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Page 1: Eagle's Rider – Elf
Page 2: Elidon – Empire! (Firebird)
Page 3: The Empire Strikes Back – Enterprise
Page 4: Epimetheus+ – European Superleague
Page 5: Everyone's a Wally – Exterminator
Page 6: Extreme – Eye Spy
Screenshot of Everyone’s a Wally

Everyone’s a Wally

(Mikro-Gen, 1985)

Wally and his friends (Wilma, Tom, Dick and Harry) have to open the safe by collecting the five letters of the combination – but to do this, they have to earn some money performing various tasks around the town, and their wages are in the safe. You’ll have to work out by trial and error which characters to use for each task, which objects should be used, and what the tasks actually are. To help you out, Wally is the odd job man, Wilma is Wally’s partner, Tom is the mechanic, Dick is the plumber, and Harry is the electrician. The graphics are nice and the characters are really well drawn; it’s quite funny to see them walk! The little tune at the start of the game is great as well, and the game is actually a rather nice challenge.

See also: Herbert's Dummy Run, Pyjamarama, Three Weeks in Paradise.

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Screenshot of Every Second Counts

Every Second Counts

(TV Games, 1988)

Remember this quiz show from the 1980s, which was hosted by the magician Paul Daniels? The show consists of five rounds, all of which are based on general knowledge questions, although in three of the five rounds, you are allowed to choose from a selection of categories. The points you win in the first four rounds represent the amount of time you get in the fifth and final round, hence the name of the quiz. Unfortunately, each game can be very short indeed, since if you get a single answer wrong in the first or third rounds, you’re not allowed to answer any more questions. The graphics and music are quite good and the game is well presented, but I can’t see myself coming back to play it again, and it’s not a game you can really play on your own.

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Screenshot of Evil Donjon

Evil Donjon

(Genesis Software, 1989)

A sorcerer known as Elric has cast an evil spell over the realm of Sir Frondebeuf. The only way to restore normality to the land is to collect several phials which can be found within the Evil Keep (or Evil Donjon if you’re French). This is a simple platform game in which you must collect the phials on each level while avoiding the monsters. They always try to close in on you, but after a few goes, you can learn how to use this to your advantage. You can dig holes in some of the platforms to kill some of the monsters temporarily and retrieve any phials which they may have picked up. The graphics are very good indeed, and I love the chimes of the bells! However, there isn’t much room on the screen to avoid the monsters, and digging holes can often be a bit awkward.

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Screenshot of EXIT

EXIT

(French)

(Ubi Soft, 1988)

Your spaceship has crashed on a strange planet, and in order to leave, you must repair it. You will also have to find several golden objects, and for some reason, these are obtained by playing a rather nice shoot-’em-up sub-game in which you must shoot all the blue bricks without shooting any of the red bricks. Then there is a sage who must be found, and there are a lot of other puzzles to solve... The graphics are really beautiful and colourful, but there is no text to accompany any of the locations or the objects, so it’s often very hard to know what you’re supposed to do with the objects you can collect. Another big problem is that the locations are linked together in an extremely confusing and illogical manner, so that you become disoriented really easily.

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Screenshot of Exolon

Exolon

(Appeared on an Amstrad Action covertape)

(Hewson, 1987)

This is one of the classic shoot-’em-ups on the CPC. You are Vitorc and have to blast through five levels consisting of 25 screens where you walk from left to right. You’ll encounter all sorts of guns, rockets and other strange monsters as you try to shoot them all, although you can use some of your grenades to shift the bigger ones. The graphics are amazing, but this is offset by the game being a bit too tough; you’ll definitely need all of the nine lives that you are given! It’s still a very good game, though.

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Screenshot of The Experience

The Experience

(Players, 1986)

Text adventures are rarely as surreal and bizarre as this one. What exactly is the Experience? You start the game trapped in an attic with no exits, and the entire game takes place within this single room. A text adventure with only one room, I hear you say? Yes, it’s true! In the attic are a few random items on the floor, a headless tailor’s dummy, a wardrobe and a bed. What do you do? Well, you can examine the items closely, but they are nearly all useless. In fact, it is possible to complete this GAC-created adventure in just five turns! The author is clearly insane, and while it’s, er, different from most other text adventures, it’s certainly not going to offer a lot of enjoyment.

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Screenshot of Exploding Wall

Exploding Wall

(Byte Back, 1989)

Fancy a game of Breakout – but with a playing area that’s bigger than the screen? That’s what you get here. The usual fare is present, although there are only four types of bonuses to collect. You also have to keep track of the ball at all times – it may well go off the screen. The graphics are very impressive and the scrolling stars are a nice effect, but the game is slow, and unless you have rockets (one of the collectable bonuses), it’ll take aeons to complete a level.

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Screenshot of Explorer

Explorer

(Electric Dreams, 1987)

Your spaceship has crashed on the Emerald planet, and now you must search for nine separate pieces. This will be a time-consuming task, because the game boasts an incredible 40 billion locations! Fortunately, you have a device that can track the location of the nearest piece, and you can also use beacons to navigate your way around the planet and transport objects. A jet pack allows you to travel more quickly around the planet. The landscapes are quite detailed, if rather Spectrum-like, but unfortunately it takes ages to draw them, and getting anywhere takes an excruciatingly long time. Even the most patient players will find themselves becoming frustrated – and there’s no facility to save the game. While technically impressive, it feels as if the programmers added a game merely as an afterthought.

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Screenshot of Express Raider

Express Raider

(US Gold, 1987)

Several trains carrying lots of gold are travelling through the Wild West, which is too good an opportunity to miss. However, you don’t have a gun, so you’ll just have to use your fists. After a preliminary fight to start things off, you climb on to the top of the last carriage of an express and must beat up the enemies, who will use a variety of weapons against you. Once you’ve made it to the front of the train, you grab the gold and go to the next express – but this time you’re on horseback and must shoot the enemies while running alongside the train. Of course, they’re trying to shoot you as well! This procedure repeats for the remaining expresses. The game is OK to play, although it may become repetitive after a while. The graphics are a bit basic, though, and it’s best played with the volume turned off!

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Screenshot of Exterminator

Exterminator

(Audiogenic Software, 1991)

A cul-de-sac of seven houses is overrun with horrible insects, rodents and amphibians, and all of them must be killed. Enter the Exterminator! Each house has five rooms, and in each room, the floor is tiled. Killing creatures causes the tiles to change colour, and if you manage to turn all of the tiles in a column to the same colour, you are taken to another room in the house, or if all five rooms have been cleared, the next house. The creatures you will encounter include rats, mosquitoes, robot tanks and toads – and watch out for the wasp which buzzes around the room constantly and will sting you! The graphics are very appealing, and the music (which only plays during the game if you have 128K of memory) suits the hectic pace of this fantastic game really well.

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