 
on the new Amstrad PC. 

PC Chess, by Mike Carpino, is a work- 
manlike implementation of the game. It 
offers four levels of play, use as a board 
for a two-player game, clocks, colour or 
monochrome display, optional self-play, 
board rearrangement, exchange of co- 
lours, joystick or keyboard control, hard 
copy, game save (for a maximum of 26 
games), and sound (a beep as each piece 
is moved). Moves are entered by joystick 
or by algebraic codes. I'm a poor player 
and have never beaten this program or 
found any obvious weaknesses. A friend 
who is more expert says that it plays 
well, but will occasionally interpret per- 
petual check as а draw. The disc in- 
cludes 18 pages of instructions, confi- 
guration routines, and three program 
modules which must be prepared for use 


INP. 


The workman's chess game 


by a fairly simple set-up procedure 

PC-Chess needs only 64K and includes 
colour or monochrome versions. Regis- 
tration is $15 (around £10), without 
benefits (PC-SIG Vol 120). 

Duelling Starships. by d'Angelo and 
Dea, is a two-player tactical combat 
version of Star Trek. The screen and 
keyboard are split in half, and the docu- 
mentation includes templates for card- 
board masks, used to stop each player 
seeing the other's half. Unfortunately the 
left hand player is supposed to use the 
function keys; many PC-compatibles (for 
example, the Tandy models) have these 
along the top of the board. 

The game works in real time, and a 
player with fast responses might easily 
get in two or three shots before the other 
retaliates. It uses text characters only, 
and there is no way of configuring it to 
give colour on a colour display. The disc 









holds 26 pages of documentation. Duel- 
ling Starships needs only 64K. Registra- 
tion costs $15, no benefits are specified 
(PC-SIG Vol 260). A CP/M version is also 
available. 
3-Demon, by John D Price and Rick 
Richardson, takes two old ideas, three- 
dimensional mazes and Pacman, and 
combines them into an entertaining 
game. The player has a restricted view of 
the maze, plus a radar display showing 
the distance and bearing of ghosts 
(called ghouls). The cursor keys control 
movement (rotation and forward mo- 
tion), the cursor pad plus key brings in a 
map of the maze and suspends the 
game. There are nine levels, all fast, with 
the top 10 scores for each level saved to 
disc. It uses simple but effective medi- 
um-resolution colour or monochrome 
graphics, and the ghosts look convinc- 
ingly menacing (in a jelly-like way) as 
they prowl the maze. It’s the 
only game to have a help 
screen which can be used in 
play. Documentation is on 
the disc, but seems to be 
designed to be viewed on 
the screen only; page breaks 
don't correspond to any nor- 
mal paper size. 

3-Demon requires 128K 
and a colour graphics board, 
with a colour or monoch: 
rome monitor. Registration is 
$10 (around £7), the source 
code is sent for $50 (£35) 
(PCBBUK Vol 40). 

Janitor Joe by Kevin Bales 
is a fairly simple platform 
game, owing a lot to Jump- 
man and other games of its 
ilk. Control is by cursor keys 
апа spacebar or joystick; op- 
tions include levels and sound. A colour 
display is needed, and the characters are 
fairly small and lacking in detail. The disc 
includes a help file with suggestions on 
strategy (and cheating) for each level of 
play. 

Janitor Joe needs 128K and colour and 
is in the public domain (PC-SIG Vol 176). 

Willy the Worm by Alan Farmer is a 
similar platform game. However, it offers. 
eight screens and the disc includes a 





























KBD 





screen editor which allows game custo- 
misation. It can be configured for graph- 
ics or for the basic IBM text mode 
(essential for some clones and minimum. 


configuration IBM PCs), plays some 
pretty tunes and is reasonably fast. The 
top ten scores are saved to disc; there's 
also a display of the ten best scores of 
the day. 


More games next week. 





14/POPULAR COMPUTING WEEKLY 


20-26 NOVEMBER 1986 








FREE GAME 


when you subscribe 





7 4 WEEKLY 
Your choice of any one of the games listed below is free 
when you subscribe to Popular Computing Weekly 
greet repel lie дечу рае онуно Шосе |] 


Please enter my annual subscription to Popular Computing Weekly at £28.00 UK. (£39.95 Overseas), and send my froo Game as 
marked below. 





Commodore 64 Amstrad. Spectrum BBC Micro B. 
D Willow Pattern О Don't Panic О Willow Pattern О Fat Man Sam 
О Chicken Chase CI Chimera О Chicken Chase D Microcosm 


O enclose a cheque made payable to Sunshine Publications Ltd. 


5 Please charge my Visa/Access card No: T T T TT | LLIIIITI] Ery Dae 


Name: Address: 

















Computers owned: Age: 


Return this form together with your payment to: PCW Subs, 12-13 Little Newport St., London WC2H 7PP (Allow 28 days for delivery) 

















9th official 
commodore 
computer show 












KSEE jnre 


November 21 
When the versatile C64 takes to | 10am-6pm Saturday, 
the stage you'll be treated to an | November 22 
amazing kaleidascope of sound 
and music. 







10am-4pm Sunday, 
November 23 


















entire Commodore 
family — from the 
C16 and Plus 4 to 
the 64, C64, C128. 
and the fabulous. 
Amiga. 









Looking for ideas for gifts? 
Take your pick from many 
thousands of products. 
from stocking fillers to 
major presents, including 
ali th software and 
hard leases. 









Everyone who's anyone in the growing 
Commodore world — including a number 
of mystery celebrities. The last time a 
Commodore Show was held in London it 
attracted a record 20.000 visitors. 

musssssssssasanananauma, 

Bring this coupon to the Show to get 50p per person off 


normal admission price of £3 (adults), Є2 (children) 
Маа tor up o four people 

































Windows. icons 
and pull-down 
menus — see the 





















e ee e P | а ги E 





‘Sunday, Nov 23, 10ат-4рт 
Amiga the most talked-about computer ONE NE 
range of them all 






Champagne Suite & Exhibition Centre, 
Novotel, Hammersmith, London W6. 


taron на 
== 























NOVEMBER 1986 POPULAR COMPUTING WEEKLY/15 








Games: reviews 











$. x 
* 


peta co 


LIVES оо SCORE 902150 





ode Masters have final- 

ly released their first 

batch of games, and 

there can be no doubt that if 

they keep this initial high stan- 

dard up, Mastertronic and 

Firebird are at last going to 

have some significant compe- 
tition on their hands. 

Terracognita has been writ- 


ten by Steve Curtis (author of 
that Mastertronic biggie Mon 
aqueterrous) and its solid 
budget fare 

Nothing too demanding in 
the brain department, apart 
from reasonable map making 
skills, but your reflexes will 
know about it all right. 

You are faced with a screen 


Code Master’s 
brilliant début 


scrolling vertically down- 
wards — scattered with im- 
passable walls with tiny gaps 
and the obligatory kamakazi 
aliens. Through this futuristic 
impression of Oxford Street 
on Christmas Eve, you must 
manoeuvre your spacecraft 
left, right, up and down, zap- 
ping like mad and trying to 
pass over certain special 
squares (giving bonus score, 
extra lives, extra fuel, etc) and 
avoid others (time warp . . . it 
takes you back to the start, 
and ‘speed up’ squares that 
make the screen scroll faster) 

Code Masters say that 
there are about 100 screens 
worth of scrolling in the thing 
— so you can be assured that 


cracking it will take quite 
some time . . . even using the 
cheat I've discovered. 

Totally unlike his last offer- 
ing, Steve has produced 
another little cracker — one 
that is certain to find its way 
into one or two Christmas 


Stockings. 
Popular Appeal $ $ $ 
John Cook 





Program Terracognita 
Micro Spectrum/Am- 
strad CPC Price £1.99 


bury, Oxon OX16 7RT. 








A brave new world for the Commodore 


nco’s decision to sup- 
port the Commodore 
C16 and Plus/4 is a 


brave one, and all owners of 
these neglected machines 
should wish the company 
luck. It's fairly easy to pro- 
duce fast, flashy arcade 
games with not too much 
sophistication on the C16; 
something which uses the full 
64K memory of the Plus/4 
should, though, be as good as 
if not better than a Commo- 
dore 64 program, and Bridge- 
head doesn't quite come up 
to that standard, 

It's а joystick-only combi- 
nation of platforms-and-lad- 
ders and Commando; the 
Screen scrolls horizontally, 
and you control a small ani- 
mated soldier armed with a 
knife and grenades. There are 
64 screens to get through, all 
of which scroll bidirectionally, 
although the backgrounds are 
pretty chunky; big bright pat- 
terns rather than fine detail 

Enemy soldiers become 
progressively more vicious, 
attacking with guns, bazoo- 
kas and heat-seeking mis- 
siles. Stabbing them requires 
split-second timing, and re- 
moving landmines with gre- 


nades demands precise aim. 
Apart from that it's just a 
matter of climbing ladders 
and negotiating causeways, 
picking up spare ammo and 
penetrating through to the 
enemy base. 


Not an inspiring game, but 
worth considering if the lack 
of Plus/4 arcade software is 
getting you down. 


Popular Appeal $ Ф 
Chris Jenkins 








Mailstrom delivers 


ne of the few games 
coming out this 
Christmas not to be 


based on a Sylvester Stallone 
film, Mailstrom is a highly in- 
dividual fantasy. 

Civilisation has collapsed; 
criminals roam the streets; 
public servants fear for their 
lives; anarchy rules. It's like a 
Saturday night on the Broad- 
water Farm Estate. 

Through this chaos strides 
the heroic figure of Michael 
Nasty, postman, with his 
high-powered, heavily-armed 
bright red van, and a deter- 
mination that the mail must 
get through. 

The van moves left to right 
across the scrolling back- 
ground, and Michael's actions 
are controlled using icons at 


the bottom centre of the 
Screen. He can be made to 
leave the van to collect items 
found in the road, store them 
in the back of the van, check 
the status of the van and 
select weapons and power 
boosters. 

Your task is to collect sacks 
of mail from the sorting of- 
fice, and deliver letters to the 
houses indicated. Along the 
way you must open post box- 
es, deposit empty sacks at 
post offices and avoid attack 
from various antisocial 
elements. 

This is a pretty minor game, 
featuring reasonable levels of 
programming and invention, 
but nothing spectacular. | do 
hope, though, that our post- 
men get to see it, and become 


inspired by Michael Nasty's 

example to deliver the post to 

us before 1.00 pm some- 

times 

Popular Appeal $ $ $ 
Patrick Arche! 











16/POPULAR COMPUTING WEEKLY 


20-26 NOVEMBER 1986 

















Games: reviews 





Avenger 


runs 


the gauntlet 


jon't be fooled by the 
sub-title Way of the 
Tiger into thinking that 
Avenger is just a re-run of the 
original martial arts adven- 
ture. In fact, if anything, it's 
closest to all the Gauntlet 
clones — Dandy, Druid and so 
forth. 
Avenger casts you as a bold 
ninja warrior, out to avenge 





On the Spectrum 


the murder of your foster 
father and retrieve the stolen 
scrolls from the evil Yaemon. 
The playing area is viewed 
from above with the semi- 
perspective effect familiar 
from Gauntlet. Your move 
your warrior around the de- 
tailed background, which 
scrolls so far then flips to 
another screen. 

Your opponents, who can 
be defeated with ninja stars 
or well-placed kicks to the 
groin, consist of various ori- 
ental baddies and nasty mon- 
sters. Defeating them results 
in their disappearance in a 
puff of dust, Ultimare-style. 

There are keys to collect, 
doors to open, traps to avoid, 
good tunes to listen to, and 
lots of fast and colourful ac- 
tion. Certainly one of the best 


TREASURE 


SHURIKEN 


Amstrad avenged 
games of its type, Avenger is 
also available on the Amstrad 
in a version which adds multi- 
colour characters. 


Popular Appeal $ $ $ $ 
Chris Jenkins. 











Everyone's a mercenary... 


fter first appearing on 
the Commodore 64. 
Mercenary has now 


been released for the Atari ST 
in a compendium package 
featuring the Second City as 
well as Escape from Targ. The 
compendium itself contains a 
plastic wallet housing the 
game disc, Interlude on Targ (a 
short story), a glossy colour 
map of Targ Central City and a 


couple of plain maps covering 
the underground complexes. 
For those who missed Mer: 
cenary first time round, here's 
a brief résumé of the plot 
Your spaceship has crash 
landed on Targ, smack in the 
middle of Targ Central City in 
fact, a planet half in the con: 
trol of the peaceful Palyars, 
though they're not averse to 
blasting away should you de- 





cide to flatten some of their 
buildings (which collapse in a 
wonderfully animated way), 
and half under the thumb of 
the invading Mechanoids 
Your objective is simple. Es- 
cape from Targ. To do this 
you'll need transport, lots of 
money and a ship capable of 
reaching the Palyar colony 
craft hovering far above the 
city. 

In order to get the money 
certain tasks for either side, 
or maybe both, must be per- 
formed, and various puzzles 
within the complexes beneath 
the city have to be solved 
First thing to do, though, is 
get some wheels (or wings in 
this case). Handily there's a 
Ship nearby which the Palyars 
are willing to sell for 5000 of 
your 9000 credits. If you're of 
а light fingered persuasion 
then the alternative is cheaper 
but more dangerous. 

All the action takes place in 
wire frame 3D graphics which 
move smoothly when flying 
slowly and whizz past at an 
incredible speed when full 


throttle is applied. The graph- 
ics are exactly the same as on 
the C64 version, being three 
colour and not devastatingly 
impressive, although the ani 

mation and speed are. 

After getting airborne the 
next objective is to find an 
elevator to take you under- 
ground where you must roam 
around collecting objects and 
figuring out how in hell you're 
going to get off Targ. 

Even if you do escape 
there's always The Second 
City on the disc to play. The 
Mercenary Compendium of- 
fers arcade, strategy and 
problem elements and, given 
pricing in the ST software 
market, a good value for mon- 
ey game. 

Popular Appeal $ $ $ € 
Duncan Evans 








20-26 NOVEMBER 1986 


POPULAR COMPUTING WEEKLY/17 


Check out these offers оп top quality printers. All the models offered are substantially 
‘ada rom th normal high sea prens Pres are fay ceive o1 VAT, diver 
to s 


PANASONIC KXP 1080 


Now an even better price for this popular printer. A huge number of print 
‘options can be achieved, the switch selectable М.О being available in all 
modes except sub/superscript. The quality of the NLQ is far better than 
‘other similarly priced printers. Features include 100 cps draft mode, 20 
cps NLQ, friction and tractor feed, Epson compatibility and easy change 


long life ribbon. 
ONLY £179.95 
MICRO P. MPI65 


The best NLQ of any printer in the price range? Most people who see it 
think so. This printer has proved very, very popular over the last year and 
‘even more so at this super competitive price. An unusually high draft 
Speed of 165 cps and its superb switch selectable NLO at 35 cps make 
this the class winner for performance por pound. Standard features 
Include friction and tractor feed, 2K buffer, Epson compatibiity, quiet 
‘operation and full graphics capability. Must be the highest spec available 


тт 
i ONLY £219.95 
STAR NL10 


New high specification printer just released. А! the usual features PLUS 
вазу front panel selection of most modes, semi-automatic, single sheet 
teed, double and quad height characters AND plug in interface cartridges 
Choose between standard centronics parallel, IBM, or Commodore. Ideal 
for Commodore owners who want the convenience of a CMB ready 
printer but may wish to change later, just buy a new interface cartridge for 
£39.00. When reviewing this model in a group test with the Epson LX80. 
Citizen MSP-T0E and others, What Micro magazine referred to it as "the 
Rolls-Royce of these printers”. A single sheet feeder is available for 


£63.00. 
OUR PRICE: ONLY £259.00 
(state which cartridge required) 


JUKI 6100 
А superb DAISYWHEEL printer, this model provides the highest quality 
print that only a daisywheel can provide. Print speed is 20 cps and the 
aisywhoel itself is of the common Triumph Adler type. Ribbons are of 
the cheap and easily obtainable IBM selectric variety, 


ONLY £289.00 
MICRO P. MP200 


A brand now very high specification dot matrix printer which will print in 
draft mode at 200 cps and М.О at 40 cps. Additional font cartridges are 
available to vary the print style, Most functions can be accessed from the 
front panel as well as through codes. Another high spec feature is its BK 
buffer. It is Epson compatible and has full graphics ability, 


ONLY £299.00 























1040 STF Mono £79900 520 STM c/w SF354 
1040 STF Colour 699900 dsc drive £449.00 
(These prices include VAT and “The Pawn” F.O.C.) 








LIMITED OFFER 
Complete brand new CBM 64 circuit boards. Repair your 
own '64, upgrade your VIC-20 or keep as a spare £45.00 











СВМ 1541C Disk dive £189.95 — CBM 64 power pack £24.95 
СВМ MCS801 Colour printer £199.95 СВМ compatible data rec. — £2995 


СВМ ВАС connoisseurs pack, c/w mouse, tape deck, s/ware etc. £239.95 
ALL OFFERS SUBJECT TO AVAILABILITY 


p Trade enquiries weicome. European orders 
Send price as advertised. Outside Europe £200 for airman. Mail order to 
Evesham Shop please. 


EVESHAM MICROS 
BRIDGE STREET, EVESHAM, 
WORCS WR11 ARY. 

Tel: 0386 41989 


MICRO CENTRE 
1756 PERSHORE ROAD, 
COTTERIDGE, BIRMINGHAM. 
Tel: 021-458 4564 





18/POPULAR COMPUTING WEEKLY 





IBM COMPATIBLE MACHINES 
Bondwell РС BW34 640K RAM dual ds 380K 54” drives 12" green monitor 
Bundled MS DOS-GW basic 
‘ARP £688.85 WAVE £603.00 (a) 
Bondwell PC BW36 Specifications ас ВИЗА except single drive + 20Mb 


Winchester hard disk 
RRP £1148,85 МАМЕ £1025.00 (a) 


HARDWARE 


Amstrad PCW 8256 inc. printer monitor RRP WAVE 
and software £458.85 — £40900 (a) 
Amstrad PCW 8512 inè. printer monitor 
and software £57385 
20d 3- Drive ONLY — PCW 
dnd Y Dive + 250K Rom uppie РОИ 
СРО 8256 Cent. - RS232 Interface - PCW 
Álphacom 32/Timex 20/40 primer-spec/2X81 
С Master 128 
Ferguson 37140A 14” Portable TV 
Ferguson 14C10 14° Pare V 
Monitor Style, black 
Psion Organiser | hand held computer w.s | 
СВМ MPS803 Dot Matra Printer ine. Tractor Feed 
СВМ БАС Conosseurs colection inc. CBMBAC, 
CN cass unt, NEOS Mouse 8 Software, + Chess, 
Слз, баг, Pitman's Typing Tutor £249.99 
DMP 2000 Printer ine. free cable for CPC £169.00 
Amstrad CPC 6128 Colour £399.00 
ZX Spectrum plus 48K inc. free s/w 
SOFTWARE 
6128/PCW £99.99 
8128/PCW £69.99 
BI2U/PCW £69.99 
6128/PCW £149.99 
PCW £149.99 


£169.99 
£189.99 


Sape accounts 1 
Sage rod pl ion 2 
{90 penal 3 
Sage кшшз plus 142 
ge combo pack 1+3 61 
Sape supe combo pad 14263 6128/PCW E199 99 
TP nope t gh Seed ның эм mail FEW, £83.99 
i Ne ñ dog andi 
Totem BMAL mal sene iw ocos PEW £29 38 
[осоп Rotate prms as Нез эмет) POW [24% 
‘mor Prospel al u/ps me. осока PCW £29.95 
A ен nce АТ Pans aig inc los: 500 
t) £400 (£3 00 d) £209 fe) £1.00 (Í 50p-Desptted by im ol post 


З. ДА. 7. ЕЕ. (mail order) 
Walney Audio Video & Electri 
53 Shearwater Crescent, Barrow-in-Furne: 
Cumbria LA14 3JP. Telephone: 0229 44753 


БЕЗЕ 9 


EE 





“THE ADVENTURERS HANDBOOK” 


The monthly book no self-confessed adventurer 
should be without. 
“Stunning value” — Tony Bridge, PCW, 
issue 13 available now! 


44 pages of adventure help and news 
for just £1 
FOR EVEN BETTER VALUE 
TAKE ADVANTAGE OF OUR SUBSCRIPTION RATES 
3 issues for £2.75 
6 issues for £5.00 
12 issues for £9.00 
Issues 1 to 12 are still available and cover hints, 
maps and solutions to over 225 adventures (issues 
1-12 for £9 or £ 1 each individually). 


ARCADE PLAYERS 


If you enjoy arcade games why not take a look at our other 
handbooks — £ 1 each — back copies and subscriptions as 
for Adventurer. 

Spectrum Arcade Handbook — issue 13 
Commodore Arcade Handbook — issue 12 
Amstrad Handbook (including adventures) — issue 12 
BBC Handbook (including adventures) — issue 12 
C16/Plus 4 Handbook (including adventures) — issue 6 


Send cheque or PO to: 


H&D SERVICES (PCW) 
1338 Ashton Old Road 
Higher Openshaw 
Manchester M11 1JG 
Tel: 061-370 5666 








20-26 NOVEMBER 1986 











Adventue Corner 








avid Oya from Banbury is obvious- 

ly a Wally Fawkes fan, as his new 

Quild adventure for the Am- 
strad is called Flook (actually, Flook One. 
as others in the series will be coming 
along soon). Although the original Flook 
was a little, furry, snub-nosed creature 
in David's story Flook is your surname. 
The player takes the role of Heronimus 
Flook, mild-mannered computer pro- 
grammer who has been caught by the 
boss playing (shock, horror) adventure 
games and incarcerated in a remote 
farmhouse ~ a very strange reprimand, | 
must say. Anyway, here you are, stuck in 
the very first location and trying to get 
ош. All the usual W, Е, S, N, Up апа 
Down commands have no effect, neither 
‘can you Break Door or otherwise escape 
that way. 

