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HE Amiga might appear an odd L choice of computer on which to use a word processor . Renowned for exceptional graphies, stunning sound and amazing processing power, doing nothing more than typing letters to the miikman on it might seem akin to dispatch riding on a Honda Goldwing. As a resuit, programmers have two extremes to aim between: 1. CompIeteIy ignore ail the Amiga's bits and bobs and treat it as tf it were a PC, or: 2. Go completeiy over the top in graphical user interfaces. This means you have a nice choice of styie when it cornes to Amiga word processors. If you can't stand the cute and furrv Amiga interface, you can piump for something iike Protext which can bear more than a passing resemblance to a CLi window. If you want a maximum user-friendiy extra-sweet drinking chocolaté type program, then you can try something more iike the PenPai's of this worid. With respect to documentation, it was a great relief to note that ah manuais - even of the cheapest package - were of a very high standard. Ah programs aiso made the most of any extra hardware avaiiabie, and could easiiy be instalied on a hard drive. After using many. many products, i can safeiy say that word processors bring out the best in the Amiga.
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ALL PRICES ARE INCLUSIVE OF VAT AND DELIVERY (UK mainland only) COVER STORY Managing Editor Derek Meakin Reviews Editor Nic Veitch Technical Editor John Kennedy, B.Sc. Disk Editor fed Walker Production Editor Peter Glover Hrf Editor Tym Leckey Digital Stuntman Ian Ttndale Advertisement Manager John Snowden Advertising Sales Wendy Colburn Published by: Interactive Publishing Ltd, Europa House, Adlington Park, Adlington, Macclesfield SK10 4NP.
Always renowned for its artistic capabilities, this month sees the extension of the Amiga into two new and very different spheres.
A'AMIGA i COMPUTING PROFESSIONAL DRAW TWO If you want professional results you need professional tools. Now that version two of Pro Draw has been released, are the days of Mac supremacy numbered?
VISTA No longer confined to research labs, an Amiga-generated virtual reality will enable you to explore the entire universe.
GAMES SPECIAL Editorial; 0625 878088 Advertising; 0625 878888 Subscriptions: 051-357 2961 Fax: 0625 879966 MicroLink: MAGOOl interactive publishing Chairman Derek Meakin Managing Director Hugh Gollner Commercial Director David Hirst .Amiga Computing welcomes articles for publication. Material should be sent on Amiga readable floppy disk. The return of material cannot be guaranteed. Contributions can only be accepted lor publication by Interactive Publishing Ltu on an all-rights basis.
© 1990 Interactive Publishing Ltd. No material may be reproduced in whole or in part without written permission (that means you snouty). While every care is taken, the publishers cannot be held legally responsible for any errors in articles, listings or advertisements.
Amiga Computing is an independent publication and Commodore Business Machines (U.K.) Ltd is not responsible for any of the articles in tkis issue or for any of the opinions expressed.
News trade distribution: Comag Magazine Marketing, Tavistock Road, West Drayton, Middlesex UB7 7QE. Tel: (0895) 444055.
NEWS ROUND-UP Software houses promise titles for the CDTV, multimedia in education, CAD on the Amiga, Plus news from the 16 bit fair.
LETTERS 19 EZRA SURF'S POSTBOX Don't take a risk, With your printer or disk, When help must be brisk, Ezra takes the bisc(uit).
¦ AMGA J ARCADE Bond is back (again), Ima°eworks take off with Wings ana Gonzo visits the sticks of Manhattan. Do you do? Electrocoin does.
Fiq_ 7 J STUFF In the second part of our special report on word processing we test the best packages available on the Amiga.
¦ CONTENTS ¦ CLOSE GADGET SHORTIES PORTFOLIO 105 114 76 I ARTISTS JL VI mm showcase Transport yourself into the colourful world of Amiga graphics with the work of Steaven Heppener from West Yorkshire, LAST BLIT VACCINE MINI MIDI TICKETS PLEASE!
Roving away-day reporter Green checks out the rumours of archaic Amigas and gets to play with the biggest train set ever, Mutate and survive. A unique expose on a vile threat to Amiga owners sanity. For your own safety, you must read this!
Two low-priced pieces of hardware to make life easier as Aj looks at a budget MIDI interface and the latest anti-virus device.
PUBLIC DOMAIN 7Q- AMIGA Find out how Stewart C, Russell has rebuilt his Amiga from the bottom up. Total cost: Almost nothing.
O DTP ¦in part VI VI THREE Where did it all go wrong? Asks Nic Veitch. This month some of the pitfalls to avoid as you fight through the desktop jungle.
REVIEW I FAST JL FAX Get the lowdown on a new way to communicate, as Jason Holborn uncovers the fax behind the latest in exciting peripherals.
GreySlayer A complete arcade adventure game, with brilliant graphics, stunning sound effects and a 61 Converter Swapping between graphic formats has never been easier.
Converter handles all screen huge playing area. And it all fits on one disk!
PROGRAMMING CODE CLINIC If you want to program your Amiga but don’t know where to begin, Aj has been looking at the many alternatives available.
TEM Polish up your samples with this comprehensive sound editing suite. Incredibly it’s been written in Basic.
The Code Clinic All the code from the jolly interesting programming section.
MusicBox Travel back in time to the '70s when flares and platform soles were all the rage and the Disk Editor was hip and groovy.
ITSF (H MusicBox MusicBox,DOC •) HefioryDust Filter Ult's better than we ever hoped for. It's such an easy system to get to grips with, but staggeringly open-ended, so that any Amiga owner can benefit from it. It's wonderful and vorth every penny.
Get it - now!" Popular Computing kly,July 5-11 The view of magazines and Amiga owners alike is unanimous: AMOS - The Creator is an astonishing piece of software. Now, for the first time, you can exploit to the full the awesome power of your Amiga. Whatever you want to create, AMOS will turn your dreams into reality.
"A must for Amiga users who would like to be abte to develop their own games, -ut can't face the thought of learning machine code." ACE, August "An incredible product that should create more incredible products. It looks like the days of the machine-code programmer are numbered." Commodore User, August "Can AMOS be used to produce commercial-quality games? The answer seems undoubtedly 'Yes'. No other language will let you do so much with so little effort. For producing programs that need to use ultra-fast graphics and animation, super-smooth scrolling and scintillating sound, there is only one
choice... and it's name is AMOS" Amiga Format, August What AMOS owners say: Completely brilliant - far better than I ever imagined possible - I absolutely love it" Liam Murphy, Colne “Just bloody great... Simply no other software of this class available for the Amiga or PC" Simon NicoU, Butndford “AMOS is perfect. The Amiga was made for AMOS" K Sumpter, Swindon “A very impressive package - without doubt the very best Basic available on the Amiga. Incredible graphics manipulation commands" Paul Feazey, Oxford “Brilliant! I've done more with AMOS in four days than with HiSoft Basic in six
JRArkley, Woolion “The best value for money package I have ever bought for the Amiga. I really feel that you want me to enjoy using the language.” Colin Mercer, Bolton “On par to be the best Basic language ever." S Hawkes, West Bromwich “Endless possibilities and uses. Congratulations!" Michael Fletcher, Mold “Excellent! Amazing! Brilliant! Superlative! Etc etc... f love the commands and ease of use. I understand now why AMOS is called The Creator" DM Richmond, Blackpool “This is going to be the best selling package on the Amiga! Ft will allow my ideas to come to life" David Linacre,
Chesterfield “AMOS is very fast, friendly and no doubt about it, the best program for the Amiga!!"
David Harrigan, Derry “As a previous STOS user I can't fault it. Brilliant! Frangois does it again!!!" Neil Burton, Tidwortb "Excellent. The speed for a Basic is breathtaking" Delwyn Farr, Dukinfietd “Simply awesome - the most impressive piece of coding I have ever seen!" M Rackley, Stone “An excellent job! AMOS is faster than I'd ever dreamed possible!"
David Milton, Welwyn Garden City “An absolutely fantastic package that uses the Amiga to its full potential" nk Ball, Stoke-on-Trent "Everything I want to do with the Amiga can be done quickly and easily with AMOS" Stuart Margerison, Blackburn “Fantastic. I knocked up something in a day which would have taken a month in assembler” Gary Symons, Bournemouth “It’s the best piece of software I’ve bought for the Amiga. Worth twice the price.” 5 1 Sweet, Heme Bay "AMOS will do for Amiga programming what the invention of fire did for civilisation" Kevin Smith, Mardeti "Looks set to be the most used
piece of software ever on my Amiga" Martin Bruce, Croyden Wk W "The best thing that could have happened to the Amiga" Derek Bere, Fradley WHAT YOU GET: AMOS Basic, sprite designer, Magic Forest and Amosteroids arcade games, Castle AMOS graphical adventure, Number Leap educational game, 300-page manual with more than 80 example programs on disc, sample tunes, AMOS ClUb Newsletter ...and more!
EXTRA DISC FREE!
Now every copy of AMOS, whether you buy it direct or from a retailer, comes with an additional disc: AMOS Extras! It’s packed with useful programs: AMOS Sprites 600, AMAL (AMOS Animation Language) editor, menu editor, large text scroller, IFF brush to sprite converter, scrolling shoot- ’em-up game and Soundtracker and Sonix converters.
Do you already own AMOS? Send in your registration card to obtain your free copy!
ALL THIS FOR JUST £49.99!
Our guarantee: Buy direct from us, and if you're not delighted with your purchase, return it to us within 14 days for a complete refund.
R Please send me AMOS - The Creator •“l | and my free AMOS Extras Disc | i ? I enclose a cheque payable to Mandarin i , Software for £49.99 , ¦ Postage & packaging free in the UK. Add ' I £2 per program for Europe. I I ? Ptease debit my Access Visa Connect | i card number: j What AMOS owners are going to create:
* * An educational program for motorists... a graphical
role-playing game... a Star Trek game... a C,, Mandelbrot
explorer... database-type programs... a platform beat-’em-up
like Barbarian... scien- ™ ™ tific programs... a boxing
simulation... a conversion of Star Chess... conversions of old
Spectrum classics... video titling software... an evolution
simulator... printed circuit board designer... a football
game... a Speedball-type game... a flight simulator... small
business accounts... a cricket man- agement game... a
tactical wargame... producing plans of archaeological sites...
home finance package... flashy scrolling demos - and this is
just the beginning!
Unleash your imagination - get AMOS now!
Expiry date: Name Address Postcode Send to: Database Direct, FREEPOST, Ellesmere Port, South Wirral L65 3EB. | | Credit card ordersrTel: 051-357 1275_| AMIGA SCENE ON the run-up to the UK launch of Commodore's new CDTV planned for the autumn (see Amiga Scene, August), an increasing number of companies are pledging their support for what has been described as the start of the next computing generation.
Support grows for new CDTV Hot on the heels of the American launch at the Consumer Electronics Show in Chicago, CD-rom production firm Next Technology (0223 420222) is busy working on a number of software titles to accompany the UK launch, including the official Welcome disc which will go out with every system.
Already well known for its CD-rom mastering service on the other machines, Next Technology has been called in by Commodore because of its proven track record in this field.
“Next Technology was identified as a leading player in CD-rom technology some time ago in the Commodore CDTV development programme”, said Commodore’s UK managing director Steve Franklin.
“Their skills in software development and support for other software houses will be invaluable leading up to the launch of CDTV”.
Next Technology will support other independent software vendors who are developing applications for CDTV through its unique Pressed for Time CD-rom production service already available for Acorn’s Archimedes machines.
Using recordable compact discs, this reduces the cost of developing prototype applications.
“Commodore lias stolen a march on the rest of the industry with CDTV and has a real opportunity to become market leader with a product of this type”, said Graham Brown-Martin, chairman of Next Technology.
“I am delighted that we are so closely involved in such an innovative product which has the ability to change the face of education, home entertainment and computer-based training”.
New players in the CDTV field are unwilling to divulge too much about the software they are developing, but at Mindscape. Geoff Heath told Amiga Computing: “We have got four projects which we are working on at present and they will not all be games. It is hoped to have some product ready for September”.
It was revealed that one of these will be a CDTV version of Mindscape's World Atlas, a program emminent- ly suited to the multi-media format.
Over at Arcana, Max Tavlor said: “We are ivork- ing on something which is going to fully exploit the multi-media capacity. It will be based on one of our previous games but we at not saying too much about it at present because of the competition.
“We are hoping to have it ready for the launch of CDTV, blit in common with some other developers, are having difficulty getting information out of Commodore. We hope to have the product ready for September, but we cannot be definite at present.
“What 1 can say is that it will be very impressive and we are certainly very excited about the spec for CDTV we have seen so far”.
Helped by its CD-rom authoring system, CRL is steaming ahead with three Commodore picks sales chief FOLLOWING the despatch main responsibilities as of former retail sales direc- tor David Pleasance to head Commodore Electronics in Switzerland (see Amiga Scene, August), CBM has appointed 29- year-old Kelly Sumner to the job of national sales manager for its retail division.
Sumner has been with Commodore for 11 years and was previously national accounts manager. His _ hyper-media games titles for CDTV.
Michael Hodges told Amiga Computing that they will probably sell for around £30. They will be Laurel and Hardy, Herewith The Clues and the Druid game Cult of the Severed Head.
Also among developers reported to be hitting the CDTV trail are Impressions.
Virgin, Lucas film and Mirrorsoft.
Awaiting more information on available software, High Street giant Dixons is remaining non-commital on whether or not it will stock the CDTV. With Commodore predicting that 40 titles will be available by the autumn, Comet has decided to stock the new machine.
Head of the retail division will be “to consolidate Commodore's leading position in consumer electronics and to increase its High Street distribution network”.
High on his list of priorities will be to mastermind the introduction of products such as Commodore’s new console and in particular the CDTV player.
DynaCADD for the Amiga AIMED at taking the tedious detailed work out of design, Ditek International’s 2D and true 3D computer aided design and drafting package DynaCADD is now available on the Amiga from Express- works (0252 726255).
This general purpose CAD package has been produced for use in electrical, mechanical, architectural and civil applications.
It revises, designs and details drawings in 2D and true 3D, features fast display speeds and can read and write DXF file formats.
With flexible automatic dimension features, all selections are made with the press of a single key for dimensioning in European or American standards.
DynaCADD is compatible with most popular pen plotters, dot matrix, laser and Postscript printers and disk files.
DynaCADD supports Amiga WB1.3, WB2.0, PAL NTSC and will also be made available in French and German versions.
With the emphasis on ease of use, DynaCADD performs all of the necessary text functions, attributes and manipulation, including the use of professional DTP fonts from AGFA Coznpugraphic. Price, £650.
Music power for gamesters AMIGA owners who hitch up to the new Miniamp 4 stereo speaker system from Trilogic (0274 691115) can give the neighbours real cause for complaint.
The Bradford-based firm claims to have doubled the power output of its previous model while maintaining the same power supply.
By using a low distortion two chip bridge design, Trilogic boasts a hi-fi quality 5 watts per channel output for the system which also includes new compact twin cone speakers which can be placed up to six feet PUPILS at 120 schools in Derbyshire will soon be learning Japanese with the help of Commodore's Amiga-based multi-media system, the CDTV.
Derbyshire County Council’s unlikely decision to introduce Japanese into its educational system follows the county’s success in attracting the giant Toyota Motor Corporation to build a £700 million assembly plant within its boundaries.
CDTV to the rescue The computerised educational aid has been pioneered by Derby-based Global Learning Systems in partnership with Commodore and the county council, It combinbes hi-fi sound, digitised video computer graphics and text on a single CD-rom and will be used on Commodore’s CDTV, expected to be launched in the UK in September.
“This is an extremely exciting educational initiative and was conceived following our coup in attracting Toyota to the county”, said leader of Derbyshire County Council, David Bookbinder.
“Our school curriculum is going to include the teaching of Japanese culture, history and languages. By giving our children these options, Derbyshire will be providing the management and supervisor}7 recruits for tomorrow’s Japanese factoapart.
Miniamp 4 is easily connected via the Amiga’s stereo sound sockets and for those who prefer to use their existing hi-fi speakers, Trilogic has designed in standard two pin DIN loud ries. “Once the Japanese venture is operating successfully, we will consider how the learning system can be integrated into other curriculum areas”.
