Bitnamic, through its European branch, Teknamic, is releasing three new games for the ZX Spectrum in the very last day of the year.

The first one is a relaunch. Published as a “Cover Tape” in issue 88 of the Crash magazine, “Countdown to the Death” is the result of the efforts of two young Brazilians: Mario de Paula Leite Gouvea, programmer and creator, and Eduardo Avellar, the music composer.

The game consists of five interconnected mini-games: Hangman, Bonus Machine (slot machine), Bat and Ball (a Breakout clone), Memory, and Repeat It (repeating patterns in the “Simon” style). Variety in gameplay, neat graphics and music, diverse and imaginative sound effects… It’s no wonder that the English publisher put it on the pages of the magazine! The cassette version costs €7,90 plus taxes.

The second game is Depth Charge, a game inspired by two arcade games from the ’70s, Depthcharge by Gremlin and Destroyer by Atari, combining the mechanics of both. In the game, you control a destroyer fighting submarines that are passing by you under the sea, while of course, they try to destroy your vessel. As in real life, to hit the submarines the destroyer will drop the depth charges which will slowly find its way to the bottom of the ocean. To make the game more challenging, the player has to set at what depth they will explode using the up and down keys to move a crosshair before firing, instead of simply dropping charges aimlessly hoping to hit something on its way down.

Depth Charge is very polished and it managed to keep, if not make it better, the gameplay and entertainment value of the original arcade games. You can buy this game bundled with the classic Brazilian magazine, Micro Sistemas, or standalone for €6,90 plus taxes.

The third game will please the text adventure fans out there. In Saboteur: Deep Cover, you play a spy that has been working undercover at Viridis, an evil corporation that keeps all its secrets very safe. Your job is to find all the evidence of the company’s illegal activities and smuggle it out without being caught. The game is created by Clive Townsend and Andy Remic, with graphics by Clive.

Saboteur: Deep Cover will be sold by Teknamic, except in the UK, where it will be available and sold by Cronosoft. The price is €9,90 plus taxes.

The three games are already available at Teknamic Store.

Link: Teknamic

Yandex Retro Games Battle is a game development contest, organized by the Yandex Museum that brought to life amazing games for the ZX Spectrum, like Marsmare: Alienation and White Jaguar. If released in the 80s, these games would have made the developers rich folks and the blockbusters of the time look not so incredible as our memory tells us!

This year, the Yandex Retro Games Battle has exciting news for the game developers, and not only the ZX Spectrum ones! The 2021/2022 edition (v3) has expanded its reach allowing games developed for nothing less than seven platforms: Amstrad CPC 464/6128, Atari 8 bits, BBC Micro / Master, Commodore 64, MSX / MSX2, TRS-80 CoCo, ZX Spectrum 48K / 128K.

Celebrity Jury

Another impressive news is that your game will be judged by stars of game development, including John Romero and the Oliver Twins. Here is the full list:

  • John Romero: Programmer, game designer, co-founder of id Software, co-creator of Wolfenstein 3D, DOOM, Quake and a whole first-person shooter genre.
  • Oliver Twins: Andrew Nicholas Oliver and Philip Edward Oliver are legendary game designers, creators of Dizzy character and game series of the same name, as well as lots of other games.
  • Yuri Matveev: Editor-in-chief of the Spectrofon magazine in the ’90. Scriptwriter and composer for the Star Heritage game. Currently, head of Step Studio.
  • Simon Butler: One of the original pixel pushers from the 1980’s, graphic artist for Ocean Software. 37 years on and still working in game development with more than 300 titles under his belt. Indie titles are his passion but also likes the occasional AAA game.
  • Mark R. Jones: Mark worked at the world famous Ocean Software back in the 80s. More recently he is involved in the retro gaming community and helps restore and preserve game artwork. Last year he worked on the graphics for a free ZX Spectrum conversion of the Univeral arcade game ‘Mr. Do’.
  • El Mundo del Spectrum: Is a Spanish media (website, podcast, video, books, etc) about Spectrum born in 1996. The staff, Alejandro Ibáñez, Javier Ortiz, Jesús Martínez del Vas (photo) and Juan Francisco Torres, spread information about the past, present and future of the most wonderful machine in history: the Spectrum. Winners of Yandex Retro Games Battle 2019
  • Roman Mindlin: Has been working in back office automation at Yandex since 2018. Co-organiser of the demo festival Chaos Constructions. Retro computer collector.
  • Mikhail Sudakov: Formerly journalist at Game.EXE, currently editor-in-chief of the KG-Portal.ru and Idpixel.ru websites. Producer of Castlevania: Spectral Interlude for ZX Spectrum. Has the largest collection of licensed games for the ZX Spectrum in Russia.

Rules and Prizes

Games in any genre are eligible to compete. The main rule is that they must run on original computers from the list.

Games also must not:

  • Use additional peripherals (except a joystick and mouse)
  • Infringe on other people’s copyrights
  • Participate in other competitions and exhibitions

The competition results will be announced on December 17, 2022. The jury will evaluate games on their graphics, game play, game design (out of 10 points each), and sound (out of 5 points). The total of the three scores will determine the three winners.

The money prizes are also very attractive. The first place will get USD 1,000; the second USD 800; and the third, USD 500 (Approximate values since they are expressed in Rubles).

Link: Yandex
Source: Planeta Sinclair