Friday, January 20, 2017

Harris Went Skiing

Today we rewind the clocks all the way to 1982 for a skiing adventure with the odd looking 8-bit hero, Horace. Not wanting to upset Psion, he changed his name to Harris for his Atari ST appearance, all thanks to a couple of brothers calling themselves OllySoft.

Anyone old enough to remember the original will feel right at home with Harris who is once again looking to enjoy a skiing trip. However, it's not started off well, Harris finds himself in a pickle as he didn't bring along any skis so must hire from the resort - who stupidly built their shop on the wrong side of a busy highway!

If you have ever played an OllySoft game, you will probably guess why I wasn't expecting too much from Harris Went Skiing. Shockingly, it is actually a good clone and is most certainly OllySoft's best release. The graphics and sounds are quite close to the original but, even as an ST nutter, I must admit nothing beats the authentic and dodgy ZX Spectrum version. Playing the Frogger screen is a little too easy in comparison to what I remember and simply waiting for a large gap in the traffic allows you to run across the road in one go! The skiing part is quite close to the original with a few extra obstacles and, once complete, somebody robs your skis and you are returned to the start.

I'm glad I got to experience the very early 80s with my ZX Spectrum. Times were different and we sure had lots of homebrew quality games because that's exactly how it was, which makes those days very special. The Horace games are certainly a part of that era and OllySoft did a great job with Harris Went Skiing. Seeing "Horace" again has certainly brought back lots of nostalgic feelings for this old gamer and I really did enjoy playing it. Hardly a game you will be playing all night long but I do still find myself happily recommending Harris for all the old fogies out there!

LINKS

 - Harris can be found on Automation #345 which is available via Old Games Finder.
 - OllySoft comprises of two brothers, Steve & Stu who developed five Atari ST games. Ignoring Harris, each are lame and rather tasteless but I imagine they had lots of fun making them. All games can be found using Old Games Finder but whether you want to bother is another thing:
     * Who Maimed Roger Rabbit - Imagine Operation Wolf but set in the President Trump's backyard which is overrun by rabbits! A successful hit turns those cute rabbits into a bloody mess of gore. It's quite fun, if repetitive.
     * SubHunt - a pointless two player game with an awesome hidden easter egg!
     * Ayatollah Invaders - An endless supply of angry ayatollah dudes running down your screen and into the path of your tank. It's mind-numbingly boring but I must admit, those somersault deaths are actually very cool.
     * Motorway Death - It's time to lower the bar even further to play hit and run! People appear glued to the road, so drive into them and watch blood splatter as their bodies spin off into the air. Funny... well... for a few seconds!

Who Maimed Roger Rabbit
SubHunt
Ayatollah Invaders
Motorway Death