Chairman of GLS Stuart Webb claimed the new system is a world first for edu- cational technology.
"Although the initial project is designed to teach Japanese in Derbyshire schools, our system is also appropriate for business as well as home use”, he added.
“We intend to market this exciting learning concept to individiual education authorities, schools and colleges in this country and further afield”.
At Commodore, managing director Steve Franklin said: “CDTV will be able to revolutionise educational teaching for all types of students.
Speaker sockets in place of the jack socket connector in the original model.
Including all leads, headphone adaptor and power pack, the new Miniamp 4 costs £43.99. What it provides is an interactive system at a very affordable price”.
The GLS system links the presentation of both audio and visual information to the responses of students.
It also allows teachers to design and tailor programs to the needs of particular groups or individual pupils.
The software is able to maintain incentive records of personal progress and will be launched at the Nottingham studios of Central Television in September.
Technology at the studios is being used in devel- opment work and the system will undergo a trial period before being offered to 120 schools in the county on hardware sponsored by Commodore.
Worldwide database INTERNATIONAL barriers are being eroded all around the world and The Disc Company has taken full account of this with its latest offering, InfoFile - an Amiga database package which is available in 10 languages.
InfoFile boasts a fast processing speed for the manipulation of text, numbers, graphics and sound with rapid search routines and the ability to sort data according to the user’s needs.
Included in the package is a disk filled with 10 readymade templates so even beginners can start to create their own databases. These include an address file, chequebook, home video library, club membership manager, expense report and inventory manager.
An interesting feature of InfoFile is its desktop presentation function for creat- i n g simple sound and graphics slide shows from a database. Also included is the spreadsheet-like ability to define calculations.
Available in English, French, German, Dutch, Spanish, Italian, Danish.
Swedish, Norewegian and Finnish, InfoFile costs £24.95. UK distributors are Centresoft, Leisuresoft.Gem, HB Marketing and Multi- Media. The Disc Company’s European office is at 9 Rue de Vanves, F-92100 Boulogne B i 1 lan court, France. Tel: 33 1 49 10 99 95.
They've got video taped G2 SYSTEMS (0252737151) claims to have solved the problem of how to produce a professional quality video output when using an Amiga.
A specialist in interfacing computers to video, G2 has launched VideoCenter, a combination of video mixer, genlocker and PAL encoder.
The VideoCenter mixes incoming PAL video signals with the computer output either using sliding faders or under software control. It also provides a filtered RGB output and has YC inputs and outputs to take full advantage of the SVHS system. Price, £695.
3D Festival prizes G2 has also brought out an instructional video tape aimed specifically at teaching Amiga owners the basics of recording computer graphics onto tape.
Covering the A5Q0, A1 0 0 0 and A2000, it includes helpful coding, genlocking and keying routines, outlines many problems faced by beginners and is backed up by graphics.
Launching the tape. G2 partner Greg Hollidge said: “Professional computer graphics are now within the reach of everyone. The Video and the Amiga tape fills an important need by showing the way to even greater use and enjoyment of the best selling Amiga packages”.
Video and the Amiga, produced for G2 by Picture Box Television, costs £10.
Mouse takes to the buses Spreading further K-SPREAD 3 and K-Spread 4 from Kuma Computers (0734 844335) are due to be launched in September.
John Day of Kuma told Amiga Computing that the new versions boast double the functions of their predecessors.
Among the improvements for the Windows-based programs are a good set of macros of the Excel type which John promises will make them more readily available to “ordinary folk”.
The new spreadsheet packages will cost just under £100.
Cut price graphics AS Amiga Computing went to press, Julian Swallow of HB Marketing received his first consignment of a new price-busting Amiga graphics tablet manufactured in the Far East.
About to launch it to the READERS who entered the Amiga animation competition being run by Amiga Centre Scotland in conjunction with the Edinburgh Festival (see Amiga Scene, August) stand a chance of winning the new solid modelling and animation package Real 3D.
Martin Lowe of ACS has opted to award Real 3D to the winners because of its excellent features which include surface mapping, multiple light sources, hierarchical object creation and manipulation and camera fix and follow.
CLAIMING a world first, Contriver (0280 822803) has launched a bus mouse which is compatible with five computers.
Called the Contriver Five in One, it works with the Amiga, Atari ST, Schneider and Amstrad Pcs and the Commodore PC 3i series.
“Although it's not unusual for serial mice to be compatible with many computers, a vast proportion of computer users prefer to use dealers, he said it will sell at between £150 and £170.
Emulating the features of a SummaGraphics tablet, it is said to be a professional A4 product with more functions than the sketch-type units usually available at this price.
“For its size and quality, it is the cheapest graphics tablet available for the Amiga”, said Julian. “We uTrue solid modelling, working with real solids means you can do such things as perform boolean operations on two objects to make one new object”, he said. “IFF pictures or brushes can be mapped onto objects and with user definable brilliancy, an infinate number of surfaces can be created.
Super fast ray tracing allows a typical scene with various surface to be rendered in around 15 minutes”.
Finalists will also have their work on show at the festival's Animation Exhibition, a serial port for other peripherals and thus have a preference for bus mice”, said Contriver boss Adolpho Giannini.
“Those with two or more computers from the five compatible machines will find this mouse a particularly tempting product”.
The Contriver Five in One mouse features micro- switches for better response and sells at £29.99 including a mouse pad and pocket.
Have tried it out with a number of packages and it works very well”.
Turn your printer green AMIGA users with green leanings are now being offered three new types of environmentally friendly paper from The Standard Check Book Company, the UK’s largest supplier of listing paper.
Checklist, Multilist and Safelist all use 99 per cent of the tree with even the bark being used as fuel.
Bleaching is by Hydrogen Peroxide instead of chlorine which can generate highly toxic dioxins.
Checklist and Multilist cost £13.90 and Safelist which is for use with laser printers costs £16.15 per 3000 sheet box. They are available from Action Computer Supplies (0800 333 333).
Greater London Computers presents the AMIGA 3000 Ml wrmsms m®w simnMbfe 16Mhz I 40Mb version £ 2499.00 + VAT 25Mhz I 40Mb version £ 2999.00 + VAT 25Mhz 1100Mb version £ 3299.00 + VAT Mtofcstoiry (Mbits Buy a new A3000 from us before September 30th and we’ll throw in a few extras, like these: A 15" Multisync colour Monitor, or A DTP Software Pack, including: Profesional Page 1.3, Profesional Draw 1.2, Outline Fonts, Pro Page Layouts and Structured Clip Art.
Or A Video Pack, including: A2300 Genlock, Deluxe Paint III, Deluxe Video III.
Or Any combination of items that you want that we think is reasonable, buy the machine and name your freebies.
Greater London Computers 481 Hale End Road, Highams Park, Chingford, London.
E4 9PT Tel: 081-527-0405 Fax: 081-503-2341 And by the way, all our A3000’s come with correctly fused plugs fitted, and starter kits of cleaning equipment, and if you ask really nicely then you might get one of our teddy bears Genlock in the right spirit SPIRIT Technolog)7 of Salt Lake City. Utah reports that it has now gone into production with the new version of its Interlok genlock encoder for the Amiga. It claims the REV 3 board will be the strongest mid-priced genlock in the Amiga market.
Refinements include a unique circuit design which allows fast forward reverse search and pause without causing computer crash, a problem in Amiga genlocking systems which take control of computer timing to allow locking to incoming video.
Another useful feature, particularly for artists, is an internal selection system for matching Interlock to the slightly different RGB levels produced by the A1000, A500 and A2000.
This matching capability added to Spirit’s encoding makes it possible for Interlock to produce the same colour hues and intensities in encoded video as those displayed on the Amiga RGB colour monitor. Interlok REV 3 is aimed at small studio or high-end home users.
Also new from Spirit is the Fat Trapper 4Mb internal memory expansion board which offers A500 owners 4.5Mb total available ram memory inside their computers.
It expands in 512K increments from OK to 4Mb which, when added to the 512K on the Amiga motherboard brings the A500 up to 4.5Mb internal ram.
Installation is via the plug-in expansion port in the bottom of the A500 normally used for the A501 card or clones thus leaving the 86-pin expansion connector free.
Cross compiler upgraded AMERICAN company Lattice has released a major upgrade to its Msdos to Amigados C cross compiler which is fully compatible with its current Amigados C development system.
The new package includes the complete Amigados C development system and provides the optimizer compiler, libraries and utilities for Msdos which make it possible to create Amiga programs from an Msdos system.
“With the Msdos to Slightly longer than Commodore’s A501 board, Fat Trapper is populated with 256Kx4 chips and allows users to add more memory chips and set address configurations without opening the computer.
As Amiga Computing went to press, details of UK availability and pricing were not finalised. For further information ring Spirit Technology on 0101 801 485 4233.
Amigados C cross compiler, developers can take advantage of networking, tape back- up systems and other hardware facilities of an Msdos system to produce programs which run on an Amiga”, said vice president of Lattice, Robert Hansen.
“The cross development system also makes it much easier for programmers to share program source code modules with Msdos programs''.
The new system is available in the UK from HiSoft (0525 718181). Price, £718.
Shopper Show's a scene stealer ALREADY the largest event of its type in the world, The Computer Shopper Show is to move to a bigger venue and will be extended to four days this year.
When the doors open at the Wembley Conference Centre on December 6, visitors will also find a quartet of major new feature areas within the show.
Entertainment Shopper will be an Aladdin’s cave of computerised playthings: Music Shopper will feature the latest in computer music- making with emphasis on MIDI for the Amiga.
Education Shopper will display the wide range of education software now available.
Small Business Shopper will be a demonstration and sales area housing major companies offering business hardware and software at the keenest prices.
“One of the benefits of moving the event from Alexandra Palace to Wemblev has been that we have virtually doubled the exhibition space available”, said Michael Meakin, head of organisers Blenheim Database Exhibitions. “This has allowed us to add these new dimensions.
“It is ail part of our continuing policy of ensuring that Shopper remains the leading end-user event on the computer calendar”.
Last year’s inaugural event packed in more than 26,600 visitors. This year’s show is expected to attract 50,000.
Classy stick AMIGA users who fancy owning a Rolls Rovce but can’t afford the petrol can now console themselves with what has been billed as the Rolls Royce of joysticks.
DLL (0983 864674) has signed a distribution deal to bring a new range of Advanced Gravis joysticks to the UK. The Amiga version will sell for £44.95. ALTHOUGH quite a small show, the Summer 16 Bit Fair at the Royal Horticultural Halls in London provided plenty of interest for Amiga owners.
Split between two halls, more than 100 exhibitors displayed their wares and made promises regarding future products. The number of Amiga-related stalls easily outnumbered the ST stalwarts.
Ram expansions were rapidly becoming more affordable, with prices hovering just over the £40 mark.
If you were looking for slightly out of date software then you were spoilt for choice, with serious and games software alike going at bargain prices.
For the first time in the UK. Bitcon Devices were showing their much awaited KCS Power PC Board for the Amiga 500. The tiny circuit board could almost be mistaken for a 512K ram expansion as it clips neatly into the Amiga’s “trapdoor” expansion port. That's where the similarity ends, however, as this little wonder comes complete with Msdos 4.01, GW Basic Shell and DOS-Help utilities to turn your Amiga into a PC that will work perfectly with a colour television.
The standard of emulation is very high, with programs such as Wordstar, Lotusl23, Sage and a well-known car navigation package running with no problems whatsoever. It could even run the PC version of Protext.
The Power Board makes good use of Amiga peripherals, directly supporting 3.5 and 5.25in floppy drives.
When not in use as a PC emulator it acts as a 1 Mb memory expansion with battery backed up clock. A software upgrade will allow hard drive users to benefit from the card too.
Priced at £320. It is only being held back from immediately release by the lack of a readable manual. Having been translated from Dutch to double Dutch, the English version is still under preparation and will be with us “in days”. Of course, Amiga Computing will be doing a thorough review as soon as possible.
Also at the show displaying their wares was Solid State Leisure, a new company specialising in accelerating the Amiga's centra!
Its card was well demonstrated as it ripped through some Sculpt renderings, using a 16MHz 68020 with a speed of 2 to 3 Mips.
Faster cards were available using 20MHz and 25MHz clock speeds.
SSL told us they have even more exciting peripherals on the way. In the run up for Christmas they hope to release a full expansion system for A500 owners and sub-£500 24 bit colour board.
RealThings was proudly demonstrating the latest in its Live- action series, Birds.
The package helps would- be artists to create life-like animations on their own Amigas.
It aims to educate as much as entertain, and Robin Bilson told us he would like to see this as a turning point in computing as users turn towards subjects of a more “green” nature.
It was hard to tell which got more attention at the Arnor stand: Version 4.9 of Protext “the last before v5, really" or the Amiga 3000 it was running on.
The latest incarnation of Protext makes some concessions to Intuition, using more pull-down menus, hot keys and requestors. With split screen editing and (relief!) An improved spelling checker. Version five is due in August with a introductory £125 price tag.
Rombo were showing off two upgrades for its VIDI digitiser. The first was a purely software upgrade to Vidichrome and doubles the resolution by using interlaced HAM mode. As you can see from the example below, results are very impressive.
Perhaps even more impressive was the colour splitter. This small box electronically splits the video signal into the red, blue and green components, which means VIDI can now grab in colour without filters.
Apparently the show was such a success that the next will be held in the slightly more up-market (and hopefully spacious) surroundings of the Novotel, Hammersmith early next year.
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Cs. AMIGA C V SPECIAL DEALS V Goldrunner Jaws Wordwright (w processor) All our A500 Packages include the following : Leatherneck Deleon 5 Nigel Mansell’s Grand Prix Karate Kid II High Steel Better Dead than Alien Battle Squadron Night Walk Super Huey Amiga 500 512K Batpack includes 4 software titles and TV modulator ..£379.00 Amiga 500 1Mb Batpack includes our 1Mb RAM Upgrade with Clock fitted ..£415.00 Amiga 500 Batpack with Drive includes our 3.5" External Drive ..£435.00 Amiga 500 1Mb Batpack
with Drive features our 1Mb Memory Upgrade plus 2nd 3.5" External Drive .....£470.00 Amiga 500 512K Flight of Fantasy pack includes 4 software titles and TV modulator £379.00 Amiga 500 1Mb Flight of Fantasy pack includes our 1Mb RAM Upgrade with Clock fitted .. £415.00 Amiga 500 Flight of Fantasy pack with Drive includes our 3.5" External Drive ..£435.00 Amiga 500 1Mb Flight of Fantasy pack with Drive features our 1Mb Memory Upgrade plus 2nd 3.5" External Drive ...... £470.00 AMIGA A500 SOLDERLESS RAM UPGRADES AMIGA ACCESSORIES Philips CM8833
colour monitor inc. cable £259.00 Vfdi-AMIGA video digitiser package ......£95.00 Vidi-Chrome colour accessory for above £ 16.00 MiniGEN Genlock Adapter £95.00 A-Max Mac Emulator with 2xMac ROMS £249.00 A-Max Mac Emulator without Mac ROMS £129.00
5. 25" External Floppy Drive 40 80 track switchable 360 720K)
with throughport... £99.00 Contriver Hi-Res Mouse Package
including mouse mat & mouse pocket ...£22.95
Naksha Mouse Package (also compatible with Atari ST and
Amstrad PC) ...£28,95 Roland CM32L Sound
Module ......£350.00 Roland CM32P PCM Sound
Module .£430.00 Roland PC200 Keyboard for above
modules £160.00 Amiga Replacement Power Supply Unit (Genuine
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Cover £ 4.95 Amiga BASIC - Inside and
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for the Amiga £14.95 Amiga Disk Drives -
Inside and Out £27.95 RAM UPGRADE ONLY £39.95
including VAT & delivery 512K RAM CLOCK UNIT FEATURES : ft
Direct replacement for the A501 expansion ft Convenient On
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only £34.95 j
ft Fully populated board increases total RAM to 2MB t ft Plugs
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FASTRAM Ics for accommodation up to 1,5 MB NEW!
