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Wacky Darts

(Codemasters, 1992)

Play a game or tournament of darts with seven wacky characters, including Nigel the Ninja, Jeff the Archer, Baza the War Machine, and Jocky Pilsner. Each character has their own method of playing, and some even use arrows, shurikens and bullets instead of darts – now that is wacky! You can play either the normal 501 game or a round-the-clock game where you must hit each of the numbers in sequence, from 20 to 1. This game first appeared on the CPC on the Quattro Fantastic compilation, and the novelty is fun at first. However, the collision detection is poor (e.g. scoring a treble 1 when a dart clearly landed in the treble 20 zone), and aiming the dart accurately is extremely difficult. The almost total lack of sound effects is another thing to note.

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6

Wacky Races

(Hi-Tec, 1992)

Race the Mean Machine, piloted by Dick Dastardly and his dog Mutley from the cartoon series, across five long and hazard-filled tracks. You've got to finish either first or second to be allowed to go to the next level, and to do this, you must use the Mean Machine's weaponry to bump the other racers off the track, in true Dick Dastardly style. Worms and beetles also have to be killed using the same weapons. If you finish in the top two, there's a sub-game where you, as Mutley, must find four bombs for the next level within the time limit. The graphics are clear and well drawn, but there are very few sound effects. The game is a lot of fun initially, and the first level is fairly easy, but by the second level, it becomes much harder and consequently more frustrating.

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6

The Walking Mummies

(CocoCode, 2015)

Reviewed by Missas

The Walking Mummies is a smart idea that has been translated into an original and interesting game. You take control of a pyramid explorer who enters mazes with the objective of finding and grabbing treasure chests, which proves to be a very challenging task. This is a strategy game where you take control of the explorer and you need to carefully plan your moves. You get only three steps per round, and after you make your moves, your enemies (cobras and mummies) take their turns to move. You can fire a limited number of arrows, but they won't help you much. The graphics are cute but blocky and there is no sound at all. However, since the idea is original it definitely deserves attention, but beware; once the mummies attack, you will need nerves of steel and the virtue of precognition to survive!

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6

Wanderer

(Elite, 1989)

A system of ten planets has been taken over by the evil Vadd. You must eradicate Vadd in order to liberate the planets, but you'll need to obtain 8000 Megs to buy a Mega Disrupter before you can visit Vadd's planet in the centre of the system. To do this, you must trade Disrupter units with the planets. Each planet has five units, which are represented as symbols, and if you can provide a planet with several units that are the same, you will earn more Megs – think of it as a variation of poker. You can also fly through black holes and collect variable Disrupters which can be traded for about 2000 Megs. There is also a lot of shooting to be done while travelling between the planets. Overall, this mixture of shoot-'em-up and trading is rather repetitive and lacklustre.

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5

WAR

(Martech, 1986)

Reviewed by Pug

I remember buying this one with my pocket money one weekend. Loading the game gives the promise of a good-looking shoot-'em-up. An impressive MODE 1 screen appears as a title screen and options are displayed... then your heart sinks as the small options menu is slowly replaced by the game background. In this so-called game, you play within a small window moving your ship around and hoping to hit the approaching ships which wrap around the edges of the screen as they move downwards. The colour scheme, while fetching for the rest of the screen, does no favours to the small area used for the game. Each time you die – and that's always – you return to the menu, losing a life. Avoid!

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0

War Cars Construction Set

(Firebird, 1987)

Reviewed by CPC4eva

Before the mighty Super Cars from Gremlin Graphics came War Cars Construction Set. Based on the simulation of slot car racing, viewed from an overhead perspective, you must race against a computer opponent to collect flags for points, which may also allow you to perform special moves such as crashing into your opponent's car without losing a life. An added bonus is that the game contains a construction set where you can build your own tracks. The MODE 1 four-colour scheme is very poor, reminding me of a Spectrum colour scheme. While the speedway arena playing area is big, it is also confusing as the side-by-side split screen is very small and the on-screen map is very poor to read. It seems like you're driving around in circles and not achieving much.

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4

Warhawk

(Firebird, 1987)

Pilot the advanced Warhawk spaceship through an asteroid belt, shooting the enemy bases and the swarms of aliens that advance towards you. You'll also need to avoid asteroids. Contact with them, or with aliens and their bullets, loses energy. Unfortunately, while it's not a problem to avoid alien spacecraft or asteroids, the bullets follow you all around the screen and are a lot more difficult to evade. Thankfully, your energy is restored fully at the start of every level. The music is brilliant, but the graphics are less so (although the screen area used is large), and the gameplay lacks variety; basically, it's just another space shoot-'em-up, and there aren't even any power-ups to collect.