Then you notice the computer in the 
corner, currently displaying a zap-'em-up 
game. This holds the key to your libera- 
tion, which isn't far away even though 
you uncover a bug in the meantime. Once 
escaped from the farmhouse you'll be 
able to visit many locations and discover 
some useful objects. А 

The puzzles associated with them are 
to a large extent rather nonsensical 
although there is a certain crazy logic | 
suppose (you can do some very interest- 
ing things to an 'elephant-sized geran- 
ium’ with a clockwork mouse), and it's a 
case of manipulation and waiting for 
something to happen 

But there is a good atmosphere 
evoked by the text, which is rather chatty 
and humorous even though the style 
isn't up to much, and a few spelling 
mistakes crop up. Speed of responses 
are up to the usual Quill standard and 
you'll find an answer to most inputs (the 
default, rather than being the more usual 
"1 don't know what you mean...” is a 
faintly amusing bit of Franglaise, but at 
least that's better than the desperate 
"Come on you idiot" kind of answer 
found in all too many Quid efforts 
nowadays). 

All in all, nothing too world-shaking, 
but a good beginner's adventure (as well 
as a good hint sheet if required and a 
newsletter) for a very good price, just 
£1.75 for a cassette or £1.25 plus a 
formatted disc from David at 24 Kings- 
way, Banbury, Oxon OX16 9NY. The 
second part is due now and a third is well 
on the way. 


The Space Idiot and 


the Flook 


Tony Bridge is delighted by some 


non-mainstream adventures 


There are some weird people about — 
many of them seem to be writing and 
playing adventures, and West Yorkshire. 
holds its fair share of them if Microtech's 
effort 20014 — a Space idiot is anything to 
go by. 

The adventure is Quilled, Patched and 
illustrated and a lot of thought has gone 
into the composition of the story, as 
you'l see from the very start — the 
loading screen is sensational (and, 
thankfully, quick to load). The original 
2001 (upon which this story is most 
definitely not based) employed two 
Strausses, Richard and Johann, for inci- 
dental music and so it's very fitting that 
Microtech use part of Mozart's Eine 
Kleine Nachtmusik until the player 
presses a key to begin; the poor old 
Spectrum copes as well as can be 
expected 

The opening text screen is a bit hack- 
neyed, though: "These are the voyages _ 
of the Starship Retrograde, its five-year 
mission to boldly go where we've been 
umpteen times before. Far into the future 
lay intrigue, mystery, horror, tension, 
excitement, curious beings, intelligent 
computers, thrills, spills, wonder, war, 
muck-raking and automated toilets. But 
in this adventure these are irrele- 
vant . . "апа so on. However, this is the 
only hint you might get of a story — 
broadly, the adventure is space-y, with a 
futuristic character set, and the main 
quest is “Escape from the ship before it 
collides with Belta Goose" (although 
there is a secondary quest which is up to 
you to find). 

The opening sentence in the documen- 
tation says: “Explain this if you can." | 
don't think 1 can, so let me give you, 
verbatim, a couple of location descrip- 
tions which should give you some of the 





Adventure Helpline 


Going bananas? М you are stuck in an 
‘Adventure with nowhere to turn do not 
despair — help is at hand. 

Fill in the coupon, explaining your prob- 


flavour of the proceedings. 

“You are not, not in the entertainment 
1/4s. There isn’t a constant drip, drip- 
ping of yellow steam in the caverns of 
the captain's mouth. Unwantedly the 
hassle of your Christmas shopping is 
non-existedness.”” And “Store room are 
you in? No, I'm am. Have you ever seen 
the monster? No, I'm am. Where do you 
live? In a living place.” And every other 
description is equally baffling. Some are 
genuinely funny (a dim understanding of 
what is going on permeates the thick 
Bridge skull) while others are merely 
annoying. The funny bits come not only 
from the crazy imagery but also from the 
thinly-disguised characters that pop up 
‘occasionally, like Neil Armweak and Fun- 
gus McNeil, who seems to have done 
something very nasty to Microtech 

There are lots of locations to be ex- 
plored, and progress forward is mostly 
easily accomplished. The first problem 
you come across, however, is in moving 
around. All direction commands, and 
many of the others, are transposed, so 
that North, for example, becomes North- 
west and so on; and you must Wear 
objects to get them, and Take them to 
wear them. Why, | haven't the faintest 
idea, and as far as | can see, you're not 
made aware of this fact — rather, you 
must sort things out for yourself. 

Although most adventures are written 
(and played) with puzzle-solving in mind, 
nevertheless there is room for games 
which create an atmosphere in which the 
player can wander around manipulating 
the environment. Infocom, | suppose, is 
the expert at this (see Suspended and 
Mind Forever Voyaging), but the осса- 
sional budget game turns up which is 
worth playing for reasons other than the 
sheer cracking of logical conundra. 




















20-26 NOVEMBER 1986 


POPULAR COMPUTING WEEKLY/19 








| Games: Arcade Action 








hose lucky enough to be near a 
television set at four in the after- 
noon, or who have a video record- 

er at their disposal should make an effort 
to catch up with the marvellously creepy 
ITV programme Trapdoor. For those that 
can't see the program look out for the 
Piranha software release of Don Priest- 
ley's excellent Trapdoor game which per- 
fectly captures the atmosphere with 
some superb cartoon-like graphics. It 
also earns the distinction of being the 
first TV spin-off which appeared before 
the original. 

Many, many thanks to the team at 
MikroGen who have heard and acted on 
my plea for help with the fiendish Frost 
Byte. | know that a few people have had 
trouble even getting off the first screen. 
Unfortunately it's not particularly easy 
when you do know how, but here goes 
anyway. 

Start: You start in room seven (don't ask 

me why but it must have made sense to 

somebody). To finish the first level you 
must leave through the exit in room one 

Room Seven: Take the bullets which are 

to the right of the gate and ‘use’ them so 

that you are able to fire. You can't shoot 
the top alien but fall off the platform to 
the left and shoot the bottom two aliens. 

Walk along the bottom into room eight. 

Room Eight: To get past the water drops 

you have to keep jumping in the air and at 

the right time move right as you are 
falling. Before going past the second 
water drop shoot the alien beyond it 

Proceed to room nine. 

Room Nine: Shoot the rotating tripod on 

the ground and run along to the mat- 

tress. Jump on to the mattress and 
shoot the other alien. Jump up into room 
six and climb on to the platform. 

Room Six: Take the red crystal but don't 

use it. Shoot the alien on the other side of 

the water drop. Then get past this water 
drop by again jumping up and moving left 
as you fall. 

Room Five: Use the red crystal and run 

underneath the three aliens. Then pick up 

the green crystal and use it, shooting the 
alien above you and jump on to the 
ledge. Proceed into room four. 

Room Four: Move down so as to land 

just behind the green alien and shoot it 

quickly from behind. Get past the water 
drop by jumping up and moving left as 
you fall (| seem to have heard this before 
but it isn’t as easy as it sounds). Clamber 


Avoid the trap 


Tony Kendle passes along solutions for 
Trapdoor and Strike Force Cobra 


up on to the mattress and jump up into 
room one. Shoot the first alien and then 
shoot the alien beyond the water drop. 
Get past the water drop as usual and 
take the red crystal and go into room 
two. 

Room Two: Use the red crystal and 
then run underneath the first alien and 
jump up onto the platform. Run under- 
neath the fast moving blue alien and take 
the green crystal. Use this crystal and 
get very close to the right hand edge of 
the room and then jump 
Move right into room three as you fall. 
Room Three: You should have landed on 
the platform. Kill the first alien and then 
fall on to the mattress. Jump up into 
room one and clamber on to the platform 
with the other kreezer. Go over and 
rescue him. Fall back down into room 
one and leave via the exit. You have 
completed level one. 

If anyone gets further than this and can 
send in some more tips | will be very 
pleased to hear from you. 

lain Tatch, our Chingford correspon- 
dent, has written again with a "simple 


little routine giving infinite lives on Mi- 
cropower's Frenzy. Although not a very 
well known game it does feature on 
Computer Hits Two and so the poke 
should hopefully be of use to a fair 
number of people. 

“Once the game has loaded all you 
need to do is press Break and then type 
281 76B=8A9 : 2&1 76C=1 : Call &2754. 
This will give you infinite lives on what | 
think is an otherwise very frustrating 
game." 

Jim Bisset of Leven in Fife has sent ina 
similar poke for an undistinguished, but 
widely owned, game: "Given out free 
with every Sinclair QL is The Games 
Cartridge. One of the games on this is a 
version of the ubiquitous Breakout in 
which there are four lives. The following 
poke extends this to 255 lives: 

Load mdv 1_breakout (Enter) 

135 poke v+(256042-256000),255 (Enter) 

Run (Enter) 

"Given the number of these games in 
existence | would envisage this being 
well usedl” 

Thanks to both of you for the tips. 








[chars | 














Beau Jolly 
Domark 
Mindscape/US Gold 
Hewson 
Mastertronic 
Firebird 
Mastertronic 
Melbourne House 
Hit Squad 
Firebird 

Elite 





Addictive Games 
Mind Games 


Top Twenty 
1 (6) Computer Hits Vol 3 
2 (3) Trivial Pursuit 
3 (1) Infiltrator 
4 (17) Uridium 
5 (14) 180 
6 (11) Thrust 
7 (19) Kane 
8 (4) Fistll 
9 (-) They Sold a Million (3) 
10 (-) Ollie and Lisa 
11 (5) Paperboy 
12 (9) Ninja Master 
13 (2) 1942 
14 (-) Happiest Days 
15 (7) Ghosts and Goblins 
16 (-) Ace of Aces 
17 (-) Fairlight 2 
18 (16) Warhawk 
19 (-) Head Coach 
20 (-) American Football 
All figures compiled by Gallup/Microscope 








20/POPULAR COMPUTING WEEKLY 


20-26 NOVEMBER 1986 














Competition 





The 2,000 envelopes, please... 


jongratulations to 65 readers, and 
‘commiserations to the other 
2,000 who entered our recent 

movie quiz. 

Few of you will need reminding of the 
great prizes, but just in case . . . we were 
Offering five Spectrum Plus-2s from 
Amstrad, ten Star STX-80 printers, and 
50 Mastertronic Magnum joysticks. 

We gave you eight stills from some of 
the greatest science fiction movies of 
recent years and asked you to identify 
them. We expected some of you to have 
trouble spotting Star Trek ll — The Wrath 
of Khan from the other Star Trek movies, 
and indeed we caught some of you out. 





‘Star Trek Il, not IIl. The hint is the shi 
name, the USS R. 








More surprisingly, many of you con- 
fused Escape From New York with 
Bladerunner. 


Here are the correct answers: 
1 Alien 


2 The Last Starfighter 
32010 

4 Return of the Jedi 

5 Dark Crystal 

6 Star Trek Il 

7 Escape from New York 
8 Logan's Run 


And here are the winners: 
Spectrum Plus-2s are on their way to Philip. 
Dixon, of Sunderland; Philip Wainwright, of 
Northampton; Andrew Noble, of Hull; D T 
Davies, of Weston-Super Mare: and Clive 
Parker, of Bristol. 

Star-Micronix printers will be heading towards. 
George Leith, of Ellon, Aberdeenshire; Steve 
Fitton, of Heywood, Lancs; Andrew Penning- 
ton, of Huyton, Merseyside; Simon R, of 





Escape From New York, not Bladerunner. 


London SW3; Marcus Johnson, of Graffham, 
W Sussex; Sean Haydon, of Bilston, W 





Midlands; David Turvey, of Thames Ditton, 
Surrey; D Liptrot, of Durham; | Henderson, of 
St Ives, Cambs; and P Rogers of Skelmers- 
dale -Lancs. 

The winners of the 50 joysticks are lan 
Lawson, of Ulverston, Cumbria; Graham 
Panton, of Denton, Manchester; Keith 
‘Muscat, of Newcastle upon Tyne; Anthony 
Dayus, of Witton, Birmingham; Philip Gode, of 
Malvern, Worcs; Lawrence Fryer, of London 
NW4; Fay Hutchinson, of Chesterfield; Robert 
Dicken, of Cobham, Surrey; Angela Toal, of 
Lurgan, Co Armagh; P Stevens, of Rochester, 
Kent; Dervis Konche, of Cheshunt, Herts; D L 
Hyler, of Poole, Dorset; Bill Little, of Stoke on 
Trent; Sinclair Hart, of Bracknell, Berks; Mrs H 
Norton, of Burton on Trent; S Bateman, of 
Middlesbrough; C R Lated, of London E1; B A 
Briscombe, of Widnes; David Benjamin, of 
High Wycombe; C D Bell, of Romford; Adrian 
Lodge, of Barnsley; Peter Tobin, of Hull; Nigel 
Malin, of Hull; Thomas Adams, of Chester; 
Lawrence Ding, of London SW 16; Peter Lord, 
of Exeter; Nigel Parsons, of Cardiff; Cpl G S 
Sporne, of BFPO 20, Dortmund; Anthony 
Baker, of London; C J Davies, of Stevenage; 
Miss J Brown, of Hemel Hempstead; Peter 
Lam, of Amersham, Bucks; Nick Wild, of 
Broseley, Shrops; Miss G Mollison, of London 
N18; John Holburn, of Dorchester; D Hamp: 
ton, of Catterick, М Yorks; Paul Reeve, of 
London SW; lan Crammond, of Newcastle 
upon Tyne; Garrick Morley, of Ledbury, Here: 
ford; Joe Bailey, of Castel, Guernsey: Colin 
Morris, of Northwich, Cheshire; Ricardo 
Pirroni, of Harrow, Middx; Stephen Mahoney, 
of London N7; Tony Bland, of Welling, Kent 
Nick Ellerby, of Stirling; A Young, of Kirkintil 
loch, Glasgow; George Gaylor, of Glasgow; 
Huw Griffiths, of Swansea; | H Cook, of 
Houghton-le-Spring, Tyne & Wear; Mark 
Boddy, of Letchworth, Herts. 











This is your second chance 


racing game with a surreal touch, 

is now available for the Amstrad 
CPCs on both tape or disc, And here at 
Popular, we've got 20 to give away if you 
can get these three devastatingly simple 
questions right. 


Е: Software's ElektraGlide, the 


ElektraGlide Competition, Popular Com- 
puting Weekly, 12-13 Little Newport 
Street, London WC2H 7PP, and an 
Amstrad ElektraGlide could be yours. 

One entry per person only, please. The 
first 20 correct entries picked at random 


will receive а copy of ElektraGlide for the 
Amstrad CPCs. All entries must reach us 
by Wednesday, December 10. 

Winners’ names will be published in 
Popular Computing Weekly, December 
18. 





1 Who won the 
1986 Formula 1 
World Driver's 
Champions! 


2 Where 
French 24 hour road 
ice held? 


3 Which Formula 
One team did Nigel 
Mansell drive for in 
1986? 











Now just fil in the 
coupon below, send it 
= or a photocopy — to 














|f 1 win, 1 would like a copy of 
Amstrad ElektraGlide on tape С on 
disc O 

Tick appropriate box. 











20-26 NOVEMBER 1986 


POPULAR COMPUTING WEEKLY/21 





ATARI-ST-COLOUR-ONLY 
£19.95 Disk 


Available now from your local Atari dealer 
or mail order P&P included from: 


SOFTWARE. 
1 North Parade, Parsonage Gardens, 
Manchester M3 2NH. Tel: 061-855 1558 








as seen on TV. 
Now available on one disc 
for your Amstrad. 


MACSEN "<s Sofware, 17 Nott Square 
MAALSEN Carmarthen. Dyfed SA31 IPQ. 
SOFTWARE Tel: 0267 232508 
















A OMPUTER SOFTWARE 
ETa The UK's Cheapest Computer Software. We Won't Bo Beaten, 
-C Send For Full List 
wee | Commodore 64 





ЗЕ 


i 


мем sopeta 
2 
MER on 


E 


мех Computble 


ES 








PT THE: 
RR T 


if 


zh 
fi 
H 











22/POPULAR COMPUTING WEEKLY 


20-26 NOVEMBER 1986 





























WEEKLY 


HARDWARE SYSTEMS 


| you are seriously interested in 


computers, choosing a system 


represents a frightening challenge. Apart 
from the money you might have to invest, 
if the system you choose will not do the 
job you will probably be left with an 
unsellable white elephant. 

This supplement looks at the ten top 
systems available this season, Each one 
should be right for someone; decide 
whether your interest lies in 
programming, games, business, or specific 
applications, and our guide will help you 
to find the right one. 

There's also a feature on the bargain. 
micros which might tempt you 
discontinued lines which still have 
something going for them - on IBM 
clones, and on games consoles. Choose 
carefully! <q 


The crucial choice 


CHOOSE A COMPUTER THIS CHRISTMAS 
FROM THE TOP TEN IN THE SHOPS. THE 
POPULAR TEAM PRESENTS THE CHOICES 


Buying a system — 
the top ten micros 


Should you go for 
an IBM compatible? 


Gone but not 
forgotten — 
discontinued bargains 


Games consoles on 
the attack again 











ACORN BBC 
MASTER COMPACT 


Components: Keyboard, 3.5in dise drive 


(800k), colour monitor 
Software: View, ABC Logo, Timpaint, Icon 
Software, utilities 

CPU: 65012 (low power CMOS version of 
6502) 

RAM: 128K 

ROM: 32K 

Storage device: disc drive 

Ports: disc, printer, joystick, econet, 
RS232, Composite Video, RGB, expansion 
bus 

Sound: three music, one special effects. 
(AY-3-8912) 

Graphies: 640 x 256 — 2 colours, 320 x 
256 — 4 colours, 160 x 256 — 8 colours + 8 
flashing, 820 x 256 — 2 colours, 160 x 256 
— 4 colours, Teletext 80 x 75 — 8 colours, 
All modes except Teletext, multi-colour. 


Keyboard: 10 function keys, keypad 
Basic: The best on any 8-bit computer 
Other languages: None available on 3.5in 
dise 

Expandability: Limited to expansion bus 
add-ons (of which there aren’t any as yet) 
Software compatibility: Not directly, 

With special cable adaptor, DFS Rom and 
5.25 inch disc drive 75% of disc software 
Software availability: very little 
Distributors: High street, specialist 
dealers 

Applications: Word processing. Should be 
good for games, education and business 
when software becomes available, 
For/Against: Has good Basic, 64k of 
memory available for Basic, hi 
resolution graphics. Poor availability of 
colours, $n disc drive severely limits 
software available. 

Other Comments: System available 
without monitor at $440 or with 
monochrome at $537 

Cost: 5687 























20-26 NOVEMBER 1986 


POPULAR COMPUTING WEEKLY/23 




















RED ARROW 
SOFTWARE LTD 


REQUIRES 





TOP ROYALTIES OR 
CASH PAYMENTS 
AVAILABLE 





JASON BARTHOLEMEW, 
29 CUMBERLAND AVENUE, 
WELLING, KENT 
01-303 4805 











suppleme 








AMSTRAD CPC 6128 


Components: Keyboard with built-in 3in 
olour or monomonitor 
: CP/M Plus, GSX, Logo 









Storage device: 3in disc, cassette 
: Joystick, dise, centronics printer, 
cassette, user port, stereo sound, 
power monitor syne 
Sound: AY-3-8912, three channels plus 
noise 
Graphics: 160 x 200, 16 colour; 40 column 
320 x 200 4 colour; 8 column 640 x 200 2 
colour 
Keyboard: 74 keys, numeric keypad, 
cursors, definable function keys 
Basic: Upgraded Mallard basic with added 
graphics and disc commands 
Other languages: Forth, Pascal, C, ete 
Expandability: Up to 256 16K ROMS 
Software compatibility: Runs virtually 
all CPC 464/664 programs plus СР/М80 
Software availability: Some high street, 
specialists, mail order 
Distributors: Some high street, specialists 
Applications: Games, business, 
programming 
For/Against: Popular machine, good spec, 
fast disc drive, fair software library. Disc 
software expensive; some CPC 464 
software will not load; system must be 
bought with special monitor 
Other Comments: A good all-round 
system which provides everything the 
'st-time buyer needs to get underway 
Gost: With mono monitor, $299.99; colour, 
8399.99. 



































AMSTRAD 
PCW 8256 


Components: Keyboard, monochrome 
monitor with built-in Зіл disc drive 

Software: Locoseript, CP/M Plus, DR 
Logo, Mallard Basic, Mail 











ROM: Bootstrap only 
Storage device: Jin disc 
Ports: Dedicated printer port, custom 
expansion bus 
Sound: Single channel internal speaker 
Graphics: 640 x 200 mono 

function keys, four-way 
уз, specific word-processing keys 
Mallard Basic, business oriented 











Components: System unit with dise drive, 
keyboard, monitor 
Software: MSDOS, Dos Plus, Gem 








Storage device: 5 in floppy 
Ports: Centronics, RS232, jo 
Sound: One channel only 












with poor graphics handling 

Other languages: Logo bundled 
Expandability: Up to 512K 

Software compatibility: Runs CP/M Plus 
programs configured for 3in discs 
Software availability: Specialist dealers 
Distributors: High street, plus office 
equipment suppliers 

Applications: Word processing, business 
For/Against: Ideal bundled word 
processing system, fast disc drives, 90. 
column display. No colour, primitive 
sound, difficult to interface other printers 
Other Comments: PCW 8512 with more 
memory and extra disc drive also 
available. Ideal for many applications, 
useless for others. 