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Unpopulated RAM Expansion Board with Clock £39.95 RAM Board with Clock, with 512K FASTRAM Installed £69.95 RAM Board with Clock, with 1 Mb FASTRAM Installed £94.95 RAM Board with Clock, with full 1.5 Mb FASTRAM installed .. £119.95 PRINTERS Prices include VAT, delivery and cable Star LC10. Inc. 2 extra black ribbons .. £ 159.00 Star LC10 colour, inc. 2 extra black ribbons £209,00 Star LC10 Mk.ll improved speed 180 44cps ..£ 199.00 Star LC24-10 24 pin, excellent value ... £239.00 Star FR-10 9pin 300 76cps 16
NLQ tonts . £399.00 Star FR-15 as FR-10. Wide carriage ...£499.00 Star XB24-10 24pin; 4 SL0.25 LQ fonts .....£499.00 Star XB24-15 as XB24-10, wide carriage ......£649.00 Star Colour Upgrade unit lor X8 or FR models £ 39,00 Star SS10DM c s leeder for FR10 X824-10 ...£100.00 Star SS15DM c s teeder for FR15 XB24-15 ...£170.00 Star LC15 wide carriage vers, ol LC10 .£329.00 Star LC24-15 wide carriage vers, ol LC24-10 ..£409.00 Star Laserprinter 8. 8ppm 30Qdpi (price ine.1
year on-site maintenance) .£ 1599.00 Olivetti DM100S excellent value 200 30cps printer including 12 months on-site maintenance ..£129.95 Olivetti Auto Cut Sheet Feeder for DM100S £ 79.95 Olivetti PG-306 laser; 512K RAM, HP compatible £976.35 Olivetti PG-306 as above, with PostScript Upgrade .... £ 1749.00 Epson LX400 budget 10' .....£159.00 Epson LQ550 10" 24pin ...... £349.00 Epson LQ400 excellent value 24 pin .....£229.00 Panasonic KXP1180 multi-feature 9
pin £179.00 Panasonic KXP1124 24pin printer .£259.00 Panasonic KXP1624 24pln wide cam printer ..£399.00 Panasonic P37 cut sheet feeder for KXP1180 .E 95.00 Panasonic P36 cut sheet feeder tor KXP1124 .£ 109.00 Hewlett Packard Deskjet Plus (300 dpi inkjet) ..£ 595.00 Hewlett Packard Laserjet III fine 300dpi laser £ 1595.00 PHILIPS 15" FST TV MONITOR (MODEL 2530) With its dedicated monitor Input, this model combines the advantages of a high quality medium resolution monitor with
the convenience of remote control Teletext TV - at an excellent low price I ? Suits ST or Amiga cable supplied) ? Faslext Teletext. On screen graphics ? Ful inlra-red remote control ? SCART Input Outpul Connector ? Audio Composite Video inputs ? 60 TV tuner presets ? Headphone private listening Jack ? Exiemal aerial Input loop supplied) £269.00 Includes VAT. Delivery and computer connection lead COMMODORE A590 HARD DRIVE Good quality Commodore Hard Disk unit, including its own PSU and built-in cooling fan.
Features sockets for up to 2Mb of on-board FASTRAM expansion (see below). 80ms Access time, with up to 2.4Mb sec transfer rate. Autoboots when used with Kickstart 1.3. A590 Hard drive (20Mb) .....£379.00 NEW! - 40Mb A590 Specially upgraded model for only.. £499.00 A590 RAM Upgrades Upgrade kit comprising of D-RAM FASTRAM IC's. We will fit the upgrade free of charge when bought with an A590.
A590 512K RAM Upgrade kit £36.00 A590 1Mb RAM Upgrade kit .£70.00 A590 2Mb RAM Upgrade kit £135.00
3. 5" EXTERNAL DRIVES AMIGA SOFTWARE WORDPROCESSING Protext
Kind Words Version 2 ..£39.95
Digita Home Accounts . £18.95 SBA
3 ....£59.95 Deluxe
Video 3 ...£59.95
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. £110.00 AMOS Game Creator
. £37.50 AMOS Sprites
...... £11.95 HiSoft Lattice
'O' £179.00 Very
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F-19 Stealth Fighter ... £22.50 F-29
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Superbase Personal Version 2 ..£69.00 ecial
New Products Evesnam nicros ‘TESSA j twin ergonomic stereo
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Your Amiga produces excellent quality hi-fi stereo sound. Enjoy stereo sound reproduction to the full with this great new twin speaker system! Incorporates a specially designed, good quality amplifier with adjustable volume control, to obtain the best sound.
ONLY £34.95 Includin9VAT and Delivery MIDI INTERFACE GET CONNECTED !
Our new fully compatible, high quality MIDI interface connects directly with the Amiga serial port and provides IN, OUT and THRU ports for good flexibility.
Features LED Indicators on each port to assist ease of use and also for diagnostic purposes. Superb compact design.
ONLY £19.95 KRAFT TRACKBALL EFFICIENT MOUSE OPERATION - IMPROVED GAME PLAY!
Very high quality trackball, directly compatible to any .. ¦ Amiga, ST or CBM'64, plus jjfeK many others. Operates from the mouse or joystick port, and features selectable drag control autofire button lor -Jw Mr versatility and better action.
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Top quality construction and opto-mechanical design, delivering high speed and accuracy every time. No driver software required f ONLY £44.95 STEREO SOUND SAMPLER S-S-SAMPLE THIS !
Offering full compatibility with almost any Amiga audio digitiser software, our Sound Sampler features excellent circuitry, yielding professional results. The main A D converter gives a digitising resolution of up to 50 Khz, with a fast slew rate. Two phono sockets are provided for stereo line input, plus an option for microphone. Adjustable gain is achieved with built-in control knob. Complete with public domain disk containing sound sampling applications utilities.
ONLY £29.95 ALL PRICES INCLUDE VAT AND DELIVERY Same day despatch whenever possible. Express Courier delivery £5.00 extra.
1762 Pershore Road Cotteridge Birmingham B30 3BH 021 -458 4564 fax:021-433 3825 y Qpan Mon • Sat. 9.00 - 5.30 Unit 9 £ ES MAIL ORDER DEPARTMENT it Richards Rd, Evesham, Worcs Wi Cali us now on © 0386 - 765500 8 lines, Open Mon - Sat, 9.00 - 5.30. Fax: 0386-765354 Technical support (open Mon-Fri, 9.30*5.30): 0386-40303 ill 6XJ KT71 Send an Order with Cheque, Postal plc onto welcome r, . . Rrrrr iHPj j j , -i P«»ducl* covered by 12 Mcmih* Warranty Order or ACCESS VISA card details aii good* subject 10 availability. E.&o.E. ¦RETAIL SHOWROOMS 5 Gllsion Road Cambridge CB1 2HA
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TEL 0527 69 59 ( Sales & Marketing) FAX: 0527 63084 'European (Reripheral Distribution Peripheral House DEPT Aft Unit 36 Cranford Gardens Compton Acres West Bridgford Nottingham NG2 7SE ALL PRICES INCLUDE V.A.T. Add £3.95 For Post & Packaging Next Day Courier £9.95 Telephone (0602) 841640 AMIGA PERIPHERALS Sourced From Europers Leading Electronic Man ufacturers Sound Sampler for A500 1000 inc. Software £29.99 Midi Interface. High Quality for A500 1000 2000 midi in. £29.99 midi through. 2 midi outs.
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Betrayal ..... 15.99 Beverley Hill Cops .....15.99 Beach Volley ..16.99 Battfevalley 15.99 Black Tiger .....16.99 ‘Blade Warrior .. 15.99 Blue Angels ....16.99 Bad Company .. 15.99 Battle of Australia .....15.99 Bomber ....19.99 Budakhan .16.99
Cabal ..16.99 California Games ......13.99 ‘Carthage .15.99 Chase HO 16.99 ‘Chaos Strikes Back .16.99 ‘Chuck Jaegers AFT .16.99 Colorado ..16.99 ‘Combo Racer .. 13.99 Conflict Europe ..16.99 Conqueror 16.99 ‘Corvette 19.99 'Commandos Compilation
.15.99 Cyberball ..13.99 ‘Chicago 90 . 12.99 Chambers ofShaolin 15.99 ‘Damocles 15.99 Day of the Tiger . 15.99 Dan Dare 3 ... 13.99 Defenders of the Earth .....12,99 Dragons Breaih ..19.99 Dragon Flight .19.99 ‘Dragon War .. ,16.99 Dragons of Flame .....16.99 Dungeon Master 16.99 Dungeon Master
Editor ......9.99 ‘Dreadnought .13.99 Demons Tomb ...13.99 Drakken ....19.99 Double Dragon II 13.99 ‘Dynamic Debugger ...15.99 ‘Eagle Rider .... 16.99 Elite . 15.99 ‘Eluira Mistress of the Dark 19,99 ‘Emlyn Hughes International Soccer . 16.99 Emotion ...... 16.99 ‘Epoch ...... 15.99 Escape from the Planet of Robot Monsters ...... ..13.99
‘Eye of Hercules ... 16.99 ‘Flash Dragon ..13.99 F29 Retaliator 16.99 "F19 Stealth Fighter ....15.99 F16 Combat Plot ......15.99 Falcon ......19.99 Falcon Mission Disks 13.99 Fast Lane 12.99 ‘Federation Quest I ...13.99 Ferrari Formula One .16.99 Fiendish Freddy .19.99 ‘First Contact ... 15.99
‘Final Battle ....16.99 ‘Flirt ...16.99 Flood . 16.99 Footballer of the Year II ......13.99 Forgotten Worlds ......13.99 ‘Fourth Dimension ..16.99 ‘Frankenstein ... 12.99 Full Metal Planet .... 15.99 ‘Future Basketball .....16.99 Future Wars ...16.99 Gazzers Super Soccer ......16.99 Grand National ...19.99
Ghostbuster II 16.99 Gunship ..... 15.99 Gravity ... 16.99 Games Summer Edition ...13.99 Ghouls and Ghosts ...16.99 Halls of Montezuma ..16.99 Hammerfist .....16.99 Highway Patrol ... 15.99 Hillsfar . 16.99 Hard Driving 13.99 Heavy Metal ....16.99 Hound of Shadow .....16.99 Hot
Rod ....16.99 ‘Hoyles Book of Games ...24.99 Imperium ... 16.99 Indiana Jones (Lucas Films) ....16.99 Indiana Jones (US Gold) ..13.99 Invanhoe ..16.99 Infestation ...... 16.99 Interphase .. 15.99 ‘International Championship Wrestling ...16.99 ‘International 3D Tennis ..16.99 Iron Lord ..19.99 ‘Iron Tracker
12.99 Italy 1990 ..16-99 ‘Jack Boot .. 16.99 ‘Jack The Ripper 12.99 Jumping Jackson .. 12.99 Kenny Dalglish Soccer Match 13.99 Kick Off ... 12.99 Kick Off II .. 12.99 Kick Off II World Cup Ed ..16.99 Kick Off Extra Time .. 9,99 Krystal ......19.99 'Killing Game Show ...... 13.99
Klax ...13.99 Knights of Crystalian .19.99 ‘Krypton X 12.99
* Leaving Tef ramis .....16.99 Legend of
Djel 16.99 Leisure Suit
Larry II ...19.99 Lightforce
(Compilation) ...16.99 Lombard R.A.C. Rally
..16.99 ‘Last Ninja II .. 16.99 ‘Lost
Patrol 16.99 ‘Last
Stuntman ... 12.99 ‘Magic
Fly 16.99 Magnum 4 Compilation ...... 19.99
‘Majic Johnson 12.99 Man Utd
Mansion ...16.99 ’Matrix
Maruaders .....16.99 ’Microprose World
Cup Soccer II 15.99 Midwinter ...
...19.99 ‘Mitro ...... 13.99 New York
Warrior ......24.99 Ninja
Spirit 16.99 Ninja
Warrior ..16.99 North and
South .15.99 Nuclear War ......
16.99 Operation Thunderbolt .....16.99
Onslaught .. 13.99 Overlander
Paperboy .. 12.99 Pinball
Majic ...16.99 Police Quest
II ... ..16.99 Populous ..... 16.99
Planet Busters 13.99
Populous Data Disks ...9.99 Premier
Collection 3 (Compilation) .... 19.99 Player Manager
..12.99 P47 15 99 Powerdrift
‘Panic Station . 13,99 Projectile
.16.99 Pro Tournament
Tennis ...... 16.99
‘Quarter Back ... 13.99 Rainbow
Islands ... 16,99
‘Renegade .. 16.99
R. V.F. Honda ...... 15.99 Red Storm
Rising ..... 15-99 Resolution 101 .
Rally Cross .....12.99 Rock
and Roll .... 13.99 Rorkes
Drift ...16.99 Rolox
S. E.U.C.K .19.99
Scramble Spirits .13.99 ‘Secret
Agent Flys By ......16.99 ‘Shadow Warriors
. t6.99 ‘Skate or
Sonic Boom .. 16.99 Space Harrier
(New) .. ...12.99 Space Harrier
II 13.99 Space
Stryx . 13.99 Space Quest
ill ...19.99 ‘Star Trek
5 .. 24.99 Steve Davis Snooker
12.99 Story So Far 1 (Compilation)
......12.99 Story So Far 3 (Compilation)
......12.99 Stunt Car ... 15.99
‘Street Fighting Man .13.99
Switchblade ... 13.99
Stormlord ...13.99 Shadow of
the Beast . 16.99 Sherman M4
.... 16.99 Star
Blaze 13.99 ‘Super
Quintel 15.99 Super Cars
..13.99 Sim City
... 19.99 Seven Gates of
Jambala .15.99 ‘Super League
Manager ..16.99 Super League
Soccer ,.....16.99 ‘Survivor ..... 15.99
Tennis Cup .....16.99 ‘The
Keep .. 16.99
‘Toyottes ... 13.99 Triad III
(Compilation) ...16.99 TV Sports
Football ...... 16.99 ‘Trivial Pursuit
(Family Edition) 16.99 Theme Park
.16.99 ‘Turbo Buggies
.. 13.99 TV Spons Basketball
19.99 ‘The Gales ...
16.99 Tower of Babel .15 .99
‘Trivia .. 15.99 ‘Track Attack
16.99 Turbo Outrun ... 16.99 Typhoon Thompson
Golf ...... 16.99 Ultimate
Darts 13.99 ‘Universe III
Untouchables .16.99 ‘UMS
II ...... 15.99 Ultima
V ... 19.99 ‘Views
Fly Trap ..13.99 ‘Warmonger
Waterloo .... 15.99
Wild Streets . 15.99 World Cup
Soccer '90 ......13.99 Warhead
‘Warp . 12.99 Winners
Xenomorph .... 16.99 Xenon
AMIGA 500 "Flight of Fantasy" Modulator, F29 Retaliator,
Rainbow Islands, Deluxe Paint I,
E. F.T.P.O.R.M.I £369.95 AMIGA 500 Batman Pack Modulator, BATMAN,
New Zealand Story, Interceptor, Deluxe Paint II £369.95 AMIGA
500 + 1084S Either Pack above + Colour Monitor £599.95 AMIGA
500 Class of 90’S Educational Pack £529.95 COMMODORE 1084S
Colour Monitor £249.95 Amiga External Drive Power Drive 1 Meg
DS £79.95 Amiga Memory Expansion Plus Clock and Free Game
£79.95 A590 HARD DRIVE 20 Meg Hard Drive £369.95 CHEQUES AND
POSTAL ORDERS PAYABLE TO SOFTSELLERS. POST AND PACKING FREE IN
UK except hardware, charged at cost. OVERSEAS £1.50 per item.
Subject to availability and price change without notice. 'Some
titles may not be released at time of going to press. Shop
prices may vary, but personal callers can claim advertised
discounts on production of cut-off slip.
No Amiga Flight of Fantasy £369.95 Amc September TITLE COMP COST Amiga 500 Class of 90 Pack £529.95 TOTAL COST £ Tel No. .. Have you ordered from us before Yes Name..... Address.
Hi, I’m the mail man, Man. It's my job to sort your scribblin’s and spill the beans on the problems we all have when DFO: starts to whirr. So if you've got something to say it to me.
The best letters will be sent prizes of up to £100, so get a copy of Protext into your drive pronto. Drop me a line at Ezra Surf’s Postbox (ESP), Amiga Computing, Europa House, Adlington Park, Aolington, „ Macclesfield SklO 4NP.
