Another reason is one I've been both hoping for and dreading at the same time. I've got through to the next stage of both the jobs I applied for recently, one of which means I have to have an interview. I've never liked interviews, and it's been fifteen years since I had one. So I have to prepare really thoroughly for this one. It's quite important, so I might well be less evident here until it's out of the way.
|Pew! Pew! Shoot the little saucer things from your giant Gyro thing!|
One of my mates had a few of their games before I even owned my Commodore 64 and they were quite distinctive and fun to play, although not many of them would stand out as classics. They were colourful, with very big, mostly chunky graphics, and an immediately recognisable music style.
Some of their games could only have come from the minds of the British. Take Bozo's Night Out, for example. The object of the game was to get Bozo home after an epic night on the lash. This, of course, is much easier said than done.
|Yep, this has all the makings of a good night out.|
It's mental stuff, and not all that good in the cold light of day, but back in the day it was entertaining stuff.
Another Taskset game that you wouldn't get from any other nation was Seaside Special. Borne from the legacy of the seaside postcard but imbued with a British sense of satire, the game saw you trawling a beach for radioactive seaweed, with which you then trooped off to 10 Downing Street to lob at the sackless political residents.
|Even Tebbit would be crapping himself at the sight of that stripey loon!|
All this does make it sound as though Taskset were a bit of a novelty company, who were only there to make up the software numbers at the beginning of the 8-bit revolution. There were, however, two stone-cold classics in the Taskset lineup... Super Pipeline, and its sequel, Super Pipeline II.
The object of both games is to guide your plumber and his mates around a series of pipes, keeping them open so that the water (or whatever liquid it is) can flow into the barrels at the end. This sounds easy, but as you would expect, there are a number of obstacles which attempt to make things run far from smoothly...
|You know, this would be a lot easier if they built a pipe|
that went straight to the barrel.
The Super Pipeline games are frantic, cartoony and great fun to play. They were unquestionably the jewels in the Taskset crown, and kept me amused for many a long while. It's a shame that the company died out as things were really taking off with computer and video games... Andy Walker was their key man, maybe I'll get to hear some of his and their story in weeks to come.