Cost: 5399 + VAT ($499 + VAT) 














AMSTRAD PC1512 








Graphics: 640 x 512, 16 colours 
Keyboard: Standard qwerty plus numeric 
keypad and 10 function 

Basic: Locomotive Basic 2, running under 
Gem 

Other languages: Practically everything 
Expandability: Up to 640K under MSDOS 
or 8Mb using Lotus/Intel spec 

Software compatibility: Practically all 
IBM software 

Software availability: Specialists 
Distributors: Most business micro 
distributors, many high street and 
independent stores 

Applications: Business 

For/Against: body has one, 
everything runs 's cheap. The 
standard is five years old, and a bit dated 
Other Comments: Don't fight it, it'll take 
over anyway 

Cost: $528 entry level 





















20-26 NOVEMBER 1986 


POPULAR COMPUTING WEEKLY/25 



























ATARI 520 STM 


Components: Keyboard, 500K dise drive, 
mouse 

Software: Gem, ST Basic, ST Logo; Ist 
Word, Neochrome. Free CP/M emulator 








CPU: 68000 (16 bit) 
RAM: 512K 
ROM: 192K 
Storage device: 
Ports: Midi in, Midi out, printer, monitor, 
TV, hard dise, disc drive, c 
modem, joystick /mouse, joy: 
Sound: External, three channels (AY-9- 
8912) 

Graphics: 640 x 400 — 2 colours, 640 x 
200 — 4 colours, 320 x 200 — 16 colours. 
Colours selectable from 512. All modes 
multi-colour 

Keyboard: 10 function, cursor/utility pad, 
keypad 

Basic: Good but has bugs and poor editor. 
Computer Concepts Fast ST Basic 
cartridge vastly superior 

Other languages: C, Pascal, Fortran, 
Assembler, BCPL, LISP, Cobol, RPG 2 
Expandability: 1 meg upgrade, 1040 ST, 
2080 ST, 4160 ST 

Software compatibility: Upwards 
Software availability: Some high street, 
mail order, specialists 

Distributors: Specialist 

Applications: Business, entertainment, 
word processing 

For/Against: Very fast and powerful, lots 
of user memory, excellent graphics, 
reasonable sound, Gem desktop and 
mouse, Midi ability. Basic degraded by 
bugs and poor editor 

Other Comments: Ordinary monochrome 
monitors are incompatible due to high 
bandwidth of 70Mhz. Atari’s monitor is 
very high quality. 

Cost: 5449 


























Expandability: Top model in Atari's 8-bit 
range 

Software compatibility: Yes with most of 
the lower range Atari 8-bit machines 
Software availability: High street, 
specialists, mail order 

Distributors: Some high street stores, 
dealers 

Applications: Games, business, education 
For/Against: A vast number of American 
software titles available, relatively crude 
graphics if a useful number of colours are 
used. 

Other Comments: Cassette recorder costs 
584. Various deals are being offered 
bundling the computer with recorder or 
disc driv 



































ATARI 130 XE 


COMMODORE 64C 





‘Components: Keyboard 





Storage device: Cassette, dise 

Ports: Cartridge, serial 1/0, expansion, 
monitor, TV, two joysticks 

Sound: Four channels 

Graphics: 320 x 192 — 2 colours, 160 x 96 
— 4 colours, 80 x 1! 16 colours 
(selectable from 256), 80 x 48 — 4 colours 
Keyboard: Five function keys 

Basic: Adequate at best. Poor string. 
handling 














Components: Keyboard, tape deck, mouse 
Software: Cheese graphics, Pitman typing 
s 





CPU: 6502 





Storage device: Dedicated cassette, disc 
Ports: 2 joysticks, cartridge, serial, 
video/audio, user/RS: TV 

Sound: External, 3 channel "SID" 
synthesiser 

raphics: Text, multi-colour and hi-res 
320 x 200) – 16 colours 

Keyboard: Four function keys, plus four 
shifted functions 























26/POPULAR COMPUTING WEEKLY 


20-26 NOVEMBER 1986 








Basic: Abysmal. No Basic commands for 
sound or graphics, though good editor. 
Many alternat available 






Other languages: Forth, Pascal 
Assembler, ete 
Expandabilit pack fortheoming 


Software compatibility 
C128, C128D 

Software availability: All high street, 
alis 


Upwards to 











Distributors: High street, specialists 
Applications: Games, applications 
business 


For/Against: World's biggest-selling 
micro, huge software base, good graphics 
and sound, many third-party peripherals 
available. Very poor Basic, often needs 
special interfaces for non-Commodore 
peripherals 

Other Comments: The 64C is functionally 
identical to the old 64. After Christmas 
the 64C should be available outside the 
Compendium pack 

Cost: $249 


COMMODORE 128D 


Components: Keyboard, main unit with 
dise drive 











RGB, 
channel 


serial, video, T 
Sound: External, 
synthesiser 
Graphics: 64 mode, as CBM 64C: 

mono text and 320 x 200 hi-res 16 colours 
Keyboard: Detachable, with numeric 
keypad, extra cursor keys, eight 
additional control keys 

Basie: In 64 mode, as CBM 640; in 128 
mode, much improved Basie V. 7.0 with 
graphies, sound and structured 


advance 
programming commands 
Other languages: In 64 mode, as CBM 





supplemen 
pp 


64C; in 128 mode, nothing 
Expandability: 256 and 512K memory 
packs fortheoming 

Software compatibility: Downwards to 
64C; also runs some CP/M 

Software availability: As CBM 64C 
Distributors: High street and specialist 
Applications: Business, 80-column word 
processing, games 

For/Against: Runs 64 software, CP/M 
software on correct dise format; good 
sound, graphics, fast disc drive, lots of 
memory, But large “footprint”, little 
dedicated 128K software, little CP/M 
software in right format, cost of monitor 
must be added to machine price 

Other Comments: Commodore's attempt 
to compete with the Amstrad PCW fails on 
several counts, Best regarded as an 
upgrade for 64 owners who want more 
power without sacrificing their software 











Software: 4 games-disc, CP/M, Basic 
CPU: 780 

RAM: 256K (192K on video Ram) 

ROM: 16K 

Storage device: disc drive, cassette 
Ports: Monitor, audio out, cassette, RS232, 
two joystick /printer /user, Vamp edge 
connector 

Sound: Three music, one noise channel 











16 colours from 
colours, 256 x 100 — 
4 colours, multi colour modes 

Keyboard: Eight function keys, cursor 
pad 

Basic: Competent version. Provision of 
sprite handling commands are the high 
spot 

Other languages: BBC Basic, Logo, 
Assembly 

Expandability: None 

Software compatibility: All 64K Einstein 
software, some CP/M, some Spectrum 
(with emulator) 














Software availabilit 
mail order 
Distributors: Specialists, Tatung (UK) 
Ltd, Stafford Park 10, Telford, Shrops TF3 
3AB 

Applications: Business, games, word 
processing 

For/Against: Has superb graphics 
potential, hardware sprites, compact 
system. No software to make use of the 
new graphic modes, mediocre Basic 

Other Comments: Good value for money 
but the software scene has a very patchy 
look to it 

Cos 


: Specialist dealers, 











0 


SINCLAIR 
SPECTRUM PLUS 2 





Components: Keyboard with cassette 
deck 

Software: Various games packages 
CPU: 280 








drive, dise 
pad, 

idi out, user port, printer port 
xternal, AY-3-8912, three voices 
plus noise; piezo beeper in 48K mode 

5б x 192 — 8 colours 
Keyboard: Full travel with four cursors, 
extend mod keyword 















‚ Basic: Idiosyncratic 48K Sinclair Basic, 


more flexible 128K Basic with better 
editor 

Other languages: Forth, Pascal, C, 
Fortran, ete, etc 

Expandability: None 

Software compatibility: 99% of Spectrum 
48K software, plus 128K packages 
Software availability: All computer 
dealers 

Distributors: High street, specialists 
Applications: Games, some business 
For/Against: Huge software base, 
improved Basic and sound in 128K mode, 
good keyboard, built-in cassette deck, 
price. Limited graphics, no standard fast 
data storage device, non-standard joystick 














ports 
Other Comments: Ties with the 64C as 
the games-players' choice; far from ideal 





for any serious application, but 
inexpensive and well-supported 
Cost: $149 











20-26 NOVEMBER 1986 


POPULAR COMPUTING WEEKLY/27 








supplemen 





To PC or not to PC? 


THAT IS THE QUESTION . . . JOHN LETTICE 
COMES UP WITH SOME ARGUMENTS FOR AND 
AGAINST BUYING IBM COMPATIBLE MACHINES . 


f you're still wondering why you should 
buy a PC, award yourself ten brownie 
points immediately. The land of mom, 
apple pie and the Strategic Defence 
Initiative may have fallen for a five year 
old technology, and the British software 
industry may be climbing onto the 
bandwagon (what's a BIOS, mum?) but 
you a least retain a healthy scepticism 

But sceptic or not you'll be aware that 
the world and its cohabitee is going crazy 
about the beast, and you'll want to know 
what the fuss is all about. 

Oddly enough the daddy of the 
standard, the IBM PC, started off a 
home computer. It had a Rom Basic and a 
tape port (newer PCs 
still do) and a paltry 
amount of memory. 

Its contemporaries 
were the ZX81, Vie 
20, T199/4A and 
Atari 400, and its 
main claim to fame 
was that it had a 16- 
bit processor, 
although it only had 
an 8-bit data bus. 

Since its humble 
beginnings the IBM 
PC has moved away 
from the home area 
and in the busines 
field has seen off the 
Apple I, Commodore 
Pet and Apricot 
machines, along with smaller fry like the 
Victor Sirius and sundry other machines 
that ran the same MSDOS operating 
system but didn’t pass the acid test of 
being IBM compatible. Some of these were 
better machines, but they didn't have the 
good fortune to have the magic letters 
‘IBM’ on their casing. 

From around 1984, practically all new 
business computers were IBM compatible. 
They could read IBM dises, run IBM 
software, and were generally both 
cheaper and faster than the PC, and this 
is where the Amstrad PCI12 comes in. 

Part of the secret of IBM's success has 
been the PC's open architecture. It's easy 
to plug in cards, and as the operating 
system, MSDOS, can be bought off the peg 
it's easy to produce a lookalike, 
Compatible manufacturers have managed 


28/POPULAR COMPUTING WEEKLY 


to score off IBM by using faster but 
compatible proci by using slightly 
higher technology (IBM's AT garnered 
hoots of derision when the first machines 
turned up using piggy-back 64K chips 
instead of 256K versions) and by including 
IBM ‘extras’ like Centronics and RS23 
ports in the basic machine price. 

Many of the compatible manufacturers 
have undercut IBM's price by putting 
together cheap components, but the route 
taken by the bigger companies - Amstrad 
included — has involved cramming as 
many features as possible into as few 
chips as possible. As it's now possible to 


buy an ‘IBM PC on a chip’ Amstrad is by 


no means the greatest exponent of this, 
but its PC does have a very small chip-set. 

Because of the number of years the 
IBM standard has been around it isn't in 
the forefront of technology. The basic 
chip, the Intel 8088, is no sprinter, and 
although the upgraded 8086 is faster it 
still doesn’t rival the 68000. The IBM's 
standard graphics are frankly laughable, 
and the company’s upgrade, the Enhanced 
Graphics Adaptor (EGA), is not widely 
regarded as the perfect solution. 

Olivetti, Compaq and Amstrad use non- 
standard graphics, but although this 
improves the screen handling it can cause 
compatibility problems. Amstrad's display 
is highly compatible given those problems, 
but as most software will be written for 
the IBM first it’s unlikely that much of it 
will take advantage of the Amstrad's 





ability to put 16 colours on screen at one 
time. 

So although the PC's graphics may be 
comparable to those on other busines 
machines they're inferior to those 
produced by many home machines. 
Despite these limitations the US software 
industry has risen to the occasion and 
produced large quantities of very good 
games software for the PC. If, however, 
you were thinking of spending around 
S500 on a games machine, apart from 
wanting your head examined, you'd 
probably be better advised to go for an ST. 

The PC's advantage lies more in its 
serious software base, and practically 

every best-selling 
word processing, 
database or 
spreadsheet program 
written over the past 
few years has been 
issued for the IBM 
PC. Because of the 
amount of effort 
that's been expended 
on the standard, this 
vast body of 
software includes 
most of the best 
programs in the field 
and while many of 
them currently cost 
an arm and a leg, the 
falling price of the 
hardware is bringing 
down the software prices. 

But the decision on whether to buy or 
not still comes down to what you want 
from a machine. If you simply want a 
machine that will do basic business tasks 
adequately you might find yourself better 
off with an Amstrad PCW, which taking 
the printer into account is current! 

& 200 cheaper than the PC. If on the 
other hand you need compatibility with an 
office n«chine, or you just want to keep 
pace with the software that's going to be 
coming out over the next year or so, the 
extra money for the PC might be a wis 
investment. 

If state of the art technology is your 
scene, forget it; if not, consider a PC 
clone. 

But don't go buying one just because 
everyone else is doing it... <q 


20-26 NOVEMBER 1986 


AVAILABLE AT LAS 


Now you can use your PCW 8256/8512 as an 
Executive Word Processor AND continue to use 
your existing LOCOSCRIPT files. 


VERY QUIET (98b (A) 


The ATT LOCOPRINTER gives you professional 
letter quality printing from a 35cps daisywheel 
printer using a special interface/cable and 
Software to enable you to use your existing 
LOCOSCRIPT files. 


Now you can print out a fu A4 page of 


DISCOUNT COMPUTERS. e 


1617 pitch etc. (as provided on your 
Amstrad dot matna). using your 
Standard tes, 


ШШ 
ui 


Printer also avaiable wth standard 
intorfaco and NEWWORD/WORDSTAR 
Word Processor and n tha PC 1512 
drm forth same pice, 


SPECIAL OFFER 
Normal price — £549 + vat 
only — £485 + vat 


| 


[ 


Spe 








Commodore Amiga 
only 
£1100 inc vat 


(£956.52 ex VAT) 
This package includes: 


Commodore Amiga computer 
512K RAM 
Mouse 
Single Disc Drive 
Colour Monitor 
FREE Software 
12 month maintenance contract 
FREE Courier Delivery in UK if required. 
Plus FREE software or FREE discs & 

Storage box 


Phone or write for more details or to arrange a 
demonstration. 


Also Availabl 
Atari 520ST-Ms from £440 
Atari 1040ST-Fs from £900 
256K Amigas from £1030 
Sinclair QLs from £130 
Also available a large range of software & 

peripherals for the above machines. 
M.P.C. SOFTWARE 

72, JULIAN ROAD, WEST BRIDGFORD, 


NOTTINGHAM NG2 5AN 
TEL: (0602) 820106 


All prices correct at time of going to press E&OE. 








DIRECT TECHNOLOGY (UK) 


FOR THE BEST DEALS ON ANYTHING 


Telephone: (01) 361 2484/4268 


Hardware — at more than realistic prices! 
ALL PRICES INCLUDE VAT & FREE COURIER DELIVERY SERVICE (UK) 


ATARI HARDWARE 
520ST-M (512K with modulator) 


1MB RAM UPGRADE (Upgrade your 520ST to a 1040ST) 
1040ST-F (1MB with SM125 hi-res mono screen) 
1040ST-F (1MB with SC1224 med-res colour screen) 


SF354 (JMB 3-5" floppy disk drive) 
SF314 (1MB 3-5” floppy disk drive) 
SH204 (20MB Winchester hard disk drive) 
SM125 (12" hi-res mono monitor) 
SC1224 (12" med-res colour monitor) 
CM36512 (14" lo-res colour monitor) 


CITIZEN PRINTERS 


120-0 (Dot matrix — 120cps, 80clms, 25cps МО, F/T) 
PARALLEL INTERFACE for 120-D 
SERIAL INTERFACE for 120-D 


LSP-10 (Dot matrix — 120cps. 8Oclms. 25cps CQ. F/T) 
MSP-10E (Dot matrix — 160срѕ. 8Ocims. 25cps СО, F/T) 
MSP-15E (Dot matrix — 160cps. 132clms, 25cps CQ. F/T) 
MSP-20 (Dot matrix — 200cps. 8Oclms. 50cps NLQ. F/T) 
MSP-25 (Dot matrix — 200cps, 136clms, 5Ocps NLQ, F/T) 


PREMIER 35 (Letter quality — 35cps. 132clms) 


HOP 45 (Dot matrix — 24-pin, 200cps. 132cps CQ, 66cps LQ) 


THESE ARE JUST SOME OF THE GREAT DEALS YOU CAN PICK UP TODAY 
For the best deals on anything call DIRECT TECHNOLOGY (UK). TELEPHONE: (01) 361 2484/4268 (9.00am to 8.00pm Mon-Sat) 


Direct Technology (UK) 
35 The Homesteads, Waterfall Road, London N11 1LH 





Telex: 895 1182 GECOMS G 


£320.00 

£75.00 
£775.00 
£950.00 
£149.00 
£185.00 
£622.00 
£149.00 
£360.00 
£270.00 


£210.00 

£43.70 

£59.80 
£285.00 
£375.00 
£475.00 
£450.00 
£545.00 
£689.00 
£870.00 











NOVEMBER 1986 


POPULAR COMPUTING WEEKLY/29 











( — TELE-GAMES- — ^ Ke HOMEVIEW Kove 


===> The leading Video Game specialists offer 









































100s of cartridges for — 
ST SOFTWARE ST HARDWARE 
y Mese 2398 soos. 2900 
Mor 23% a 
ATARI | TRS OLECO er | | = ELE E 
SION N | | ben rectory 2795 AST 1000 1meg Drive 
2600 WIEN) МТ 228 - 2250 Comana Segle imap Ove 18800 
Riana Forever Море) ` 2250 Cumana Twn meg Drive 26900 
Arriving soon — console and game cartridges for — oes 2400 CUL LEE 
2586 38.00, 20meg Hard Duc ооо 
e A Gay 2500 "Here Бони 27995 
(Nintendo) Mut zB eem zn 
Cee 1985 
азды воа 2350 2673 
Send for lists (state make and дате) еен 2499 COMPUTER SUPPORT 
TELEGAMES, WIGSTON, LEICESTER LES 1ТЕ [E EE AND 
(0533 880445) dus m AST PRODUCTS 
Word or Word 3650 pik Discs 3.58/00. 21501 10 
Madri 4250 вож Dace 3508/00 24.50 for 10 
Aen 2796 Mamban 3508/00 2650010 
МРС SOFTWARE eee Space 3250 А i 
The Specialists in 68000 based computers HL Pl ae m doi 
ftt Pech hers Gudo 2795 — regandess of whore purchased Pron 
cns BES Bde Board System 2800 orara ten some doy — opan 7 daya: 
van {eather Goddesses of Phobos 2750 - жее Mon. Tues, Wed, Frond Set 
=> Tre утюг 2798 opantilb Oop, Thurs ii 6.30pm. Sun 
ба ранае 1895 “Ttam-3pm 24 Hour Answer Service 
158 Serum 3550 — HOMEVIEW BBs 01.892 7767 300/300 
> "none parny коры 
FE BUSINESS SOFTWARE 
pir корена 4750 
К еб Prices include. 
Fes ana есч ате and FREE P&P. 
| tested reed K Comm 4750 Overseas orders welcome 
pore Switch 2795 САЦ FOR BEST PRICES, CREDIT 
сш = p 3750 — CARDHOTUNE 01-691 0207 
irem dil beurre ED oe ac RING HOMEVIEW NOW 
M.P.C. SOFTWARE Laserbase/ST. 296 BROCKLEY ROAD, 
72, JULIAN ROAD, WEST BRIOGFORD, NOTTINGHAM NG2 БАМ. ов Man BROCKLEY, LONDON SEA 2RA 
TEL: (0602) 820106 LL on 

















Ali prices correct at time of going to press E&OE 





ACOLOURTV FOR £69 ! 


FACT NOT FICTION. NOW THANKS TO OUR OWN ENGINEERS 
RGB COLOUR MONITOR OWNERS CAN HAVE A 
TOP QUALITY COLOUR TV FACILITY THROUGH THE 
SCREENVISION TV AND VIDEO TUNER ! 





SIMPLY * PLUG IN YOUR COLOUR MONITOR, NO ALTERATIONS OR MODIFICATIONS NEEDED AND YOUR MONITOR HAS 
DUAL PURPOSE, AS A DEDICATED COMPUTER MONITOR AND FULL COLOUR TELEVISION !! 
THE SCREENVISION TV AND VIDEO TUNER S COMPATIBLE WITH MOST AMSTRAD, PHLIPS, MCROVETIC TATUNG, DECCA, SANYO, MTACH, TAXAN AND OTHER RGB MONITORS 


* SUPER SLIM MODIFIED TV-VIDEO TUNER OF MOST MODERN DESIGN & SPECIFICATIONS 
BUILT-IN RGB, COMPOSITE VIDEO AND AUDIO OUTPUT * BUILT-IN AUTOMATIC FREQUENCY AND GAIN CONTROLS 


PUSH BUTTON CHANNEL SELECTION * CRISP CLEAR PICTURES ON ALL CHANNELS sucre 

LEDSTATUSINDICATOR + ISOLATED 240V AC POWER FOR COMPLETE SAFETY 

SEPARATE CONTROLS FOR BRIGHTNESS, COLOUR & VOLUME * ON-OFF SWITCH 
£69" 195 Б 


ADDITIONAL ADO-ON PERIPHERALS FOR SCREENVISION TO FOLLOW. 


SEE FULL COLOUR TV THROUGH THE AMAZING SCREENVISION 


AMSTRAD & TATUNG EINSTEIN MONITOR OWNERS REQUIRE NO ADDITIONAL CONNECTING CABLE auras 


HOW TO ORDER — SCREENS MICROCOMPUTERS & ELECTRONICS 


MAIN AVENUE, MOOR PARK, NORTHWOOD, MIDDLESEX, ENGLAND 
энте у | TELEPHONE: 09274 20527 TELEX: 923574 ALACOL G 
—— FACSIMILE: 0923 40402. PRESTEL: 927420664 


TRADE. EXPORT AND BULK ORDER ENQUIRIES WELCOME TELEPHONE 09274 20664 FOR DETAILS 








30/POPULAR COMPUTING WEEKLY 20-26 NOVEMBER 1986 











supplemen 





The living dead 


ZOMBIE MACHINES — DEAD, YET THEY 
STALK OUR HIGH STREETS! CHRISTINA 
ERSKINE ENTERS THE MICRO TOMB IN ` 
SEARCH OF BARGAINS 


r addition to the mainstream micros 
available in various ‘bundles’ or 
‘compendia’ this Christmas, there are also 
opportunities to pick up, often very 
cheaply, older machines which are no 
longer manufactured. Go on a tour of your 
local chainstores or computer shops, and 
you will come across 48K Spectrums, 
MSXs, QLs and Plus/4s, selling for a 
fraction of their original price. Ideal 
bargains if you just want a starter 
machine, or want a computer for a 

specific purpose. Or are they? 