Mac bashing I USE Apple Macintosh computer at work, together with Mac Draw software, for designing various types of forms and documents.
I have purchased an Amiga 2000 for home use and I would like to continue designing from home.
Would you be able to advise me on a suitable program which has similar facilities?
I have tried a number of software retailers who advertise in your magazines for a similar program, and I have been told that none exists. I would be most grateful for vour advise and assistance.
M. J. McAuliffe, London.
Continuing the sago of Amiga versus Mac, and again you’re in luck, Mac Draw is quite a simple drawing package, and you should be able to achieve similar results with a program such as Deluxe Paint, If you want to animate your forms you should get DpointHI, else II will suffice, For designing forms and documents you might be better off with a good DTP package such as PageSetterll (reviewed in the April issue).
DO you think you could get a little review of some of the profes- sional and public domain C compilers in this magazine please? I am interested in learning C but don’t know where to start.
Even though C is supposed to be THE language at the moment I haven't seen an awful lot about it.
Gareth White, Partridge Green, West Sussex By happy coincidence we had a look at a public domain C comKeep on trackin’ I HAVE just started to program some updates for Sound Tracker V2.5 and would appreciate it if fellow programmers would send source code.
Any version will help to keep compatibility, something V2.5 does not. Any code on packers will help C again as well. All letters answered and disks returned if address supplied.
I will also send a copy when available.
P. O. Box 1198, Collingwood 3066.
G'dav. You should keep in mind the fact that Sound Tracker is a commercial product and therefore copyright, so if you are using any original code you should obtain permission before distributing it.
Of course, if you are writing a program which just happens to be Sound Tracker-compatible, like MED for example, then that's a different matter.
Piler in last month’s issue. Since then, a new contender for “best free C system" has emerged, called Sozobon Z C. Get a copy from your favourite PD library and check it out. Looks cool.
Professional C systems are overshadowed by Lattice, who seem to produce the compiler that nine out of ten programmers prefer. It costs a lot of money, but you won't need to buy another.
If you are serious about getting staked in C, you’ll need a good book. Try C - The Complete Reference by H. Schildt. Take a peek at the Code Clinic for more Cinfo.
Expansion snags LIKE many people using the Amiga 500, I am now wanting to expand my system beyond the usual external drive and half meg upgrades.
However the availability of information on upgrades seems to be sadly lacking.
I use my Amiga mainly for text and graphic-oriented projects such as desktop publishing, painting, and animation and soon realised that 1 Mb memory’ was not sufficient.
So out came the back issues of your mag to evaluate the best direction to spend my pennies, memory expansion, hard drives, fatter Agnus, accelerator boards all jumped out from your glossy pages, so a few phone calls ensued.
Here the problems arise. Most of the suppliers I spoke to did not know what did what and why.
They all were keen to sell me their products, but were unable to help with a few of my queries.
1: What help is a fatter Agnus?
2: What help is an accelerator board?
3: If I go for a hard drive with extra ram, will this be compatible with the onboard ram upgrades? Or will I end up with memory pools all over?
4: Is it more sensible to go for “loadsa ram” before a hard drive?
Bearing in mind the applications I dabble with the most, perhaps you could help me spend my pennies in the most sensible direction.
S. M. Doe, Colchester, Essex.
Easy Here are the answers: 1: It will allow to upgrade your computer to support I Mb of chip ram (instead of the usual 512k) and some new screen modes on a monitor. Chip ram is used by graphic and sound intensive programs, so it gets used up quickly.
2: Believe it or not, an accelerator board will speed up your Amiga.
They work by replacing the 68000 CPU with a faster 68020 or 68030 CPU and perhaps a maths co-pro- cess or as well. When used with programs which have a lot of thinking to do, such as DTP or ray- tracing packages, the speed increase can be considerable.
3: If you have the standard 512k "trapdoor" memory upgrade, any extra memory supplied with a hard drive will work perfectly. Ton may have problems if you are using larger expansionsf but by running a program such as MergeMem you might be OK. Ask the suppliers.
4: A hard drive makes such an immediate improvement to the Amiga that I would recommend you get one first, If you get an A590, you will be able to put up to 2Mb of ram inside it with no problems.
WHILE I enter yet another competition which I have no chance of winning, I thought I might save myself 20p and a trip to the post- African power box and write you a letter to go in the same envelope as the compo.
Firstly, a small point about Checkmate’s A1500. The disk drive is repositioned, and room made next to it For another. Does this have to be internal, external or doesn’t it matter? Drives made internal are cheaper than external ones, but are advertised as 2000 only.
Next, a word of advice about memory expansions would be appreciated. I want to get an expansion of about 1 to 2Mb. I have seen boards advertised for 1,
1. 5,1.8. and 2Mb. My family however aren't too sure about
spending so much at once and want to get a
0. 5Mb expansion and enlarge it later. I know this is impossible,
but they want to know why, and I don’t know the answer. Also
are there any hoards von recommend?
Going on from that, with all these expansions in the pipeline, I have been told by friends that my PSU (power supply unit) will suffer, and that I should but a new one.
The only point is that I am emigrating to South Africa within a year. Is it true that with different power voltage (or whatever) abroad I will need a different PSU for each country , and if so, where can I get it?
On a different note, how easy will it be for me to get a subscription to your magazine from S.A.?
Your mag is much better than anything I can get here or there. If I do subscribe from there will I still get the disk?
Simon Champion, Haselmere, Surrey.
OK, already. You don't want much, do you? For starters, an internal drive will fit inside the A1500 and you can pick them up real cheap these days.
Secondly, though 1 am loath to admit it, your family are right, it is sensible to upgrade in stages - you don't want all that power going to your head.
There are a couple of boards around that fit in the trapdoor and are expandable in half meg chunks. One that springs to mind is by Evesham Micros which will take up to 1.5 Mb, but anything over 512k is going to require some internal fiddling which will invalidate your warranty.
Alternatively, why don't you just get an A501 or similar expansion and expand your memory externally at a later date?
An upgraded PSU is always a good move - we covered one a couple of months back that seemed to do the business. As for S.Africa, their power system works off a different set of volts and Hertz so you won't have much joy unless the local talent have come up with something. The bitterest pill is sweetened by the fact that it is possible to get an airmail subscription to your favourite mag.
O no 1 for Amiga Firstly I would like to compliment you on such a splendid magazine which I look forward to receiving every month despite it being hard sometimes for my newsagent to obtain it. Yet this now seems to be solved.
It is with interest to the Amiga market and your magazine I write this letter asking you to confirm whether a bulletin board called 01 4 Amiga is in fact the Number One Amiga Computing Board.
It was claimed users of this BBS can leave messages for the editorial team of your magazine and all messages left will be answered by yourselves online with the best messages going into the magazine.
This BBS in question also has in the past stated that it is Commodore UK’s link between Commodore and the end user, that being the person spending vast sums of money calling this BBS.
These users could well be your readers.
I find it hard to believe that Amiga Computing and Commodore could associate themselves with such a BBS.
Could you please confirm whether these facts are true or is it a pie-eved claim made by the sysop.
Name and address supplied Let me tell you, although the guys at Amiga Computing like to get around a bit in the comms world there is no “official" BBS for this Nice pictures, shame about the rest I AM yet another one of the rapidly-growing crowd of Amiga users, and like many new users I have a multitude of opinions and un-answered questions spinning around in my head.
After six months with my A500 I have finally got acquainted with the basics of such wonders as the CLI, no thanks to completely unhelpful manuals.
I have found to my frustration that the “Introduction to the Amiga” book supplied with this wonderful computer is full of pretty pictures, but also contained all too many references to other books such as the AmigaDOS reference manual. Many integral parts of intuition, such as project flags, seem to be very scantily covered, if at all.
Commodore obviously assumes, in this case wrongly, that Amiga owners can easily afford a large pile of expensive reference books.
The AmigaDOS 1.3 enhanced software manual appears to go to the other extreme and assumes that you are already acquainted with the original version of AmigaDOS.
As for AmigaBASIC, basic is definitely the word. For the few programs I bothered writing on it 1 got the distinct feeling that my old 8 bit micro would have done better and perhaps even quicker job.
For instance, it completely rejected a simple one line IF statement, forcing me to replace it with an identical WHILE statement, which did work! I am now considering venturing into C programming or perhaps buying the imminent AMOS.
Right, ‘nuff said on that matter.
The Amiga is an excellent computer when it comes down to it. On to some questions: What is a macro? I have seen several references to them in your magazine but they remain a compete mystery to me. Similarly what is Arexx?
Is there really any use to the AUX: and PIPE: devices? Do any applications use them? I cannot seem to find a description of the Clipboards device. Could you shed some light on what this is for too? I know that Notepad needs it, but that’s about all.
What is new about the new fatter Agnus? Will it make any difference with my existing software, for example Dpaintlll, Digipaint3 and PageSetterU.
I think that's enough of an outburst to be getting along with. I have written this on Notepad and then fed it through the thoroughly recommended PageSetterU, so you can see how desperate I am for a good text editor.
Stephen Pascoe, Lexden, Essex.
The term macro can refer to several things. In a word processor; a macro is a collection of text or a function that can be defined to be available from a single keypress.
For example, you may define a macro to print out your entire address at the press of a single function key.
A macro assembler allows entire subroutines of mnemonics to be inserted by a single name.
Arexx is a programming language. Its primary use is to provide a “glue" to hold several multi-task- ing programs together. An Arexx program can take data from a text editor and pass it directly to a compiler or assembler.
Both AUX: and PIPE: are potentially useful. Some folk swear by them, others ignore them. Barely would you need to use them unless attempting some pretty techie stuff from the CLI.
By using AUX: you can open a CLI controlled by an external terminal. For example, you could use an ST as a dumb terminal with its own CLI with access to the Amiga's hard drive.
PIPE: can be used to allow a process to pass information to another process. It acts as a temporary file through which data can flow.
The clipboard device is an idea taken from the Mac that Amiga users rarely make full use of The idea is that data from a program can be clipped and stored in the clipboard. Once there, it can be pasted or copied back in at a later date.
The feature that is often overlooked is that data can be clipped into completely different programs.
Of course, whether its in the light format when you do depends on the program.
Try the QED text editor.
DISK space, desk space, the more you have the faster you use it and the more you want. Expanding either can be costly.
In my quest for more desk space I looked at the adds for monitor stands and was surprised to see the cheapest going was £15 going up to £50. So I considered making one of my own and after a couple of tries came up with the illustrated design.
DIY makes a stand The measurements given are recommended minimums, change them upwards if needed. Make sure the distance between legs is magazine. Anyone who tells you anything different is just plain lying. If anyone can supply us nith hard evidence of this sort of thing even better, I've got this lawyer just hanging around doing nothing.
You are, of course, free to Email any member of staff anyivhere you like, but obviously no guarantees of replies can be given - it strains these guys’ nerves just to go through all their Email, never mind reply to every message.
As to the other allegation you make, I’d like to see what the sysop of this board has to say. I'll make a promise that if he writes in a signed and dated letter I’ll publish it in full.
Amo, amas, AMOS 1 recently upgraded from an Atari ST (shock horror) to an Amiga 500.
It was the best move I have ever made. Anyway while owning an ST I used STOS as my main programming language and closely followed the articles in your sister magazine with STOS programs on the cover disk.
What I would like to know is, are you going to be running a series at least 19in, the legs are long enough to clear your machine and any devices you may want to put on it and the board will be deep .enough for all four monitor feet.
Get the wood from your local timber shop and get them to cut it to size if possible. Cut the rear corners to shape at home, then sand all edges and corners smooth.
Next rest the board on the legs to check it will be level and wobble free. Make sure you have made the cutout in the front right leg to increase clearance for DFO: and sand all the legs smooth and flat.
Finally put strong wood glue on of articles on AMOS, including demos on your cover disk like they did for STOS? If so how soon?
Mr N.D. Burton, Tidworth, Hants.
Yes. Next month. Written by the guv who did a lot of the AMOS demos.
Mutant Ninja DTP I must congratulate Nic Veitch for his article on How to Desktop Publish. As a graphic designer using Macintosh SE 30s and Ilci, I would have killed to have access to such a guide when I first started using the humble Mac Plus several years ago.
Yet 1 take umbrage with Nic’s comments that from just reading a magazine, or looking at a poster and being exposed to advertising, you acquire all there is to know about graphic design.
That’s a big claim, like saying because you can read sheet music you can play every type of musical instrument. If we are all so clever, maybe this article is unnecessary.
In retrospect, the comments may have been used to cushion the casual user against the plethora of the ends of the legs and nail them in place.
The finished stand takes my Sony Trinitron portable easily, saving a lot of space, and having it raised to eye level and directly behind the keyboard saves neck ache.
Total build time one hour. The total cost £1.84 plus eight nails and some strong wood glue - maybe a little more if you cover it in sticky backed plastic.
London, Excellent idea! Let's have more cut-price projects for those (like me) of restricted incomes.
Perhaps I could persuade the powers that be to do a special feature on some of the best.
Considerations involved with desktop publishing, but I must admit that even having access to training and possessing the design background, there is still a tendency to use everything the equipment offers in the way of typographical choice.
Where do you draw the line and stop using typographical whims that are incomprehensible and irritate everyone, and not just purists?
Judicious selection is very much based on experience and some appreciation of good or bad design.
I am sure that if the quality of Nic’s article continues in the next two issues of Amiga Computing, (but without the inflammatory remarks), many desktop publishers will improve the visual quality of their productions dramatically.
Nic states: "like background radiation, we’ve been exposed to design since birth". Exposure to radiation which is out of control has also been known to have a mutating effect.
Steve Hudson, Spring Bank West, Humberside Like, I'm really sorry you took umbrage, but I sure hope you give Who ya going to call?
I am a new Amiga owner, and am confused by what I have heard about viruses. What are they? What harm can they do?
How can I tell if I have one, and how do I get rid of them?
S. Birch, Bognor Regis.
Viruses are programs which copy themselves from disk to disk. If you boot your Amiga with an infected disk, the virus program will load itself into memory.
From then on it will try to copy itself on to any disk which is inserted. Viruses like to save themselves to the first few tracks on a floppy disk. This can destroy any piece of commercial software which uses these tracks for its own purpose.
What's more, some viruses will do something dramatic - like destroying your files - after they have been memory for a while. If you find your computer is not behaving itself very well and tends to crash a lot, you may have a virus.
Here are some anti-virus guidelines:
• Always switch your computer off completely for 30 seconds in
between playing games.
Because the virus lives in ram, it can be totally removed from memory by simply switching off.
A warm reset (Ctrl and Amiga keys) does NOT achieve this. If you do have a virus on one of your disks, this will prevent it spreading.
• Get hold of a copy of VirusX version 4. This program will do a
thorough check of every disk you insert. It can be placed in
your startup sequence so it is always present.
VirusX is public domain and can be obtained from every PD Library for a few pounds. If it thinks there is a virus on a disk it will say so. But beware: As mentioned before, sometimes commercial software uses the first two tracks of a disk.
This means the virus detecting software may get confused, and ask permission to re-write the boot sector. Don’t let it!
It back. Meanwhile Nic says: Wash my cotton socks, f'm in the news! I appreciate what you're saying. OK, so good design in the end conies down to what you know and how long you've known it, but in this case I wasn’t talking about good design, just design.
Surely you won’t contend that you need to graduate from art cob lege before you con lay out a page?
The object of the series is to show people that anyone can do it.
I'm not proposing that everyone is an expert straight away, but they're not novices either. In an average day a normal person will read far more words than they will hear.
This effects their whole perspective on printed media.
I hope you enjoy the rest of the series. Bv the way, the analogy with background radiation ivas care- fully chosen... Kind reset HELP ! Please, you are my last hope! I am completely baffled. I have an A500 and I have acquired a Fujitsu DX2200 printer for it. The problem is that if I try to print from Kindwords or Home Accounts I have to switch the printer off first, tell the software to print, and then switch the printer on.
If I do not do this AmigaDOS will return “Printer trouble check Talking speed FIRSTLY I would like to make one point I think many magazines have messed up in the past, and that is basically the speed of a modem that normal telephone lines can handle.
