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WINTER OLYMPIAD '88

 

 

Professional, Originally Released On Cassette Only

 

Game Type          : Multi-loading Arcade Sport Extravaganza

Author             : Dave Croft

Standalone Release(s)   : 1988: WINTER OLYMPIAD '88, Tynesoft, £9.95

Compilation Release(s) : 1989: PLAY IT AGAIN SAM 8, Superior/Acornsoft, £9.95

Stated compatibility    : Electron

Actual compatibility    : Electron, BBC B, B+ and Master 128

Supplier            : TYNESOFT, Unit 3 Addison Industrial Estate, Blaydon, TYNE &                   WEAR NE21 4TE. Tel: 091 414 4611

Disc compatibility     : CDFS E00, DFS E00

 

 

 

Instructions

On loading the game, you are presented with the Player Table. Enter the number of players (1 - 4), then press <RETURN>. Enter the initials of each player (3 letters must be input) followed by <RETURN>. After a brief time of further loading, you will enter the first event.

 

There are six events in Winter Olympiad 88. Each event has three heats per player. At the end of each heat, the current score position is displayed. After Heat Three the medals are awarded and the Medal Table is displayed.

 

On all events, DELETE pauses the game, COPY restarts the game.

While paused, the Q key turns the sound off, the S key restores the sound.

 

Game Replay When Using The Cassette Version

When loading the cassette version, reset the tape counter to zero when the file "BEGIN" appears on your screen. At the end of the game, it you wish to replay the game with your scores and records intact, rewind the cassette to zero on your tape counter (this is not the beginning of the tape) and reload the cassette from the start of the "BEGIN" file.

 

Bob Sled

Z ............... Brake Left           X ............... Brake Right

 

Keep the bob on the track, but as high as possible on the bends for maximum speed. The scrolling map shows your position. (This event cannot be aborted.)

 

Speed Skating

Hit the Z and X keys alternately for speed.

Remember that rhythm is important in this event.

 

Ski Jump

Hit the Z and X keys alternately for speed.

Use the C and F keys to align the skis.

Gain speed using the Z and X keys prior to your jump. When in flight, use the C and F keys to align your skis and hopefully make a successful landing which will increase your style bonus. (This event cannot be aborted.)

 

Giant Slalom

Z ............... Move Left            X ............... Move Right

 

You should try to keep to the right of the black flags and to the left of the red flags.

 

Ski Slalom

Z ............... Move Left            X ............... Move Right

 

You should try to pass through all the gates of the slalom course, being careful not to miss any flags or incur any time penalties.

 

Biathlon

Hit the Z and X keys alternately for speed.

Press the SPACE key to fire.

Speed and accuracy are all important in this event. Battle your way across the snowy terrain, stopping at each of the targets. Then with five shots, attempt to hit all the targets and avoid heavy time penalties.

 

 

Instructions' Source   : WINTER OLYMPIAD '88 (Tynesoft) Back and Inner Inlay

 

Review (Electron User) - "Winter Warmer"

Not so long ago the market was seemed to be swamped with sports games of every description. But all of them had one thing in common - joystick or keyboard bashing to the point of destruction.

 

My first though when I saw the cassette inlay for WINTER OLYMPIAD 88 was "Not again..." but the sheer addictiveness of this game soon changed my mind.

The scene is set as soon as you open the box, with a four page introduction to the forthcoming Canadian winter olympics by TV presenter David Vine. It conjures up pictures of crisp, snow-covered and mist-shrouded mountains dotted with pine trees that rustle in the wind.

However, as the manual itself is only six pages long, all instructions, hints and tips for the six different events are squashed onto the last two pages in small, eye-straining print.

That aside, the first part of the game to load is the core, so called because it is the section of the program which controls each event. This takes rather a long time, but eventually a rotating scoreboard appears, which stops turning and asks for the number of participants and their names. A nice touch this, and the revolving scoreboard crops up again later after each event.

The first event - Bob Sled - is quite hard. Using only the Z and X keys to apply left and right braking, you guide the bob-sled around each bend and curve of the icy channel, trying to squeeze as much as possible from the fragile-looking craft. Banking too hard causes a heartrending squeal of metal on ice, followed by the sled overturning, with the occupants falling out and ending up trapped underneath. It looks and sounds quite painful.

The scenery is animated quite well for an Electron game, with pine trees rushing - or creeping as some irreverent souls muttered - past to either side of your speeding toboggan.