Certainly, success at the budget price 
level can extend the lives of micros. Last 
Christmas, up to 100,000 Electrons and 
`С16з were sold. The soft: e companies 
took note, and many turned their hands to 
publishing programs, often low-priced, too, 
for what had previously been two poorly 
supported computers 

However, discontinued computers at a 
knock-down price must be treated with a 
very large dose of caution. It can be a 
good idea if you want the computer for 
‘one specific use only, and therefore have 
no reason to splash out on, say, a 
Commodore Compendium, with all the 
bells and whistles it provides as well 
They're also not bad if you simply want a 
cheap starter machine, which will give 
you some idea of computing, and help you 
decide whether you want to make a 





























proper ‘computer investment’, or as a 
second machine, better for games, 
programming, whatever, than your 
current model. 

You will definitely need to shop around. 
The larger High Street chain stores 
Boots, Smith's, Lasky's, et al - tend only to 
stock the newer machines (PCWs, CPC 
6128 and 464, Spectrum Plus 2, Atari ST, 
and Commodore 64c), although Dixons has 
а wide selection, such as the Acorn 
Electron at $79.99, the Atari 800XL at 
569.99 and the QL at $119.99. It's the 
smaller consumer electronics chains, and 
the independent computer stockists which 
are more likely to sell the bargains. 

So, what can you get, and how much 
use is it going to be? Below is a table 




















showing what you might reason 
expected to find, and the sort of prices 
you would probably pay. Don’t take the 
prices as gospel truth, though - these 
machines have no recommended retail 
price, and the shops will quote a price 
they think people will pay. The prices 
given below are only approximate. 

This is one area of Britain retailing 
where you can try haggling - after all, 
any shop is going to be quite keen to get 
rid of a three year old Vic 20, so you may 
be able to knock the price down still 
further. If the computer has POA on the 
tag, this means Price on Application, 
which goes on to mean you and the 
retailer coming to a mutually beneficial 
agreement. 

All these computers have both 
advantages and disadvantages. 

The Spectrums, CPC864, old-style C64 
and Vic 20 have simply been superseded 
by their successors. With the exception of 
the Vic, they have excellent software 
bases. There are still plenty of alternative 
keyboards available for the Spectrum 
(Saga Systems’ range, for instance) which 
could make a good later buy if you decide 
to stick to the Spectrum. The Spectrum 
128s that are still around only have a 
price advantage of about $30 on the new 
Spectrum Plus 2, so may not be that good 
a bargain, but rubber keyed versions can 
be picked up for a song. 

Despite all the furore surrounding the 
dropping of the CPC664, it will still 
happily run 99% of Amstrad CPC disc. 
software, of which there is now a 
considerable amount. However, it is 
difficult to find 6645, and the price 








20-26 NOVEMBER 1986 


POPULAR COMPUTING WEEKLY/31 








supplement 
рр 








reduction is not generally staggering. 

The old style Commodore 64 has an 
excellent and very varied software base; 
the best counsel here, however, is 
bly to wait, As Commodore 
ntrates on the 64, prices for the 
discontinued version may well fall. 

On the others, it is best to match the 
computer to your needs. A Commodore 16, 
for example, could make a good 
introduction to computing for a young 
child, with its good - and cheap - arcade 
style games catalogue. But the recipient 
Will probably grow out of it quite quickly, 
and require something more advanced. 

No-one who is considering buying a 
micro could fail to be aware of the 
controversy which surrounded the QL; 
while this, the idiosyncrasy of microdrive 
cartridges, and the, er, unusual keyboard 
may put you off, there is a fair amount of 
good serious software for the machine, 
particularly in the field of computer 
languages. 

With every machine listed (and who 
knows, you may come across a Dragon or 
T199/4À for next to nothing, and the same 
applies) caution is the best approach. If 
the computer breaks, it may be very 
difficult to get parts, new software will be 
very thin on the ground and the existing 
catalogue may look horribly dated. But, 
better to pick up a rubber-keyed Spectrum 
for $50 to experiment and find out what 
you want to get out of computing than 
splash out almost $1000 on an Atari 
1040ST, only to discover you really wanted 
infinite lives on Jet Set Willy. < 
































add dd 





T 


LLL T 









































Approx. 
Machine Availability — | Price Comments 
Spectrum 48 Quite a few still | 540-890 — | Can add better keyboard later; 
(rubber keys) around . large software base 
Spectrum Plus — | Lots around 580-8100 | As above 
Spectrum 128 Widely available | $120 As above, plus possibly worth. 
waiting for further discounts 
‘Commodore Vie 20 | Very rare 830-880 | Very dated, no new software 
products 
Commodore 64 | Widely available | $100-8200* | Old, but 64c enhancements 
(old casing) are largely cosmetic. Possibly 
worth waiting for further. 
discounts, Huge software base 
and peripheral choice. 
Commodore 16 — | Quite afew still | 540-880 | Good budget games software 
around base, good basic 
Commodore Plus/4 | Lots around 540-8100 — | Will run C16 software; little 
dedicated Plus/4 software. 
Amstrad CPC664 | Very rare S250 b/w | Plenty of CPC disc software 
+ | $300+ col | now available 
MSX Quiteafewof | 550-5100 | Reasonable games base; dise 
most brands drive very expensive 
available 
Sinclair QL Quite a few still | $100+ Unpopular Microdrive storage 
around system; good selection of 
serious software 
Atari XL Getting rarer | $40-880 | Software base never reflected 
machine's capabilities 

















"Some of the old ‘bundles’ can still be found, eg, the Music Pack (with keyboard, Sound 
Expander, and C2N at $299.99). Try branches of W H Smith. 











32/POPULAR COMPUTING WEEKLY 


20-26 NOVEMBER 1986 





SPECTRUM REPAIRS 
ONLY ONE COMPANY OFFERS 


Over 15 years computer maintenance exper- 
ience on all types of systems from Main- 
frames to Micros. 

We repair ALL Spectrums sent to us. Not 
only the profitable ones. IF they are sent to 
us first. We receive many that have been 
tampered with by other repair companies 
and returned to their owners unrepaired — 
often further damaged by an attempted 
repair. 

An honest six months parts and labour 
written guarantee on the WHOLE computer 
— not only on the fault repaired — read the 
other adverts carefully. 

Free update and overhaul with each repair — it 
is in both our interests for your computer to 
be reliable. 

NO "FREE" games — your money is best 
spent on top quality components and profes- 
sional computer engineers. 

All Spectrums are returned fully insured by 
1st Class post. Normally within 24 hours — 
please do not send power supplies. 

@ All-inclusive price of £20 or £15 without 
update and guarantee, regardless of the 
number of faults found. 

M. P. Computer Maintenance, 
The Laurels 

Wendling y 

Norfolk NR19 2LZW 


Tel: 036287 327 








Once Bytten 
31 BOWNESS ROAD 
LONDON SE6 2DG 
Phone Orders: 01-698 2911 
(Callers by Appointment Only) 











SPECIAL OFFERS 
FOR AUTUMNAL EVENINGS IN FRONT 
OF YOUR MICRO!!! 
USED GOOD! 
соммоооке ы £99.00 £25.00 
EPSON miro PRINTER E] 19900 
TOLMONT — ` 9800 18900 
[OX AX EU NE. £198.00, 
[E TH вон £158.00, 
H3 ‘DISC DAVE £88.00, 





r] 
er М COMPLETE MONITOR 250K We. SPREADSHEET, MODEN AD Cis SENARE 


пе. тйрй и, КАГЫЙ уси тө, 


in part-exchange 
NEW GOODIES‘ 
ROTROMCS CASSETTE RECORDER FOR MOST COMPUTERS (ESPECIALLY FOR COMMODORE, COMES 


ти SULLA GN SALA 
OMMOOORE TAPE INTERFACE (FOR MOST RECORDERS) ЕНН 
EBC AB UPGRADES чөө DKT GNT UE Er] 
INTERGEM FOR POW 13895, 100 CAP USC BOK £995 
‘SAGE MODEM + CHTOHAT FOR ANSTRAD PCW. пни 


N B. We can supply most new Micros and peripherals, talk to usi 


ONCE BYTTEN DISCS (BY ATHANA AND VERBATIM) 
With labels and hub ringed (517 with sleeves) 


"tek ner NN 
LE (пш cefo 21] 

tU — SES HE D JE 

31-0590 1381p 695 {8995 £169.00 

3 028D bacs [by Maxen £3:90 sach or Box of 5 tor £17.35. 

QUICKSHOT II JOYSTICK (THE CLASSIC)... £5.95 INC РАР. 


* Post and Packing within the U.K. as follows: 
Computers £5. Monitors £5, Printers £10, Disc Drives £3 
il Accessories £ 1, Discs FREE! | 
Overseas orders welcomed. please ask for quotation 
PRESS ! ! ! (Well, slow it down anyway) 


mala то сөз tor элу Cena London ode WE ODDENS 
w, Stason foreco Taioprone Kei Moa 


















Why do you suppose there's an ST in ChriSTmas? 
Atari ST's make fantaSTic presents 


for 
ArtiSTs, prieSTs, STudents, SToremen, STrippers 
in fact whatever your profession the Atari ST range is made for 


YOU 
We've got STockings full of software too! 


Phone us now for out lateST STupendous prices 


Wishing our customers throughout the world a 
HAPPY ST CHRISTMAS 
Part Exchange and Finance Available 








BATH COMPUTER SHACK 
8E Chelsea Road 


Lower Weston, Bath, Avon 


Tel: 0225 310300 





TROWBRIDGE COMPUTER SHACK 
8 Timbrell Street 
Trowbridge, Wilts 
Tel: 02214 67299 











20-26 NOVEMBER 1986 


POPULAR COMPUTING WEEKLY/33 








supplemen 





| 
Some consolation 


CHRIS JENKINS ON THE UNEXPECTED 
RETURN OF THE DEDICATED GAMES 
CONSOLES TO THE CONSUMER MARKET ` - 


istory, they say, repeats itself. When 
Nolan Bushnell's original arcade 

ping-pong game was reduced to the size of 

a box of chocolates, the games console 

was born; and now, after some years in 

the wilderness, it looks as if the concept is 

to be reborn in a more sophisticated form. 

Games consoles are, of course, in effect 
computers without the interactive 
element. You can't write a program on a 
games console - it doesn't have a 
keyboard. But inside are all the elements 
of a true computer; RAM, ROM, video 
handling, sound generators, and so forth. 

The argument in favour of games 
consoles is that they are cheap, 
because they cut out so many of the 
elements of a true computer, like 
the keyboard, disc drive, printer, 
monitor, large RAM; and because 
they use cartridges or data cards 
rather than tape or dise storage, 
they are easy to use, 

‘The games console is ideal if you 
have admitted to yourself, as so 
many computer users have, that the 
promise of being able to write your 
own programs in Basic or machine 
code is a delusion; most of us are 
never going to be able to write 
adequate commercial standard 








programs, and can be used with Atari 
Joysticks, paddles, track-balls and touch 
pads. The Nintendo and Sega machines, 
though, threaten to outperform 
Atari—although they will cost somewhat 
more. 

Sega's console will cost around $100, 
and consists of a main unit, power supply 
and two control units. These include two 
fire buttons and a mini-joystick. The 
central processor is the Z80 found in the 
Spectrum and Amstrad machines, 
although there's a custom video chip 
offering 32 colours from a palette of 64 





danger of losing the virtue of simplicity, 
Due to be launched early next year, the 
Nintendo may cost up to $150, with 
cartridges at around $30 although the 
success or otherwise of the Sega may 
affect the price. 

The Nintendo system contains 
proprietary chips which produce video 
displays featuring 52 colours. It come: 
complete with two control cards, similar 
to the Sega system’s, which feature two 
fire buttons and a thumb-pad each. 

There's also a light-sensing pistol, the 
Zapper, which works like a light-pen, and 
ROB, a miniature robot which can 
be plugged into the console and used 
as a partner for games, or made to 
perform up to 60 actions in strings 
of 100 commands. The gun and 
robot are, of course, optional extras; 
the basic system consists of the 
control deck, two cards and one 
game cartridge. 

Nintendo software is arranged in 

a number of different series; sports, 
light gun, robot, educational, action, 
arcade conversions and so on. 
There's even a programmable series, 
where the obstacles can be varied to 
your own taste. In all, 27 titles have 
been announced so far. 




























programs, so why bother trying? It's 
like buying a fitted kitchen when all 
you can cook is frozen beefburge 

Now that RAM and ROM chips are 
cheap enough to give a games console the 
same sort of power as a computer, and 
now that the initial excitement of 
grappling with programming has dulled 
into indifference, the time is ripe for the 
games console to return. 

So what is on the market? So far, only 
one system, the Atari 7800, replacement 
for the aged Atari 2600. However, before 
Christmas there should be two 
competitors, the Sega system from 
Ariolasoft and the Nintendo from Mattel, 
whose own Intellivision system nearly 
brought the corporation to its knees in the 
boom years. 

Atari's 7800 is $69.95, runs 2600 


34/POPULAR COMPUTING WEEKLY 


with 256x192 pixel resolution. The 
familiar AY-3-8910 four-voice sound chip 
(as in the Spectrum Plus 2, Amstrad CPC 
et al) is also included, and there are 32 
hardware sprites and hardware scrolling 
routines. 

Needless to say there's little more to 
add; the virtue of the games console is its 
simplicity. Slots for cartridges, 
data, cards, and ports for TV, monitor and 
sound complete with line-up. 

Cartridges available for the Sega have 
128K capacity, while Astron 
cards—credit-card sized plastic 
strips—have 32K capacity. Both cost 
around $19.95. For some of the details on 
games available at the launch of the Sega 
system, see Popular, 23 October 1986. 

The Nintendo system, distributed by 
Mattel, looks more ambitious, but in 
























In Japan and the USA, games consoles 
such as the Sega, Atari and Nintendo are 
already making a big comeback. With the 
home computer field going up-market, 
moving on to the 68000-based Atari ST's, 
there is now a gap at the low end of the 
market which mass-produced, cheaply- 
assembled games consoles could fill. 
Although there isn't a quantum leap in 
quality between 8-bit micros and game the. 
new games consoles - as there is between 
8- and 16-bit computers - it may well be 
that the non-technical camp will defect 
from computers to consoles. Put another 
way, if all you are looking for is fast- 
moving, colourful arcade games looking as 
much as possible like the coin-op originals, 
then a console may be your best choice. <q 


20-26 NOVEMBER 1986 





ENTERBRISES 


Multi Task — For Multi Tasking Psion Suite 

Psion 23. 

IMCS 512K Disc Interface 

CST Interface 

Citizen LSP10 - including бй! install and АЙ Leads 

Miracle Systems 512K 

Cash Trader. 

Guboids 

OL Paint 

Lattice С 

Supercharge 

Sign Designer 

Ram Disc - 50% Faster Than Any Other Ram Disc. 

MCS Interface and Dual Drive 

CST and Dual Drive. 

@ Plus 4 Free Books ~ Full Service Contract Guarantee 

MS 512K and Ram Disc. 

GST Macro Assembler 

Meteor Storm 

Lots of books at 

Pascal 

Computer 1 Monitor 

‘Once Used Microdrive 
Cartridges. 44495. 10-1150; 20-1985, 

TRADE ENQUIRIES WELCOME 


Books - Full Hutchinson Range all at £2.95 - Full set of nine £19.95 


50-4495 





Please rush me (Qty) of 


My name and address. 


DS ENTERPRISES 
25 Trinity Rise, London SW2 2QP 
Tel: 01-671 0209 
Call for quote on any QL'ish item at all 














Fmicrodeal Yo u Really Get 
The Best Deal 

* High percentage of GROSS receipts for 
royalties. 

* Your product marketed throughout the world 
by Microdeal & their associates — 
Michtron — PSL. 

High level PR. for your products with press 

reviews, exhibitions, WORLDWIDE, 

advertising WORLDWIDE. 

Technical support from our own authors 

both in the U.K. & U.S.A. Why invent the 

wheel twice? 

Hardware on loan or at subsidised price 

together with copies of ST 

magazines/books from around the world. 
When considering a publish: 


Sis MR. J. Symes Managing Director 
iR < Microdeal Ltd Box 68 St Austell 


NS M. N} Cornwall PL25 4YB Tel 0726 68020. 


20-26 NOVEMBER 1986 


JOIN THE 
CELEBRATIONS FOR THE... 


21st ZX MICROFAIR 
CHRISTMAS. SPECIAL 






‘Around one hundred 
hooks, magazines and 








‘mals, drinks and snacks, You'll 













м restaurant open 
sphere 
ced price tickets on the coupon below 


MICROFAIR 
CHRISTMAS SPECIAL 


pru 13th December 1986 








(10am-6pm) 

* New Horticultural Hall, 
Elverton St, 

London SW1 


ADVANCE TICKE TODAY 1 


i 
i 
I 
| 
i 


POPULAR COMPUTING WEEKLY/35 











Programming: Amstrad CPC 





Xen Plus 


Simon Goodwin 


'en Plus is a follow up to the Xen 
extension program for the Am- 
strad CPC's computers, which 


concentrates on graphics and screen 
manipulation and provides 13 further 






commands in less than 2K 

The commands are as follows: 

1Нерт lists all new commands. 

IVDU.x provides a BBC like VDU com- 
mand. For example IVDU,23, 1 turns on 
the graphic XOR function. 

IScrswap.n allows screen memory to 
be moved around Ram. When n=1 
screen Ram is set to 16384. Setting n to 
zero reverts to normal 

\Uprint,x.y,@a$ underlines the text in 


a$ at graphics coordinates х,у. 
lEmphasise,x.y.@a$ outputs text in an 
emphasised 

IDotline,n. direction draws a dotted line 
n pixels long in one of four directions (0 
to 3) 

IScrfacts gives a run down of graphics 
and text co-ordinates, pen and paper and 
screen móde. 

The remainder of the listing and in- 
structions will be given next week. 














10 REM ХЕМ PLUS BY SIMON. T. GOODWIN 
20 REM. 

30 FOR п=39000 ТО 40530 

40 READ a$ 

50 POKE n,VAL(*&*+a$) 

60 count=count-+VAL ("ke +a$) 












70 NEXT 

80 IF count (2163646 THEN PRINT "DATA ER 
ROR*END 

90 CALL 39000 

100 DATA 00,00,00, 00, 3E, 01, Cb, 0E 





110 DATA BC, 01,89, 98, 21,58, 98, CD 























120 DATA D1, BC, DD, 21, FB, 96,06, 18 
130 DATA CD, CD,25,9C, DD, 24 
140 DATA 18,CD,6F,9C,CD 
150 DATA c 





9C, CD,25, 9€ 





160 DATA C9, 
170 DATA ЭВ, 
180 DATA 







200 DATA 99, 
210 DATA 32, 
220 DATA 48,41 
230 DATA 42,00, Ji 
240 DATA 53, 46,41,43,54,13 
250 DATA 44, 4F,54, 4C, 49, 4E, C5, 53 
260 DATA 43,52,53,57, 41, 0, 44,50 
270 DATA 52,49, 4E, D4, 47, 43, 4F, 4F 
280 DATA 52,C4, 54, 43, 4F, 4F,52, C4 
290 DATA 42,4F,D8, 
300 DATA 54,05, 
310 DATA 4С, 7 
320 DATA 20,41,63, 74, 
390 DATA 65,64, 2£,53,69, 6D, £F, 6E 
340 DATA 26,54, 2E, 47, EF, 6F 64,77 
, 31,39, 38,36, 20 
360 DATA 20,20,20,00,00,00,00,00 
370 DATA 00,DD, E, 00,DD,66,01,22 
380 DATA 28,99, 
390 DATA 9€,22,20,9C,ED, 53, 
400 DATA 22,2F,99,28, 





31,9903, 9F, 90,03 
45, 40,50 
















































410 DATA 28, 20, 9C, CD, FÉ, BB, CD, C6 
420 DATA BB,ED, 53, 1E, 9C, 22, 20, 9C 
430 DATA 
440 DATA 







460 DATA 58,28, 
470 DATA 9C,CD,F6, BB, d 
480 DATA 22,2F, 93, D, F6, BB, C9, DD 
490 DATA 6E, 04, DD, 66, 05, DD, SE, 
500 DATA Db, 56, 03, CB, 3C, CB, 1D, 
510 DATA 1D, C, 18, 
520 DATA 00,66,04, 
530 DATA Db. 
540 DATA 
550 DATA 
560 DATA 
570 DATA 
0 DATA EE, CD, 25, 98, Co, 2 
590 DATA 21,60,9A, 06, 0D, 
600 DATA CD,78,8B, 70, 
510 DATA 22, 4E, 9A, 3A, 4D, 98, £F, 26 
620 DATA 00, CD, 29,96, 3A, 4E, 9A, 6F 
630 DATA 26,0 а 
640 DATA 23, 9B, Cb, 25, 
650 DATA 98, 06, 0C, CD, 
660 DATA EB, &F, 26, 00, CP, 29, 9B, CD 
670 DATA 25, 9C, Db, 21, 75, 98, 06, 0E 
680 DATA CD, EF, 9C, CD, 99, BB, EF, 26 




























720 DATA 9B, CD, 25, 

730 DATA 52, 41, 50,48. 
740 DATA 43,6F, 20,6. 
750 DATA 54,45,56,54, 20. 
760 DATA 6F,72,64,73,20 
770 DATA 52 
780 DATA 20,43,55, 
790 DATA 20,50,41 
800 DATA 43,52,45, 45, 4E, 20, 
810 DATA 44,45, 20, 00,00, 























820 DATA FE, 00,28, 05, FE, 01,28, 06. 
830 DATA C9,36, C0, C3, 08, BC, 3€, 40 
840 DATA C3, 06, BC, DD, 4E, 02, DD, 46 
#50 DATA 03, DD, 7€, 00, 32, 28, 9B, ED. 
860 DATA 43,26, 9B, CD, C6, BB, ED, 53 
870 DATA 1E,9C,22, „ЕА, BB. 
880 DATA ED, 4B, 26,98, 11,04, 00, CD 
890 DATA 98,9C, C5, CD,E7, 9A, ED, 5B. 
900 DATA 1E,9C, 2A, 2i 
910 DATA Ci, 0B, 78, BL, 
920 DATA 28,98, FE, 0 
930 DATA 28, 1A, FE, 
940 DATA 9C, 28, 2B, 2! 
950 DATA СЭ, 2h, 20,9€,23, 
960 DATA 22,20, 9, C9, ED, SB, 1E, 9C 
370 DATA 18, 18, 1B, 1B, ED, 53, 1E, 9C 
980 DATA C9,ED,5B, 1E, 9C, 13, 13,13 
990 DATA 13,ED,53, 1E, 9C, C9, 00,00. 
1000 DATA 00,CB, 7C, 28, 0C, 3E, 20, CD 
0 DATA 56, BB, EB, 21,00, 00, A7, ED 
1020 DATA 52, 0E, 0A, 1E, 00, 3E, 00, 06 
0 DATA 10,29, 17,89,98,02, 91,20 
1040 DATA 10,F7, 1C, FS, 7C,B5,20,ED 
1050 DATA 43,F1, C6, 30, CD, 5A, BB, 10 
1060 DATA FB,CS,FE, 01,26, 09, 30,47 
1070 DATA DD,23, DD, 23, 10, FB, 3C, 47 
1080 DATA DD, 7E, 00, C5, Db, ES, CD, SA 
1090 DATA BB,DD,E1, C1, DD, 2B, DD. 28. 
1100 DATA 10, EE, CS, CD, C3, 9B, DD, SE 
1110 DATA 04,DD, 56, 05, DD, 6E, 02, 
1120 DATA 66,03, ED, 53. 1E, 
1130 DATA SC, CD, Ci 
1140 DATA DD,2A, 
1190 DATA 20,9C, 06, 10,28, 1 
1160 DATA SB, 1E, C, CD, CO, BB, 21, 00 
1170 DATA 00,11, 10,00,38,22,9C,47 
1180 DATA 19,10, FD,EB, 21,00, 00, CD 
1190 DATA F9, BB, C9, DD, 6E, 00, DD, 66 
1200 DATA 01, 75,32, 22, 7Е,32 
1210 DATA 23, 9,23, 7E,32,24,90,C9 
1220 DATA CD,C3,9B, 3E, 17, CD, 5A, BB 






















































































3D Rotator 


John Owen 








his program draws a tetrahedron 

and then rotates it in three dimen- 

sions. The program can easily be 
modified to rotate another object. 