Many people get the impression that 1200 is the norm and if you really want speed then 2400 is the one to go for. These are the people who when told of modems that operate at 9600 or 19200, say “Oh well... you’ll never get one of them running on BT lines'".
My board, which operates at 9600, is on the old analogue exchange and it still works fine and I know also that British Telecom themselves use 19.2s to transfer info from exchange to exchange.
Obviously the expense is another key issue here. 2400 modems ARE a lot cheaper but printer and cabling". The weird thing is that I do not have to do this if I am printing from Basic.
I have asked Commodore and they haven’t a clue. Fujitsu say that it’s Epson FX80 compatible so I’m using the EpsonX driver (Eve tried all the others on the disk anyway).
Secondly, can you tell me why your Workbench 1.3.2 upgrade redefines my @ “ keys. My “ has changed places with my © and and I’ve lost my apostrophe (the one below the “ on the keyboard) altogether!
Lastly, I am thinking of buying a video digitising package, but I can't afford to buy a video camera to go with it. Would it be possible to connect up my VCR to my Amiga, find the frame I want and simply press pause while the Amiga reads it?
Secondly lastly, thanks for bringing the cover disk back and your magazine is brilliant, (My missus says that a little praise and grovelling should ensure that my letter gets printed. Excuse mv sweaty palms).
Richard Frith, Grovelville.
Sounds like the printer needs a reset code ( esc@) which I believe Basic does automatically - in other words it is a software fault and you can only try to see if vou can get your problem packages to send a reset before they print (or do it when you think it will take four times as long to transfer a file your bill will become four times higher, so with the extra money you can buy a faster modem and not sit watching that file download!
The prices range from around £100 for a 1200,£200 for a 2400 £250 for a 2400 with error checking compression and £850 for a 9600 with error checking & data compression (can achieve speeds of
14. 4 in many cases).
If you are considering setting up a bulletin board of your own, then there are various companies offering sysop discounts - which means that you can get a 9600 for £450... all inclusive!
What's the difference between V32 & HST?
There are two different types of 9600 modems, the European standard (V32) and the American one yourself). As for your keyboard problem. Well, how can I break this to you - you've got an American A500. The fault is easily rectified by remoiing the line “Setmap gb” from the startup sequence.
You'll be Iuckv to have a VCR that can perfectly freeze a frame well enough for even a fast grabber to have a chance. What about a nice ex-security CCTV camera?
They're good enough for the job and only a shade over £100 if you look around.
Paging Mr Cavedaschi A correspondent in the July issue, Ron Cavedaschi of Brighton, complained about the lack of assistance he received on DTP programs.
OF course, he wanted to see what the programs could produce, as no one in their right minds is going to shell out nearly £100 for something which may not be wanted.
As I can sympathise with Ron Cavedaschi, and have both Pagesetter and Pagesetterll, I have run off examples (on a Panasonic KXP1124) that come with both programs and would ask you to forward them to him.
1 have used Pagesetter for about 18 months and it is capable of very good results, seen when connected to a 9 pin printer. Your review of (HST), but before you think you must get the European one, hang on.
There is an important thing to bear in mind - and that's what you want to use the modem for.
If you are a business user then you will find that V32 is the standard. Hut if you are a simple Amiga user who wishes to call the local boards and get the latest utilities and demos then you need HST. As for the home market the HSTs are the standard - one of the reasons being that you can import them from the US very cheaply.
There are dual standard modems (V32 HST) which are nearly the same price as buying both separately, but these mean you can connect to any board that you will ever possibly want to!
Johnathan Morris, Cheshunt, Herts.
Pagesetterll and the upgrade price of £39.95 persuaded me to change to that program and it has been money well spent.
Pagesetterll only come with two Compugraphic fonts, so I was interested in the disk of Compugraphic fonts available for Professional Page and Pagesetterll.
Now I am in a similar position to Mr. Cavedaschi as I would like to see what fonts are before parting with well over £100, but I was unable to get any help from the well-known company I approached.
I understand there are 35 fonts on the disk s but it would be nice to see a leaflet of what they look like.
Your remarks about 9 pin printer output were not very reassuring to the many hundreds of 9 pin printer owners. If one reads reviews of such printers - the StarLClO for example - the reviewer usually comments on the excellent output of which the printer is capable.
Of course, if are going to compare the output with a deskjet or laser printer then the output will look awful, but everyone have their standards and personal requirements. Ron Cavedaschi states he only has limited funds, so he is unlikely to go out and buy a laser printer. Like most of us, he wants to be able to produce a decent copy with the minimum of outlay.
Finally, my Panasonic printer's default setting has been set to 12 cpi rather than 10 cpi. I did not realise it at first, but this was the reason for part of the right hand side of graphic dumps, printout from Pagesetterll from being cut off.
Changing the setting to 10 cpi cured the problem, so full-width pages are now printed. Whether this would effect other printers I do not know, but the information may be useful to someone who has this problem and not realised the cause.
J Farrar, Hayle, Cornwall.
Umm...er...yes, well it’s like this - I've lost it. No, not my sanity, but Mr Cavedaschi's address. Isn't it just typical that the one piece of paper I need is the one that gets eaten by the Technical Editor (at least that's my theory) t If you’d like to get in touch Mr C. we’ll forward the goods.
Re the CG fonts. Yeaht I dig. I think I know which distributor, or should I say marketing company; you mean. I'll see if we can't sort something out, but they take up a lot of space y’know.
AMIGA owners fall into two distinct groups. There's the brilliant, mathematically advanced superbrain who machine codes in his sleep and who thinks a heavenly body is a distant asteroid as yet undiscovered, especially by the distorted Hubble telescope... Then there’s the dissolute, arty type of genius who supports Liverpool, loves big bikes, mourns the passing of the ten bob note, and has been given an injection of pure and permanent joy by the graphic wonderment that our Amiga unlooses on an otherwise unsuspecting world.
Brm... I'll try that one again, if you don’t mind.
Amiga owners fall into three distinct groups - the programmer, the artist and the games-player (without whom, there would be nobody writing such superb programs for the Amiga.
Anyway, Gold Disk’s Pro Draw is a program which needs some thought and planning, and therefore not really for someone as stupid and inherently instinctive as I am. I do think that it is a very interesting and powerful program, however, in the right hands... Trying to do things literally “by the Structured art is to drawing programs what DTP is to word processors. Ian McDonough paints an exciting picture of professional quality output at a home user price book”, I restrained my twitching hand from impatiently thrusting the disks into my Amiga and tentatively began to read.
"Requires a minimum of 1 megabyte All on the line ONE of the advanced features included in this version of Professional Draw is the ability to align text with a curve. Actually you can align any text with any curve. A requestor will give options as to whether the text should fit inside or outside the curve and the standoff between the two.
This is far more advanced than most professional DTP packages running on any computer. If you think about it, you don’t have to attach the text to any curve, the actual curve can be deleted afterwards leaving just the text. This is useful for running around objects artwork or just for being weird!
Not only is the text fitted near on exactly where you want it, but can be re-scaled to fit the image exactly.
This is an invaluable addition as it is hard to judge exactly how long the of memory” Hmmm... like many of us I began with half a meg and then upgraded to 1Mb with an extra disk drive. A minimum... ah well, let’s see how it goes.
Text is going to have to be to fit around an irregular curve.
Each individual character can be rotated to be tangential to the curve at its particular position or not. This means that the text can actually “flow” along the curve or just be repositioned in the vertical axis to correspond to the curve - excellent if you have a lot of text which must be clearly legible.
The use of Compugraphic scaleabie fonts means no jaggies on the text.
The introduction explains the difference between a structured graphics program such as Pro Draw and an ordinary one made up of bitmaps, such as Deluxe Paint.
Bitmap graphics it likens to newspaper photographs, made up of thousands of tiny dots which appear as a continuous tone. Structured graphics organise the image into basic structures based on geometric elements such as lines, curves, ellipses and rectangles. They produce a description of the image rather than the image itself.
Now all this information may seem rather boring. The end result, however is absolutely ex, brill, or mega, depending on which class of computer Trace - the final frontier Gold Blend AS with most structured drawing programs such as sshhh... Adobe Illustrator, you can make a drawing or graphic active so that you can fiddle with it by pointing on it with an arrow Gold Disk have named the Null Pointer tool, Any changes from the familiar pulldown menus, or alterations using the tools, only affect the activated item. In the manual it suggests creating a vertical box, cloning it (yes it does remind
you of an ideal theme song for “Boys from Brazil”: Send in the clones! An Irish joke.) And using the superb Fill Colour and Blend requesters to fill the first with blue and the second with cyan (that’s a sort of light bluey turquoisey sort of colour for those watching in black and white).
You then select the number of steps you wish the blend to take: The manual suggests eight. After switching off the wireframe made (oops!) It works. Amazing: The box on the right slowly changes colour as it moves towards the box on the left (or is it the other way around?)
The program will blend the images in the number of steps specified. This is similar to tweening in an animation package: At regular intervals between the two images a new image is placed, some fraction advanced in the process of transforming completely from one image to another. This effects not only colour but also shape - you can slowly transform a square into a circle if you really like.
User you belong to. All these structure- thingies, cure “The Jaggies”, which occur when you try to scale up a drawing.
The manual has a really nifty index of chapters running down the right- hand side of each page, with the current section highlighted in black, just like a hard copy of a pull down menu. It’s a bit like the difference between a digital clock and the more traditional face. The information contained in the traditional face contains a graphic representation of the time, portions of time elapsed and portions of time yet to pass. A digital face contains only the time. The Gold Disk index works in the same way.
The next portion of the manual deals with a tutorial, but unfortunately the description of the tools and requestors only arrive later. This can be a little confusing at times: I was desperately searching for the Fill item for about 10 minutes.
The Pen tool draws a straight line, except when you keep the button depressed, then it draws Bezier Bundled along with Trace VI.8 @ 1990 Gold Disk Inc, mm Professional Draw is a little program called “Trace”. Now just because it’s little doesn’t mean it isn’t incredibly useful. In fact it is a piece of coding genius and a godsend to anyone who has a lot of bitmap clipart lying around.
Trace is a program that will convert bitmaps into structured clip-files as used by Pro Draw. Why bother, you ask, when it is already possible to load the bitmaps themselves?
Well, as I’m sure you’re aware, when you re-scale a bitmap you get those jaggies - nasty pixelisation caused by the resolution of the original.
Structured art does not suffer from this as a structured drawing contains, if you like, instructions for how the picture is made up, rather than actual binary data for the image itself.
Trace, as the program is imaginatively called, is not limited to line art. Fill and colour options are available to totally capture the image as near to the original as possible.
Digitised pictures with lots of shades don’t tend to come out very well, but Ficture File I Output File raw Clip Nane I Hard: Ar t work T IFF p dr ay trace Plop Ploppy Fit ± tSkSS Pixels Qcolor fflFills Status: Loading Picture : 'pdraytrace' Width: 640, Height: 490, 2 Colors Tracing ... Contour 1, 1675 Edge Points Trace Abort L Included on the disks is a small utility called Trace. Its purpose is simply to translate bitmap images into structured clip-art - something it does very' well apart from that it works fine.
There is, of course, a snag. You must specify the resolution the program is to work to - how close to the original it should trace in other words. The default setting is plus or minus 1.5 pixels which works quite well for most things, but you may need to experiment in order to get the best results.
Curves. To draw a curve, apparently, we must do two tilings: Drop the control points, and set the direction points that control the curve. Now that’s easy for you to say.
It was probably at this point that I became forever grateful that I didn’t take tech drawing at school, in fact I don't think that they had invented tech drawing in those days. Even the writers of the tutorial realised that help was urgently required and the cavalry came riding in with “the SineWave.tmplt”. Have you ever attempted one of those church fate type games where you have to thread a copper loop around a devilishly hair-pinned set of wire curves, either inebriated or even completely sober? Child's play compared with this! This was a genuine attempt to do as the manual commanded.
It was of course a reflection on my lack of ability to think, plan and compute, rather than any genuine criticism of the program. But then, salvation! I found the Freehand Tool.
Instead of all this brainscrunching segments and paths to juggle with, I could, in the words of the manual, draw the curve and Professional Draw would interpolate the control points and tangents that defined it.
Now that's much better, the computer is, once again, doing all the hard work for me and freeing me to be really creative, man.
After a few interesting but difficult tutorials, the manual revealed a major problem in its own design. The next section contained really important information such as the anatomy of the screen, that all the little squiggies on the right are the tool palette, that the white box on the right is the page position gadget and what on earth all Into print OF COURSE, all this wonderful structured stuff is a bit academic if you can’t print it out. In fact, the nature of Pro Draw is such that you don’t actually know what you’ve got until you print it out - perhaps a preview mode wouldn’t go too far
Rather like Gold Disks DTP packages, Pro Draw can produce high quality, high resolution output on a standard printer. That is to say, it will drive the printer to the limits of it’s resolution - something few other packages are capable of. This doesn’t mean you’re going to get 1000 dpi out of a 9-pin, but the results are quite staggering.
The bestest bit is the postscript Print to PostScript j| Copies: M Q EPSF ? Manual Feed Q Negative Q Mirror Q Bitnaps Q Override CustoM Specs'.
IHsU ? Roll Paper NidtliiHEHai FroM PageU* To Page*.
0 Cur. Paso ® Fol io Output to Ink Nane: Density Angle Process: t i Process Black aatEEiipi 0 BfiH ? 8 bit Bms i Process Yellow ajtEBipi Hjttti0 0 3 Color 11 Process Magenta MtLUlpi M-Httl:!0 (§1 4 Color UCR GCR f i Process Cyan EEKIiEllpi IcftBH0 0 Color PostScript OK ?
Cancel | ser: | par: j Oo output. Now if you have a laser printer, and that’s as far as you want to go, that’s fair enough - you won’t need postscript output. But there are at least feA two incidences when you might have occasion to use one.
Scenario one: You happen to have a typesetting machine lying around, a Linotype for example. Now you are in business. You can output straight on to film at maximum resolution. Pro Draw will even handle its own colour separations, producing films for three or four colour processing with undercolour removal and all of the sort of stuff that publishers get really excited about.
Scenario two: You want something printed professionally but you don’t have a printer up to the job. Simply select the disk output option and all the data, including postscript information, will be spooled to your disk. Now you can send it off to any one of the Amiga bureaux springing up around the country.
Those obscure, illegible little icons are really supposed to represent.
This is an excellent section called Basic Concepts and to be of any use should have been thoughtfully placed at the beginning of the book.
The most useful tool I noticed from the start were two rulers running along the top and left side of the page.
They measure the page in whatever units are specified in the Layout Tools requester and adjust to whatever magnification is being used.
Whenever editing or drawing is being carried out the rulers have a sliding line to indicate the position of the X and Y axes. The assistance afforded to aid accuracy made one wish that Pro Draw had been mandatory for the English team dining the term of Italia 90. The rulers helped even me to construct intricate mathematical figures.
The list of features contained on only two small disks is lengthy, and just goes to prove the myth that size isn't everything.
Featines such as scaling, rotating, blending, cloning, distorting and wrapping text along a curve are just a few of the advanced tools normally to be found only on more expensive software.
The ability to import bitmapped graphics ffom other programs such as Deluxe Paint is an exciting feature, and one that I attempted successfully on this occasion. These bitmaps can be traced by hand to create structured drawing versions, and thus a graphic free of jaggies.
The flexibility of Professional Draw is evident in a number of ways. It can, for instance, be used not only with Professional Page, but with other page layout systems which support EPSF files (Encapsulated Postscript Format, stupid... er... sorry just addressing myself}, even on different machines.
Professional Draw is well worth the Ecus. Ecus me, that should be shekels.
When compared with other structured drawing programs for different computers, costing a great deal more, this system offers equal, if not greater features and flexibility, and tremendous colour possibilities.
It might take some time to get the hang of, and there are aspects of it that will forever remain a mystery to me, but I feel that the potential ready to be unleashed on these two innocent- looking disks is of ginormous proportions.
REPORT CARD Professional Draw 2.0 Gold Disk £199.95 FEATURES . Packed full of features previously unavailable on the Amiga. This program is droning level with Mac systems with its excellent facilities for handling text.
