Wednesday, 14 January 2015

Gaming 1982: "The Hobbit" (Sinclair Spectrum)

I didn't put a 'teaser' up on my last post back in December because I wasn't sure what I was going to do this year. But over Christmas, reading up on 'GamerGate' a bit more than I'd previously had time for, I was suddenly struck by inspiration...

One of the first games I ever played, on my brother's Sinclair Spectrum (rubber keys!) 'The Hobbit' was....basic. Very basic!



Yup, just that basic! Kids today, with their iPads & PS4s, would look at you pityingly if you told them you once spent hours clustered with the family round a teeny-tiny TV screen, playing this game, and fruitlessly trying to work out how to get Thorin to stop sitting down and singing about bloody gold!

Remember, this was long before the Internet and games magazines, and the easy availability of cheats for when you got stuck. And since it sold a million copies, there must have been a lot of us in need of that!

You can, should you wish to, relive this experience via this emulator.

9 comments:

A K Haart said...

Similar to a Dracula game I played on the VIC 20 but that one had no graphics at all. We had to use our imagination.

andy5759 said...

I had a BBC B, 8k ram. Games on cassette took 25 minutes to load. Totally addictive.

Michael said...

We spent ages on 'Rigel's revenge', and I managed to get a big cheat sheet in a magazine to solve it...

I typed the whole thing into an Amstrad 464, and a daughter somehow erased the lot!

Happy days!



Barman said...

Who remembers 'Adventure' and the magic word XYZZY?

Completely text based - you had to use your imagination to get round it!

I played it on a (at the time) state-of-the-art computer at my first sales job.

I'm not sure I would choose it over candy Crush on my tablet now though...

Bucko The Moose said...

I have (had?) The Hobbit on the Spectrum. There's a place in the game that seems to be an error where you can't progress any further. My mate had the same problem.

opsimath said...

My first ever computer was a ZX81, against which the Speccy seemed like a Cray! And when it comes to remembering the Speccy's keyboard, only one word springs to mind - 'rubbery'!

I simply HAVE to get my hands on one of these.

Furor Teutonicus said...

Played the hobbit one, but always ended up in the prison/dungeon.

Found it was a bad idea to break the window.

It just went black, and you were stuck.

I also kept getting bollocked by Thorin for telling trolss etc to "Fuck off." A wee figure wuld come across the screen and hit your icon, or whatever, with a sword..... or was it an umbrella??? Whatever.

JuliaM said...

"Similar to a Dracula game I played on the VIC 20..."

Ah, yes, the 'no graphics' world! Always thought that was about as challenging as talking books!

"I had a BBC B, 8k ram."

I think my parents did look at that first, but can't remember why they settled on the Speccy.

"I typed the whole thing into an Amstrad 464, and a daughter somehow erased the lot!"

Ouch!

"I'm not sure I would choose it over candy Crush on my tablet now though..."

We really are spoiled these days, aren't we?

JuliaM said...

"There's a place in the game that seems to be an error where you can't progress any further. "

Just one..?!? ;)

"I simply HAVE to get my hands on one of these."

They can be had on eBay!

"Found it was a bad idea to break the window."

Heh! Yes. Games were unforgiving those days. But they built perseverance...