Line 480 holds the object's point, each 

specified by x,y and z co-ordinates re- 

spectively. From each point to the next a 


line is drawn. 

The variable p in line 100 indicates the 
number of points. 

As the listing is fairly short it can be 
easily incorporated into your own pro- 
grams to provide displays for a variety of 
applications, including games. 





36/POPULAR COMPUTING WEEKLY 


20-26 NOVEMBER 1986 


Programming: OL 








трт 
points 

















Steven Pattullo 


ontrolling your spaceship is by 
using a joystick plugged in port 
two. Moving the joystick up and 
down results in your spaceship following 
suit. Left slows you down while right 
speeds you up. The fire button launches 
the missile 
There are three listings in all for UFO. 
They must be saved in order for the 
program to run correctly. If you don't 
want to type it in send £2 (or £1.30 plus 
cassette) to Steven Pattullo, 34 Birch- 
field Road, Widnes, Cheshire WAB 7SU. 








PRINT "a" 
PRINT "M-''e-e 
PRINT 

PRINT 

PRINT 

PRINT " 

PRINT 

PRINT 
PRINT 
PRINT 
PRINT 
PRINT 
PRINT 
PRINT 
PRINT 
PRINT 
PRINT ` 

PRINT SSSRPRESS I FÉ 








PRINT "HELEEEEEELEEEEEEEEEEEEEE ELLE E E L E G 














PRINT БИК 














20-26 NOVEMBER 1986 


POPULAR COMPUTING WEEKLY/37 








Programming: OL 


320 FOR H-688 TO 7@3:POKE Н, 1 :МЕХТ 

338 POKE 704,255:РОКЕ 705,0:РОКЕ 7G6,235:POKE 707,0:РОКЕ 7@8.255:POKE 709,0 
340 POKE v416.7 

345 POKE V*23,7:PÜKE 
398 POKE V-1.158:POKE 
3680 POKE V43,158:POKE 
370 POKE Vv45,158:POKE V 
388 POKE 21,7 

390 SYS 49152 

471 POKE S+4,17 

2 Ret ZF 1 THEN RESTORE 
5+1,Х:РОКЕ 5, 





























REM me STICK RERDMddee 
THEN POKE 714.1:P0 
КЕ 7&6, 1:POK| 







1:POKE 707,255 
714, 1:РОКЕ 715,1 









255:РОКЕ 711, 
POKE 711 
POKE 711,1 





V«395:POKE 0,0 


v+23,0 POKE у+2Э 
5 TO 5+24:РОКЕ N,Q: NEXT: PE 
1802 PRINT SPCC152;"3GET READY" FOR N 
a POKE 
POKE 2 
POKE 704,0: POKE 
E 708,255:РОКЕ 7 
W442, 7 POKE ved: 

















=1 
REM ***LEVEL ONE*** 
PRINT "xs" 





PRINT Ser opa UN possi S h Ero n ed 
FOR N= 
PRINT 
25 PRINT " йул үе экей ete 
1130 POKE V«40,15:POKE 45,251 :РОКЕ V ‚а 





1131 POKE v+30,0 
1145 POKE ¥+3,14@:POKE +11, 1 





SUB эда 
KE 698,R:PÜKE 698,R 
GOSUE 790 















1190 IF JO 127 THEN GOSUE i 
9 IF 127 THEN POKE 7! 1:POKE 7! OKE 714,1 E 71 
IF (PEEK<¥+16)>AND2>=2 AND PEEK 88 THEN GOTO 1300 





210 GOTO 1179 
1300 POKE Y+21,9:PRINT " 

















38/POPULAR COMPUTING WEEKLY 20-26 NOVEMBER 1986 | 











Fonts 


R Groom 


Ihe character expander will work in 
any graphics mode and is used as 
follows: 

ProcEXPAND(x.y.a,9.w.d.) 

Where x and y are the graphics co- 
ordinates, 2 is the Ascii code of the 
letter, w is the pixel width, d is the pixel 
depth, g is the colour as used with бсо/ 
and s Ís the slant of the letter which can 
be positive or negative. 

If you would like а copy send £3 and a 
tape to R Groom, 106 Ingles, Welwyn 
Garden City, Herts ALB 7HG. 














1240 J6Rc; 
1250LDA823; 
1260 DAR25; 
1270008871; 









191000088: JSRCX 

1320118823: JSRCX 
133000025: 
1940000 2 
JSRCX 
1360LDA8255: JSRCK 
137000810: 
іза 








1400068255: 79807 
141009475: JSRCX: JSRC: RC 
142000476: 75802: 

143000225 


JSRCL 








149000478: 
1900008255: 79 

1510875 

1520\THIS GIVES OCTUPLE HEIGHT 
1530.oct 

1540JSRca11 

15501000 

1560. loop? 

1970100823: 75801 

1580008255: 75801 
1990009071, 








1620008825: JSRCX x 
1630118810: JORCX 
1640LDA89: ISRCX 












INK: CPREB 
6&0BNE1oop2 
1670RTS 

16801 

1690ENDPROC 

1700: 

1710DEFPROC FONT(XL, 
1720F08LX=1T0LENT$ 
17307%702ASC (NIDS (T$, Lt, 1)) 
1740VDU01 XLI YX 
17501F80 
1760IFNX=2CALL jeft 
{7 7OIFNL=3CALLY ight 


Yt, T$, NY) 











1800IFNX=6CALLdouble 
1810IFNX=7CALLquad 







1830NEXTL' ENDPROC 

1846: 
SSODEFPROC_EXPAND pos, уро, asc, aca. 
Y, width, depth, Тал) 
1960F0RA-0TO9: FORES ÜTO9: or id (AX, BY) = 
NOTE, A 
18707%70=asctsCALL cal] 
1860widthi=wrdthXDIVE 
1890derthi=depthxDIVE 

1900counttet 

1910КЕРЕАТ 

19201F7(870¢count%) )=1287(470+count)=? 
(470+countZ) -128:9гі@ І, count) «1 
19301F?(470+count’) -64? (E70 «count =? 
£70¢count%) ~64: grid (2, count) =} 
19401Е?(&70+сол 21) >32? (E70 count 
£70+count’) -32:ar id (3, cour) =1 
19501F2(170+count)>=162(k70+count3 
£70+count)-1629r idt (4, count) +1 
19601 count) 28? (870+count X) #708 
Totcount2) -Bxaridi 5, count) «1 
197Е?(&70+сом 2) >=47(&70+count 2) 708 











E 



























19901F? (k70«coun! 
aridhi, count) «i 





20306C0L0, gco?tt 

AOFÜRAX 1TOS 
хебоге е ant 
xstoreX 











“2400TFar iat ВИНА aNDar iB 
IMOVExpos1*widthXDIV2, yposX: MOVExpostiew 
idthXDIV2, yposti-depthXDIV2: PL0T8S, xpos! 
OT85, xpos1lewi dth, уро: 












epth2p1V2 

21101Farid' (E-1, AX) =1ANDar id (BX, AX+1) 

IMOVExpost, yposX-depthXDIV2: :MOVExposY, 

ypos1-deethX:PL0T85, xpos%+width%DIV2, уро 
-depth'YDIV2: LOTES, xposktwidthZDIV2, yp 

ostt-depthit 

OT Far idi (Brt*1 AX) =1ANDar id (BX, AXEL) 

={MOVExpost/+widthiDIV2, ypost-depthiDIV2: 

MOVExpos%+widthiDIV2, yposX-depthX: PLOTES| 
sxpositwidthi, yposX-depthXDIV2:PLOT8S, xp. 























20-26 NOVEMBER 1986 


POPULAR COMPUTING WEEKLY/39 





Bytes & Pieces 


Fractal 
Geometry 














DG Nevill 


This QL routine generates a complex 
surface which can be used as a base for 
landscapes in games programs. 

The procedure requires three points to 
be specified to define a starting triangle 
(1,y1,21,x2,y2,22,x3,y3,23) and the 
depth of recursion (the bigger the value 
of 7 the more complex the resulting 
shape). 

The surface is generated by dividing a 
triangle into four triangles and distorting 
the height. This is then repeated for each 
of the resulting four triangles. 














Amstrad ТЕБЕ ИОНЫН 


30 MODE 1:805UB 100 


haracter 40 INK 0, 0:INK 2, Er INK 3, 19:PEN 2 
C 50 LOCATE 4,2:POKE 48597, 163:PRINT "ENLA 
БЕР WRITING':POKE 49597, 19 
modes 70 PEN 1:LOCATE 2,5:PRINT* This is а mod 
е 1 screen with a mode 0 size title in 
Graham Redman ink 3" 
80 LOCATE 2,23:END 
This machine code routine for the Am- єз 
strad CPC series allows characters of | 9) REN*####ENLARGED WRITING*++++ 
mode O size to be used on a mode 1 100 MEMORY 41801 
screen, 110 FOR пей TO 53 
The routine includes a demonstration | 120 evt 41902en, VAL Uk" MID ("ESESCDLAB 
showing now it can be used in your own | CF EBCD45B806g74FCS0506046FCB213002F60rC 
Enter Poke 48597,163 to turn the 1213002F 63312131 0EFD1E521 00081 9EBE123011 
routine on, once installed, and Poke 0DEE12424242CC375BB" , 2*n+1,2)) 
48597,19 to switch the double height 130 NEXT: RETURN. 
printing off 




















Collapsing 
Screen 







m 110 00023,0 

085,640,800 fter 1 of 6845 chip 

AB(5, 15} "The Amazing] 120 FOR WAIT=1T030:NEXT 
130 ET 

XO: PRINTTAB(i0,31);"* Pr 140 ENDPROC 

Bryn Humphreys pace Bar += 150 DEFPRÜCdestroy screen 

160 FORK=80 TO 0 STEP-1 

170 00023,0, 





:REM alter regis 





This BBC listing shows how the 6845 180 FOR WAT 
CRTC chip can alter the amount of dis- 190 NEXT 
played characters on a Mode 1 or 2 = a 
screen. It does this by changing the value 90 DEFPRUCshow_screen 200 ENDPROC 
of register 1 in Proc show_screen and | 100 FOR=i TO 80 
Proc destroy. screen. 

The listing gives a demonstration of 
the effects possible. 

















40/POPULAR COMPUTING WEEKLY 20-26 NOVEMBER 1986 








i 
RODTEK CHRISTMAS OFFER | 


THREE DIFFERENT BUMPER PACKAGES AT BUMPER PRICES I 


KINGSIZE GAMES FOR COMMODORE 64 














Here is your chance to buy volume 1 & just released volume 2. 50 incredible value games 
on each cassette or disk version. 
Cassette Package: Normal Price £19.95 Christmas Price £12.95 
Disk Version: Normal Price £25.90 Christmas Price £14.95 
(If you already have Volume 1, you can buy Volume 2 separately at £9.95) 





KINGSIZE GAMES FOR COMMODORE C1 6/PLUS 4 





Buy Volume 1 & just released Volume 2 
50 incredible games on each cassette 
Cassette package: Normal Price £19.95 Christmas Price £12.95 


(If you already have Volume 1, you con buy Volume 2 separately at £9.95). 


THE FAMOUS ROBTEK MAGIC DISK KIT 
Б ROBCOM TURBO 50 [voted No.1 utility of the year) 


Normal Price £44.90 Christmas Price £29.95 
MAGIC DISK KIT: 


For Commodore 1541 and 1571 disk drives. Everyone with a disk drive 
needs this product. No more repair bills no technical knowledge needed. EASY TO USE, 
You can solve or prevent most of your problems now with this product. 
CONTAINS: SPECIAL CLEANING DISK 
ROBTEK'S UNIQUE ALIGNMENT DISK: tests and adjusts speed and alignment step by step. 








TURBO 50 
Voted No. 1 utility. For COM 64/128. Transforms your Commodore with this incredible 
powerlul cartridge. Fantastic features include Turbo loading for your disk drive and 
Cassette Player, Copying Program, Taol Сенка Interface, Reset Switch and much 
much more. 


= = All these products are available ot all good computer stores or you con order 
= = direct from Robtek. 
=== Viso/Cheque/Postol Order 
= == Robtek Lid., Unit 4, Isleworth Business Complex, SI. Johns Road, Isleworth, 
- -— Middx. TW7 МІ. Tel: 01-847 4457 








20-26 NOVEMBER 1986 POPULAR COMPUTING WEEKLY/4T 





Programming: Peek & Poke 











With Kenn Garroch 
Slipped disc 


AF Wilson, of Whitehaven, in 
Cumbria, writes: 


0 vert a 500K Shugart 
compatible disc 
drive, with power supply, 
into a one megabyte 
drive. If so, how easy 
would it be to fit a switch 
to transfer between 500K 
and 1000K modes? 


There are a number of 

you propose. The first 
is that you would need quad- 
ruple density discs to operate 
store your data. Most discs 
are rated at single density 
(100K per side), or double 
density (200K per side). If you 
used double density discs 
and tried to put 400K per 
side, you would have quite a 
few errors cropping up. You 
сап, or could, get quad den- 
sity discs but these are phe- 
nomenally expensive. 

The other problem is inher- 
ent in the way disc drives 
work. A stepper motor is 
used to move to the read/ 
write head across the disc, 
splitting the area into 40 or 80 
tracks for single or double 
density. A quad density sys- 
tem would need to have 160 
tracks and so the stepper 
would have to have 160 
steps. The switchable 40/80 
track drives are actually 80 
track systems with a switch 
to cause the stepper to move 
two steps for each pulse in- 
stead of one step. 

For the system you pro- 
pose, you would need a quad 
density drive with a switch to 
do double steps giving 400K 
or 800K. These are quite rare 
and unless the drive you have 
is one of these, you will not 
be able to make the stepper 








do half a step since the accu- 
тасу is not good enough 

Your best bet is to buy a 
hard disc drive as these come 
in sizes of 5, 10, 20 and 40 
megabytes. 





64 problems 


Allan Gore, of Winstanley, 
Wigan, Lancs, writes: 


0:: styled TV with 


RGB for use with my 
Commodore 64. Dixon: 
where I bought it, told me 
to go to any electrician to 
get the appropriate lead 
made up to give a crystal 
clear picture. I have since 
been told by an electrical 
shop that the Commo- 
dore 64 is not compatible 
with RGB monitors. 

1 went back to Dixons 
and told them, but as far 
as they are concerned the 





















tell me 
right? They will 
not refund the money if it 
isn’t compatible. How do 
1 stand legally here? 

Also I have a 1570 disc 
drive and bought a pro- 
gram called Alternate 
Reality which won't load. 
The 1541 and 1570 are 
supposed to be 100% 
compatible, although the 
Roms are slightly differ- 
ent, so it may be the pro. 
tection on the disc. The 
shop ! purchased it from 
says that they tested it on 
the 1541 and it loaded 
properly. | have written 
to US Gold but have had 
no reply. Can 1 get ту 
money back? 


The Commodore 64 is 
A not RGB compatible; 

however, the 128 is so 
maybe Dixons is a little mixed 
up. Are you sure that the 
1444 monitor does not have 
a composite video input? If it 
does the 64 will work, and it's 
simply a matter of getting the 
right cable. 

If you are not satisfied with 
the monitor, ie, it does not do 
what you purchased it to do, 
youare well within your rights 
to take it back and have your 
money refunded, and the 
same applies to the game 
Alternate Reality. The best 
thing to do with this is to 











phone US Gold and talk to 
Someone about using their 
software with the 1570. The 
chances are that the protec- 
tion is all that's stopping you 
playing the game and they 
should either advise you on 


how to get it working, or . 


refund the money. 





Amstrad 
illumination 


Jim Gibb of Wishaw, Strath- 
clyde, writes: 


in response to Keith 
0 Platt's query about 
connecting a Fergu- 
son TV/monitor to his 
Amstrad 464, | would like 
to point out that the RGB 
signals from the Amstrad 
CPC should be terminat- 
ed in resistances of 1000 
for the full colour range to 
be obtained. 
The Amstrad monitor 
has th 














the Ferguson, 
as | am aw: other 
TV/monitors, have not. 


For this reason the RGB 
signals are non-standard. 
A box containing th 
required terminations 
could be constructed for 
connecting in-line with 
the cabh 
The luminance signal i: 
not required since the 
RGB signals correctly 
combined contain the lu- 
minance information. 


The following diagram 
A should do the trick. The 

pin outs are the same as 
‘on page one of appendix V of 
the 464 user guide. You will 
probably have to connect 
Sync as well (not shown in 
diagram). 















































Want an ST? 


K Sutch, of St Helens, Mersey- 
side, writes: 


am thinking of tak- 
Q ing advantage of Sil- 

а Shop's offer and 
ing an Atari 520ST, 
Without a monitor, for 
Christmas. 

Would it be worth buy- 
an ST for program- 
ming purposes? 1 have 
d Spectrum Basic for 
the last two years and 
have just started to learn 
280 machine code. | am 
also very interested in 
trying out new language: 
(eg, Logo). Another factor 
will the price of the ST 

dramatically. within 
the next year or so or will 
it become obsolete with 
new advances in 
technology? 

Could you use the ST 
with TV modulator in any 
resolution and if so, could 
you use something like 
Neochrome as it s 
"colour systems only'? 


The ST is quite good as 
Ат 

goes since а lot of lan- 
guages are available as con- 
versions to 68000. If this is 
not enough, Silica Shop is 
giving away a CP/M emulator. 
И you can get the correct 
format discs, there are even 
more languages available 
with this. 

The ST is unlikely to be 
obsolete within the next year 
although it is possible that the 
104ST may become more of 
the ‘in machine’ than the 520 
since the price difference is 
not that great and you get all 
that extra memory. 

The main thing to bear in. 
mind when looking to buy a 
computer is that you could 
wait forever for the price to 
drop. Alternatively, it could 
fall next week. 

The 520STM (M for modu- 
lator) can be used in all colour. 
modes (medium and lo-res) 
with a domestic TV. How- 
ever, the hi-res monochrome 
mode cannot be used. How- 
ever, nearly all ST software 
works in medium or low 
resolution. 

In reply to your question 
about Neochrome, yes it will 
work with a TV, so will Gem, 
Basic, Logo and 1st Word, etc. 






































42/POPULAR COMPUTING WEEKLY 


20-: 





6 NOVEMBER 1986 












SPECTRUM TITLES 
sag 

Kong Sines Back 
Sum, 
Cantal Lyme 
rica Mass 
Saboteur 

os 

feo 

Paty oen 
Storie 

Many innocent 
Ds меени 
Never Enn Soy 
Moniy On The Rm 
Siyo 

eats 

West ak 

funder 

Sam Sisi 

Fav ба, 

Im 

orti 

Ап Feta 
Gyroscope 

Faring Ware 
Who Dares Wes i 
Tris d Tane 
Sonal 

aos Advent 
Enea fe 
Adventure Guest 
com 

Муну icone 
Aen way 
Koo 

Mach sig 
YSW 

Non Cames Complain 
рий! waq 
пз y 5. 
урунт 

s 

Manas 
Prantasa Daran 
Spoeman huk 
faros AC 
W Wolter 
Toy Beare 
Merton Sei Mason 
Rompen 

Mido Pool 
Мапс ne 












BSRSSESRESESSSS 


24 
2: 
2 
2 
H 
3 
3 
3 
2 
2 
2 
24 
2 
4 
2t 
3 
2 
2: 
H 
2 
n 
2 
3 
n 
2 
3 
2 
4 


PEPEE IT 





ЕРРРЕБЕЕ5 


2 
1 

H 

3 

2 

2 

2 

2 

2 

2 

3 

2 

3 

1 

1 

2 

Frank Bruno's Boxing 1 
Manono H 
The Covenant H 
Going Word 1 
Biaderunner 1 
H 

3 

3 

3 

2 

2 

1 

à 

H 

4 

H 

ry 

4 

2 

3 

1 

z 

2 





Monly Mole 
Beachhead 1 
Bruce Lot 

Bounty Bob 

Sabre Wolt 
Everyone's a Waly 
Robin ot Sherlock. 
Моо Prologue. 
Twister 

Scrahtie 
intone 

DT s бирее 
Revouton 

Factory Breakout 
Cytelum. 