Some interesting examples and tutorials, but perhaps they might have been better explained. All features are reasonably documented.
- 1 3- to Dot Matrix; SPEED Compugraphic fonts are
never going to be incredibly fast, but there are major
improvements on previous versions in other areas. Unfortunately
this means you don't have time to nip off for a cup of tea
while it does something.
FroM PatfQ To Page f 0 Cm'. Patfe ® Folio It Copies: Hi Eject Page HI Bitwaps Density: |g jg Driver: HPJ.aserJet Output Scale X: 9W Y: Htl 0 Black & Nhite ® Gr ey Scale |_J Color Correction Dither: ® Ordered 0 Halftone 0 Floyd-Steinberg DPI: (398, 388) ,-"v [ ] V VALUE., Better value if you can buy it in the States. Tax and distributors profits over here make it slightly less attractive but it's still well worth it. Ironically you can probably get it cheaper by buying
1. 2 and taking advantage of the upgrade offer.
1} Color Cancel ] OK If you can copy the file on to a PC disk you can get even more bureaux to help, since the postscript language is not machine specific.
An update to the original Pro Draw is an option for HP plotter output.
Again, you can spool this to disk if you don’t happen to have one of these devices, and pop it in the post to someone who does.
Gold Disk still lead the way in professional, productiiity-biased software for the Amiga Cleverly written and always favourably reviewed in the press, Digita produces a range of powerful, low cost software for the home and business user.
FINAL ACCOUNTS DGCALC MAILSHOT The fastest and most powerful spreadsheet available irt inis pr ce bracket with 512 rows by 52 columns, giving you up to 26624 celts. As w th all Dig ta products, the operation of the program is clearly thought out. Being either menu, mouse or command driven you'll be able 10 start using It within minutes
- even if you've never used a spreadsheet before. Some of the
features which make;! Such good value are the exporting of
ASCII files for integration with other programs, adjustable
column width and text overflow, programmable function keys
(macros), and a unique windowing facility, so that you can look
at different parts of a sheel at the same *'me £«j0 g g If you
ever need to send out mailings or print labels, you know
howfiddly and time-consuming itcan be making sure all the
labels are printed correctly. Well now all that's a thing of
the past Because Mailshot actually shows you the labels on
screen, you can type names and addresses in exactly the correct
place. But more than that the labels are animated on screen as
a continuous sheet, allowing you to scroll backwards and
forwards, to search forpartscular keywords or to edit entries
with the minimum of fuss. Facilities include searching,
detection of duplicate labels, sorting (even surname!) 9 labels
across, 999 copies of any label This has to be the simplest and
most effective method of creating a mailshot available £24 95
The program will take information prepared by Cashbook
Controller and produce a complete set of accounts including.
8 Trial Balance ’ Trading and Prof it and Loss Account
• Balance Sheet * Notes to the Accounts 8 Full Accounting ratios.
All reports may be produced at any time, wtth comparative budget figures if required. The facility to produce these documents quickly, accurately, and regularly is of enormous help in running any business, large or small, since one shows the true profitability achieved, and the other the exact strength of the business in terms of assets and liabilities. G§ E type classic invaders ¦ MAILSHOT PLUS Do you ever have to pnnt names and addresses atawkward places on envelopes, or do you ever need to fill in tricky forms or invoices where the text has to be in exactly the right place? Usually you have
to do it by hand, or get your trusty old typewriter out of the cupboard and dust il off. Well not anymore. The Emulated TYPEwri'.er transforms your computer and printer into ft lufly Hedged typewriter, supporting bold, underline, italic and oiher type-styles.
Because itcan display and print text INSTANTLY you can line up your form, press Return and Space a few times to move to the correct place, and then start typing. Alternatively you can switch to tine-by-line mode, which offers word-wrap, justification and proportional Spacing, so that you can edit each Ime before it's printed £39 95 Escape from executive stress with the classic space '• nvader £14.95 Money saving combination pack featuring both Cashbook Controller and Final Accounts-Save £10.00. ... £69.96 Are you absolutely sure your taxman is doing his job correctly? Plan your own tax with
ease, this menu-driven program will calculate your income lax liability (4 tax years included) and provide pertinent facts about your lax position You can perform what-if? Calculation to discover ways to minimise your tax 1 lability. In fact, the program will advise you on things such as. If you are a married man. Whether it would be advantageous to have your wile s income taxed separately or not At this price who knows, you will probably find that FTP will pay for itself in tax savings the first time you use it!
* ' STOP PRESS “ July 89 - PTP user receives tax refund ol over
£39.95 DAY-BY-DAY An excellent way to get organised With it you'll be reminded ol birthdays and other anniversaries, meetings and appointments, phone calls to make and soon As with all D gita products, inputting information is simplicity itself and, once entered, you can search lor keywords or lor particular events such as birthdays lo see when one is coming up.
Includes month'week day planner, automatic reminders lor overdue appointments, month and week summary at a glance. For less than £30 this is the ideal way to make sure you never miss that important occasion again! £20 g
* *’-»J¦ Hx.Zt"1'™ * Advanced version of Mailshot for the
business user with the following extra facilities ‘ integration
with other software (using ASCII files) ¦ column iabulaied
summary (ideal for telephone lists, etc) 8 4 extra memo lines
per label (with delaulte) ' system lor codmg. Dating and adding
messages lo each label ’ different layouts available for
horizontal and vertical justification. £49.95 ,5 ONA£ :an eb,
CASHBOOK COMBO PERSONAL TAX PLANNER S SSfS ss
* ** " .iJSSsSS!?
Available to the trade from: Digita, GEM, Greyhound, HB Marketing, Lazer, Leisuresoft, R & R, SDL.
"Serious software at a sensible price" All software written in the UK. Prices include VAT & P & P (add £2.00 for export) HOW TO ORDER DIGITA INTERNATIONAL CREDIT CARD HOTLINE 53 0395 270273 Post: Digita International Ltd Black Horse House Exmouth Devon EX8 1JL England Fax: 0395 268893 Amiga peripherals that won’t cost you an arm and a leg... &SSSB
M. E.S. aren’t tied down to any one manufacturer. Our aim is to
bring you the best Amiga peripherals from all over the world.
COMPETITION a floppy drive!
RAM UPGRADES MES HALF MEG (with free 1MB Demo) £47 MINIMAX + 2 MEG INTERNAL £289 EXP 8000 + 8 MEG INTERNAL (2MB fitted) MICROBOTICS 8-UP 8 MEG A2000 (2MB fitted) £289 SUPRARAM 8 MEG A2000 (2MB fitted) £289 HARD DISKS - SYSTEMS BY VORTEX, XETEC, GVP, SUPRA, MICROBOTICS - CALL FOR PRICING 68030 ACCELERATOR CARDS - A2000 FROM A590 RAM UPGRADES your CaPtion the address below, name and address on a postcard to along with your V2MEG rtAA 1 MEG £39 £75 !"EG£145 TRADE ENQUIRIES WELCOME Send cheques to: Dept ONE Memory Expansion Systems Ltd.
Access Britannia Buildings, 46 Fenwick Street, .iverpool L2 7NB
(051) 236 0480 • 24 Hour Sales
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051) 236 0480 'RICES ARE SUBJECTTO CHANGE WITHOUT NOTICE TUDENTS
of optics will know I J what a virtual image is. It’s an
image which is real and yet and yet at the same time unreal.
You can see your virtual reflection in a mirror, but you
can’t project it on to a screen.
If you've been keeping your eyes open you will probably also have seen the calm our over virtual realities, one of those wonderful phrases to use at parties. Instead of images, virtual realities are entire worlds which only exist in the mind’s eye of a computer.
The classic example is that of asygry~ relaxed californian with a set of eye- phones over his head, exploring a universe of geometric shapes and colours. The eye-phones create a three-dimensional image to confuse the brain into thinking it’s somewhere else entirely. The illusion can be enhanced with tactile feedback gloves to provide a sense of touch when grasping computer generated objects.
However, this is not a completely honest definition of a virtual reality* Any artificially generated sensual stimuli! Can be construed to be “virtual”.
For example, imagine a computer console that can act as a view port on the world. You select any place, anywhere, then zoom in, stand on a plain before a mountain and look around you. You choose your location, the time of dayTthe seasons - even the weather, to shit your mood.
When you’ve grown tired with Earth, you visit another planet in the solar sjJStem and explore where no one has been. You take a quick day- trip to the giant volcanoes on Mars and take a few snapshots, all from your imaginary terminal.
And when the physical universe has unfolded its secrets for you, you explore the very fabric of mathmaties When is reality not reality? Who can say what’s real and what isn’t? John Kennedy explores a universe that only exists in his Amiga itself, wandering through the fractal from real-world co-ordinates. The covalleys of Mr Mandelbrot. Ordinates in question come from Of course, all this is impossible. United States Geologic Survey Digital Which is why Vista is such an Elevation Mapping files. These files interesting program. Programs which contain data sampled at attempt the impossible are
sufficiently rare to make them interesting.
Vista will render real l dscanps for you in HAM mode, using information approximately 30 metre intervals which means a typical Vista tile is made up from about 130,000 polygons.
This alone would be inpressive, as it allows an accurate representation to be made from geological data. It is even more impressive because of the artificial intelligence engine built in.
The AI will decide where trees can grow and snow can fall. It will cause rivers to flow in realistic ways. ' On the 18th May
1980. Mt St Helens blew its top. These Vista generated images are
produced from authentic data captured before and after the
“big bang " Your outlook on this world is controlled from a
control panel on the left of the landscape plan view
display. From here your location and the site you are
looking at may be controlled. The tree and snow parameters
can also be adjusted to provide views at different times of
Non-romantics with their feet firmly on the ground and heads in the real world might ask questions like “Do I really need a program like Vista? What do 1 do with the pictures I create?” I feel sorry those people. Half the fun with a package like Vista comes [t mm ¦ ; S y ¦
g. -. IP11* =a 35 • t ' ' -':Y
• V, - ",i mk.
From just playing around, tweaking landscapes until they are just right.
The production of IFF screen files is almost secondary.
If the IFF files are important to you, you can have more control over them by outputing the data in a format suitable for the Turbo Silver raytracer.
All the illustrations generated for this article were render using Vista, which proved more than satisactory. In either case, you can produce a script file which will generate many different views of a landscape, ideal for animations.
For those desparate for something useful to do with the package, Virtual Reality Labs have one or two suggestions. Geography teachers can use it to generate examples for their classes. Hikers can preview their journeys. Engineers can produce line- of-sight surveys. Games designers can use it to make realistic backdrops.
Some of these uses assume that the DEM files exist for the area you wish to study, which may be a problem.
Vista comes with files for four interesting places in the US, including Mt St. Helens before and after the big bang. Also provided is Mons Olympus
- the giant volcano on Mars - and the Mandlebrot and Julia sets.
If these are not enough to keep you busy, you can choose a
randomly created fractal landscape to explore.
REPORT CARD Vista Virtual Reality Labs HB Marketing £59.95 EASE OF USE... Very easy to use. Although using an external ray-tracing package solves the problem, some more control over effects such as lighting ivould have been welcome.
SPEED Surprisingly fast. Even at the highest resolution, the rendering is not a "leave it overnight" affair.
VALUE . Depends on how you look at it. If you have a definite use in mind, you'll see it as money well spent.
OVERALL A package that is destined to find a space on the shelf of all those interested in Amiga graphics.
Target This is the spot that the imaginary observer is looking towards XYZ The co-ordinate switches can be switched on and off to control movement in one, two or three axis of movement Camera This is the location where the observer stands Place a lake anywhere you like on the landscape. The computer allows the wat fill the landscape up to the correct level Snow The height above which snow appears-on the mountain sides Tree The “timber line”, above which no vegetation grows Haze To provide some atmospheric effects, the level of haze can be chosen to lie somewhere between a pea-souper and
crystal clarity Blend Subtly merges the colours to add to the realism IjXax e t illCanexBl X 3840 0 Hr 7 6 80 r r~ Z 3988 I Lake Snow ¦ - j|;. River 2659 HI P I* 1 River Running water on tap. The river will
- flow downhill, forming lakes in hollows and waterfalls over
cliffs Light The location of the sun in the sky ' and the
subsequent changing of shadows can be controlled by chosing one
of the four compass points Colours The palette may be
redesigned to completely alter how the landscape appears.
Changing the standard blues and greens can put you on another
Poly An indication of the resolution of the rendered landscape. With size 8 selected, 2048 polygons are generated. Using size 1 means 131,072 polygons, a longer rendering time ana a higher quality image [ail i tie Zoor Render* View vis fee 1 lib* iY In Smooth Selecting this option causes the landscape to be rounded slightly, removing any rough edges. It may be repeated to round down any unsightly jaggies Wide Zoom Your imaginary camera has two lenses, to provide different views from the same location View Render Starts the image generation | process_ 1 Displays any hidden landscape previously
rendered Promised as “coming soon” are expansion disks with data for underwater explorations, more extra-terrestrial sites and a few more earth-bound examples. As the files use US data, it’s unlikely that Macclesfield will ever be rendered. This will probably not be a great loss to mankind.
Fractal Generates a completely random landscape using fractal geometry and some simple shaping rules Ticket Office Is Now Open!
6-9 DECEMBER 1990 WEMBLEY CON Last year saw almost 30,000 people converge on the first Computer Shopper Show. This year, the event - already the world s largest pre-Christmas computer shopping spree - will be even bigger.
Doubling Up On Success The move to Wembley means nearly twice as much floor space, twice as many exhibitors, twice as many bargains, twice as many entrances and an extra day - all designed to cater for record crowds.
After all the Computer Shopper Show exists entirely to help the buying public get what they want at the price they want to pay. Ask anyone who went to last year's Show about the money they saved. Many visitors in our exit poll reported getting more than twice what they expected for their money (or paying half what they’d budgeted). That’s what we call value!
Then there’s advice - lots of it - on what to buy. Whether youTre already a committed computer buff or a complete novice.
Whether you’re in to Pcs (including Amstrads and any IBM clone), Amiga, Atari ST, Acorn (Archimedes and BBC), The Computer Shopper Show 1990 Wembley Conference Centre Wembley, London Thursday December 6th - Sunday December 9th 1990 Opening Hours: Thursday December 6th 10.00-6.00 Friday December 7th 10.00-6.00 Saturday December 8th 09.00-6.00 Sunday December 9th 10.00-5.00 Call the Hotline 051 3571736 have your credit card details . Ready, j ence centre Commodore and Sinclairs - or any popular machine - you’ll find one-stop shopping at the Computer Shopper Show.
Start saving money nowl Buy an advance ticket and you‘re already a pound or more in pocket. Or save even more with a family ticket - only £12 for two adults and two children.
• •••••• Cut down on queuing time. Be first through the door to
save even more money. Pre-order your entry tickets for FAST
F- H I ? Adult tickets at £4 (save £1) ?_Under 16's tickets at £2.50 (save £1) ?_Family tickets - admits up to 2 adults and 2 children - £12.00 (save £5) Please indicate which day you expect to attend the show Thursday*} FridayDSaturday?Sunday I would like to pay by - ? Cheque made payable to Blenheim Database Exhibitions Total £______ ? Credit card ?Access ? Visa Expiry date No| | j j ; j [ j j Please indicate which type of machines you are interested in: AMS 0 ATARI H ACORN iH COMMODORE ? IBMCJ OTHER, PLEASE STATE__ Signed Name Address Postcode Please return your completed order form to -
The Computer Shopper Show Ticket Office, Blenheim Database Exhibitions Ltd, PO Box 2, I Ellesmere Port. South WirraJ L65 3EA I---- ---------amcsj Adults £&ee £4.00 Under 16's £3:50 £2.50 Family Ticket (2 adults, 2 children) £17.00 £12.00 Amiga Arcade No shoot to kill policy Hercules goes Fem. Lib.
APPARENTLY Hercules had this daughter, right. She got cursed by Hera and in order to lift this terrible blight must complete a very difficult platform game...er, 1 mean re-enact the historic 12 labours ol her Father.
Well that's Greek mythology according to Millennium, anyway.
Yolanda (for it is she) must complete more than 50 levels of the fastest and most difficult platform game ever (well, probably).