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6

Warlock

(The Edge, 1987)

Explore the castle and collect as much treasure as you can, while avoiding or slaying the warriors and minions that roam the castle. The castle is large, and as well as doors, there are trapdoors and stars on the floors of many rooms, which take you to other levels of the castle. Of course, you must also keep an eye on your energy, and you can collect objects to restore it. I must say that this isn't a bad game, and the graphics are really good (although it's sometimes difficult to see what's going on), but the game slows down dramatically when there are a lot of enemies on the screen, and it's really Gauntlet in isometric 3D with less variety.

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7

War Machine

(Players, 1989)

Reviewed by Alain Schroetter

Sometimes budget games can match the best full price productions. War Machine provides you with full colour graphics and remarkable playability. The game is neither too easy nor too hard, and there is a peculiar atmosphere that makes it easy for you to become identified to the hero and take part in his quest. The game would have deserved a little tune, for the sound, although convincing, is a bit bare. For real arcade lovers, to try War Machine is to adopt it.

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8

Warrior Plus

(French)

(Rainbow Productions, 1986)

Reviewed by Guillaume Chalard

You've entered a haunted castle, hoping to find some treasure. To gain access to the upper floors, you must explore every room to find keys and, by the way, fight monsters. This is an adventure game which uses a third-person view, with rather dull MODE 1 graphics. The 'Plus' in the title doesn't mean anything, for the previous version was better in my opinion. Here, every encounter starts a kind of 'game within a game' where you must shoot a monster, which is amazingly bad and completely shatters the atmosphere of the game.

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6

The Way of the Exploding Fist

(Melbourne House, 1985)

Reviewed by Chris Lennard

The father of all fighting games. Simply put, this is the game that the better known and more humorous IK+ is based on. You control a single character in a karate tournament that consists of a series of one-on-one bouts against computer- or human-controlled opponents, so that you may reach the rank of 10th Dan. At your command are a range of 18 lethal moves that you dispense with your hands, head (!) and feet, with extra points being awarded for the more tricky ones performed. What we now take for granted – learning your special moves and appropriate responses to your opponent's attacks – was first defined here. It has nice sound effects when you make contact, cute graphics, a fun two-player mode, and genre-defining game play – a classic. There's also another version of the game – The Way of the Exploding Fist+ – with some extra backgrounds.

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8

The Way of the Tiger

(Gremlin, 1986)

Reviewed by Guillaume Chalard

This great arcade adaptation of a role-playing gamebook is one of the best fighting games ever for the CPC. The originality of the game is that it is split into three parts – unarmed combat, pole fighting and sword fighting. You must complete a stage in order to go to the next, but you can practice each level separately. During your progress, you'll have to fight other ninjas, rhino-headed men, dwarves or skeletons. You'll be helped by Kwon, God of the ninjas, who can give you extra health. Technically, it is brilliant; the graphics are gorgeous and very detailed. Your ninja really looks like a ninja and each move seems real. There are several backgrounds, all of which are wonderful, and the use of parallax scrolling makes the game visually impressive. It's a must for kung-fu addicts!

See also: Avenger.

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9

WEC Le Mans

(Imagine, 1988)

The Le Mans 24-hour race is the most famous test of the endurance of both man and machine. Thankfully, you don't have to race around the circuit for 24 hours; you only have to complete four laps. Your car only has two gears, but it's fast, and you'll need to be in order to reach each of the checkpoints before your time runs out. As you progress, you'll encounter more traffic, and you'll need to be more careful, or you may crash rather spectacularly, with your car flying through the air! The graphics are well drawn, but the colours are rather dull, and although the engine noises aren't realistic, the screeching of your tyres as you take a corner flat out is a nice touch. The music on the menu is also wonderful.

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8

The Weetabix vs. the Titchies

(Romik, 1984)

You won't need to have eaten your Weetabix this morning to beat this ridiculously easy Space Invaders clone. Dunk and his friends must shoot wave after wave of 14 Titchies – an inferior type of cereal. If Dunk is hit by bullets from the Titchies, his shield is automatically activated and he loses some of his Neet Weet energy. However, there is more than enough energy to see you through each wave with ease, and that's the major failing of this game. It's meant to be played by kids, though, and you could only obtain it by collecting tokens from boxes of Weetabix cereal. The graphics and sound effects are fairly good considering the time it was released, but the gameplay is far too easy and monotonous.