Jasper 

фуга 

Stabe 


SINCLAIR MACMILLAN 
TITLES (АН at 2.99 each) 


sehsssssssesssesssze: 















Арпа Better Word Seter 
Qi Ste Weathermaster 
Planet Patrol Body Swap 
Mac Man's Magic Minor Soundabout 
Мас Man in The Caves — Cargo Gider 
Mac Man And The Great Escape 

Disease Dodgers 

PERIPHERALS 48K 

Curah Mico Sols. 285 
5 Rols of phacon Paper 835 
Timex 20/40 Thermal rns. 3498 












LOGIC’S WINTER SALE 


COMMODORE 64 TITLES 


Iso 
Six 

Bounder, 

T. On A Spring, 
Ghastchaser 
Knights of Desert. 
Law Of West 
Kermit’s Staymaer 
Fgimght 

Tigers in Snow. 
Gyroscope. 

A Pandora 

Bombo 
Dagonsiule. 

Word Cup 1 

Kong Stikes Back 
Ward S Baseball 
Combat Lynx 
бика! Mass 
Saboteur 

Zoids. 

Monty Mole 

Monty On The Run 
Souther Beile 
Never Ending Story 
Winter Games 
Summer Games 1. 
Weary 

Beachhead 

Combat Leader 
Motorcross. 

Red Hawk 

Pi Slop 

Crazy Comes 
Dummy Run 
Айолала 

BC'S Quest ar Tes 
Mane Miner 
ISW. 

Woo Dares Wins V 
оши 

Hunchback Olympics 
Colossal Adventure 
Loris ot Tine. 
Pastioder 

Causes of Chaos 
Wed Dimension 
Space Shuttle 
веле. 

Rock М Bot 
Fighting Waor 
Rocky Honor Show 
Bade Runner 

Debs. 

итеу 

видре Payer 2 
Pinball Ward 

Dark Tower 

‘Shoot The Rapids. 
буз Day Out 
Star Trooper. 

Master 0 he Lamps 
Snowbal 

Adventure Guest 
тоер 

лден. 
Mabeus 

нак 

Жал Мооре 
Harvey Smith's Show Jumper 
Knockout 

The Designers Pencil 
Music Studio by Ассо 
Ms Pacman (caf). 
Rototron 2084 (car 
Delender (сал) 
Donkey Kong (ca) 
Moon Pato (сал) 
Dig Dug (сал) 
Ward ot Wor (сал) 
International Soccer (сал) 
Match Fishing 
Tenuth Head Аоте 
Basion Bond 
Death Star int 
Beyond For Forest 


















ЕНТИП 





4% 
398 
з 
299 
395 
E 
295 
295 
295 
395 
535 
5.95 
585 
595 


Postage and packing 75p all orders. OVERSEAS £1.00 per tape 


LOGIC SALES LTD, = 
6 MIDGATE, PETERBOROUGH, CAMBS PE1 1TN 
24 hour ordering on 0733 313870 


/— HSV COMPUTER SERVICES LIMITED — 


DISKETTES 

UNBRANDED LIFETIME GUARANTEE 
Quantity 10 20 30 40 50 100 
34” SS/DD 135 TPI 15.50 30.50 45.50 60.50 75.50 149.50 
05/00 135 TPI 17.50 34.50 51.50 68.50 85.50 169.50 
54” 55/00 48TP| 5.95 11.50 1695 2250 27.95 54.95 
DS/DD 48 ТРІ 6.95 1350 19.95 26.50 3295 64.95 
05/00 96 ТР 7.95 15.50 22.95 30.50 37.95 1495 

All disks supplied in cardboard boxes 

with write protect tabs, labels and 

envelopes and come with our no 


quibble money back or replacement 
guarantee. 


AMSTRAD 
AMSOFT/MAXELL 3” CF2 1 — £3.65 
5—£17.50 10—£31.95 


CREDIT CARD HOT LINE 
E3 (0256) 463507 


ALL OUR PRICES INCLUDE CARRIAGE & VAT 
NO EXTRAS TO PAY! 








Also best prices foi 
Disk Boxes, Ribbons, Paper, Labels 


HSV COMPUTER SERVICES LIMITED 
40-42 New Market Square, Basingstoke, Hants RG21 1HS 















MS 

















COMM 64 DISCS Easy Sock (dec) 








ви, Easy Script (dc) 
Sod Mion x Future Finance (dc) 

Thing On A Spring. Easy Spel (dc) 

фу Мато Bredens Basic 64 (Cond). 

Rec Hawk 1551 Disc drives lo +4 and Cl 
MI Chess i CN Паше, 

Tol 98 — CH Music Maker Keyboard 
Toi 388 Commodore 128 Music Maker 
EDI 399 кеюн 

шоо. 388 — Facem/Assembler/Ossassembler 
Себе 399 Programmes Utites (Disc) 
Suspended 309 Simons Basic Extension 





6 Games Dc (nc Sooper Fruit, Depth (cassette о disc). 


Charge. Stélar Wars, Laby argain Books from 1s 
по, The Quest, Patience. zx - p 





Publishin 
Spei Sones Па + £250 pip 
Hover Bover Normally over £50.00 RRP 
Sheep Space t Cassette Bok 
fs ita П. felony oa Commodore 64 
Super Zanon барле Bok би 
Monty on the Run. Peekes & Pokes 064 
Batte d bran Tos тра COA 
Тане Europe. Acad Machine Language Bok C64 
Chimera Willow P. ideas Book C64 
Алес Challenge Machine Language Book C64 
64 UTILITIES 1st Publishing Programs on 
we Linn sss Disc for C64 
Зор Pus Word Рик. м st £1095 ich 
Cage Pus.) 336 Areas £2000 of ARPN 
соп Pad ҮЗ Pus 4 Ose 747 Fst (word pir) 
Dr Watson 64 Ass Lang Course абаз (database 
Dee 335 ббс 
тохт Type ass) 295 Pasa language) 
Commodi Modens 4% ADA талоо Course (адар) 
Easy Pie (c) $88 Poeer Pan Cic peg) 
Froyanmers à. Gades $89. Аоте Monto Compier) 











20-26 NOVEMBER 1986 


POPULAR COMPUTING WEEKLY/43 








Soundcheck 














Mark Jenkins explains the basics of Midi and micro music 


for confused readers 


'e've discussed Midi more than 
once in this column before, 
but the questions keep com- 


ing in from readers, so this week, we'll 
look at Midi in some detail. 

Can you live without it, and can you 
plug it into your computer? Obviously 
there is a degree of confusion around — 
Paul Malley of Co. Antrim has written in 
to say that he's keen to learn more about 
micro-based music, but the first time he 
heard Midi mentioned was on an episode 
of EastEnders! 

So, for Pau! and anyone else who 
needs some basics on equipment and 
interfacing, here goes. 

Midi (Musical Instrument Digital Inter- 
face) is a standard which allows instru- 
ments including synthesisers, digital 
pianos and other keyboards, drum 
machines, sequencers, effects, guitar 
synthesisers (such as the Stupp DG 1 
and Synthaxe) and microcomputers to 
be connected together 

If an instrument has Midi it will have 
one, two or three five-pin Din sockets 
somewhere. These are for the In, Out 
and Through Midi functions. If it doesn't 
have Midi, it's sometimes possible to 
add it with one of a range of Midi 
convertors and accessories now 
available. 

Midi is a serial digital interface like 
RS432 — it transmits on and off voltages 
which add up to a binary language which 
is interpreted by a microprocessor in the 
receiving instrument. This language (the 
"dictionary" for which a document 
called The Complete SCI Midi Version 1.0 
is published by Sequential Circuits) con- 
tains many different words and has 
several different functions. The main 
function is to simulate the playing of 
notes on a keyboard. Midi has 128 
values for different notes which cover 
11} octaves, much more than a normal 
piano keyboard. Send a “note оп” code 
plus one of these values to a synthesiser 
over Midi, and that note will sound. 

What's the point of Midi control? Well, 
like all computer systems, there are 
several possible applications. The sim- 
plest is to connect two keyboards to- 
gether (from the Midi Out socket of one 
to the Midi In socket of another) so that 
they both play the same notes simul- 
taneously, thickening the overall sound. 
Another application is to control many 
synthesisers from a micro which has 





recorded some Midi data (from a key- 
board or guitar controller input) so you 
can play back a complete composition 
and edit it. 

Midi can do this because it operates on 
16 different channels which can be 
selectively used by each instrument 
playing back. Midi also contains a code 
for a clock pulse, so you can connect 
sequencers and drum machines by Midi 
and they'll all run at the same speed. 
There are also codes for the following 
Key Velocity — so that sounds are louder if 
you hit the keys harder. 

Key Pressure — to introduce vibrato and 
other effects if you push down on the 
keys. 

Pitch Bend — controlled from a special 
pitch bend wheel or lever. 


Not a gui 
controller . 


r, but the Synthaxe Midi 





Modulation — for vibrato effects from a 
wheel or slider. 

Patch Change — to switch to a new 
sound. 

A Midi sequencer or Midi-equipped 
micro with appropriate software will 
record all these pieces of data and allow 
you to edit them individually — so if you 
give a performance of a piece but don’t 
like the pitch bend on the fifth note of the 
sixteenth bar, you can edit it out. 

It’s possible to add Midi to the Com- 
modore 64 (with an interface from Se- 
quential, Jellinghaus, Siel, C-Lab, Stein- 
berg or many more), to the BBC (with an 





interface from UMI, EMR and others), 
and to MSX, Amstrad and other micros. 
The Atari 520/1040 ST micros have 
Midi sockets as standard, while the 
Spectrum Plus also has Midi sockets of a 
sort (BT phone plugs were used in a 
devastating example of false economy) 

Midi is almost compulsory now on all 
but the cheapest new keyboards, and if 
you have older equipment working on 
analog voltages you can buy an analog- 
to-Midi or Midi-to-analog converter 
(don't expect miracles, though — even 
some Midi equipment has limitations, for 
example in whether it can give out or 
respond to velocity or pressure informa- 
tion, whether it can play more than one 
sound at a time over Midi, and so on). 

Midi equipment is expensive com- 
pared to budget micros, although it's 
becoming cheaper — Casio's excellent 
CZ-101 Midi synth is about £248, Ro- 
land has a Midi sound module without a 
keyboard for around £150, and some 
Midi software is not too expensive (pro- 
fessional software starts at around £ 100. 
though). But do you absolutely need to 
have Midi to make music? The answer is 
"No" — you can produce very impressive 
music with your micro's built-in sound 
chip (particularly on the Commodore 64), 
you can add very authentic drum sounds 
with a Datel or Tron unit, and keyboards 
and FM synthesiser modules to your 
heart's content. 

But the fact of the matter is that the 
world of semi-pro and professional 
music has taken Midi to its bosom, and is 
determined to make it a living, expanding 
system which offers some wonderful 
options even for those without much 
money to spend. Midi does have some. 
secrets and some problems, but no more 
зо than the average micro-computer. 
It's worth spending some time, effort 
and money to come to terms with such a 
powerful music-making system. Your 
local music shop will be happy to help 
you — particularly if you make them think 
that you're about to spend some money. 


if you have any queries or tips for this 
column, please write to Mark Jenkins 
at Popular Computing Weekly, 12—13 
Little Newport Street, London WC2H 
7PP. Mark would also welcome ex- 
amples of your own music on audio or 
program tape, or disc. 















44/POPULAR COMPUTING WEEKLY 


20-26 NOVEMBER 1986 














This adver tina 
was prepared 








FRONT PAGE 


do 





FRONT PACE 














s supplied 
© 











ete, read 


№ 
FRONT 


FULLY 


a 

to tey 2 

ask lop d 
š: 


or yourself for 


"SK=TOP_PUBLISHT 
FOR THE SINCLAIR Ot 





HERE 15 A SUMMARY OF THE FACILITIES SELF 


once you] 
d your 
you 
to print 
it, FRONT PAGE hes 
ИЛ? 


VERY 





280x908 pixel draving area 
Supports all QL text sizes. 
Alternative font AND E 
very 
User-defined graphics on Bc 
Freehand graphics. 
Cut and past 
Load and save futi and part screens. 
Up to 88 tines and 139 columns. 
pies, readisis, etc 


ie text eng. y 




















mt 





PAP INCLUDED FOR UK AND EUROPE. 


Yes, the QL can nou do 
desktop publishing, and 


FRONT PAGE al lous you to 
do something USEFUL vith 
your OL. Design your oun 
Gr tuork, produce your 


отраг 
up leaflets quickty. 


-CONTAINED 


REMEMBER UHERE YOU RERD 
IT FIRST-ON FRONT PAGE! 


GAP SOFTVARE, 17 ST, ЈОНА TCE, LONDON, D 00: 01- 


FOR OUTSIDE EUROPE 


QL 4MATTER SUITE V5.3 
Crd пәри! Wut эз Dy 
э» fer уй тб, pics, has fr md 
swa e m Vil 9 min TO we ut 
Desc mb tan дин in Swap tiga 
"ot 
ia escis БРО: kon v. + “Faner 
edm eto. C 
es. 


it economically! "+ 





"0 Steve Jones, 
ZITASOFT 

эз Foxboume Rood, London SW17 BEN. 

PS ответе eo ОВ 


neusletter, make 








DO TT ECOMONICALLY! 
PAGE 


HENU DRIUEN 





STOP 
PLAYING GAMES 


ceres pen mm 
"i-e Sse 
EIU mE 
Z= 
Westlink Promotions (CW1) 
[ucro 
ЕНЕНЕ 


is: 


ERSY TO USE 
CONOMICRL 


























BLANK DISCS 5jin. 
ALL discs have reinforced hubs, are certified error free and quaranteed for 
lito. mi IDED discs are manufactured for double sided use оп 
any single sided drive such aå the Atari, Commodore, Cumana etc, drives. 
Tracker discs can bo supplied with B side notch if requested. 











10 25 
u N/A £14.95 

TRACKER £7.95 £17.95 

MIMIC £9.45 £22.95 

ALL above discs come with WRITE PROTECTS, LABELS and 
SLEEVES. 


LOCKING DISC BOX - holds 100 £11.95 or just add £10.00 when 
purchased with 50 or 100 of the above discs. 


АРІ 8-BIT DISC SOFTWARE 

DOS 4.0 - Tho best DOS yet. Works in single, enhanced. and double 
density. plus many other advantages over the other DOS's. £4.95. 
SHEER FORTH Powortui FIGFORTH language disc, double sided with 
tutorial on B side. £6.95. 

IX "XL" — Translator with extra 4K of RAM in machine code. £3.95. 




















DOUBLE DENSITY MOD. from £19.95 to £29.98 {depending on 
Software 
BLANK 3}in. DISCS!!! 
10 
13509: 10. 5 во 00 “э 
58/00 £14.95 £34.95 £64.95 £124.95 £15.95 
08/00 £17.95 £38.95 £74.95 614495 £18.95 
mirsueism 
DD £23.95 BOX (10) - 2 BOXES ONLY £44.95. 
LOCKING DISC BOX " Poids 90 = E1898 v jns add £12.00 when 





purchased with 50 or 100 of the above discs. 


ATARI 16-BIT SOFTWARE 
BOTH DISCS HAVE OVER 100K OF PROGRAMS ON THEM. 
DESK ACCESSORY 1 — Includes a directory printer, a printer spooler and a 
digital watch, 67.95. 
DESK ACCESSORY 2 — Includes a variety of ram discs, an analog clock 
and a calculator which works in hex and dec with direct conversion, £3.95. 
Many other ATARI 8 and 16-BIT programs - just write for more info. 
Cheques etc, payable to STORT SOFT (International orders add 10% and 
remit in Pounds/Sterling by Bank Draft or Int. Giro). 


Send to: 


STORT SOFT (Dept PC1) 
18 Crown Close, Sheering, Bishop's Stortford, Herts CM22 7NX 











ж OL SOFTWARE 
* CHARACTER TOOLKIT £12 


Тт package contain ai you need to create and use your 
"ao contane routines Yat low you to pnr 













ICON TOOLKIT £12 


“OL nto an Icon controled supor mero 
Tefal progremmati, Vau c 
program the icons rade ‘eon 
ener and we have even incidid a special eser program to make e task tat 
This toot aiso contains lots of new graphice commands, al of which have the abit to 
row using ser defined patterns. noi Ius sold ines. There is even a new ñ command 
‘hot wal ony shape with any user defined pattern features ike those are normaly oniy to 
ba touna n ine most expensive of drawing programs) 























(oes without saying that our sprites 
‘pie designer's aso included 


COMPLETE TOOLKIT £30 





* 


Ате tooks on one cartndge offering s substantial saving - probably he best oR 


x 








* 





x SOUND EXPERIMENTER £12 


Тта а probably оле о the most ongnal and teresting pock 

re e package you can m yan, at мо st A, ato 
лому shows you to draw sounds on your QL эсте 

ter Forwards or bockwords in whole or m port. Soi youve st 





‘ever writen for he OL 
synthesise. The 













BLOBZ £5 
THE RUBBERISED ASTEROIDS GAME - ADDICTIVE ARCADE ACTION 











Send cheques or Р.О. to: 
SMILING SOFTWARE 
10 Fir Road, Marple, Stockport SK6 6HA oo 








20-26 NOVEMBER 1986 


POPULAR COMPUTING WEEKLY/45 




















= SOFTWARE 





WINDOS II. 


тһе most comprehensive graphics package for 
che S oe true C40 Ro Features ali the tools you 
Reed to brite HMP programs — 


Graphics windowing, 
Gee and put for screen manipulation, 
A Joustich-keuboard driven pointer, under 
interrupe Control, 
Plot Draw Circle, Рашти, Вох commands, with 
manu BP farent Plotting nodes, єз Tad 
ANY style of printing possible, of ANY size, 
Sinclar’ control code Compatible, 
Ail Commands avaiable through PRINT. 
Also included is a Fully comprehensive 22 p: 
males) ardeo programs wich demonstrate the 
Boner of MINDOS V ° 





KE, а fully Featured character designer for 
иге wth’ COS E can help you design comple te 
Ra acter sets of pou PZP char agian UE tO raed Su 
IBIS Wa Ci ee you are < ons eash 


DOODLE, a fully featured artist E 
x Cully featur m 
sie fe SES Ee d to shon fc i 
an be Heed E Ea n to nectare Code! fis also 
ERR SN КОМИ die ad nas prepared asa 
The price is an amazing £12 For the lott 
Ir ge eed more comancing, Ship is what Gheis, 
od e DP Rounds бошча said, Oet 50 
‘The WINDOS enviroment looks very much ike 
the windons open and close themselves very 


seas 
У ђе) has many of the Features of 





Gen. 











advanced packages. 
БОБ 2) certainly represents value For 
money, mith à clear manual 


Available on cassette or microdrive cartridge 
Son tive same price. C ‘Speci d nedum nhen 
отете 


To get your copy, send a cheque/P.O to the, 
valle SF ЧҮ your name and address, to 





Spectrum < 4 











COMPUTER SWAP COMPUTER SWAP 


‘Computer Swap entries are limited to 30 Please write your copy in capital letters on the lines below. 








‘enclose a cheque or postal order or give 





‘Access or Barclaycard No in the box 
provided, Only text appearing inthe grid 





‘words. All entries cost £2.50, Please I Т 

















mal condition and for private sale only 
No advertisements for lists of software 
will be accepted 


Site primed. Sende for to: Com 

puter Swap. Popular Computing. 

Week 12.13 Lite Newport St, | 
London WC TPP. 

PLEASE NOTE АП software fer 

through computer rap must be in og 








T cannot be swapped. 








Warning: I is ilegal o adverse pirated C Please charge my Visal Access card no: 






























































46/POPULAR COMPUTING WEEKLY 


20-26 NOVEMBER 1986 























ASIRUS SETTLER 


THE FIRST COMPLETE RACING PROGRAM 
ASIRUS SOFTWARE now offers a complete RACING PACKAGE 
containing everything you will ever need, in your pursuit of backing 
WINNERS. But like all things, to do a good job, you need good 
tools, and we have the best 
© HORSE FORMULATOR: Use for NATIONAL HUNT and FLAT, 
HANDICAP and NON-HANDICAP races. Based on a METHOD 
known to be CONSISTENT. Just type in the DATA from any DAILY 
Or RACING PAPER, and the computer will select the HORSE with the 
BEST chance of WINNING, together with its RATING. 
© GREYHOUND FORMULATOR: Use for any TRACK, OPEN and 
GRADED RACES. Just type in DATA asked for, and the COM 
PUTER will give RATINGS for all dogs, together with its best 
‘SELECTION. 

@ SETTLER: This powerful SETTLER will SETTLE SINGLE and 
MULTIPLE bets to any STAKE and S/P. No need to work out your 
bets on paper 

© PERMULATOR: To perm bets which have more than one 
SELECTION in a race, useful for working out DOUBLES, TREBLES, 
4-FOLDS and MULTIPLE PERMING. 

© WINNING PERCENTAGE: For the HORSE and GREYHOUND 
FORMULATORS. This depends upon the ACCURACY of the DATA 
fed in, but the approximate percentage runs between 60 and 75 per 
cent. 

