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Year search: 2007
Judge: Chris Young & Phillip Lake [Official Site]

Advanced 3D Maze
AuthorAndy Rea
Filenamea3dm/AD3DMAZE.P
Year2007
PositionNo ranking
FormatZX81
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DescriptionAs if the ZX81 didn't have enough maze games already, here's another one - with a 3D twist, and random multi-screen maps.
CommentsDear Trading Standards,
Please find enclosed a tape containing a game sent to us for the zx81 entitled "Advanced 3D Maze." We are submitting it to yourselves because we believe that it is in clear breach of the Trades Descriptions Act (1968), being as it is neither advanced nor in 3D. In fact it cannot even claim to be isometric, as it is merely a series of lines on a screen. Similarly, as it describes itself as a 'Maze' game, it is also in breach of the Property Misdescriptions Act, as upon playing said game we discovered that the 'walls' have no relevance to the 'Maze' as it is possible to move straight through them, thus making it not even an accurate representation of any kind of maze.
We trust that the author, Mr. A. Rea, will be hearing from you soon, and will therefore instruct him to recall all sold copies and cease further distribution.
Yours,
Unsatisfactory Software

Advanced Jet Set Willy Guardian Simulator
AuthorRickard Berglind
Filenameadvanced-jetsetwilly-guardian-simulator.z80
Year2007
PositionNo ranking
FormatSpectrum
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DescriptionNo description
CommentsAnother rip-off of Jet Set Willy, but with a twist - you play one of the weird objects (called "The Guardian") that patrol the house, in this case, The Top Landing. Your aim is to move back and forth and stop Miner Willy when he appears, which he will do when you are going the other direction. If he gets past, you won't see him for toffee. The only reasonable course of action is therefore to reset the Spectrum. Crap!

Atak Pajakow (Spider Attack) I
AuthorDaniel Gromann
FilenameAtak pajakow (Spider Attack) 1.tzx Atak pajakow (Spider Attack) 1.tap
Year2007
PositionNo ranking
FormatSpectrum
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DescriptionEscape from the invasion of mutant spiders from the planet... Earth.
CommentsWow. Another game straight from the 80s (although the green and black colour scheme makes it look like the 70s), spider Attack has the added challenge of being all in Polish, although the author has kindly provided a translation. Once again, what we have here is a Frogger clone, with spiders (we all remember those in Frogger). Rather helpfully, one of the controls resets the Spectrum - the control you'll be using most, no doubt.

Atak Pajakow (Spider Attack) II
AuthorDaniel Gromann
FilenameAtak pajakow (Spider Attack) 2.tzx Atak pajakow (Spider Attack) 2.tap
Year2007
PositionNo ranking
FormatSpectrum
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DescriptionTake your revenge on the evil creatures that are taking over the world, without leaving the house.
CommentsSpider Attack 2 follows on (presumably) from the events of Spider Attack 1. Our hero (if you can call a man escaping some attacking spiders which aren't, er, attacking, by running away, a hero) has made it safely home. Now you have to make use of your installed "arrow launcher" (a popular home defence system in 1940s Poland, one presumes) to fight off the spiders. And that's about it, really. There's only really one key - Fire. Oh, and one to reset the spectrum again.

Bed and Breakfast
AuthorPaul E Collins
Filenamebfast.tzx
Year2007
PositionNo ranking
FormatSpectrum
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DescriptionYou are taking the breakfast orders in a hotel restaurant, which for some unfathomable reason has no pens. Therefore you are required to remember the orders and deliver the correct breakfast to the correct person. Maybe implementing some sort of buffet would be a better solution?
CommentsBed and Breakfast appears, by all accounts, to be an accurate simulation of running a B&B. A poor B&B at that, but a B&B nonetheless. Gameplay involves remembering the breakfast orders for all of your guests, who all happen to come down for breakfast at exactly the same time. It's the speccy equivalent of those games you used to play at 6th birthday parties, where your friend's mum brings out a tray with a load of random household items on it, covered with a teatowel, and whoever remembers the most wins. There don't seem to be any winners from playing this, though - only losers.