Speed Skating is the next event and visually this is perhaps the best of all six. You are presented with two views of your player, one from the side and one from in front. These are synchronised quite well, with bobbing together, and both sets of arms and legs pumping steadfastly away!

Your controls for this event are the same as before, but this time an element of familiarity creeps in - you have to pump the keys alternately to gain speed and momentum. There is an element of skill to this, however. Pressing the keys too

quickly causes the skates to slip and you lose speed: Slow down and the speed needle starts to climb again.

The only niggle with this event - and with some of the later ones - is your inability to abandon the game if you are fed up and want to move on to the next one.

Each event has three heats, and if there are four players participating with each heat lasting 1-2 minutes, it can take fifteen minutes to move on to the next event.

Moving on to the Ski Jump, event three, you are greeted with a spectacular view of your player poised at the top of the jump. After the three beeps you are again pumping the Z and X keys for all you are worth. This time, finger speed is vital if you are to gain enough momentum for a good jump.

As the man reaches the end of the slide, the scene switches to a side-on view of your player being catapulted into the air. Now the Z and X keys become alignment controls for the skis. The skis tend to drift apart in flight, so you must keep them in line until landing. Otherwise not only could you lose points for bad style, but also you might end up unceremoniously sliding face-down in the snow.

 

I quickly tired of this event, as after a while the game turns into a frantic key bash, followed by a quick bit of ski-alignment. There isn't really enough skill in this one.

Event number four is the Giant Slalom, in which you rush downhill, guiding your skis between gates made of black and red poles. This event was a lot more satisfying than the previous one, requiring lightning-fast reflexes to swing your player left and right through the gates.

These must be entered with the red pole to the player's left - your right - and in a panic this can easily by forgotten, resulting in doleful bongs from the computer's speaker as you accumulate penalties. At the end of each heat, any penalties add seconds to your score, and I can tell you that as a consequence mine was consistently worse than the other contestants.

The graphics for this event are very good indeed, accompanied by exhilarating whooshing noises as your skis cut swathes of snow at each turn. The pole detection seemed very accurate, allowing some very tight squeezes to be intercepted. But as soon as a pole is touched, it bends at an angle and you hear a warning tone - a highly addictive section of the game.

The Ski Slalom, event five, is next on the tape. This was quite good fun, and my favourite of the six events. Your viewpoint is from just behind and above your player's head as he plunges through the snow. Gates appear to the left and right of you, leaving barely enough time to react and slam to one side or the other to clear the poles.

 

You really do need a lot of skill for this one, as the poles leave little margin for error. Sometimes the gates are so far to one side of you they can't be seen and a large blue arrow suddenly appears, suspended in mid air, which points to either left or right. It's quite a feeling when you actually manage to respond to one of these warnings in time and shoot straight between the poles at an incredibly tight angle.

Again, good graphics. A mountain range scrolls from side to side in the distance as you manoeuvre. The warning arrows are a nice touch, but I challenge anyone to respond to all of them in time.

 

Moving on to event six you join the Biathlon. This is the final event on the tape, and as such it is quite a good finale for a very entertaining package. It is really two events in one. You first have to speed-ski up to a row of five targets as a rifle-range with five bullseyes to hit. Your rifle is then cocked - another nice touch achieved by clicking the cassette relay on and off - and a black cross-hair moves down the target.

Pressing the spacebar fires your gun, and if the cross-hair is exactly over the bull at the time, you are rewarded with a satisfying smacking sound and the bull is coloured black. If you miss, you hear an offkey ding, and your miss is marked with a red cross.

 

This exercise is repeated for all five paper targets before you must again shoulder your rifle and speed off into the snow to find the next cluster of targets.

 

Overall, WINTER OLYMPIAD 88 is an entertaining package, marred only by the slight monotony of some events, and the inability to fast-forward to the section of your choice. The sound effects are by nature limited, but there is a nice jingle at the end of each event which you may recognise from previous televised WINTER OLYMPICS.

As an Electron game, it holds up against even the BBC Micro - I ran the programs on both machines, with no noticeable change in speed. At £9.95, WINTER OLYMPIAD 88 has got to be good value, as you are effectively getting six games for your money, and there is going to be something for everyone in each.

 

Sound ........................... 9

Graphics ....................... 10

Playability .................... 10

Value for money ................ 10

Overall ........................ 10

"Electron User Golden Game"

Chris Nixon, ELECTRON USER 5. 4