Adventure: Text
ZX Spectrum 48K

4 (Supplement)
Chris Bourne

BYTE is an adventure game with a difference, according to CCS, which produced this offering. You play the role of a computer and move round a simple grid of rooms hunting for various circuits. There are seven levels of difficulty and you have statistics based on RAM, languages known, speed of operation and the like.

So far, so good, although the heavy-handed jocularity of it all raises more groans than laughs after a time, but there are other reasons why Byte is 'an adventure game with a difference'. For a start, it must rank as one of the slowest adventures written. It seems to be programmed almost entirely in Basic and the response time consequently is poor. Second, the program insists on going through a series of routines every time you type-in a command, including an uninspired jingle, a listing of your character statistics, and a statement of what you can see. That all takes time, slowing the game to a truly awesome crawl.

The descriptions of rooms and their contents have a wonderful simplicity. They go something like this. 'You are in room 3,1 on level 1. You can see: Ark.' You then type in your command, such as 'o' for open or 'w' for west. The computer thinks about your letter, tells you what it means, and finally does something about it.

With all that and no graphics, CCS seems to have taken a perverse step backwards with its game. It lacks even the more basic elements of old-fashioned text-only adventures. The result is unlikely to be of use to anyone, except possibly as a cure for insomnia.

Memory: 48K
Price: £6.00