Chesney Hawkes' Celebrity Digital Higher or Lower Simulator
AuthorGavin Callard
Filenamechh.tap
Year2007
PositionNo ranking
FormatSpectrum
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DescriptionThe name says it all, really. Bruce Forsyth is not included for legal reasons.
CommentsChrist. Chesney Hawkes' Celebrity Digital Higher Or Lower Simulator, to give it it's full title, does exactly what it says on the tin. A cyan-rendered image (which takes bloody ages to generate) of the mid-90s popster guides you through what is effectively a round of Play Your Cards Right without the cards. Place your bets, and then guess whether one number is higher than another. And that's it. Well, at least it didn't crash. The less said the better.

Crap Castle Master 2
AuthorAnthony 'monty.mole' Lycett
FilenameCrapCastleMaster2.tap
Year2007
PositionNo ranking
FormatSpectrum
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DescriptionWireframe 3D treasure-hunting follow-up to Crap Castle Master
CommentsWell, at least it's an honest title. To be fair, A.L. Graphics' effort is technically competent - the wireframe castle is fairly impressive (and who knows, maybe historically accurate). The main problem with the game is that I don't know anyone who's got enough time on their hands to play it. Even the bloke outside the shopping centre selling the Big Issue is too busy to dedicate enough time to what is, in effect, watching a fictional castle being drawn (or indeed, watching paint dry. which maybe preferable). 95% for effort, 0.1% for gameplay. Except it actually only a deserves 5% for effort, being as it is a rip-off of the previous Crap Castle Master attempt.

Where In The World Is John Darwin?
AuthorGeneral Zoff
Filenamedarwin.tap
Year2007
Position3
FormatSpectrum
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DescriptionClue-hunting police investigation with over 19 locations to visit.
CommentsOne of the better of this year's entries, Where In The World Is John Darwin ("Can-oe find him?") proves also to be one of the most topical, and also original (alright, maybe not). But it is fun, one of the most vital elements of a crap game. You travel the world investigating the case of canoe enthusiast and alleged international fraudster John Darwin (within the budget of the local police authority). Is he in Rome? Is he in Fucking Austria? Who knows? Only you will find out, as you travel the continents in search of clues. The only thing that stands in your way is time - crack the case before time runs out and you'll bag yourself a promotion and hefty bonus. And a nice tan. If not, your wife will leave you and you're off the case! Cripes!

It's topical, it's entertaining - it has one joke (nay, it *is* one joke) and above all, it's crap.
It could've had more gameplay, with additional clues based on the other global locations, and Darwin appearing in other locales, but Zoff couldn't be arsed. We can only admire such laziness in crap game development.


Dobsonic Defendor (Gold Edition)
AuthorDavid Mackenzie
Filenamedd.tap
Year2007
Position1
FormatSpectrum
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DescriptionAccording to the author, "It's a thrilling shoot-em-up loaded with over 4 weapons to choose from!"
CommentsDobsonic Defendor describes itself as a "thrilling shoot-em-up with over 4 weapons." That's probably one of the most accurate descriptions issued to any of the crap games on offer this year. Taking it's cues from Space Invaders, you control your craft, the Dobsonic Defendor, with the O and P keys, and Space to fire. It's deceptively simple, and yet the depth and attention to detail is stunning. B+.

Bad spelling aside, Dobsonic Defendor stood out because although it looks impressive (like a proper game!) it is in actual fact crap. It's got the best array of weapons ever seen (James Blunt! We all remember that weapon in Frogger) on any game (on pretty much any platform). It's also impossible to lose, has practical controls and pretty good aracde-style graphics. All that's missing is any kind of entertainment, which makes it very crap, considering what it could have been.


Desant (Landing Operation)
AuthorDaniel and Krystyna Gromann
FilenameDesant (Landing Operation).tzx Desant (Landing Operation).tap
Year2007
PositionNo ranking
FormatSpectrum
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DescriptionYou are the captain of a ship and have to catch the parachutists landing in the bay.
CommentsAnother Polish entry from Daniel Gromann (with his mum on this effort). Rather touchingly, the opening screen has a poem relating to parachutists. In the instructions/translation, Daniel says, "This poem itself should give me victory in the Crap Games Compo!" Don't be too sure Daniel - this is a crap games compo, not a crap poetry compo. We'll leave that to Tom Paulin on Newsnight Review. As for the game itself - it's a crap-games standard Game & Watch knock-off, a bit like "Hat Catch" but with more Gameplay; you can actually move the ship to catch the parachutists left and right. And the sprites actually look like what they're meant to be. Furthermore, the game reiterates it's crapness credentials by not having the ability to get back to the main title screen and, even better, even the author isn't sure if it's possible. Daniel, your game is crap. And I'm sure that's exactly what you wanted to hear.