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4

Wells and Fargo

(Topo Soft, 1988)

Reviewed by Javier Sáez

Wells and Fargo has established a new stagecoach service that involves crossing hostile territories. And guess what, your job in this game is precisely to cope with all the hazards that lay between each end of the route. There are two characters in the game, the rider of the stagecoach and a rifleman that goes on the stagecoach roof, and unless you play with a friend, you'll have to control both. Although this game had very good reviews in Spain when it was released, I don't think it's that good. The graphics are quite good, and so is the scrolling, but I find the gameplay somewhat dull, repetitive and also quite difficult in single-player mode.

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6

Welltris

(Infogrames, 1990)

Tetris is, of course, an absolute classic, so what could be done by its creator to improve on it? The answer is to make it 3D, and the result is this. Pieces fall down a well and on to the bottom, which consists of an 8×8 square grid. Points are scored by making a row or column of eight lines. Unlike Tetris, the pieces can be made up from two to five blocks, depending on the difficulty level. To make the game appealing, there are pictures of everyday Russian life to accompany the game. It's certainly an interesting twist, but it is confusing, and a decidedly awkward control method doesn't help.

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6

Werewolves of London

(Viz Design/Ariolasoft, 1987)

Reviewed by John Beckett

The aim of this game is to search London's streets, parks, rooftops and subways and find the eight evil yuppies who turned you into a werewolf. When this is done (a cross flashes on the screen when one is close) the curse is broken. However, this isn't easy, because there are many policemen on the streets, hunting for you! The game is split into two halves – day (as a normal man, seeking out items and the yuppies) and night (as a werewolf, using the information you obtained during the day to go on a killing spree). The graphics are great, the music is suitably eerie, and the difficulty is just right; the fewer yuppies left, the harder they are to find. The only problem I found is the unholy degree of slowdown that occurs when lots of people are on the same screen. Despite this, it's an instant classic!

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8

Werner

(Ariolasoft, 1987)

Werner is a German cartoon character who has a big nose, likes beer and has a lot of fun, and he's very popular in Germany. This is a selection of five games which you can play individually or together. One of them is a car ride where Werner is attacked by flying screwdrivers and melons (!). The game after it is also a car ride, but you must collect the right objects to win. Werner really wants a motorbike, though, and another game lets you assemble a motorbike by choosing various components. It's possibly the most interesting of the games, but working out what parts to use requires a lot of patience. Then there's a dice game called 'diddling' which is supposed to be played by three players. I suppose that the game is designed to be enjoyed with some friends, but as a one-player game it's not much fun.

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5

West Bank

(Dinamic/Gremlin, 1986)

Reviewed by John Beckett

Another excellent game; the joy of this one is in its simplicity. You play the Sheriff (well, his gun's target) and in front of you are the three doors of West Bank, which is being robbed. The doors open randomly, and you must shoot down the mean-looking guys with bags of gold in their hands, and avoid the friendly-looking guys and the women. But beware, because as the levels go by, other characters start appearing. The graphics are great, and so is the music; a soulful, very cowboy-ish tune plays throughout, and you'll be humming it all night! Also, the difficulty curve is excellent; early levels are no problem, but later ones are a nightmare! Overall, a very good and addictive game, although if I had any gripes, it would be the lack of locations that other games of the genre have.

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8

Western Games

(Magic Bytes, 1987)

Compete against the computer or a friend in six cowboy-themed events. Arm wrestling is self-explanatory, while in beer shooting, you shoot beer glasses from someone's hand – dangerous! In quid spitting, you chew tobacco and fire it into your opponent's spittoon. Then there is milking, in which you must milk a cow, and eating, in which you must eat a bowl of stew. Finally, in the dancing game, a woman performs a dance, and you (as a burly cowboy) have to perform the same moves! The arm wrestling, beer shooting and dancing are quite good, but the other three events have very complex controls which totally spoil the fun. The graphics are really colourful, and the animation and presentation have to be seen to be believed, but it's a shame that only three of the events are worth playing.

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7

Who Dares Wins II

(Alligata, 1986)

Reviewed by Javier Sáez

Once again, a single soldier faces a whole evil army. This is a Commando clone, with graphics that are a bit more detailed, although not as cute, and no scrolling. The gameplay is more or less what could be expected, but nevertheless, the aforementioned absence of scrolling makes the game less amusing than other arcade games of the same style, like Guerrilla War, Ikari Warriors or Mercs. It's worth a few tries, but you'll forget about it quickly.

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6

Whopper Chase

(Erbe, 1987)

Reviewed by Pug

Nice loading screen, an impressive options screen. Colourful graphics. Limited sound. This game seems to involve avoiding groups of nasties or shooting them. It all moves along in a sluggish manner, and you soon lose all your lives. You will become bored within 30 seconds of trying to play this game.