Features include a three level trainer for those who don't feel quite up to herculean feats to begin with and an option which allows the tasks to be selected in a random order.
When the original Hercules came out on the C64 it prompted proposals of marriage from the press - how will the 1990 version fare?
Yolanda is mucking out the stables of your local store at the mythological price of £19.99. Do as I do ELECTROCOIN, having recovered from the release of Time Soldier is now planning a series of coin-op conversions, releases of which will only be a couple of weeks apart.
The first of these will be Mr Do!
THE LATEST adventure from the creators of Zak McKraken and Indiana Jones is Loom.
In the time of the Groat Guilds, all co-existed peacefully and all was well. All that is except for the weavers. They got it into their heads that they deserved better and, unable to come to terms with reality, went off to an island to weave on their own.
Eventually, the weavers gained great knowledge and mastery over the rest of the populace, but isolation had its price. Inbreeding had AN interesting approach to games is being adopted by New Deal. In one of its latest releases, Wildlife, the object is to shoot various endangered species, but with a camera not a gun.
Collect the components of your camera and take a trip through the multi-parallax scrolling countryside admiring the flora and fauna.
If you see a hunter, shoot him in the guts.
Also due for release is Astate, an archaeological graphic adventure which has already received rave reviews in France.
Run Run, a conversion of the old classic which achieved cult status around the world back when the staff of Amiga Computing used to hang around an arcade on Queen’s Parade (a long time ago, in other words).
The plot, as was the style back in those good old days, is completely ridiculous. Mr Do must collect fruit and dots while fending off the attacks of ravenous monsters with his trusty crystal ball.
This continuing campaign to re- release old arcade classics is explained by Electrocoin’s Luther De Gale as supplying the playability and fun of arcade classics but with improved graphics and features for those too young to remember them.
Oh, and for the misty-eyed and nostalgic of you, the series will he selling at the almost old-style price of £14.99, done nasty things to each successive generation. Something had to be clone. The one they call Lady Cygna did it, and what she did begins your adventure.
Not giving much away there, are they? Still, the package comes with Back to the IMAGEWORKS is about to take off in a new direction with strategy games. Wings is its latest release, set in the First World War.
Although the game has an overall strategy bias there are many “simulator” type sequences including a 3D fighter sequence and a more conventional 2D bombing run.
Keep your eyes from the circling sky by watching out for a review soon.
A full 30 minutes of drama on tape and a book of patterns, an evening's entertainment for all the family there, surely,
U. S.Cold is responsible for spinning this tale, and it's thread
ing it’s way to the shops now.
It’s got personality TITUS is launching a new strategy games system. No, sorry. Titus is launching a new strategy game concept, called Action Concept.
The system will work around one system disk and several data disks, with more being released at later dates. Nothing completely novel there, you might think.
But the difference is that the data disks will not just be new scenarios to use with the original game, but new games in their own right, with different graphics and characters, each with their individual personalities (apparently).
The system disk just contains the programming for setting up, among other things, the 3D isometric display which will be a feature of all the games.
The system disk will be released with the first of these action disks, entitled Commando War, with the player in charge of a 12 man squad with the simple mission to capture as much territory as possible.
Future releases will include jungle warfare, Vikings. Trafalgar, First World War, the Conquistadors and a prehistoric battle for survival.
All the latest news on the games software scene Moore to come CONTINUING the releases of official James Bond software, Domark will shortly unveil The Spy Who Loved Me. Yes, Bond is back, and getting younger ever)7 time.
Following the plot of the original film. Bond must stop the evil Stromberg who plans to launch nuclear warheads at New York and Moscow for some reason more adequately explained in the film.
This necessitates iiasing closely with the rather comely Russian agent Anya Amasova as you indulge in over the top car chases (yes, this is the one with the Lotus in it) gun battles and wrestling bouts.
Interestingly.the 007 game series has been getting increasingly better as the programmers delve deeper into the past.
Whether this is a reflection on the films or on the programmers remains to be seen, but for the moment, nobody does it better.
THE man with the nose has been poking it in where it's not wanted, noticeably around highly crucial street hockey games. Yes, after Wipeout, Gonzo games is planning another release so addictive it should be illegal.
This time street hockey gets the big nose treatment. Start off in downtown Manhattan, dodging the traffic and garbage and beat the local teams in order to build up cred and get to your ultimate goal - Central Park.
Switch control between your five players, keeping a constant eye on each via the small but perfectly formed remote viewing monitors.
Features include animated blockACTIVISION has fust released the first Mission Disk for the acclaimed Fighter Bomber game.
This will provide a further l(i missions, including attacking a well-defended submarine and halting the enemy advance on a beleaguered airport.
When you've had enough you can always design your own missions! If you have the urgent desire to blow apart some airfield somewhere (we all have that feeling now and again) it is but the work of a moment to construct such a scenario.
The Fighter Bomber Advanced Mission Disk is out now, get it before it gels you!
Ing, tackling, shooting, dribbling and ducking moves.
But hockey isn't all. In between matches you must pick your way through traffic in the busy streets.
The street layout is an accurate (apparently) depiction of the Big Apple, so if you ever go on a visit, you won’t get lost. There’s value for you.
To top it all you can serial link two machines (whatever their ilk) and beat the hell out of a friend, all approved by the British Street Hockey Association.
Street hockey hits (and i do mean hits) your local dealer on August 31.
TITUS has secured the rights to market Disney software in Europe. Disney software will be covering three main categories: Entertainment, with releases like Dick Tracy, linked to the film starring Warren Beatty and Madonna and Arachnophobia. A new Spielberg production Children's software, with products featuring the age-old favourite Disney characters like Goofy, Donald Duck, Mickey Mouse etc. Creativity, starting with a very important release of the Disney Animation Studio, an animation package which seems to have some amazing features.
Attack of the tures. Big lumbering monsters attempt to crush the life out of our hapless hero - hope you remembered to collect ail those bombs, that’s the one regret you’ll never ijiget.
On later levels a new monster will emerge from the ashes of the old and it’s time to do battle again.
The game may appear easy to play at first, and the generous number of credits may aid progression to the later stages, but if the underlying strategy is simply to get to the next level then there is a point at which the hero is underequipped for the job - a methodical approach pays hugh dividends.
As good a simulator we are ever likely to see to train would-be you HAVE BEEN SELECTED AS A MEMBER OF AN INTFRPLANFTARV .?W‘97'TERML PLANET X. AsyNTHETIC INDUSTRIAL PLANETOID- H DEAR. The evil Reptilons and their countless hordes of robot monsters are holding humans hostage. But this is not the limit of their tyrannical ambition. The captives are being used as slave labour to further add to the mechanical army of the Reptilons.
Soon these fiends will attack and destroy all life on Earth, and when they've finished with David Attenborough they’ll start on the rest of us.
The citizens of Earth know full well they are being watched by eager, greedy eyes. To ensure their salvation they must destroy the synthetic Planet X, the base the Reptilons are using as a monster factory.
Ha-ha, says mankind - that’s easy. We'll send not 100 ships, not 1,000 ships, but one ship. One hero alone will be enough to secure our future.
The reasoning behind this is simple - critically flawed, but simple. Earth was going through another of those nostalgia phases where all those naff sci-fi films became cult viewing again and everyone reckoned they were all ‘Tabby" and "corker”. So they reckoned a single lone hero would do the job quite nicely.
Play takes place in one of three areas. The canal maze is just that.
The hero is in control of a craft which he must pilot along the canals before the time limit runs out.
The tricky bit is that some canals are just dead ends. Learn the routes in each of these sections - they are always the same.
The scrolling is nice - 45 degree Zaxxon style - but once you h*ve learnt the route there is nothing much to this bit. It looks like an afterthought.
If the canal stage is completed within the time limit , which is quite tight, there is the option of choosing one of three ways to progress through the planet. There is no easy route, but different ones may suit different gamers, depending on their style of play.
And so on to the factory stage, which is where the action really starts. Swarms of synthetic swine compete in an orgy of mechanical mayhem to bounce on your bonce.
In other words, they’re all out to get you.
It’s not just the robots either.
There are booby-traps everywhere.
Electrified floors, revolving doors, movey iny-outy spikey things and small black round things which I haven’t quite identified yet.
The robots themselves are fairly unpleasant. Some are content to just trundle about and take pot shots, others feel it their duty to make the affair very personal and encroach on the hero's "space” - these dudes are serious.
Some might actually be quite cute if they weren’t stuck on deadly intent. There is even one model which looks rather familiar in a forbidden planet sort of way.
Will 60 gallons be sufficient sir?
Collect jewels to enhance your firepower, food to increase your health and bombs just in case.
Blow up boxes and machinery for bonus points.
The 3D isometric levels are excellently detailed, but there is a distinct lack of scrolling - no bonus points awarded. Animation effects are not only excellent but extremely funny too.
A lot of care has obviously gone in to the design and execution of the graphics as a whole - it all looks and “feels" right. The lovely machines, the excellent glass cases that cover some hostages - everything not only looks right, but looks right in the some way as all the mad scientists' equipment did in the classics like Forbidden Planet and Plan 9 from outer space.
The evil Reptilon stage is a different receptacle of aquatic creaheroes for the possiblity of an alien invasion. It’s not just a game, it’s a safeguard for our very existence.
Colin Turner Sou„d mmm: Gameplay B Escape from the Planet of the Robot Monsters £24.99 SSI Overall - 82% Value 999 999 999 WER Bobby Robson's revenge
- -- !
LG3- _ * W mggm ¦ RBBI ; GOAAAALLLL! The tradition cry of foreign football commentators, and players of Kick Off, the fastest and best football game ever.
After experimenting with Extra Time, and playing around with Player Manager, Dino Dinner (sorry Dini), has perfected his art with Kick Off 2. Or has he? To be honest, no.
Now before you rush for the poison quills listen up, and hear the tale of how a brilliant program has become more complex, more difficult, more challenging, but not necessarily any better.
Kick Off 2 represents the cumulation of the developments seen in those other programs I’ve already mentioned. Thanks to this, it plays more like Player Manager than Kick Off, but without the management bits, naturally.
An interesting gimmick is the ability of three or four players to play against each other at the same time, with the aid of a joystick adapter. While creating frantic fun, the experience doesn’t really bear repeating as everyone plays in position, resulting in all fruitlessly chasing the ball.
Casting that ability aside, the Kick Off 2 player can indulge in a simple one-off game, a one-off game between two of eight international teams, an eight man interna- tional league, and eight man international knockout cup, or a special event (more of later).
On an options menu the player can decide to set the time limit (three mins per half minimum), the pitch type (normal, wet, plastic and soggy, each with its own pitch graphics), skill level of each team, tactics for each team, extra time in the cup competition, after touch or not (yes if you want to score against the good computer teams), league skill level, game speed, and choice of referee.
Quite a line up, and there are more options on other menus, including a nice one that allows you to change the strip design of a team, along with its colours.
On the simple one-off games, you can load your o vn tactics from Player Manager, as well as your own PM teams. While this means that your fave team can take on your mates using your own tactics, it unfortunately stops there.
While I can understand the limitation of not allowing your Player Manager team to take part in the league, cup or special event, it seems pretty stupid that the tactics SELECT COWIEA 4 V -* f * t * _S I I ' m . A * can’t be used. In fact, although you are offered a number of tactics from the options menu, you can only use the standard four in the league, cup and special events.
Disappointing isn't the word for it.
Actually, on the pitch the Player Manager gameplay has been tightened up so that you are unlikely to hit the ball over from six yards.
Unfortunately the goalkeepers are now far too good. There are just two ways of being fairly sure of scoring, but getting into position to do either is very difficult. This results in in goalkeeping errors deciding many games, and 0-0 draws proliferating when playing the computer.
Now this goes against the grain of what the original program was all about. The fact that that the player can't dribble properly, made the speed of play and scoring of goals the greatest attributes of Kick Off. The speed of Kick Off 2 is less, no longer blindingly fast, merely quick, and goals are hard to come by. Sure, it's far more of a challenge and there is great variety, but I feel something has been lost.
Meanwhile, the other changes on the pitch include variable strength corners, controllable goal- CONTINUE LORO kicks and thrown ins, the ability to change formation whenever the ball goes out of play, and Brazilian style taking of free kicks in front of goal. There's also an action replay to review any goals you do manage to score, and save them to disk to prove it later.
QUIT So there you are, there’s a lot packed into Kick Off 2, and with the prospect of up to 25 expansion disks from Anco, you could be playing it for years. However, scoring is hard, far too hard for any but experts, and there are still some aspects of the gameplay that I’d like io see changed. Kick Off 3 remains a possibility.
Until then I say go out and buy your Kick Off 2, it is a very good game for all my minor niggles.
Better than the original? I say no, hut then I have completely mastered that, so Kick Off 2 provides a much-needed challenge and,of course, a chance for England to be world champions.
Duncan Evans The special event menu allows new competitions to be loaded from expansion disk, but gives you the World Cup to be going on with.
All the right teams in all the right groups are on offer, and you can change them around if you wish.
Having played all of these teams it strikes me that Dino doesn’t have much clue about the strength of international football squads. The Italians are far too weak, and the Rumanians and Austrians particularly are too strong.
Kick Off 2 £19.95 Anco At least there is some balance and challenge for all skill levels in this competition. Getting Cameroon or the United Arab Emirates through the first round is an achievement, while players of Brazil should get at least to the quarter finals.
Souud | Another bug with this section of the game is that it rarely allows you to alter formation from 4-2-4, which is incredibly annoying.
Overall - 81% m wjwC mm ww i* ¦ MBW&r&.r ~ 43 lie' " 1 ~11 ¦ ~ '"' * ‘:i'jSr Strategy with a UZJSJLSISI .385 ¦.'¦:} V. .¦:* 1 OFFICER Place your men carefully - every one counts Man the barricades! If the Zulus get inside the compound you're finished THERE is a lot to be said for being in the right (or wrong) place at the right (or wrong) time.
It comes down to luck, which is a funny twisty turny thing. It can make you miss your bus, win at Spot the Ball or guarantee you a place in history as commanding officer of a hopelessly outnumbered garrison in the Zulu Wars.
The defence of Rorke's Drift is so famous that Michael Caine was in a film about it. However a little bit of scene setting wouldn’t be amiss.
During the Zulu Wars a bunch of guys got left behind to guard a supplies depot while another bunch of guys went on ahead to kill all the Zulus. Unfortunately the second bunch of guys got wiped out, which was, like, a major setback to their overall strategy. Now the remaining Zulus advanced on the supply depot (obviously because they had heard how good army biscuits were) and the first bunch of guys were in the custard.
With only 136 men, some of them too ill to move never mind hold a gun or bayonet a fuzzie- wuzzie, the prospect of holding the camp against at least a couple of thousand warriors seemed more than a little remote. But they did, no doubt due to skill, strategy and heroism. But again, perhaps a little bit ofluck was involved.
In this simulation you take control of the garrison just one hour before the first attack. The biscuit boxes and mealie bags have all been placed in position as they were on the day, all that remains for you to do is wait and place your men.
There are a whole range of actions each man can perform - different firing positions, moving at different rates, different attacks. All are chosen for each man from an animated menu - you don’t really need to look up the manual incessantly to find out what's going on.
Each individual man has his own characteristics which will effect how accurately he can shoot and his chances in hand to hand with the native hordes.
Each man must be given his orders Each man can be individually ordered to perform one of nine actions ----- ,dt-‘ 3*’ ! .* Wave upon wave of demented avengers hurl themselves at your meagre defences 94 PRIMATE . cast of thousands I'll meet you on the barricades Even the officers get in on the act Fighting ability, health and ammunition can be examined at any time AMIGA COMPUTING September 1990 43 ookhou YOU’RE slime, punk. And you've got nothing to lose.
Which is why in the near future criminals like you will have a simple choice - rot in jail or do a spot of bounty hunting.
The decision might seem cut and dried, more so when you discover that if you succeed in your mission you'll be granted your freedom. The only drawback is that no one has yet succeeded.
RESOLUTION 101 Crime's the disease - you're the antibiotic But everyone likes a challenge, and what's more the food isn’t very nice, so you trade your warm, comfy although admittedly extremely overcrowded, cell for a Search Destroy licence and ground skimmer with a light machine gun.
