Lots of hot news on the Coupé to report this month. So hot, in fact, that we’re having to keep a fire extinguisher next to our SAM in case it goes up in flames! NICK ROBERTS is the man with the bucket of water...
There’s been a real explosion of software onto the SAM this month with the release of the excellent Prince Of Persia and the equally impressive F-16 Combat Pilot. Both games have been a great success on the 16-bits and now you can enjoy SAM versions with graphics and playability equal to that of the originals!
In Prince Of Persia you take the role of a brave hero, out to rescue his true love from the hands of the evil Jaffar. He’s thrown you into his dungeons and given the Princess a choice, and an hour to decide: marry him or die! You explore the dungeons, collect a sword and fight off the guards to make it to the Princess within the hour.
The game has over ten levels of action, full of deadly spikes to avoid, holes to jump and secret locks hidden in the floors. It’s one of those games that doesn’t look impressive in screenshots, you have to play it to appreciate the animation and playability. The prince runs, jumps and sways from side to side with perfectly smooth animation. The original 16-bit sprites were all modelled on live action, that’s how they’ve come to look so good.
Prince is by the SAM Co software house Revelation and published by Domark at the end of June for the measly price of £14.99 (ten pounds cheaper than the 16-bit equivalent!). Look out for the full review next issue.
If simulations are more your cup of tea then shout ‘tally ho!’ for F-16 Combat Pilot. This is another game that uses Atari ST graphics and Spectrum code to produce a first class SAM game. It won the award for Best Flight Simulator at the European Computer Leisure Awards ’90.
F-16 lets you take control of one of the world’s finest multi-role aircraft, from ground attack to air interception. It certainly looks impressive with the option of either solid fill or line vector graphics.
F-16 is also by Revelation and published by Digital Integration. Released towards the end of June it’s priced at £16.99 on disk only. Deals are being struck (ouch!) as you read this with the French software house Infogrames and Ocean to convert even more great games to the computer. Titles mentioned have been North and South, The Light Corridor, Rainbow islands, Pang, RoboCop and Navy SEALS. Although none of these are definite yet, the willingness of these companies to have their games on the Coupé is a sign of good things to come.
There may be a lack of commercial software on the SAM at the moment but the Public Domain and disk magazine market more than makes up for it. At the last count there were literally hundreds of disks, many packed to the brim with games, demos and utilities.
One of the latest lists to fall on my desk was from Fastline PDL. They currently have 42 disks in their library so you’ll be spoiled for choice. Many of the disks are available from other libraries but there are quite a few I hadn’t seen before.
Each disk from Fastline costs £2.00 with the exception of the multi-disk demos which are a little more expensive. To learn about all this great software send an SAE to Fastline PDL and ask for a list, or alternatively you could supply a disk and get the freshly updated disk catalogue.
After my piece on the Blue Alpha Electronics Sound Sampler last month, I learned they’re planning to update the software to allow better editing and manipulation of the samples. One of the biggest drawbacks with the version I had was that once you had sampled a sound the facilities for playing it back and editing it were limited.
The updated software will allow users to double the amount of sample time available, edit the waveforms on screen, give more flexible looping and have multiple samples in memory. This software will be supplied with all new samplers and given out free to existing users.
More hot news from the stables down on Ynysforgan Farm (try saying that after a few pints). Now they have a product called the Joymouse ready for release. It’s a mouse that plugs into the joystick port of your Coupé and can be used with any joystick driven piece of software. This means it’s instantly compatible with Flash! and the MIDI Sequencer as well as any games that use joystick. This is the sort of product that the SAM has been waiting for and you can get yours for £41.99, including postage and packing, from Blue Alpha Electronics.
The SAM Messenger arrived just too late for an in-depth report this issue. For those who don’t know, it’s an interface that plugs into a SAM and a Spectrum that allows you to port over games from one computer to another and play them instantly. More next month...
Until then, keep sending your SAM info to: Newsfield, Nick Roberts, SAM PAGE.