Deluxe Greyhound Racing Simulator v1.01
AuthorAndrew Blood
Filenamedog/Dog11.z80 dog/Dog11.sna dog/Presentation1.tzx
Year2007
PositionNo ranking
FormatSpectrum
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DescriptionSee Deluxe Horse Racing Simulator v1.17. Andrew was threatening to enter a camel racing simulator as well, so we're all looking forward to that at CGC towers.
CommentsThe promise of a dog racing simulator, as dictated by the text file, sounded, well, promising. After all, who wouldn't want to recreate a night out at the dogs at Walthamstow, or Romford? We fired it up with anticipation. Even the loading screen looked great (once we'd located it in a separate file). We picked the track and got our readies out, eager to place our bets. We picked the dog... And they're off! Eh? When do you place your bets, exactly?
D-

Evel Knievel One-Liner Bus Jumping
AuthorDigital Prawn
Filenameevel.tzx
Year2007
PositionNo ranking
FormatSpectrum
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DescriptionJoystick-waggling stuntman simulator with increasingly difficult bus-jumping challenges, all in a single line of BASIC (I can only assume DP didn't think this game was worthy of the Oneliner contest)
CommentsEvel Knievel One-Liner Bus Jumping is billed as a "mini-homage to the stuntman," mini being the operative word - coded in just one line of (incomprehensible) BASIC, the game sees you trying to jump over increasing numbers of red buses, which is achieved by basically bashing random keys of your choice - the concept behind it is pretty good, but the implementation is crap - random keys?
See what we did there? The review above was only one line.

Quest For The Golden Egg, The
AuthorDigital Prawn
Filenamegolden.p
Year2007
Position41
FormatZX81
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DescriptionA treasure-hunting adventure with 10,000 different locations to visit.
CommentsMan, this is one of the worst games I've ever played - and I've played Rise Of The Robots. Quest For The Golden Egg is effectively an attempt to locate an egg based on a set of X,Y coordinates - it wants to be an arcade/RPG adventure, but it would be more at home on an Excel Spreadsheet. It could work as a text adventure, but, erm, it isn't one. Play at your peril. The instructions state, "Here the real enemy is existensial despair." You'll face this just by typing LOAD"". You have been warned.

Handbags
AuthorA.J.Moss
Filenamehandbags.tap
Year2007
PositionNo ranking
FormatSpectrum
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DescriptionNo description
CommentsInteresting. This is what seems to be some sort of postmodern text adventure. Except it's not - it's much more than that and yet so much less at the same time. The game - if you can call it that - sees you writing a crap game for the crap games competition - *this year's* crap games competition, no less - on the day of submission, and the HitchHiker's Guide To The Galaxy has just started on BBC2. The crux of it is effectively a BASIC IDE, with no funtionality whatsoever. When you've entered the code, type "SAVE" and email your .tap off as soon as possible. But be quick - you've only got 50 minutes left!
In terms of gameplay? Well, obviously, there's none whatsoever. D-.

Hat Catch
AuthorMichael Wihlborg
Filenamehatcatch/HAT128.tzx hatcatch/HAT128.z80
Year2007
Position39=
Format128K Spectrum
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DescriptionYou must catch Mr Hat's hat in this fiendlishly difficult game of bluff.
CommentsI hope you won't enjoy it, says the author. Well, this is after all the CSSCGC, so we probably won't. The game sounded promising - help Mr Hat catch his hat, almost like one of those Game & Watch games from the 80s. How wrong we were. It's basically guess the number. A 'hat' graphic would've been nice, but, as it stands, it could be anything that Mr Hat is catching. Well, anything red and vaguely quadrilateral (if you squint) - a fire extinguisher, a block of edam cheese, a postbox - even an old telephone box. Mr Hat isn't even rendered as a man. He's a yellow square. The game might as well be titled, "Position A Skip Under A Falling Red Crate Of Crap."