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0

Who Said That?

(Radical, 1994)

We've all heard some classic quotes made by the rich and the famous, but do you know who actually said them? This game contains hundreds of sets of quotes, and you get a new set on each round. In each round, you are given three or four quotes, one at a time, and you have to guess who said them, out of a list of several people. Getting it wrong earns you a fault – make four faults, and the game's over. It does get hard pretty quickly, and if you want to progress, you'll need a good memory!

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8

Wibstars

(A'n'F, 1987)

Can you earn a living by delivering computer equipment to your customers? Starting at the warehouse, you load your van with cassettes, floppy discs, or Spectrums (ugh!). You then have to collect them as they fall down some chutes and then drive across town avoiding the debris left behind by the van in front of you. Having reached your destination, you now have to select the goods and move them around a series of platforms and conveyor belts, and try not to smash them. It sounds like a bizarre game, but play it and you'll see... that it's awful – really awful. The graphics look like your CPC has turned into a Spectrum, the sound is mediocre, and it's far too difficult to make a profit.

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3

Wild Streets

(Titus, 1990)

The head of the CIA, John Steven, has been kidnapped, and you have been sent to rescue him. You also have a companion in the form of a panther called Black Virgin – although as you'll find out, he (she?) is of almost no use! There are five levels, each one filled with gang members to beat up, but you can simply jump over them to the next screen without having to fight them. The only criminals you will need to kill are those on the last screen of the level, and you can use your gun to dispose of them easily. Once you've rescued Mr. Steven, you must retrace your steps. The graphics and music are both of a high standard, but it's far too easy to complete. As for the cartridge version, the choice of colours is better and the game is a bit faster, but it's not much of an improvement and is just as easy to complete.

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5

Wild West Seymour

(Codemasters, 1992)

Seymour is starring in his second movie, but once again, the film has been sabotaged by a man called El Bandeeto, and all of the studio team's equipment has gone astray! You have to find all of it and then travel across America to shoot the rest of the film. Unfortunately, many of the objects have rather obvious uses and the puzzles aren't exactly taxing, although there is one crafty trick in Act 3! The inclusion of the Game Genie only makes things even easier, and the tunes are extremely grating to listen to. It is a reasonable game, though; it's just that bit too easy.

See also: Sergeant Seymour Robotcop, Seymour at the Movies, Stuntman Seymour, Super Seymour Saves the Planet.

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7

The Willow Pattern

(Firebird, 1986)

Can Chang find his way to the Mandarin's palace and flee with the beautiful princess, Koong-Shee, or will he killed by the many samurai warriors within the maze? This is a nice, simple little maze exploration game which involves wandering through a maze which is decorated with Oriental scenery, eventually reaching the palace. There are a lot of swords scattered throughout the maze, but it's better to coax the samurai warriors into throwing their swords at you, getting out of their way, and collecting their sword. There is a little sub-game which involves jumping over stepping stones which disrupts the flow a bit, but this is a minor annoyance. The graphics are very colourful indeed and there's some Oriental music as well. Overall, this is a wonderful game.

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8

Willy Wino's Stag Night

(Silverbird, 1988)

Willy Wino is clearing all the bottles away after a massive booze-up. Having recovered from a hangover, he sets about gathering the bottles and avoiding aliens and spikes. You don't actually have to collect all the bottles, although you might need to collect all the bottles on a screen to open some doors. It's a simple and colourful platform game that is really rather enjoyable at first, and the sound effects are jolly, too. Once you reach the second level, this enjoyment disappears as you discover that it's too difficult.

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6

Winchester

(Chip, 1988)

Reviewed by CPC4eva

Set in the old Wild West, this is a run-and-gun, shoot to kill-style game which was only released in France. The objective is to run to the end of each level while trying to avoid losing your five lives. Along the way you must avoid enemy cowboys shooting bullets and throwing knives at you. There are five levels but the gameplay is very repetitive; nothing changes between levels except some of the backgrounds. If the game wasn't hard enough, a large vulture sometimes appears and drops a stick of dynamite above you which is difficult to avoid. The graphics suit the style of the game but the movement and scrolling are jerky and slow. The controls are not very responsive, which meant I was losing lives quite easily. There is a French-style Wild West tune playing but it doesn't add much improvement to the game.