To complete the package all INSTRUCTIONS can be called onto 
SCREEN while the program is running. To obtain a copy of THE 
ASIRUS SETTLER, fill in the form below, and together with a 
remittance of £20 send to: 

ASIRUS SOFTWARE, 
54 Doverhouse Road, 


POs/cheques payable to 
ASIRUS SOFTWARE, price 





Putney, London SW15 SAU. includes POST and PACKAGE 


Tel: 01-878 2641 





THE ASIRUS SETTLER is available for: ALL SPECTRUMS and ALL 
AMSTRADS, CPC's only (all programs supplied on cassette) 


1 enclose cheque/P.O. for £. 
NAME 
ADDRESS. 
Postcode 
COMPUTER эз 








AMSTRAD CPC464 colour топі 
tor, disc drive, printer, Kempston joy 
stick, much original software, maga 
Zines, folding desk, £400 o.n.o. Tol: 
Workington 64493 


C64/C128 OWNERS. For a listing 
of any basic program (cassette or 
disc), send £1.50 to Mr S. B. Smith, 
57 Upper Kingston Lane, Shoreham. 
Sussex BN4 6TG. 


CLASSIFIED 
ADVERTISING 


POOLSMASTER 


GUARANTEED WINS e GUARANTEED WINS e GUARANTEED WINS 


ASIRUS SOFTWARE presents the most up to date method for winning the POOLS, 
‘ever devised. So much so that the "has decided to LIMIT the number of 
‘copies available to 3,000 which means it is FIRST COME FIRST SERVED. Whatever 
method you have used in the past, whether it be FORM, MAGIC NUMBERS, or UP 
DATING OF DATA you can now forget: WHY: because POOLSMASTER eliminates all 
CHANCE, giving you method which can be used ALL YEAR ROUND, with consistent 
returns of DIVIDENDS. 
Developed over the past 2 years accuracy was our aim in finding a WINNING method, 
we did it, and called it POOLSMASTER; Coupled with easy to follow on screen in- 
ttuctons, which enables the user to see how POOLSMASTER operates, and why it 
‘works, nd also showing how to STAKE and PERM your coupons to give MAXIMUM 
returns, making it a complete package. 
To obtain a copy of POOLSMASTER, and remember there are only 3,000 copies 
available, fil in th form below and together with a remittance of £30 send to: 
POs w 
ASIRUS SOFTWARE Ape ode e 
inches POST and PACKAGE 


GUARANTEE 


ASIRUS SOFTWARE guarantees that POOLSMASTER will 
dividend dividends within 12 weeks or less. Should POOLSMA: 
stated above, then retum the program for a £30 refund. 


POOLSMASTER is available for: ALL SPECTRUMS, ALL AMSTRAD 
CPCs, and COMMODORE 64/128 (all programs supplied on cassetto) 


is 


Postcode 


you a winning 
STER not perform as 





enclose cheque/P.O. for £. 
NAME 
ADDRESS. 


Computor 
PLEASE ALLOW UP TO 28 DAYS FOR DELIVERY 


POOLSMASTER © 1986 





PREVENT 'Yob' spikes from vandal. 
ising programmes with the Stopguard 
Mains Transient Suppressor Plug. 
£12.75. Richardson Electronics, 5 
Penrith Road, Maghuil, Lancs L31 
SBN. 


BIG MONEY with your micro! Your 
own part-time, full-time business, 
Brand new, easy-to-follow book 
shows you how! For free details send 
S A E. to Golden Pages Publications, 
31 Stoade Road, Shoffiold 57 105. 











f Here’s my classified ad. — 1 


(Please write your copy in capital letters on the line 





below.) 





RATES: 








Line by line: 30p per word, 
minimum 20 words. 








Semi-display: £7 per single column. 
centimetre, minimum length 2 cm. 








(Please supply A/W as PMT. Or 








Please continue on a 








sheet of paper 








supply rough setting instructions.) 








1 make this per word so | owe you £ 
THESE RATES DO NOT INCLUDE 
VAT. 
Conditions: All copy for Classified 
section must be pre-paid. Copy 
date 7 days before publication. 
Telephone .. с. 
IF YOU WISH TO DISCUSS YOUR Please cut out and send this form to: Classified Department, Popular Computing Weekly, 
AD, PLEASE RING Rodney 12-13 Little Newport Street, London WC2H 7PP. s^ 
Woodley 01-437 4343. SE иш пш иш пш иш иш иш шш иш пш шш иш иш ин пш s s шиш шш 





20-26 NOVEMBER 1986 


POPULAR COMPUTING WEEKLY/47 






















Ist choice 
EXPRESS SPECTRUM, BBC 


and COMMODORE REPAIRS! 


WHY PAY HIGH 
‘FIXED’ 
PRICES 


CENTRE - IN LONDON | 
"BBC Micro, Commodore, Spectrum 
I “Amstrad, Others I 

“We sell spare parts 

|| “used Micros bought and soid | 
| Eprom Programming Service | 
I I 
I l 













Phone: 01-863 7166 
IOMPT ELECTRONICS 


Unit 4, 15 Springfield Road, 
Harrow, Middx HAT 10F 


SOFTWARE 
D> RRP £39.00 FREE WITH 
EVERY REPAIR 

























E ee 
ee aS 
LU t Mee 
em gigs 
— pd 

— C Mw 
кре 
eripiet Er 

Д5 









ere 
FOR SALE 


Z NEW AND USED COMPUTERS % 


Аа YNYOEUA - OUR ESTATES ARE 
{мк Онто ОВ ТА Ў others do tomorrow! 


NOTE OUR PRICES AND WATCH OTHERS FOLLOW THE LEADER 








FAULTY SPECTRUM 











m bash Petre ion ress eens is Бана 
Кыш к pes Red desi ees INCREDIBLE DISCOUNTS! 
Gor temper тураг опар has been an OFFICIAL Sinclair 
Sat wo wi“ ONER E tae] dd аран ъа e ATARI CONSOLE $39.95 C64 PACK $183 
Em EDU 3 $ 
Send your faulty computer DIRECT SPECTRUMS SPHONE BBC AMSTRAD 
SPECTRUM M £18.75 inc parts IBM COMPATIBLES 
Ets as £110 nc parts 
MMC CT e CHR RARE £9.95 inc parts BROTHER PRINTER $119 
MIGRODRIVE isse ne 5С 
INTERFACE 1-11 11675 bà paris DISC DRIVES FROM $59 
FRENCH'S ROAD, CAMBRIDGE CB4 3NP 205 BUCHANAN STREET, GLASGOW G1 27: 
Tel: 311371 жу 041-332 3944 








f? SPECTRUM REPAIRS - XMAS SPECIAL 


(From 1st November – 31st December) 
DON'T LET HIGH COST REPAIRS SPECIAL OFFERS! 
SPOIL YOUR CHILD'S XMAS 


















ble SPECTRÜM T done b; et = "IER DES ace "s 
fast, reliable repairs done by experts: * ptr] арната а 
MICRO-SERV are SCOTLAND'S No.1 or COMPUTER repairs E e ETE gas 
For the following same day Servicos: 07008 ET 
* Spectrum/Spectrum Plus repairs £18.95 | | Zuna бию 
* weno repairs (Spect and Spect Plus) a 00 [— — we 
X ZX PSU's (sent separately) em PL 
ж Spectrum to Spectrum Plus Upgrades (fitted free) £29.50 | | mum mee КЕ w Er] 
* 16K to 48K Memory Upgrades (fitted free) £19.95 pe L Conmate 1701 meman uim 
Prices quoted include Parts. Service. V.A Т. and Post & Packing) 
Computers & unwanted computer stock wanted for cash. 
WECAN ALSOREPAIR Call orsend Spectrum ro: _ ALIEN APPROVED Now оре! Computer epii Dept: 
DISC DRIVES, MICRO-SERV йрн Faster & cheaper than the average (90 day warranty). е2 
"WWE NONIUS, — (Scotland) LTD MEET 
CASSETTE UMTS зе DEERDYNES VIEW, "m THERSBY COMPUTERS 
16/64/PLUS 4, OL, WESTFIELD INDUSTRIAL AREA, шг; 









26-28 Bowesfield Lane, Stockton, 


VEs MICRO CUMBERNAULD G88 SHN sanas, 
Cleveland TS18 3ER Tel: (0642) 604768 


COMPUTE 
DAVESETC. m — Tek0236 737110 QUERES WELCOME: 














48/POPULAR COMPUTING WEEKLY 20-26 NOVEMBER 1986 





















LOW PRICES-HIGH QUALITY 


5.25" BRITISH MADE FLOPPY DISKS 
Quantity Ordered (price per disk) 
10-99 100-249 250+ 
£0.59 £0.54 £0.50 
£0.69 £0.60 £0.55 
40 £0.82 £0.73 £0.69 
80 £0.88 £0.82 £0.75 


INTRODUCTORY OFFER 
For every ten ordered, we will send you twelve! 


These prices include hub rings, envelopes, labels 
and write protect notch tabs. 


Track 
40 
80 


SS/SD 
SS/DD 
DS/DD 
DS/QD 


To ensure the high quality of these disks, every track and 
sector has been tested and is certified equal to, or in 
excess of every Disk Standard. 


3.5” DISKS-packed in tens with 
FREE Plastic Library Case. 
135 tpl £9.50 £18.00 £16.00 
135 tpl £25.00 £23.00 £21.00 
Free delivery — All orders despatched within 24 hrs 
Add VAT at 15% 





ss 
DS 





Our Quality Guarantee: 
Lifetime Warranty — two for one or money 
back if not satisfied 








How to order: Cheque/Postal Order with order to: 


Longworth Ltd 


31 Bridge Street, Newport, Gwent NP9 4BH 
Tel: (0633) 52538 24 hour answering service 








VAT 18% ОЛУУ ES 


M/ECTRS G/RNTEE 
JAMES MAIL ORDER 
Po Box 











RUGBY MICRO SPARES — iS IUS GE 
30 OXFORD ST, RUGBY Emme 18 mee i» 
CV21 3NF (0788) 71643 (Tm mme 


Callers welcome by App. os 

















HOME ACCOUNTS Ё 
Put your house n orderi Probably the | | 
"est home use tor your computer! 
Comprenenaive coverage of bank l 
I 
Ë 





accounts, credit carda, HP. standing 
orders ete Inbuit accuracy check fo ll 


WS ncn 
TIS be ONO. а, 


‘TancacionsCashfow projscton Tekan feu, (734) KEEN she Sa s 
Foral Amatads, Commodores and ph 
t9 эв or PREE oat trom: a 
Discus, 
FREEPOST, BETA SPECTRUM disc interface 


with utility discs £50. Commodore 
3040 dual disc drive £100. Needs 
attention, Romford (0708) 46948. 











пз 








DUPLICATION _ 





фф? SOFTWARE — 1000's IN STOCK!!! 


AMSTRAD - ATARI - BBC - C64 - C16/+4 
CBS - DRAGON — ELECTRON — MSX — ORIC 
SPECTRUM — TEXAS — VIC 20 
GAMES + UTILITIES 








CASSETTES — DISCS — ROMS 


ALL YEAR-ROUND SALE PRICES 


THE COMPUTER DEPOT 
205 BUCHANAN STREET, GLASGOW G1 2/2 
041-332 3944 ES 


GALLERY 


SOFTWARE 
1st FLOOR, 
THE ARNDALE 
CENTRE 
WANDSWORTH, 
LONDON SW18 
TEL: O1-870 4941 


FOR SALE 


QL, BROTHER M1009 PRINTER, 
Tandata modem, joystick, 24 cor дайы ДАМЫДЫ 
tridges in storage box, some games, 
books, mags, £300, Will separate 
Tel: Tadcaster (0937) 834276. 

VERSION 23 QUILL, Abacus, 
Archive, Easel, original Psion software 
stil in case, £10 for the sot of 4. Tel. 
Worthing 205443. 








< z 








EPSON FX80 PRINTER plus 32K 
Buffer, £275. Amstrad FD-1 2nd disc 
drive with interface cable, £65. Tol 
01-302 9984. 

AMSTRAD CP/M SOFTWARE. 
send a blank, formatted disc plus £5 
to: Hudson Computer Services, 6 
Swanborough Place, Brighton BN2 
5PZ 

ATARI ST software at the keenest 
prices ie. Mercenary £19.95. Send 
S.A €. for a price list. Live Wire, 1 City 
Bank Road, Cirencester, Glos. 
PUZZLES. И you like puzzles you 
should read: "Puzzle Solving for the 





‘SIMON STABLE PROMOTIONS 
CASSETTE DUPLICATION 
Certe reed sarees o DATA ОШ 
ERR IDEM a credet 





CASSETTE COPIES 


50С105 FOR ONLY £40 INC P +P 








FROM YOUR CASSETTE MASTER BBC Computer". Send £5 (inclusive 
IN REAL TIME. PLEASE PACK postage) to: Р. G. Amey, 31 Hillmont 
IN FOIL ANO SEND CHEQUE T0— Road, Нобле Wood, Esher KTIO 
‘SOUNDS G00D ATARI S20 STM, half-meg disc 
CLEAR CROFT, BOTTOM LANE, drive, high-res monitor, Citizen 1200 
‘SEER GREEN, BUCKS HP9 ZUH. printer, leads, software, books, three 
TEL: (04946) 5900 ‘months old, boxed, as new, £699. 
жш | Tel: Derek on 01-806 4160 after 


7pm. 








20-26 NOVEMBER 1986 


POPULAR COMPUTING WEEKLY/49 














PERIPHERY 


MODEMS 


Get a taste of the fascinating world of communications with these very 
special offers. 

23 Modem & ROM software for BBC only $38.50. 
V23 Modem & software with scrolling S/Ware allowing access to One to 
One, BT Gold ete via PSS + Prestel, Micronet etc: Spectrum only $34.25 
V21, V23 multifunction modem + VTX711 interface & software for 
Spectrum 48/128k only $115.25 
Professional Ү21, V23 mulüstandard modem & comme software & 
interface for PCW only $193.25. 
Intelligent V21, V22, V23 modem. 
INTRODUCTORY OFFER $285.85 
with special multicom software $374.85 


TELEPHONE SUPPORT FOR MOST PACKAGES. 
SEE PRESTEL FOR LATEST INFORMATION (7258880061) 


"AMX mouse, interface & graphics software 

‘Available for BBC (including Master), Spectrum 48k /48ke /128k, Amstrad 
CPC & PCW from 866.95 

Mouse prices include free mouse mat 


XMAS SOFTWARE 


Gift Pack (6 games) 
$240 Football Manager 
$240 Pilot 64 


Available soon 


View to kill 
perman 
Turbo 64 


Very Special Spectrum Offers 
Save over 60% 
Tau Ceti 

Finance/Address/Vat S 


jor Learner. 
Paddington Bear 5540 Nursery Rhyme Adventure 


Prices include VAT & POSTAGE 
THESE ARE JUST A SELECTION - PHONE FOR 
FURTHER DETAILS 
‘Subject to availablity 
PERIPHERY 
117 GAINSBOROUGH AVE., OLDHAM 018 1AJ. 
TEL: 061-626 5802 


83.50 Editor/Assembler/Toolkit 89.60 
60 Stock/Pinance/Address/VAT $17.20 


5420 














FIXED ODDS FORECASTER 


GUARANTEED WINS! 


FOR THE ACORN ELECTRON AND BBC 


з Displays in seconds: Forecasts ж Star Bots ж Bankers x 
Form-Finder I has been produced with the fixed odds client very 
much in mind. And because ‘Bankers’ (best homes) selected by 
the program have an 80% minimum guarantee, we can confi- 
dently predict a suitable perm, eg. 8 from 10 Bankers on your 
long list, will bring you wins within 13 weeks, including any 
stakes lost in that period. Your program gives you the various 
choices of bets that you can make that are covered by your 

guarantee. 
Form-Finder It’s unique formulas consistently produce results 
even on the extremely difficult sections lists. Whether your bet 
preferences are for pools, individual bets, fixed odds or any 
other football forecasts, Form-Finder II is the one complete 
package that is a ‘must’ if you want to take more than chances! 


* Displays in seconds: Pools Values * Match or Coupon Numbers ж 
For your copy of Form-Finder II complete the priority order 
form below and send to: ALLAN DATA, 1 Lorn Road, 

Dunbeg, Connel, Argyll PA37 10G 


Available only to Popular Computing Weekly! Please send in form 
below 











PRIORITY ORDER Pew 


Please rush me within seven days, my copy of Form-Finder II for 
my Electron/BBC. | enclose cheque/P.O. No. ....for £9.00 made 
payable to ALLAN DATA, which | understand will be refunded to 
me in full should the program not perform as stated above within 13 
weeks. 

Please print CLEARLY. 

NAME 


ADDRESS 











Christmas Special Offer 





AMSTRAD HARDWARE AMSTRAD SOFTWARE 
TERM gina HB | monet ce 
 TPCWB256. > £407.00 3% 
b E ms 
iden 85 m 

At LT sees... 20800 ‘AD PCW SOFTWARE 
ора) Hm Pow 

E jose BET] = FH 
ET ir] жа 
CO i ы ne 
E 

tic pn 
E i LE B tas 
T misma B | oia: fs 
ARN cronico aoo | aware МЫ — ms 


ALL AMSTRAD HARDWARE AND SOFTWARE AVAILABLE 
ALL PRICES INCLUDE VAT. MAIL ORDER CUSTOMERS 
PLEASE ADD *£5.00, **£4.00, ***£2.00 FOR P.&P. 


NEWCROWN COMPUTERS LTD 


98-100 HIGHTOWN ROAD, LUTON, BEDS LU2 ODQ (О.К) 


TEL: 0582 455684 соз 





YOUR PERSONAL CENTRONICS PRINTER 


UNBEATABLE| 9/457 50/100cps FAST 


DRAFT MATRIX PRINT. 
üt d ӨД € NEAR LETTER QUALITY 
pis arid Cà p 













€ SUBSCRIPT SUPERCRIPT 

© CONDENSE EMPHASISE 

© 96 CHAR+48 EURO+16 MATHS 
© EPSON/IBM PC GRAPHICS 


s (PRE 
TEL (0533) 


313531. 




















— Atari 400/000/XL/XE 
Essential Utilities for Tape and Disk Owners! 





‘on dak wan instucton 
CopyGen Version 1.3 

ed rer ou Me eon 1o aava your bec p 
Sa Wan cad Ister an the зулу! ES 99 we Suppled 
Send on SAE or phone for more deals 
Mate Cheque oc PO. payable to DaComm and send your order w 






tapes or other cassetto 
Spends The backup 





















iater 170 Bradwell Common Boulevard. Minon Keynes, BUCKS MK13 BBG. 
Pat (0908) 663708. ra 
MAIL ORDER AMSTRADS 

BLANK CASSETTES PC1512 Mono Colour 
Seeds £39900 £54800 

ити LIBRARY CASES Bud iv 498.00 бывш 

Сло CM. сю cao YOM hord dse £00900 £849.00 

m 95 dm dm $70 | metere — cem rem 
® 3885 3800 dae 38.00 | | owe soon ma em пик 

POW 6256 t 
Fey nave COO on) to br 


Superior Tapes. Don't Set tor Less 
Please dd VAT. to ail prices. Post, packing 





Disks ad mares £12.00 per system. equis] 
10 51 DS/DI РОз payable to "Smart Stes 
lastic case 
SMART SYSTEMS 
Ела Cranes Close, 
Basildon 8514 3JB u 











OMPUTER HIRE 


Ei ER AND 
PERIPHERALS BY THE WEEK OR MONTH 
RING 01-807 0157 or 01-997 8457. 
WE SPECIAUSE IN BBC AND ALSO HAVE 
ARANGE OF AMSTRAD COMPUTERS FOR 





COMPUTER HIRE SERVICES 
294A CALEDONIAN ROAD 
LONDON NI IBA — ж 











50/POPULAR COMPUTING WEEKLY 


20-26 NOVEMBER 1986 





Ee m" | 




















PERSONAL 


0E CARTEL NOTH 
VICTORIA CIRCUS SHOPPING CENTRE 
SOUTHEND ON SEA 

Te Pt) ttt 





NOBLES 
14-17 EASTERN 
ESPLANADE 
SOUTHEND-ON-SEA, 
ESSEX 
(0702) 63377/8 к 








GLASGOW 


THE COMPUTER DEPOT 
205 BUCHANAN STREET 
GLASGOW G1 242 
Tet (041) 392 3844 








MEGABYTE 
12 ETTRICK SQUARE 
CUMBERNAULD 
67 1ND 
0236 738398 





FOR BARGAIN DISCS 


CALL 


GRABACOIN 
9 LOW ROAD, 
CASTLEHEAD, 

PAISLEY, 
SCOTLAND 


РА2 6AQ 
Tel: 041-889 0885, 











here's a Dealer near you 
| 





NORTHWOOD HOUSE 
NORTH STREET 
LEEDS LS7 2M4 
Tek (Bn t 


LONDON 


GALLERY SOFTWARE 
1st FLOOR 
THE ARNDALE CENT, 
WANDSWORTH, 
LONDON SW18 
Tel: 01-870 4941... 











LIVERPOOL 


SPECIALISTS IN AMSTRAD 
PCW8256 — PCW8512 
SOFTWARE & HARDWARE 
инш mami nas CENTRE 
131 MOUNT PLEASANT 
LIVERPOOL L3 STF 
051-709 0123/708 8775 
Software Design Service Availabe 








Microhyte 


We talk business, not bits & bytes 
NO: 1 ON MERSEYSIDE FOR 
ATARI AND AMSTRAD 
71 SEAVIEW ROAD, WALLASEY, 
MERSEYSIDE L45 40W 
(051) 630 6933/638 1420 
10 am - 6 pm 
MAIL ORDER 
SERVICE AVAILABLE 


= 
OXFORDSHIRE 


WITNEY 
COMPUTER CENTRE 
105 HIGH STREET, 

WITNEY, 

OXFORDSHIRE 
Tel: 0993 78294 ,, 

















YORKSHIRE 


YORK COMPUTER CENTRE 
T STONEGATE ARCADE 
YORK 
Tek (0904) 641862 



















ULTIMA 
UNIT 28 
WHITE LION WALK 
GUILDFORD 
(0483) 506939 











AMSTRAD SOFTWARE, Cyrus Il 
chess, £10; Prospell £14; Hitchhiker's 
Guide £ 15; Sanyo MBC 550 twin disc. 
PC; + Wordstar, Callstar 
Revertstar manuals; Sanyo 
most new, £240, o.n.o. Tel: Nottm 
10602) 636247 

SPECTRUM 48K, DK Tronics key: 
Бойка, sound amplifier, interface one 
including two micro-drives, ten car 
iidges. trans express and m/drive 
doctor. Only £125. Can split. Also 
unused rubber-type keyboard £10. 
Tel: Coventry 617671 

TATUNG EINSTEIN COMPUTER 








plus colour monitor. plus printer and 
Joystick, plus software, £270. Cuma: 
па double disc drive, self-powered. 
suitable BBC or Einstein, £120. Tel. 
Kingswinford 279687 

ATARI 1029 PRINTER (no interface 
required) £60, Atari 810 disc drive 
with archiver chip (backs up 99% of 
software) £55, Antic Analogue, com- 
puter magazine, £1.25, also books, 
discs for sale, Tal: 01-299 0676. 