Haunted House
AuthorRickard Berglind
Filenamehaunted-house.z80
Year2007
PositionNo ranking
FormatSpectrum
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DescriptionWitness the most terrifying graphics ever seen in a Spectrum game in this multi-screen arcade adventure.
CommentsThis one's billed as a "Multi-screen arcade adventure." At first it sounded impressive, until we actually played it. There's only two screens, and one of those is only attainable at the point of your character's inevitable death? Why inevitable? Because the controls don't work. The "Jump" action appears to be non-existant, despite being referenced in the documentation. The documentation also states, "A not completely finished game from mid-80's" which, in addition to being quite non-specific, is appalling. Calvin Harris sang, "It was acceptable in the 80s." How wrong he was.

Hit The Road
AuthorQuique 'Cascarria' Llaría
Filenamehittheroad.tap
Year2007
PositionNo ranking
FormatSpectrum
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DescriptionThe blurb reads:
"You're a stoned teenage vandal dropping rocks at a motorway from a flyover.

See how much carnage you can cause before getting arrested!"

CommentsA first for the crap games compo, as this is the first to feature a 'Karaoke' option. Unfortunately, this is not only the best part of the game, but it's also as tuneless as any X-Factor entrant (expect to see the title song, "Hit the Road," on next year's Britain's Got Talent). The game itself sees you, as some ASBO-afflicted teenage yob, dropping rocks onto cars from a flyover. Despite the level of social commentary on show, the game as a whole is let down by a) the graphics appear to have been drawn by a five-year-old and b) the gameplay is non-existant. It's as random as a Hat Catch, or better still, Chesney Hawks' Number Guessing Bollocks.

Deluxe Horse Racing Simulator v1.17
AuthorAndrew Blood
Filenamehorse117/horse117.z80 horse117/horse117.sna horse117/117load.tzx
Year2007
PositionNo ranking
FormatSpectrum
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DescriptionAll the fun of the races on your Speccy, with the added benefit that you won't lose any money gambling your life savings on the Grand National.
CommentsAndrew Blood submitted his Dog Racing Simulator (Dog11.z80) along with this, a horse racing simulator in a similar vein (well, it's identical). Andrew, if you think churning out the same stuff and hope that nobody notices the difference, then congratulations - you're well on the way to a career with Electronic Arts, working on their FIFA Soccer series of games.

Jet Set Bulimic
AuthorDrUnKeN mAsTeR
Filenamejsb/Jet Set Bulimic.TAP
Year2007
PositionNo ranking
Format128K Spectrum
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DescriptionA puke-'em-'up with the Jet Set Willy engine.
CommentsWe instantly knew what to expect from this submission - a rip-off of Jet Set Willy, as annual tradition should dictate. The aim is to eat as 256 cheeseburgers (or '200' as the instruction suggests.... ?) and then vomit them all up again down the toilet (which didn't work). The instructions didn't say anything about the third screen, and the sprite getting stuck when we got to the bed area. So unfortunately we couldn't finish it. Verdict: Crap.

Killer Colours
AuthorPaul E Collins
FilenameKiller.tzx
Year2007
PositionNo ranking
FormatSpectrum
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DescriptionRun onto the coloured squares before the time runs out. It's kind of action puzzler, with increasingly harder time constraints and no scoring.
CommentsOK, this is a load of arse, but we weren't expecting any better, to be honest. It's basically "Simon Says" with coloured squares, crossed with Twister. To be fair though, the title is pretty good.

Lights Out
AuthorAndy Rea
Filenamelightsout/LIGHTSOUT.P
Year2007
PositionNo ranking
FormatZX81
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DescriptionA conversion of Tiger's Lights Out games, although somewhat less portable than the keychain version. 40 levels of puzzles where you must turn all the lights off in some sort of energy-saving government initiative.
CommentsAnother ZX81 game from Andrew Rea. It's a version of the old Tiger Electronics puzzle and... it's pretty good. Move the cursor to turn the lights on and off, and it'll also turn off the 4 lights around it. It's written in Assembler (source code provided!) and there's not actually anything bad about it. Andrew has clearly submitted this to the wrong competition. Sorry Andrew - you're not going to win a Crap Games Competition with *good entries.*

