Head Over Heels
Head Over Heels is an arcade adventure video game, released in 1987 for several 8-bit home computers, and subsequently ported to a wide range of formats. It was completely remade in 2003 for the PC, Mac and Linux by Retrospec. The working title for the game was Foot and Mouth. Visually, Head Over Heels bears a number of similarities to Ultimate Play the Game’s Knight Lore and Alien 8. It uses an isometric engine that is similar to the Filmation technique first developed by Ultimate.
The player controls two characters instead of just one, each with different abilities. Head can jump higher than Heels, control himself in the air, and fire doughnuts from a hooter to paralyze enemies; while Heels can run twice as fast as Head, climb certain staircases that Head cannot, and carry objects around a room in a bag. These abilities become complementary when the player combines them together after completing roughly a sixth of the game. Compared to its predecessors, the game offers unique and revolutionary gameplay, complex puzzles, and more than 300 rooms to explore. Drummond contributed some famously surreal touches, including robots (controlled by push switches) that bore a remarkable resemblance to the head of Prince Charles on the body of a Dalek. Other surreal touches include enemies with the heads of elephants and staircases made of dogs that teleport themselves away as soon as Head enters the room.
The Dizzy series of computer games, published by Codemasters, was one of the most successful European computer game brands of the late 1980s. The games featured a central figure: an intelligent egg-like creature called Dizzy. The games would typically involve Dizzy trying to save his friends and family, the Yolkfolk, often from the schemes of his nemesis, the evil wizard Zaks. Most of the games in the series were platform games, with an emphasis on puzzle solving, similar to graphic adventures. Dizzy would roam around various fairytale-like locations, collecting objects, interacting with other characters, and solving logical puzzles. Rather than jumping in the conventional platform-game way, Dizzy would somersault and roll around the landscape; hence the name “Dizzy”. The eight games which follow this style, usually referred to as the arcade adventures, are considered the ‘core’ games in the series; however, several spin-off titles were released, including Fast Food, Kwik Snax and Dizzy Down the Rapids.
Four games in the series were included in the Top 50 best games of all time in a special issue of Your Sinclair magazine in 2004.
Horrace Goes Skiing
In 1982 Tang also produced Horace Goes Skiing, in which Horace must cross a dangerous road teeming with traffic, à la Frogger, to rent out a pair of skis, then get back over the road and successfully navigate a ski course. This title is not a true sequel, as it does not follow on from an original story and is only similar in that it features the same character. Like Hungry Horace, this title was available on the ZX Spectrum, Commodore 64, and Dragon 32. As before, Sinclair distributed the Spectrum version, Melbourne House the Commodore 64 and Dragon 32 versions. In 2017, the game placed on Eurogamer’s “10 games that defined the ZX Spectrum” list.