Makes an Ideal Christmas 
- Everybody needs a Thingi! 








VDU OPERATORS DO IT 
WITHA : 


ming kas 










COMPSWAP 


SPECTRUM 128 interface, one 
microdrive, software, all boxed, new. 
Swap for QL colour monitor or disc 


drives for Epson printer or £140 cash, 
Tel: Brian 0707 58915 

DK TRONICS ROM based lightpen. 
unwanted gift for Amstrad CPC. £30. 
new, wil accept £20. Tel: 0734 
696544 

CPC6128 colour/mono monitors 
£275, second drive £60, mouse £45, 
Utopia Rom £20, CPC464 64K Ram: 
pack £30, Firmware guides, books, 
Software, half list price, Tel: 0482 
899005 evenings. 

MEMOTECH MTXS12 96K Ram 
wordprocessor, Roms or Pascal Roms 
{if both £20 extra); recorder facilities, 
games, two manuals, service sheets, 
books. Bargain £75. Demos 061-865 
5809 anytime. 

APPLE EUROPLUS two disc drives, 
‘Amber уди, graphics tablet, Trackball 
thermal printer, joystick colour, 
speech cards, business and games 
software. Cost £2500 accept £800. 
Tel: 0689 53284. 





SPECTRUM 48K with software plus. 
joystick for only £35. VTX modem. 
£15 or both for £40. Tel: Syresham 
384 ask for Stephen. 

SINCLAIR QL plus CST 512K ex 
pansion. Also Ferguson monitor 
Psion package (v2.3), Touchtype and 
a CAD program. Come and see it 
running, only £185. Tel. 0580 211 
236 Kent) 








COMMODORE CBM 8096 wih 
disc drive 8050, Ant printer 8023P in 
perfect working order. Complete busi- 





mess system for £650 оло. Tol 
0604 846539. 


Apveerse your 
BUSINESS HERE 


= UN 





Lett hand or right hand versions. 
What colour clip do you want? 
The affordable copy holder that 


























John Cook looks through this week's 


new arrivals 
Amstrad CPC 


Program Kwah Type Gra- 
phic Adventure Price £8.95 
o Amstrad СРС Sup- 
plier Melbourne House, 60 
High Street, Hampton Wick, 
Kingston upon Thames, Sur- 
rey КТТ 4DB. 


Program Booty Type Ar- 
cade Price £1.99 Micro 
Amstrad CPC Supplier Fire- 
bird, 74 New Oxford Street, 
London WC1 


wo years after the 
Spectrum version 
comes the Amstrad. 


Already sold a reputed 
160,000 on other formats, 
now's your chance to give 
those Telecom shares a 
boost. 


Program Cylu Type Arcade 
Adventure Price £1.99 Mi- 
cro Amstrad CPC Supplier 
Firebird, 74 New Oxford 
Street, London WC1 


Program Future Knight Type 
Arcade Adventure Price 
£9.95 (tape), £14.95 (disc) 
Micro Amstrad CPC Sup- 
plier Gremlin Graphics, Alpha 
House, 10 Carver Street, 
Sheffield 51 4FS. 

Program Nosteratu the Vam- 
pire Type Arcade Adventure 
Price £9.95 Micro Amstrad 
CPC Supplier Piranha, 4 Lit- 
tle Essex Street, London 
WC2R 3LF. 


looks lovely on the telly, 
plays well — superior ar- 
cade adventuring via 
the talented Design Design 
team 
Program Werner Type 
Weird Arcade Price £8.95 
(tape), £14.95 (disc) Micro 
‘Amstrad CPC Supplier Ario- 
lasoft, 68 Long Acre, London 
WC2E 9JH. 


Ihe weird and wonderful 
| adventures of a Ger- 
man biker. If this pro- 
gram wasn't written on an 
extended acid trip, then the 
instruction manual certainly 

was 

















Atari 


Program War Hawk Type 
Arcade Price £1.99 Micro 
Atari XL/XE Supplier Fire- 
bird, 74 New Oxford Street, 
London WC1. 














tari version of a Com- 

modore 64 vertical 

scroll shoot 'em-up, 

heavily inspired by Sega's As- 

tro Warrior has strong influ- 

ence on Andrew Braybrook's 
Uridium. 

Turn brain off, turn auto-fire 
on. If there is a programming 
equivalent of the Big Mac, 
then this is it. 


Program Masterchess Type 
Strategy Price £1.99 
Atari XL/XE Suppl 
tertronic, 8-10 Pat 
London ÉC2. 
Program Molecule Man 
Type Arcade Adventure 
Price £1.99 Micro Atari 
XL/XE Supplier Master- 
tronic, 8- 10 Paul Street, Lon- 
don EC2. 


-D ‘Knight Lore’ type 
game with a difference 

— you can redesign the 
whole thing to suit yourself, 
can't be bad. 


BBC and 
Electron 


Program Ravenskull Type 
Arcade Adventure Price 
£9.95 (tape), £11.95 (disc) 
Micro BBC B/Master/Elec- 
tron Supplier Superior Soft- 
ware, Dept RS1, Regent 
House, Skinner Lane, Leeds 
1S7 1АХ. 


'enskullis a plan view, 
four-way scrolling ar- 
cade adventure from 


the increasingly prolific Supe- 
rior stable. Written in Mode 5, 
it consists of four levels, each 
comprising 64 screens worth 
of castle. And that's quite a 
lot. 

Superior describe this as, 
“а hybrid of Repton and Cita- 
del,” and it would be difficult 
to disagree. Funny they didn't 
call it Reptadel really, isn't it? 


Program Ravenskull Type 
Arcade Adventure Price 
£9.95 (tape) Micro Electron 
Supplier Superior Software, 








Street, 











Dept RS1, Regent House, 
Skinner Lane, Leeds LS7 
ТАХ. 


Program Dodgy Geezers 
Type Adventure Price 
£8.95 Micro BBC B/Electron 
Supplier Melbourne House, 
60 High Street, Hampton 
Wick, Kingston upon 
Thames, Surrey. 


Program Scrabble Type 
Strategy Price £19.95 
Micro Amstrad PCW 
8256/8512 Supplier Virgin 
Games, 2-4 Vernon Yard, 
Portobello Road, London 
W11 2DX. 


u, Ee, Ey. Sounds like 
just another chapter in 
the life of everyday 


country folk doesn’t it? But 
no, they're just a few of the 
words that the computer will 
hit you with on level eight of 
Leisure Genius's Scrabble on 
the PCW. 

If you think about it, the 
only surprise is that it took 
this long for them to convert 
the most famous word game 
into the most famous word 
processor. And to my mind, 
it's the best version yet. It's 
got a vocabulary of almost 
22,000 words, specially se- 
lected from Chambers Words 
(the reference guide for all 
crossword and Scrabble 
freaks) and the Chambers 
20th Century Dictionary (as 
used in official Scrabble tour- 
naments). That's about 
10,000 more than in the pre- 
vious home micro versions. It 
also seems to be slightly fast- 








Lost for words 





er. The graphic display of the 
board and the tiles, although 
pnly in glorious green, is very 
well designed and looks a 
treat. 

Two to four players may 
take part — any or all of them 
being computer opponents 
which can take any one of 
eight levels. Level One is 
pitched at around my stan- 
dard (semi-literate, 200 
points in a two player game) 
whereas Level Eight caters for. 
the awesome mega-being 
that has no problem accumu- 
lating 400 plus. The real wa- 
tershed occurs at Level Five 
when an extended vocabulary 
of obscure words comes into 
play. When did you last go 
gorming, for instance? 

The beauty of computer 
Scrabble, however, is that 
when you put down a word 
that the computer does not 
recognise — and even given 
its relatively large vocabulary, 
this happens more often than 
you would think — it simply 
challenges you thus "Are you 
sure?" it politely asks. Too 
right matey — and next time 
you go dibbling behind the 
bike sheds, remember where 
you read it first 








lever and Jones again — this 

time in Minder land, 

leaving it out and 
knocking it on the head al- 
most ad nauseam. It does 
make a change from pixies, 
but very soon after starting 
Dodgy Geezers | began to find 
the humor predictable, 
forced, repetitive and the 
short location descriptions 
completely uninspiring. May- 
be other versions are better, 
but this BBC/Electron version 
was well out of order. 


Commodore 64 


Program Computer-Word- 
search Type Utility Price 
£6.95 Micro Commodore 
64 Supplier Softfirm, 21 
Ashbourne Way, Thatcham, 
Berks RG13 4SJ 


Program Quest of the Golden 
Orange Peel Type Adventure 
Price £3.99 Micro Commo- 
dore 64 Supplier Dual Di- 
mension Software, Ceder- 
wood, Dankes Lane, Potters 








Bar, Hertfordshire ENG 10А. 


Program Mad Nurse Type 
Warped Arcade Price £1.99 
Mere Commodore 64 Sup- 
r Firebird, 74 New Oxford 
Street, London WC1 


Program GoGo the Ghost 
Type Arcade Price £1.99 
Micro Commodore 64, 
Supplier Firebird, 74 New 
Oxford Street, London WC1. 


Program Future Knight Type 
Arcade Adventure Price 
£9.95 (tape), £14.95 (disc) 
Micro Commodore 64 Sup- 
plier Gremlin Graphics, Alpha 
House, 10 Carver Street, 
Sheffield S1 4FS. 


Program Masterchess Type 
Strategy Price £1.99 Micro 
Commodore 64 Supplier 
Mastertronic, 8-10 Paul 
Street, London EC2 


Program Molecule Man 
Type Arcade Adventure 
Price £1.99 Micro Commo- 
dore 64 Supplier Master- 
tronic, 8-10 Paul Street, Lon- 
don EC2 











52/POPULAR COMPUTING WEEKLY 


20-26 NOVEMBER 1986 











Commodore 16 





Program Masterchess Type 
Strategy Price £1.99 Micro 
C16/Plus 4 Supplier Master- 
tronic, 8—10 Paul Street, Lon- 
don EC2 


Program Molecule Man 








Type Arcade Adventure 
Price £1.99 Micro 
C16/Plus 4 Supplier Master- 
tronic, 8-10 Paul Street, Lon- 
don ЕС2. 


Program Cops 'n' Robbers 
Type Arcade Price £2.99 
Micro C16/Plus 4 Supplier 
Atlantis Software, 28 Station 
Road, London SE25 5AG. 


Program League Challenge 
Type Strategy Price £2.99 
Micro C16/Plus 4 Supplier 
Atlantis Software, 28 Station 
Road, London SE25 5AG. 





Program Хсе/ог 8 Type Ar- 
cade Price £6.95 Micro 
C16/Plus 4 Supplier Gremlin 
Graphics, Alpha House, 10 
Carver Street, Sheffield S1 
4FS. 


Program Future Knight Type 
Arcade Adventure Price 
£6.95 Micro C16/Plus 4 
Supplier Gremlin Graphics, 
Alpha House, 10 Carver 
Street, Sheffield S1 4FS. 


MSX 


Program Future Knight Type 
Arcade Adventure Price 
£7.95 Micro MSX Supplier 
Gremlin Graphics, Alpha 
House, 10 Carver Street, 
Sheffield 51 4FS. 


QL 


Program Liberator Type Uti- 
lity Price £69.95 Micro Sin- 
clair QL Supplier Liberation 
Software, 43 Clifton Road, 
Kingston upon Thames KT2 
6PJ 


he Definitive Super- 

Basic Compiler they call 

it. Well, we'll be finding 
that out in a full review quite 
soon, but first impressions 
show this to be a profession- 
ally put together package that 
is going to be of interest to a 
lot of QL owners. 

















Program Viewpoint Type 
Utility Price £19.95 Micro 
Sinclair QL Supplier Rubicon 
Computer Systems, 11 Ban- 
nerdale Road, Sheffield S7 
2DJ. 


onstruct your own wire 

frame 3-D graphics 

with this package — 
then zoom in and out, view 
the system from another co- 
ordinate, print it out, etc. 

In fact, with a bit of prac- 
tice, you could probably con- 
vince your friends that you 
had Elite running on your QL. 


Spectrum 





Program The Colour of Magic 
Type Adventure Price 
£9.95 Micro Spectrum 
Supplier Piranha, 4 Little Es- 
sex Street, London WC2R 
3LF. 


ulti-load graphic ad- 
venture (four parts 
to be precise) hewn 


from Terry Pratchett's wacky 
tome by those equally zany 
types from Delta 4. It drew a 
mixed reaction from the Popu- 
lar games testing droids, 
ranging from the bored to the 
enthusiastic. 

Don't expect state-of-the- 
art in sophisticated sentence 
analysis, but the humor of the 
excellent novel comes across 
well enough. 


Program Dome Trooper 
Type Graphic Adventure 
Price £2.95 Micro Spec- 
trum Supplier Matand Soft- 
ware, 29 Moorland Road, 
Mickleover, Derby DE3 БЕХ. 


Program Tir Francias Type 
Educational Price £2.95 Mi- 
cro Spectrum Supplier Ma- 
tand Software, 29 Moorland 
Road, Mickleover, Derby DE3 
SFX. 


Program Kwah Type Gra- 
phic Adventure Price £7.95 
Micro Spectrum Suppli 
Melbourne House, 60 High 
Street, Hampton Wick 
Kingston upon Thames, Sur- 
rey KY 1 4DB. 





Program The Adventure 
Builder System Type Utility 
Price £4.95 Micro Spec- 
trum Suppl Alpha- 
Omega, CRL Group, 9 Kings 
Yard, Carpenters Road, Lon- 
don E15 2HD. 





look like a cheapo version 
of the Quill, but it's diffi- 
cult to say how it com- 
pares in terms of perfor- 
mance. Tiny instruction 
booklet packs a lot in, but 
doesn't look suitable for а 
total novice. 

Note that to obtain the grå- 
phic style adventure as 
shown on the cassette inlay, 
you'd need to fork out 
another £2.50 for the Graphic 
Aid. 


Program Computer-Word- 
search Type Strategy Price 
£6.95 Micro Spectrum 
Supplier 21 Ashbourne 
Way, Thatcham, Berks RG13 
4SJ 


Program Quest of the Golden 
Orange Peel Type Adventure 
Price £3.99 Micro Spec- 
trum Supplier Dual Dimen- 
sion Software, Cedarwood, 
Darkes Lane, Potters Bar, 
Hertfordshire ENG 1DA. 





Program Doctor What Type 
Arcade Adventure Price 
£7.95 Micro Spectrum 
Supplier CRL, 9 Kings Yard, 
Carpenters Road, London 
E15 2HD. 


Program King's Keep Type 
Arcade Adventure Price 
£1.99 Micro Spectrum 
Supplier Firebird, 74 New 
Oxford Street, London WC1 


Program Future Knight Type 
Arcade Adventure Price 
£7.95 Micro Spectrum 
Supplier Gremlin Graphics, 
Alpha House, 10 Carver 
Street, Sheffield 51 4FS. 





Program Survivors Type Ar- 
cade Strategy Price £1.99 
Micro Spectrum Supplier 
Atlantis Software, 20 Station 
Road, London SE25 5AG. 


riginality is not some- 
thing you expect to 
find in a budget title, 


but Survivors (quite an apt 
name for Atlantis Software) 
turns out to have this virtue in 
bucketfuls. 

You control three droids in 
a Boulderdash type environ- 
ment (a hibernation dome da- 
maged by a nuclear war) and 
your mission is to teleport out 
the sleepers, trapped by 
rocks, etc, etc. To make 
things worse there are rogue 
droids wandering about the 
place who will do you severe 
damage on contact. 

Pretty average so far, but 
the challenge of the thing is 
the way in which you must 
combine the abilities of the 
three droids to complete the 
mission (7 levels, almost 
1000 hibernators — and 
there's a time limit of about an 
hour and a half). One droid 
can burrow through the de- 
bris, one can push boulders 
that block the way and the 
third does the teleporting 
You manoeuvre one droid at a 
time, changing over by a sin- 
gle key press. Simple, but 
very effective. This will keep 
you occupied for hours ~ it's 
one of the best budget titles 
to pass through our hands for 
weeks, so go out and buy it. 


Program Cobra Type Ar- 
cade Price £7.95 Micro 
Spectrum Supplier Ocean 
Software, 6 Central Street, 
Manchester M2 5NS. 


пуопе remember John 

Otway and Wild Willy 

Barret (Cor, Baby, 

that's really free, etc)? One of 

their great encore numbers 

was a song called Headbutts 

(obscure pop fact No 4352) 

And there's a lot of headbut- 
ting in Cobra. 

Since the film (starring Syl- 
vester ‘Brain Damage’ Stal- 
lone) flopped over here, this 
was never going to be the 
licensing deal of the century. 
Professional enough in execu- 
tion, it's quite fun for a short 
while as you give the assem- 
bled ruffians the odd Glaswe- 
gian kiss, when you're not 
taking them out with the infa- 
mous laser sighted machine 
gun (which you find hidden 
inside a beef burger, inciden- 
tally). But whether it would 
hold you long enough to get 
your eight quids’ worth is 
another matter. 








20-26 NOVEMBER 1986 


POPULAR COMPUTING WEEKLY/53 












A great software cover-up [Te 


№: judge a book by On opening sucha package the buyer is paying for the 


its cover — this well it becomes apparent that expensive packaging, then 
known saying could there is enough space inside the benefit must be going to 
equally apply to computer to include several cassettes the software company or the 


software. Games and utilities ог discs, plus a fairly thick distributor and the value for 
seem to be getting bigger, manual, and the buyer is left money aspect must be um 
not the actual content on the wondering why al this space Viewed win some suspicio. | Виуеге’ guide 
tape or the disc, just the size is vacant. Buyers should beware to software 
of the exterior packaging Опе reasonis that the pack- when considering a purchase; А 
There was a time, not so аде will also take discs of itis all too easy to get lulled | The last of Рори/аг'з 
long ago, when most soft- varying sizes, so that this into a sense of having bought | Buyers’ Guides deals with 
ware could be purchased in type of box can do for all the something of value merely | software. We look at the 
small practical cassette different software formats because the package looks | very best of what's avail- 
cases, ideal for standing on that the company's product good. It is the content that | able for your machine, 
narrow shelves, and easy to may be released on. But the counts and the package often | Whatever your needs. 
Sort out whenever required. ^ majority of games softwareis bears no resemblance to the | Тһе finest games pro- 
Not any more; the trend still cassette-based, and so product inside. duosi, tio ever-inoreas- 
now is for software com- the cassette still rattles Many of the more enlight- | ing selection of budget 
panies to bury the actual cas- around inside. ened retailers will allow pro- (good reminders for 
sette or disc in a mountain of spective buyers to test a pro- 9 Tiers}, the in- 
superfluous cardboard or m duct before a purchase is bk las, the 
Plastic packaging, which can 75 percent of made. And this is of course applications — 
only come under the category the software the best method to adopt 
of expensive rubbish б when buying software. So if 
Many of these unnecessary Dackage [S usually пеге is such a dealer within | Leave your copy of the 
packages are the size of an comprised of range, then it obviously | magazine open at these 
average video cassette, so empty space "кез sense to go there next | Pages around the house 
one obvious problem is find- time you intend to part with | to ensure а troubli 
ing room to store them on some of your hard earned | Christmas. 
your desk or shelves. This If the buyers would pause cash 
must be a major headache for то consider that 75 per cent Large expensive packages Readers’ Poll 
а small retailer who has little of the software package is may be justified in certain 
Space to spare. usually comprised of empty cases where serious soft- | TI 
The home user can over- space, or worse still, polysty- ware is being sold, and the 
come the problem partially by rene or some similar sub- software companies need to 
adopting the solution of keep- stance, then they should also include demonstration pro- 
ing a supply of cheap plastic consider who is paying for it, grams and manuals, along | the chance to speak up 
cases to store the software and who is benefiting from it. with the main program. and be counted. 
in, whilst storing the defunct The first point is obvious. But games in particular do Twelve categories for 
packaging in a handy garage The buyer pays for the expen- not need to be packaged in | you to vote for your 
or loft, or somewhere similar. sive packaging, and he/she this manner, and if sales were | favourites, the best and 
| The software might becon- need only compare software made with the option to pur- | Worst of 1986. 
sidered good value for money іп the budget range with chase a game or utility in 
if the packaging always re- some of the more expensive either a cheap or expensive | The Archers 
We 






















































free 

























one will run and 
Popular Rea- 
is now in its 














flected what was inside, but products to observe the dif- package, then | suspect that 
all too often the package con- ference in presentation and in most buyers would not want veal who won the 
tains only an original cassette price. to be involved in the extra | prizes in our competition 
or disc, and sometimes a slim The second point does not cost. to find some lyrics for the 
booklet. raise any mystery either, as Malcolm Serbert | Ambridge folk. 




















Dur new disassembler is Г Jusb еа ск. & it outputs a rough program spec 
! зо зиз thus... k deine 











54/POPULAR COMPUTING WEEKLY 20-26 NOVEMBER 1986 















Commodore 64 
and 
Amstrad versions 
coming soon. 


Our hero has finally 
de м 







marti s 
SHAO- but is trapped 
by triad gangs. With kicks 
and other secret powers, 
escape from and travel 
SHAO-LIN'S road to 
freedom!