Lost
AuthorBen Rapier
Filenamelost/Lost.z80
Year2007
PositionNo ranking
FormatSpectrum
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DescriptionA puzzle game with an intriguing plot. Hacker for the 21st century.
CommentsThis year's first TV tie-in to be reviewed, Lost had us in suspense. We were looking forward to re-enacting the adventures on the mysterious island of The Doctor Bloke, That Woman Who Did Time For Drink Driving, Hurley and Geoffrey Out Of Hetty Wainthrop Investigates. Imagine our disappointment when we discovered it was a mere text adventure, with only one command - enter the bloody numbers before the timer runs out. if you don't know what they are, just do a search for "Lost" and "Numbers." Entering anything else will cause you to lose the game. What's brilliant about Lost is the lack of testing that's gone into it - if you let the timer run out, well we won't spoil the surprise.
Coming soon - Lost 2, in which you have to enter the entire text of the Flann O'Brien novel The Third Policeman before the end of the century. Without typos.

Outrun - M25 Edition
AuthorAndrew Owen
Filenamem25.tzx
Year2007
PositionNo ranking
FormatSpectrum
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DescriptionThe latest in the Outrun series is a fast'n'furious race around the "road to nowhere". Dodge past traffic cones and the inevitable six car pile-up near Heathrow! Ram the barrier at Dartford! Oh, and don't forget to slow down for those pesky speed cameras...
CommentsOr, Outrun:M25 Edition, to give it it's full title. From what we've seen so far, it's pretty realistic, and definitely recreates driving on the M25. The only missing option is that of bibbing your horn, really (oo-er). It's also the only game here to sensibly come with a health warning, which the author insists you read first. This can only score it more points, as far as we're concerned. Which is more than it deserves.

Maxwell's Demon
AuthorStuart 'Swizpig' Naylor
Filenamemaxwell/maxwell.tap maxwell/maxwell.sna
Year2007
PositionNo ranking
FormatSpectrum
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DescriptionDespite the name, this is nothing to do with Robert Maxwell. Instead it's an advanced physics simulator (which disappointingly wasn't called "Advanced Physics Simulator") which involves shuffling atoms around. The documentation doesn't clearly explain why you need to do this, instead muttering some scientific mumbo-jumbo about entrophy and Boltzmann.
CommentsNot so much a game as a physics simulation masquerading as a game, Maxwell's Demon is more of an "edutainment" product. Not sure there's much "Edu" involved though - we've got both Physics and Maths A-Levels and a Computer Engineering degree and we still have no idea what's going on. And while we're at it, there's not much "tainment" in evidence either - holding down the space bar to let a pixel across the screen does not a game make.

OutPlay_128
AuthorChris Born
FilenameOutPlay_128.TZX
Year2007
PositionNo ranking
Format128K Spectrum
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DescriptionCreate amazing sound with this 128K sound player.
CommentsMan, those crazy Dutch, man, with their Hash Brownies, and whore-ridden waterways. This isn't so much a game, as, well, it's not one at all. It came with no instructions, and the email just said (paraphrasing) "It won't just crap, or will it?" Well, yes it will, and it has. It seems to be some sort of music tracker program, but we can't even be sure. How can you review something when you don't even know what it is? You don't see Barry Norman go along to the cinema, only to find he's not reviewing a film, but some obscure live-on-stage Eastern European Dance/Mime act, do you?

Pilot Wings 48
AuthorNathan Cross
Filenamepw.TAP
Year2007
PositionNo ranking
FormatSpectrum
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DescriptionA Spectrum version of Pilot Wings. According to the screenshots on Wikipedia, it's pretty darn near identical to the original.
CommentsOne of the SNES' most memorable games, Pilotwings, has now made it's way to the spectrum, where it's not quite so memorable. It is however a faithful representation of the gameplay - stage 1 sees you guiding a parachutist (and we all remember that bit in Frogger, as it might as well be Frogger) onto a target, whereas stage 2 involves flying a crudely rendered bi-plane through a series of rings (or in the 48k version, blocks). Finally, there is a jetpack stage. And that's it. We completed it in about 5 minutes, on our 2nd attempt. It's still one of the better conversions here.