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3

Wings of Fury

(Brøderbund/Loriciel, 1990)

Reviewed by Javier Sáez

Imagine a very simple flight simulator with the graphic appearance of a side-scrolling shoot-'em-up, and you have Wings of Fury. The game seemed quite appealing at first, as the simulation touch made me expect an original game. Besides, the action takes place during World War II, which is always a good thing, at least for me. After a few tries, I took off and found that this game, being a sort of toy simulator, lacks the action other games have (just take a look at P-47: The Freedom Fighter), but doesn't offer anything really interesting in return. As a result, Wings of Fury is simply a curious game with rather dull gameplay.

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5

Winter Games

(US Gold/Epyx, 1986)

You're an athlete in the 1988 Winter Olympics, which took place in Calgary in Canada. You and up to three other players can compete in seven events – hot dog aerials, biathlon (cross-country skiing and rifle shooting), speed skating, figure skating, the ski jump, free skating, and the bobsled. Understandably, everyone will find some events to be more appealing to them than others. I didn't like the figure skating or free skating events at all, but the other five events are great fun to play as you try to perfect them and beat the records. The graphics are a mixture of low- and medium-resolution, but in the four events where the high-colour, low-resolution mode is used, they are absolutely stunning – some of the best you'll see on a CPC.

See also: Summer Games, Summer Games II.

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8

Winter Sports

(Electric Dreams, 1985)

Reviewed by Pug

In this early sports game for the CPC, there are eight events to compete in – ice hockey, bobsled, speed skating, downhill skiing, ski jumping, biathlon, slalom and giant slalom. Each one requires practice and can be played in any order, but each carries a different display and method of play. Some of the games look dated and poor in their design, such as the downhill event. Others, such as ice hockey and speed skating, just meet the basic requirements for an entertaining game. A mixed bag of poor to below average MODE 1 graphics and simple audio effects just increase the lack of interest to be found here.

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4

Wishbringer

(Infocom, 1986)

Your nasty boss, Mr. Crisp, has asked you to deliver an envelope to the Magick Shoppe in the village of Festeron. But the woman who runs the shop has had her cat kidnapped by The Evil One, and she wants you to find the cat – but when you walk out of the shop again, Festeron has become a totally different place... A glow-in-the-dark stone (Wishbringer itself) was included with the game – very cool! – and you can use Wishbringer with other objects to make up to seven wishes. However, the aim is ultimately to try to complete the game without using any of them. This is intended to be an introductory adventure and experienced players will not find it very taxing, but it's still a very good, and rather surreal, adventure.

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8

Witch Hunt

(Supersoft, 1986)

Reviewed by Pug

In this text adventure, you play a rascal named Filbur Apse who enjoys upsetting people. One day he made the mistake of annoying an old man who turned out to be a wizard. This angry wizard cast a spell on Filbur that left him with the appearance of a really nice person. The only person who can lift this spell is the witch in the woods. After meeting her, Filbur is told to find all of the ingredients required to cast a new spell. Witch Hunt is a well written adventure that is packed full of rich and amusing detail. You soon become engrossed in this fictional world and can almost touch, smell and taste your surroundings. Your progress in this game is also rewarded with points; keep an eye on your score. An increase in your score is a sign that something you've found is important – and here's a tip; to unlock the witch's front door, pretend you're a postman.

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8

Wizard's Lair

(Bubble Bus, 1985)

Appeared on an Amstrad Action covertape

Pothole Pete was exploring when he came across the mysterious Wizard's Lair – but in order to escape, he has to find the four pieces of the Golden Lion, and reach the top level of the lair. His task is made harder by the many monsters lurking in all the rooms. The range of objects to be found and collected is almost as enormous as the lair itself, and it's easy to miss a section which might contain part of the Golden Lion. The graphics are good with some very clever use of colour mixing, and the sound effects are average. There's so much to discover in this game, though, and that's what I like so much about it. It's a game you can really keep coming back to.

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9

Wizard Willy

(Codemasters, 1989)

Reviewed by John Beckett

Surely a contender for Game With the Most Unintentionally Funny Title, Wizard Willy has you in the role of a young trainee wizard who sets out to rid the land of demons. The game itself is a traditional side-scrolling platformer-cum-shoot-'em-up, and the graphics are great – very detailed and colourful. The sound effects are spot on too (lots of lovely explosions!) but with graphics and sound on such a high level, something's got to give. And that something is the ridiculous slowdown that occurs when too many bad guys are on screen. Add to that the mind-blowing difficulty of the game (it's hard even by Amstrad standards!), and the fact that despite its nice visuals, it's actually really boring, and you have a pretty dire game.

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3

Wizball

(Ocean, 1987)

The wizard Zark has eliminated all colour from Wizworld and left it grey. As Wizball, you and your faithful sidekick Catelite have come to restore colour to the nine levels of Wizworld. This is done by shooting red, green and blue bubbles and collecting the droplets from them and obtaining enough of each to make the right colours. You also have to collect green pearls and use them to give Wizball more power. There are only three types of monster, and it's extremely frustrating when you get stuck in the scenery and can't get out. Still, it's an original concept for a game and one which is hugely enjoyable.

