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88 Miles Per Hour! Let’s go back to 1988

So much happened in the eighties it’s hard to cover it all in a week so I have singled out one year to really look at. As I am a huge fan of ‘Back To The Future’ it seemed a good idea to cover 1988.

I Think We're Alone Now

I Think We’re Alone Now (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

In honour of our celebration of 1988 we have changed our featured YouTube video to the no.1 selling song of 1988 (in the UK). Denim clad red head Tiffany topped the charts with ‘I think we’re alone now’

The top five songs in the UK in 1988 were:

1. I think we’re alone now by Tiffany
2. Tell it to my heart by Taylor Dayne
3. I should be so lucky by Kylie Minogue
4. When will I be famous by Bros
5. Get out of my dreams, and into my car by Billy Ocean

But getting back to games, gaming and video games, 1988 say the launch of the SAM Coupe. No, it’s not a car, it’s was a powerful 8-bit home computer by MGT that not only could run Spectrum games but was also rumoured to sell at under £100. At this price it really would have given the Amiga and Atari ST a run for its money. Sadly, when it was released it was neared £250 and it’s constant delays meant it joined the race too late to make an impact.

1988 was also the year a small company published a Russian game by the name of Tetris which apparently “would take the world by storm”. This comment was not wrong as the game went crazy and was even made available for the BBC and the MSX.

Two young brothers by the name of ‘Stamper’ formed a small company called ‘Rare’ and apparently started making games for the NES but I’m not sure what happened to those two…

The year also had striking similarities to 2008 as 1988 was the year of the Indie Gamer as a swath of ‘budget’ software houses were popping up everywhere as small teams banded together to start created games. Most notably was Alternative Software, Gargoyle Games and the awesome Zeppelin started by Derek Brewster.

Arnold Schwarzenegger was top of the movie hit list in ‘Predator’ and a small outfit called Activision won the contract to develop the game and created a non groundbreaking but pretty addictive side scrolling shooter which captured the feel of the movie and catapulted the company to bigger things. One such game was the iconic After Burner.

Now back to the charts…

1. Pro Ski Simulator by Codemasters

ZX Spectrum Joe Blade - Joe comes across a kid...

ZX Spectrum Joe Blade – Joe comes across a kidnapped World Leader and a guard (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

2. Grand Prix Simulator by Codemasters
3. Joe Blade by Players
4. World Class Leader board by US Gold
5. Dizzy by Codemasters

Commodore 64
1. Outrun by US Gold
2. Combat School by Ocean
3. Grand Prix Simulator by Codemasters
4. Solid Gold by US Gold
5. California Games by Epyx

1. Grand Prix Simulator by Codemasters
2. Game, set and match by Ocean
3. Joe Blade by Players
4. Solid Gold by US Gold
5. Renegade by Imagine

What an awesome year for gaming!


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