Remmy, The First Part
AuthorRickard Berglind
Filenameremmy.z80
Year2007
PositionNo ranking
FormatSpectrum
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DescriptionRescue your girlfriend from the undead demon that captured her.
CommentsApparently, this is one of Rickard Berglind's finished games. I hate to imagine what one of his unfinished games would be like. Oh wait - we already played *Haunted House*. You have to give him top marks for trying though. This one is a Ghouls 'n' Ghosts / Ghosts 'n' Goblins clone (and it *really* doesn't matter which one - it might be a Ghostbusters clone for all we know). Gameplay is at a bare minimum - we've left it running in the background for 10 minutes now and nothing's happened, despite there being at least one "daemon" on screen. It's even got that excellent bug, which should be a pre-requisite of all crap games, where the controls reverse when you hit the left-hand side of the screen.
Nice FMV intro, though.

Shave Rick's Beard
AuthorChris 'BloodBaz' Walsh
FilenameShaveRicksBeard.tzx ShaveRicksBeard.z80
Year2007
PositionNo ranking
FormatSpectrum
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DescriptionRick needs a shave, but he has some crazy hormones that make his beard grow at a rate of knots. Can you shave him and ensure he gets to work on time?
CommentsA pretty good effort from Chris Walsh, the only downside being his patent-pending Thin Screen (TM) technology, which basically requires you to put your telly on it's side, which is far from convenient, to be honest. Especially if it's a 50-inch plasma mounted on the wall (although everyone we know who's got one has a speccy hooked up to it, controlling the array of digital boxes and recording gear). The game itself is pretty good, with accurate skill levels (unlike other spider-based Polish games we could mention, the selection isn't totally arbitrary). Otherwise, not bad. Although you need to make your mind up if it's Dave or Rick who is the centre-piece.

Shooting Training - Part 1
AuthorRickard Berglind
Filenameshooting-training.z80
Year2007
PositionNo ranking
FormatSpectrum
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DescriptionA military shooting training game.
CommentsAnother "unfinished" entry from Rickard Berglind, although, Turtles aside, it's his most complete looking effort, which speaks volumes about his other games. As should be the case with crap games, both the controls and gameplay are simple. Maybe in this case a little bit too simple. Actually, it's major downfall is that it's not a light gun game. It would beat the shit out of *Bullseye* any day.

Slippery Feet 2000
AuthorGavin Callard
FilenameSLP.TAP
Year2007
PositionNo ranking
FormatSpectrum
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DescriptionGet to the exit whilst avoiding the ghosts (which move in the same direction as you) and bombs. A sort of arcade puzzler type of thing.
CommentsA strange little puzzle game, this. Strange, in that the concept and thought behind it is pretty good. The execution though,is bloody awful. I'd be compelled to play it further if it weren't for the fact that you have to wait a month for the controls to register, and then ages still for the sprites to move. It's your standard Q-A-O-P controls, and wherever your little feller goes (fnar!) the ghost follows - even if you are squashed up against a wall. Oh, and the instructions say to watch out for bombs - shouldn't be too difficult, as we've played through the game (so you don't have to!) and it appears that there aren't any.
C#.

Say The Colour And Not The Word
AuthorJamie 'Scribbler' Percival
Filenamestcantw.z80
Year2007
PositionNo ranking
FormatSpectrum
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DescriptionFast-paced one or two player party game, just in time for the annual Christmas party around your nan's. Remember to take your Speccy instead of Trivial Pursuit!
CommentsSay The Colour And Not The Word. Well, it's not as bad as Quest for The Golden Egg, although that's not saying much. Losing a limb in some sort of industrial accident isn't as bad as playing Quest For The Golden Egg. But we digress. The problem with STCANTW is that it really isn't computer game material - at best it should be at home on ITV's "Make Your Play" overnight-phone-scam-quiz. It has an option of one or two-player mode, although it's of no consequence really. You could probably say you had 50 players and it'd function in exactly the same way. In fact, we've just checked, and it does. We now have 50 people crammed round the speccy shouting random colours, and it's no more fun than playing it on your own.
A poor man's Brain Training. We're off to watch Quiz Call on Channel 5. You Say, We Pay. ?1 million to the regulators, that is.