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9

Wiz-Biz

(Alternative, 1987)

Last night's drinking session at the Duck and Plunger inn resulted in Ralph's friend Mike being turned into a salamander as a party trick. Not surprisingly, Mike was not amused by this, and incarcerated Ralph in the dungeons beneath his castle. You'll have to call on your familiar spirit to help you out – if you can recall his name... This text adventure has been written using GAC, but it lacks atmosphere. The setting of dungeons and a castle to explore is good enough, but the text isn't very descriptive, the locations are laid out in a very illogical manner, and little thought seems to have been given to the puzzles, which seem to have been inserted into the game at random with no coherence – a bit like Ralph, come to think of it!

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4

The Wombles

(Alternative, 1990)

"Underground, overground, wombling free, the Wombles of Wimbledon Common are we..." The Wombles are a bunch of shy creatures who live in their burrow below Wimbledon Common. Great Uncle Bulgaria has sent young Orinoco and Wellington to fetch some items and collect litter. You control Orinoco and must wander around the common, fetching the items before Wellington does, or you will lose a life. The hard mode adds some further dangers such as avoiding humans and the animals which inhabit the common (those squirrels are nasty, you know). The graphics are colourful and appealing, but there's hardly any variety in the game at all and it will soon become a bit boring.

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6

Wonder Boy

(Activision, 1987)

Reviewed by Chris Lennard

Rescue your girlfriend from the evil monster that has kidnapped her in this somewhat typical platformer. As Wonder Boy you must navigate the local scenery; running and jumping around avoiding traps, collecting fruit bonuses and nobbling off any passing creatures that get in your way. The special power-ups such as the skateboard and the bonus levels up in the clouds are a nice idea, but this fails to distract from what is quite a dull game. The graphics here are also relatively poor, especially when you compare them to examples such as Rodland or Rainbow Islands. One for platformer fans only.

See also: Super Wonder Boy in Monster Land.

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4

Wooky and Moty

(CRL, 1987)

This is a cute puzzle game where you must push three multi-coloured balls around the screen so that they form a straight line – but they're fragile and will smash if you're not careful. Instead, you must manoeuvre some blue spheres into position and push the balls towards them – but the spheres are fragile as well, so some thinking is required. There are other hazards to watch out for and avoid while you're trying to do all of this. The graphics are OK, but there are very few sound effects, and while the gameplay is good, it's a little on the slow side and it can be frustrating at times.

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6

World Championship Soccer

(Elite, 1991)

One of the worst football games on the CPC ever. Why? Well, if the terrible graphics haven't put you off (yes, it's Spectrum port time again!), the gameplay certainly will. You can take part in the World Cup or a friendly match as one of 24 nations, choosing which players you want to use in each match. There are a multitude of problems with the game, though. Passing and tackling are all but impossible; you can't seem to select another player to control on your team; the length of matches is far too long and can't be adjusted; and the game is much, much too easy – just grab the ball during kick-offs in the first half, and run with it all the way to the other team's goal. This is a truly shambolic excuse for a football game which is best forgotten about.

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1

World Class Leaderboard

(US Gold, 1987)

Reviewed by Guillaume Chalard

This is probably the best golf game for the CPC. You must prove your skills through four courses and three difficulty levels (ranging from kids to professional). The graphics are cute and colourful, and they appear rather quickly on the screen. There's a little loading time between each hole but it's worth the wait, because the gameplay is excellent. Even with a joystick, it's really easy to control the pace and the effects of your shots – but beware of the wind and the slope, and choose your club cleverly...

See also: Leader Board.

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World Class Rugby

(Audiogenic, 1991)

Reviewed by Robert Small

Considering the limitations of the CPC's hardware, this is an excellent rugby game. The front end where you select the game mode, teams, etc. is presented in the CPC's MODE 0, so it has a colourful, if blocky, look. You can select several real world international teams such as New Zealand, England and Wales. When you get to the actual game, the graphics change to resemble a Spectrum game. However, this is to the benefit of the gameplay, as everything runs smoothly and benefits from decent controls for passing, scrums, running and conversions. This is a supremely playable sports game and in my opinion could be described as the best sports game on the Amstrad CPC.

