The 4th Dimension (pictured right) were there, with a very tired stand manned by an even-more-tired looking individual. 4D had some of their back catalogue on sale, with various of these available
at £9.99 in their 'value for money' range, as launched last year. A couple of their
latest budget games were also on sale, also at £9.99, but the game announced as being
due for release at the show, the platformer Super Snail, failed to make an
Also at the show were Werewolf Software, although they had nothing new on their stand.
Unlike 4D at least some effort had been put into the presentation, however.
This effort included providing evidence of a new family-colour-coordination trend, with both
Dane and his stand helper (presumably his Dad) sporting bright orange tops and black
bottoms - R-Comp (see below) were also colour-coordinated, with the Rawnsley family
wearing purple tops and cream bottoms. It's nice to see some thought being put into such
things, I suppose.
Dane Koekoek and the Werewolf Software stand
Various dealers had a selection of games for sale on their stands, including CJE and CTA (Curriculum Training Associates):
Games on the CJE stand, and the sprawl of CTA's wares
There was also a games "arcade" at the show, featuring Doom, Wolfenstein 3D and a RISC OS port of ancient platform game Frak.
Other non-company stands included 'MADS', the Markyate Amateur Dramatics Society, which gave me a good excuse to take an arty picture of a stand:
Demoing the use of Acorns for sound effects
The Datafile were selling their games, including the excellent Emotions, which has now been repackaged into a rather smart and cool-looking larger-than-video size case. Also being sold on the stand were various old games, all marked as being incompatible with either the Risc PC or StrongARMs, at not-especially-cheap prices.
And so to the main attraction from the gaming point of view - R-Comp, who were selling Syndicate+, Acorn Doom, Ankh and
the boxed CDs for Quake Resurrection. Unlike at the Wakefield show, Ankh was available in large quantities, and Syndicate+ was fully released. Still no Quake driver, however, so those who bought Quake still have to wait an indefinite amount of time for the delivery of the Acorn player software, being developed by TBA Software
R-Comp's colour coordination (top) and Andrew Rawnsley (bottom)
Syndicate+ was not running in the games arcade, but it was present on R-Comp's stand, along with many stacked boxes of Ankh, Quake Resurrection and Doom:
R-Comp's stand was always busy, unlike most of the other stands at the show, but I can't imagine that they hoped to sell all the game boxes they had present - I imagine they were mainly for show, and they certainly looked impressive, so I guess it worked!
Also at the show were both the forthcoming Risc PC 2 (the childishly-named Phoebe 2100)
and the 'peanut', the soon-to-be RISC OS portable from Innovative Media Solutions (IMS).
I personally found the latter much more impressive - mainly because it was actually
running, although the glide finger pad for mouse control (complete with a really cool double-tap action to activate a drag) and excellent-quality display were both impressive.
My favourite feature of the Risc PC 2 was the list of faults attached to it, scrawled messily on a parcel label. "IC51 WRONG COMPONENT" was particularly amusing:
The successor to the Risc PC laid bare
The Peanut was proudly display on a classically-styled column, and although it was suffering from various driver problems it could still be played with. As mentioned above, one of the most striking things was the quality of its display:
Finally, I can't resist just mentioning that present at the show was someone I christened 'Phoebe Man', since he was walking around in a bright yellow tracksuit - the same garish livery sported by the Phoebe 2100. He was proudly wearing a ZFC badge with his name on (ZFC stands for Zimmer Frame Club, referring to an 'older' user of the Argonet internet service), but I'll spare him the public humiliation and keep his identity secret:
Cool or what?!
...this page last updated: 2/7/98...
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