Nazi Sudoku
AuthorA.J.Moss
Filenamesudoku.tap
Year2007
Position2
FormatSpectrum
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DescriptionSudoku with a twist.
CommentsTop marks for tastelessness on this one - Nazi Sudoku where, as opposed to using the numbers 1-9 in Sudoku, you use the letters A,U,S,C,H,W,I,T and Z. Control the cursor using 5,6,7 and 8 (for some unfathomable reason) and enter the letter you think is missing. The logic is competent - proper error checking and everything, like proper Sudoku on digital teletext. We don't see any national newspaper picking it up any time soon though. well, maybe The Sun.

This is sure to be a controversial decision, but we stand by it. Not the game that is - it's quite offensive and nothing to do with us. But you've got to admire the balls in having the gall to write a game as dull as that, mixed in with borderline-nazism. No-one would ever buy that - even giving it away would probably prove to be a challenge. And that in and of itself makes it crap.


Norton
AuthorA.J.Moss
FilenameSymantec.tap
Year2007
PositionNo ranking
FormatSpectrum
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DescriptionA virus (checker?) for the Spectrum.
CommentsWe're not entirely sure what this was supposed to be. All we know is it seemed to be some sort of program which suggested that the speccy had been "pwned" by a virus, but we couldn't get it to work properly. 10/10 for digs at Norton though. It would have been more realistic if it just tried to download endless updates, from a looped C90.

The Blind Chicken
AuthordeVandemar Croup
FilenameTBC.tzx
Year2007
Position39=
FormatSpectrum
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DescriptionUndescribeable, so we hand over to the author:

"Absolutely Brilliant!
A blind chicken starving to death... please, grab the controls and feed the poor little creature depending on you with your fire-button! Become a real superhero-benefactor of the poultry! Win your warm place in the heaven."

CommentsBlimey. Blimey O'reilly O'rourke. This is another random-'em-up, perhaps on a par with Hat Catch. All that is involved is, er pressing any key and see if your blind chicken can find any grain(?!). It would be worthwhile if the chicken could see, because then there might be some graphics or gameplay. But there aren't, so there isn't. The loading screen is more inviting than the game actually is entertaining, but that's nothing new where crap games are concerned - that's par for the course. If we're judging each game on it's merits (or their loading screens), The Blind Chicken will still lose. It's crap credentials are too crap. Possibly one of the worst and most boring games. Still, not as bad as *Golden Egg.* At least there's a timer to tell you how long the agony is going to last. The Blind Chicken? That Bloody Chicken, more like.

Third Tournament
AuthorIvan 'Neuronhlam' Kostrub
Filenamethirdtournament.z80
Year2007
PositionNo ranking
FormatSpectrum
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DescriptionA FPS with a variety of different weapons and realism never before seen on the Speccy.
CommentsThis one purports to be from the Unreal Tournament series. High Hopes, eh? "Does anyone want to license this brilliant engine?" asks Ivan. Unlikely, to be honest. Although it does look *a bit* like an FPS. As knocked-up-in-an-afternoon games go (we assume it was knocked up in an afternoon, as most of the entries were, albeit afternoons in the 80s) it's not half-bad. Only 2 eighths-bad. It does resemble 3D Monster Maze on the ZX81. With Guns. Which is good in anyone's book.

Turtles Part 1
AuthorRickard Berglind
Filenameturtles1/turtles-part1.z80
Year2007
PositionNo ranking
FormatSpectrum
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DescriptionA TMNT rip-off beat-'em-up, with all the fun of attacking a variety of different enemies with none of the drawbacks of paying to license the TMNT name.
CommentsOne of the best entries so far, and the only entry to seemingly feature it's own DRM in the source code (a LIST command brings up what appears to be jibberish and/or hieroglyphics). You play one of the eponymous ninja turtles - it doesn't matter which one - and must defend his home, which is now seemingly somewhere out in the countryside as opposed to the New York City sewers. It's indicative of the impact that shows like *A Place In The Sun* and *Build a New Life in the Country* have when our Crap Games are taking cues from them.
Gameplay-wise, it's fairly straightforward - it's of the one key variety, and there's only one move, "Stab," with the controls helpfully emblazoned on the bottom of the screen in large type.
Apparently this game was 20 years in the making (19 3/4 of those in the loft. And giving it 1/4 of a year is generous) and it shows; however, it's still better than tat like Daikatana.