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World Cup

(Artic, 1985)

If this game represented a country in the World Cup, it wouldn't get past the first round. You, and up to seven other players, can take part in the World Cup and choose from eight (yes, only eight!) countries. Which country you choose affects how well you play. You then get to play a match, which lasts about five minutes. Primitive graphics and jerky scrolling, combined with an irritating tune that plays continuously in the background and frustrating gameplay (such as an apparent inability of your players to tackle and a tendency for control to switch to another player at all the wrong times), make this a game to stay clear of.

See also: World Cup Carnival.

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3

World Cup Carnival

(US Gold, 1986)

This was the official World Cup computer game back in 1986, and as you may well be aware, it has gone down in history as being one of the worst games ever. For a long time, there were rumours that the original game that had been written was so awful that US Gold realised they could not sell it – although that wasn't quite what happened. Anyway, in desperation, US Gold asked Artic Computing if they could reuse World Cup (which is also an awful game). Some very minor modifications were made, and it was sold at full price, along with a few extras such as stickers and posters which weren't worth the extra money. It was an outrage, and rightly so. The CPC version includes a few extra bits, which are very poor and very boring indeed and deserve zero marks. In fact, Amstrad Action gave this game 0%, and I certainly agree with them!

See also: World Cup.

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World Cup Challenge

(Players, 1990)

Take either England, Scotland or the Republic of Ireland to glory in their bid to win the 1990 World Cup in Italy, through the qualifying rounds, the quarter-finals, the semi-finals, and the big one itself. The match highlights in this game thankfully aren't too long, although the players are difficult to see as they're all nearly the same colour as the pitch – that's smart! Surprisingly for a football management game, there are plenty of graphics, and 128K owners can even hear some music. Lots of graphics, however, means a lack of options, which will disappoint hardened fans of football management games, but I liked the simplicity myself. You'll probably win the World Cup on the easy skill level on your first go, but the other two skill levels are more challenging.

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7

World Cup Soccer: Italia '90

(Virgin, 1990)

After US Gold's shameful World Cup Carnival in 1986, it was Virgin's turn to release the official World Cup computer game for the 1990 tournament. The result is good, but somewhat flawed. For some reason, you can only choose to play as one of four teams – England, Belgium, Italy or Spain. What about all the other teams? You also discover that no matter what team you choose, you always play in purple, and your opponents always play in white. Each match always lasts four minutes, but the teams do not swap sides at half time. The animation of the players is very good, but the game feels strangely silent with an almost total lack of sound effects, and it had the potential to be much better and more enjoyable than it is.

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7

World of Sports

(US Gold/Epyx, 1990)

Reviewed by CPC4eva

World of Sports is a cartridge game that makes good use of the extra features of the Plus machines. Graphically it looks very impressive with fantastic use of colours and well drawn sprites, and there is also an excellent tune. The gameplay is quite fast and smooth. I really enjoyed seeing how fast the gameplay and movement of sprites were; it felt like I wasn't playing an Amstrad CPC game, and this is what sets it apart from many other CPC games, especially in the multi-sporting event genre. However I do feel somewhat disappointed by the staying power. While you can choose to practice an event or play all them one after the other, there are only four events – BMX stunt riding, slalom skiing, surfing and cliff diving – and they feel like mini-games. It's over very swiftly and you are given only three attempts on each event.

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6

World Series Baseball

(Imagine, 1985)

Baseball may not have much of a following beyond America, but this game certainly makes it fun. You can play either against the computer or with a friend, as you play nine innings and take it in turns to bat and bowl in alternate innings. The rules are well implemented, and you can even choose how you want to bowl – fast or slow, high or low. Scoring home runs is a great feeling, too! The graphics are good and colourful for a game as old as this one, and the sound and music are both good as well, especially the applause from the crowd. I don't like the way the game goes straight into demo mode as soon as it's loaded, though.

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World Soccer League

(E&J, 1990)

Compete in the World Soccer League against 31 other well known teams. You can choose any of six British teams, although you can change the name of your team. There are also five skill levels. As far as football management games go, it's not the most advanced of the lot; there aren't many options, and you can't train your players or make decisions on team formation and tactics. Furthermore, there are absolutely no graphics to speak of; everything is presented in a text-only format, with no effort made to even change the default colours – and you even have to press the CAPS LOCK key before the game starts! It doesn't give a great impression, but some people like simple football management games, and this is one such example.

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4

The Worm in Paradise

(Level 9, 1985)

Reviewed by Richard Lamond

The finale of the Silicon Dream trilogy is arguably one of the most adult-themed text adventures to grace the CPC. A broadside on the politics of the day, The Worm in Paradise begins with a symbolic dream sequence after which you find yourself in a Utopian 'paradise' – but are things what they seem to be? Taking the best of the previous instalments, The Worm in Paradise is not as oppressively difficult as Return to Eden but it is still a tougher prospect than Snowball. The graphics haven't improved much either, but the storyline is where The Worm in Paradise excels, creating what feels like a real world and exploring ideas not generally touched on by computer games of that time. Be warned, though; the game's transport system is guaranteed to frustrate and it will take a long time to complete this game without resorting to cheating!

