The slush of snow on skis, the red noses, white faces, and the comforting crack of ice as your opponent sinks beneath Innsbruck skating rink.
US Gold's reasons for a 128K version of Winter Games are clear. It loads in one ten-minute marathon - rather than two - has continuous music on some events and sound effects which raise a shiver in the jacket of even the most seasoned skater.
There are seven events in which one to four players take part. Skill is required for figure skating, free skating and hot dog aerials. Brute force - the rugged hand on the joystick - wins speed skating, ski-jump, biathlon and bob sled.
Most of the games have a musical intro, quickly silenced by a press of key or button. When you start skating or skiing the 128 makes a satisfying electronic swish which bounces out of the television speaker. On events of endurance the swish is replaced by a pulse that rests at 60 beats and climbs to 130.
Endurance events require joystick bashing reminiscent of Daley's Decathlon but a slow rhythm, rather than a frantic panic, is needed.
Events such as figure skating and hot dog aerials require delicate skill at the joystick. You're out to impress the judges with an acrobatic display what will earn you a gold.
Medal tables and score boards are created when you've been through your set pattern of events - all or a selected few. You're given your ranking - medals - after each event but the final score is calculated on a points system which is identical to that used in the Winter Olympics.
Winter Games is a package which surpasses all others, including those inimitable joystick crunchers Daley's Super Test/Decathlon.
Label: US Gold
Author: Ocean, David Thorpe, Epyx
Reviewer: John Gilbert
A piste de resistance of graphic style and aural wit. This new 128 version adds sound and it goes in all in one load.