Turtles Part 2
AuthorRickard Berglind
Filenameturtles2/turtles-part2.z80
Year2007
PositionNo ranking
FormatSpectrum
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DescriptionSuperfrog, but with turtles, and under the sea. Rescue the beautiful prin... erm.. treasure. What happened to the good old days of rescuing damsels in distress? Maybe it was too PC even for 1988.
CommentsAnd so, the sequel. And it's not half bad, certainly one of the better crap games we've played so far. It's a spin on the old Frogger games - cross the river to get the diving gear (we all remember that in Frogger), and then dive down to get the treasure, past one of the largest baddies ever seen in a crap game. But therein lies the problem - in which episode of the turtles did they go looking for sunken treasure? Also screamingly obvious is the misnomer - why is it called Turtles when there's only one of them? Did the other three tell him to sod off?

Velcro Head
AuthorGavin Callard
FilenameVEL.TAP
Year2007
PositionNo ranking
FormatSpectrum
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DescriptionIt's an action dodge-em-up. Think Falling, but with less gameplay.
CommentsWhy is this called Velcro Head? It sounds like the name of some crap mid-90s experimental indie band. Oh wait - that's Radiohead we're thinking of. Although to be fair Radiohead aren't necessarily crap. This game is however. It's the usual avoid-the-gravity-defying-blocks fare - and you control an asterisk. As far as we can make out, you get three lives and, er, that's it. What more can you say? Next!

Znapshot
AuthorRickard Berglind
Filenameznapshot-klar.z80
Year2007
PositionNo ranking
FormatSpectrum
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DescriptionAn Arkanoid clone with the unique selling point of slow-moving flickery balls (oo-er) and an extensive array of bonuses.
CommentsEh? Znap Zhot? What the hell does that mean? I can only presume that it's Swedish for 'Crap Arkanoid clone.' Which makes the name all the more self-explanatory, as it is a crap Arkanoid clone. What's excellent is that Rickard's documentation describes the bugs as 'features.' We even found another 'feature': there are none of those promised, pesky 'power-up' tokens getting in the way. Instead they're helpfully stored in the bottom-right hand side of the screen, ready to be collected. Otherwise it's pretty much as you'd expect: something that vaguely resembles a re-hash of the 'breakout' game listings in the back of the +2A/+3 manual. It may be a load of old bobbins, but I suppose at least it's semi-competent bobbins.

Zuzzle Xobble
AuthorJames Weatherley
Filenamezuzzle.tap
Year2007
PositionNo ranking
FormatSpectrum
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DescriptionMatch up the bubble colours and watch them explode. With proper bubble physics.
CommentsThis one's a thinly-disguised Puzzle Bobble / Bust-a-move clone, and a piss-poor one at that. Largely as it doesn't work. All of the essential features of Puzzle Bobble have yet to be implemented, meaning you are effectively drawing different coloured circles. And, er, that's it. You can't win. Or lose. Well, except by playing it. The only way out is to play it until you get the "Integer Out Of Range" error which, given how slow it goes, could take several years. Still it's not as slow as Crap Castle Master 2. The "inlay" says that Bub and Bob - sorry, Zub and Xob - are invisible. Translation: couldn't be arsed. 10/10 for lack of effort.

ZXwire
AuthorChris Young
Filenamezxwire.tap
Year2007
PositionNo ranking
FormatSpectrum
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DescriptionA port of Ackwire to the Spectrum
CommentsFirst off, we'll have to admit to some level of bias here, as ZXWire is an fully fledged (arf!) Unsatisfactory Software production. Well, half-fledged. But that doesn't let it off - we wrote it and we know it's crap. As a conversion of Palm Favourite AckWire, it's something more akin to someone's end of year accounts - a kind of Monopoly on a spreadsheet, if you will. Gameplay effectively entails entering some numbers and then waiting a bit, and then entering some more numbers, during which nobody has any idea what's going on. Even we don't know what's going on. Summat about hotels, and shares and that. We forget. In fact, we don't even know what was in the code *as it was being written.* One or two (probably more) essential features are still MIA, particularly that of any way of gauging a winner.


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