See also: Return to Eden, Snowball.

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Wrath of Olympus

(Alpha Omega, 1986)

The setting is ancient Greece. You are one of the gods of Greek mythology who has incurred the wrath of the all-powerful god Zeus. As a punishment, Zeus has cast a curse of forgetfulness upon you, and now you don't even know who you are. The only way to restore your memory is to enter the realm of Hades and drink the water from the Pool of Remembrance. This is a text adventure written with GAC, and the storyline is quite interesting, with all these great tales involving the gods. Many Olympian gods and other mythical creatures appear in the game, and pictures have been sacrificed for a larger map and more descriptive text. However, it's difficult to see what the puzzles are and how to solve them. Maybe you're supposed to have a good grasp of Greek mythology to play the game properly, but not a lot of people do.

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5

Wreckless Roger

(Blaby, 1986)

Roger has crashed his rocket, the Millennium Sparrow, on an inhospitable planet and must retrieve the five pieces which are scattered about a maze of rooms. Starting in one of the rooms, you must shoot all the flying objects before you can teleport to another room and continue the search for the parts of your rocket. As you may imagine, this is boring. Not being able to leave a room until you've shot all the objects is silly, and when you do find a rocket part, you have to search again for the exit to the next level. The graphics and sound effects are dire as well; just avoid playing this game!

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1

Wrestling Superstars

(Codemasters, 1993)

Can the Darling Dude become a wrestling superstar? You take control of this wrestler as he fights, and hopefully defeats, four opponents – Skullbasher Bob, Knucklebuster Nik, the Masked Marauder, and the Golden Guy. You must win two rounds in order to fight the next opponent. The usual wrestling fare is involved here, although a lot of joystick waggling is required. This was one of the last games that Codemasters released for the CPC, yet hardly anyone knew about it at the time! The graphics and music are quite good, but the moves you can make are rather limited, and the difficulty level increases too sharply when you come to fight the third opponent. It's also a shame that there is no two-player option.

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6

Wriggler

(Blaby, 1985)

The garden is infested with mushrooms, and you must use your laser base to kill them and also shoot the other bugs that inhabit the garden, such as flies, snails and spiders. The main aim of the game, though, is to shoot the caterpillars that move from left to right and downwards as well. When you shoot all the segments of the caterpillar, you go to the next level. This is a pretty good version of the classic arcade game Centipede; the graphics are very similar to the original, and change colour as you progress through the game, and it's fast as well, without being overly difficult.

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Wriggler

(Romantic Robot, 1985)

Appeared on an Amstrad Action covertape

It's that time again – the worm marathon, where two worms race each other over a gruelling course. The first section is in a garden with ants and spiders to contend with, before moving underground into hell (yes, really!) where, among other things, there are acid drops, moving bridges and red-hot pokers, with the last section featuring a lift where each floor has a different theme. A horrible colour scheme says it all for the graphics (which are rather simplistic), and the music is grating, too. The game is nice at first, but the final section is by far the most annoying, and you often fall through the lift and lose most of your three lives.

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6

Wulf Pack

(Blue Ribbon, 1988)

The Nazi U-boats are sinking Britain's convoys of merchant ships faster than Britain can cope. You've been assigned by the Royal Navy as a sub hunter and have to trawl the Atlantic, looking for the U-boats using sonar and then destroying them with your supply of depth charges. When you run out, you'll need to sail to a port and dock by guiding your ship through the harbour, which isn't easy. In fact, it's probably the most challenging part of the game, for the rest of it is rather boring and just involves randomly moving your ship about the screen. The graphics aren't great and the music is very irritating.

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5

WWF Wrestlemania

(Ocean, 1991)

Reviewed by Javier Sáez

Does anyone remember Hulk Hogan or the Ultimate Warrior? Does WWF (nowadays known as WWE) ring a bell to you? This game takes those fake combats that seemed to have no rules at all to your CPC. The graphics are quite good, although they lack variety. Your character performs a wide range of movements both fast and smoothly, and the computer controlled opponents are quite smart. WWF Wrestlemania is a very enjoyable game, regardless of whether you are playing against the computer or a friend. The only drawback is that it has some joystick-breaking movements (a bit like the Daley Thompson games), which I find quite bothersome.

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