Sounds fair to me.
As in all the best plots, your mission is to clean up the city.
How you are expected to single- handedly clean up an entire city without so much as a mop is never actually explained, and so instead you spend your time trying to bring other lawbreakers to justice.
Four drug-running scoundrels have carved the area into quarters, and to gain your freedom you'll have to collect evidence and track them down.
In the true tradition of computer gaming, collecting evidence is just another way of saying “shoot everything”. Each drug baron has a large gang of cronies intent on making your life miserable.
Fortunately, for each one you (ahem) apprehend, you’ll earn some cash or some more evidence.
The cash comes in useful for buying bigger and nastier weapons, louder in-skimmer stereos with Dolby “c" and lots of other fun ways of enhancing of your lowly ground skimmer.
Of course, all this would be extremely so-so if the presentation wasn't first class. And thankfully it is.
The graphics are totally solid and are incredibly fast. As you whizz the mouse across the mat to change direction, the landscape hurtles by your nose. Add the customary copper graduation of colours as they fade into the distance and the overall effect is a one of great - and yet controllable - speed.
Your skimmer is fitted out with a CBTV link which has nothing to do with new multimedia devices from Commodore. Instead it shows you what your drug-running friend is thinking.
If he's grimacing and waving his fists about, he’s obviously thinking bad thoughts about you and or has missed Neighbours, If he is smiling and waving he’s thinking what a nice chap you are for messing up so badly and making his life a whole lot simpler, I can say for certain that a tune plays throughout the game, for unlike other publications, we only review the finished product here at Amiga Computing, With such a constant repetitive little ditty hammering away, you might think it would quickly get on your nerves very quickly.
I’m happy to say that even after long hours of research I still managed to forgo the usual disconnection of the sound leads. I’m not sure about Green though, because he would moan softly and stare at the ceiling every time I started playing.
Gameplay is the way it should be - challenging without being impossible. Extra levels get harder not only by supplying extra baddies to annihilate but also by subtle changes to the city. Large rivers for example, Glub, glub, glub.
Resolution 101 works well. The graphics are fast, and all 12levels of play enjoyable. If it came to spending the rest of my life in jail or playing Resolution 101,1 know which Td prefer.
John Kennedy Resolution 101 £24.95 Millenium Sound III III IT! | | i,„_: Graphics | Gameplay va e mmmmn Overall - 81% "GOOD CLEAN FUN BUT i HOPE THAT IF WE CONTACT LIFE FROM THE STARS, JEFF MINTER'S NOT THE AMBASSADOR! FOR A TENNER, IT'S GOOD VALUE!"
COMPUNET "BRILLIANT, PURE ARCADE ZAPPING... NO-ONE PRODUCES GAMES LIKE LLAMASOFT... TAKES ITS PLACE AMONGST MY FAVOURITE GAMES - MAGIC!"
STACTION "...GUARANTEED TO GIVE YOU A GOOD BLAST...JUST GOES TO PROVE THAT GOOD GAMES CAN GO ON FOREVER."
ST WORLD "GRAPHICALLY STUNNING, SONICALLY EXCELLENT...LEAVES YOU GASPING...ONE OF THE MOST PLAYABLE GAMES SO FAR FOR THE ST..." NEW ATARI USER "MINTER AT HIS VERY BEST - NON-STOP LASER FURY WITH ADDICTION GUARANTEED...A GAME TO KEEP YOUR MOUSE CREAKING INTO THE SMALL HOURS."
COMPUTER & VIDEO GAMES nrnofam 'S any . W*-. “ Ssaass - 135-Pa9e manua ' Voted ST Budget Game of 1989, Super GRIDRUNNER is now in AMIGA format - No mere conversion but better than ever, with
• 32 waves selectable (of 64, a different challenge on each one!)
• larger screen play area
• even greater playability £10.95!
From your AMIGA retailer or direct from LLAMASOFT 49 MOUNT PLEASANT TADLEY HANTS RG26 6BN Tel: 0734 814478 Fax: 0734 816313 TmT T1 f~ T Typing in the Fast Lane OT very many people know L this, but in my spare time I am a grand prix driver for Ferrari.
I’ve even been known to combine my daytime job as an investigative journalist for The Guardian with racing by using a Z88 portable while tustling with my old mates Prost and Mansell at Monaco.
Not easy with thick gloves on 1 can assure you, but thankfully my excellent co-ordination, allied to 100 w.p.m typing, produces error-free copy every time.
Obviously with a background such as this the chaps at Amiga Computing had little choice but to offer me the latest driving game to come out of Activision for review.
This superb conversion of a Sega coin-op is the hottest speed sensation on the circuit (myself not withstanding) so I was eager to test my mettle against it.
Now, here's a little competition for you. There were only two accurate or honest statements in those opening paragraphs - can you guess what they were ? No ? I’ll tell you then. Hot Rods is the latest driving game to come out of Activision, and it is a Sega conversion.
Super Sprint players, or Badlands - EE i f. • • :': kv- • players if you want to be more up to date, will immediately recognise the 2D top down graphical style of the game, allied to four large cars, any of which can be human controlled. Yup, up to four can play if you have one of those Microdeal adaptors that nobody stocks so you have to go to a computer show to buy one.
The objective is to race around the track (bit of a tricky concept there I know) and finish first or second to continue on to the next level. Running out of gas naturally precludes you from further competition. If playing against three computer teams, the gas factor is the only one to really worry about, as finishing first or (more commonly) second is relatively easy.
The difference between this game and the Super Sprints of old, and the Badlands that will be released next January, is that the screen scrolls in Hot Rods. Should you be at the back when the screen
- which follows the race leader, of course - does another lurch
forwards then you lose valuable gas (which can be collected
from cans around the course anyway) and are dumped into second
Due to the proliferation of gas canisters, it is worth the sacrifice to get yourself promoted in the race order if you happen to be losing. With three or four human players you find people racing backwards just so that they can get repositioned in second place with the flag approaching.
In between these races of total silliness there are extras which can be added on to the car to help it hold the road in certain weather conditions, and basically make it go faster and sustain more collisions. Unfortunately you can't add weaponry to shoot people.
The trouble with Hot Rods, besides the idiocy of the repositioning business, the feeble squeeks from the speakers, and the depressingly bland graphics, is that it is just far too easy. After 17 or so levels, on only my second go at that, they start to repeat themselves as well.
With three friends taking part it does become more competitive in a brutish and crude sort of way, but as a one player game Hot Rods can only be considered as a cure for insomnia. Even if you can’t drive a formula one racing car while using a Z88 1 think you’ll find this far too easy.
Duncan Evans Graphics j | 1TT1 I I 11 l~ Gameplay mm m; ¦. M E T Overall - 65% Hot Bod £19.95 Activision Value AMIGA 500 + FREE SOFTWARE!
SK MARKETING ?
I COMPUTER SUPPLIES ? Amiga 500 + TV Modulator ? Batman the Movie ? New Zealand Story ? Interceptor ? Deluxe Paint II ? Dust Cover and Mouse Mat ONLY £375 Inc. VAT!
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500 Including;’ Mouse, Workbench. Utilities, Manuals, Tutorial, Modulator SKM price .. £355 DOT MATRIX PRINTERS Star LC10 . E173 Star LC10 Colour .£213 Panasonic KX-P1124 ..... £280 Panasonic KX-P1180 .....£190 CLASS OF THE 90's ? Amiga 500 + TV Modulator ? Midi Master Interface ? Deluxe Paint II ? Publishers Choice ? Maxi Plan 500 ? Superbase Personal ? DR-T’S Midi Rec. Studio ? Amiga Logo ? BBC Emulator + Mouse Mat ? 10 Blank Discs + Disc Wallet ONLY £539 Inc. VAT!
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Amiga Artist .£18.45 Beginners Guide to the Amiga .£16.95 Compute's 1st Book of Amiga .£16.95 Compute's 2nd Book of Amiga .....£16.95 Elementary Amiga BASIC .£14.95 Inside Amiga Graphics ......£16.95 Inside the Amiga with C 2nd Ed ...£20.95 Kickstart Guide to the Amiga .£13.95 Kids & the Amiga . £15.95 More Tips & Tricks for Amiga £18.45 Programmers Guide to the Amiga £23.95 LONDON’S LEADING Haast DEALER 9 out of 10 .. £29.95
Animator Images ...... £89,95 Animator .... £39.95 Animator 3D ....£99.95 Arena Accounts .£149.95 C-Light .. £39.95 Comic Setter ..... £44.95 Deluxe Paint II .£49.95 Deluxe Paint III £64.95 Deluxe Print 2 .. £39.95 Deluxe Music Construction £54.95 Deluxe Productions ....£99.95 Deluxe Photolab ... £54.95 Deluxe Video ......£65.95
Digipaint III £54.95 GFA Basic Compiler ...£39.95 GFA Basic Interpreter III ..£39.95 Hisoft Devpac V2 ..... £42.95 Hisoft Lattice C .. £175.95 Home Accounts . £22.95 Home Office Kit .£99.95 Instant Music ...£21.95 K-Data ..... ..£34.95 K-Gadget £19.95 K-Seka £29.95 K-Spread
III ... £75.00 K-Text .£14.95 Kind Words V2 £33 95 Mailshot Plus ...£40.95 Music X .. £169.00 Photon Paint 2 . £54.95 Prodata ......£59.95 Protext .... £64.95 Publishers Choice .....£74.95 Quartet .£39.95 Starter Kit ,.£54.00 Superbase
Personal ...£54.95 Superbase Personal II £65.95 Superplan ... £69.95 TV Show ... £59.95 Word Perfect ..£185.00 Workbench 1,3 £15.00 Zoetrop 5 in 1 package) ...£79.95 LEISURE SOFTWARE
- F19 Stealth Fighter ...£17 45 688 Attack Sub
£17.45 'Anarchy .... £14.90 Ant Heads Data
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World Cup Soccer 90..... . £17.45 .£17 45 Xenon 11 Megablast ... .£17.45 £16.90 X-Out ... ......£14 90 Web ol Terror .. .£14.90 LATEST RELEASES "Amos-Game Creator . . £34.95 'Kid Gloves .. E1590 BatlJe of Britain Finest Hour) . £20.90 Magnum 4 ... £21.90 Blade ol Steel ...... .. £23 .90 'Matrix Marauders £15 90 'Blade Warrior . .. £15.90 £17 45 'Bomber ..... £21.90 E23 9Q 'Breach
2 .... ..£17.45 £16 45 ..£13.90 £14.90 ..£17.45 £17.45 "Cartoon Capers......__ . .. £14.90 Qix ...... ...... £23.90 Champions of Krynn ..... , £20.90 Resolution 101________________ £17.95 'Chrcno Quest II ... ..£19.90 Rings ol Medusa .. £16.45 ..£17 45 £17 45 ‘Damocles .. £16 90 Skid; .. £14.90 .. £23.90 £17.45 £13 90 £17 45 Everton f.C. Intelligensia £14.90 Stellar Crusace ..... £23.90 Fire and Brimstone . £17.45 Teenage Mutant
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SYNCRO EXPRESS IS A HIGH SPEED DISK DUPLICATION SYSTEM THAT WILL PRODUCE COPIES OF YOUR DISK IN AROUND 50 SECONDS!* Syncro Express requires a second drive & works by controlling it as a slave device & ignoring the ST or Amiga disk drive controller chip whdTeby hi h speeds & great data accuracy are achieved.
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ORDERS NORMALLY DESPATCHED WITHIN 48 Hrs. ALL CHEQUES POSTAL ORDERS MADE PAYABLE TO... DATEL ELECTT OfllCST LTD., _ GOVAN ROAD, FENTON INDUSTRIAL ESTATE, FENTON, STOKE-ON-TRENT, ST4 2RS, ENGLAND TECHNICAL CUSTOMER SERVICE 0782 744324 It’s a Really Polished Game weapon), blow up (!) Or turn into a pool of acid.
Fans of the books will be glad to see Dragonfear make an appearance. This morale killer emanates from mature dragons but is only really troublesome to low level characters.
Finally, your choice of characters makes a difference. For example, only if you have a Solamnic Knight in your party will you be allowed to play a particular subadventure (the prize being some fancy plate armour).
Krynn is a vast improvement over the earlier games which, in this fast developing area, are now looking creaky. Pool of Radiance had boundless freedom and very little plot while Curse of the Azure Bonds had a good plot but little freedom. Krynn has both plus, unusually for an SSI game, no little intrigue.
There are a number of sub-plots to draw you into the game, there’s even a romance in there!
The game is pretty big, coming on three disks along with a 60- page Adventurer’s journal, 12-page instruction book, reference pamphlet and poster - value for money or what?
The market for RPGs is split down the middle. There are those RPGs which concentrate on puzzles, interaction, etc (Ultima) and those RPGs that concentrate on hack’n slash and other action elements.
Champions of Krynn falls into the latter category - and as such offers the highest quality production and most professional game design yet see in its class.
Addictive, detailed, with a balanced combat magic system that can be recommended to combat aficionados, Krynn is SSFs best yet. I can’t wait for the next!
Paul Rigby Champions of Krynn £29.99 SSIIU.S. Gold Graphics | j | | | jj Gamoplay j Overall - 91% FIRSTLY, I must emphasise that Champions of Krynn is not the sequel to Curse of the Azure Bonds, even though it utilises an enhanced engine from the Forgotten Realms series. Krynn is, in fact, the first in the Dragonlance series.
The story starts after the War of the Lance has finished. The dragon armies are planning revenge for that defeat. Their aim is to quash the forces of good with the help of the Dark Queen thus making her, and evil, total rulers of Krvnn.
Improvements and changes to the Forgotten Realms series are as follows. Firstly, the magic system has been changed. It is controlled by three moons, each representing a god (good, neutral and evil).
You’ll need to choose carefully as each moon brings its own benefits due to the mage’s power varying with the waxing and waning of the moons. That said, though, you are unable to choose an evil mage in Krynn.
So along with the need to memorise and study spells, the chances of mages dominating the game are reduced - a good thing as the AD&D system is particularly susceptible to this. The gods also influence clerics, who’ll need to choose a divinity to receive specialised deity powers.
Combat, although important, has been re-designed to a more balanced level. There are not as many random encounters, the numbers of monsters reach about 10 instead of the previous 30 to 40. In addition, the monster’s hit points are reduced so they are easier to kill.
There are plenty of tough individuals though - don’t think you’ve got off lightly.
An interesting wrinkle in this modified system is that certain characters produce new game elements. Kenders (a cheerful thief- type chappie) replace HalfLings and Solamnic Knights Teplace Paladins.
The former have the unique ability to taunt an opponent, while the latter have the unique personality trait of giving away a portion of their valuables - noble fellows that they are stupid, but noble).
Then there are the Draconians.
Surely this bunch of critters are the programmer’s revenge, because when they are killed they either turn to stone (Trapping your nrnTmTT-iPTi mu j-tit nrn Fetch me a shrubbery OVER the years Sierra has established a reputation for itself as a quality programming house, producing graphic adventures in its own unique style.
Game content aside, users have a love hate relationship with the Sierra style - cinematic opening sequences and scene setting, occasional use of animation, mouse controlled character movement.
But love it or hate it, you can’t deny it is one of the elements that makes a Sierra product something distinctive and special.
Sierra’s latest offering, Conquest of Camelot, involves you taking on the role of the legendary King Arthur in his quest for the equally legendary Holy Grail.
The games designer, Christy Marx, tells us that the King Arthur story is an unfathomable mixture of myths, legends and truth, and that her own interpretation draws on a number of these not strictly within the. Traditional Arthurian set.
In practical terms, this makes for a game which feels more rounded than the usual myth legend based adventure, providing a fuller background against which to set the all important task of Grail- hunting (it also means it's not too easy for anyone who knows their Mallory), The game comes on a.hefty six disks - the whole of the first disk being used for the usual Sierra- style scene setting. And so. Without further ado..... As king of all you survey, life can never be problem free. In your case, the problems are close to home and start with the forbidden love between Gwenhyver your Queen and
that famed knight of the round table, Launcelot. Your forgiving and tolerant nature has meant that you have turned a blind eye to their shenanegins, but their love has cast blight on your soul and caused a curse to fall on your kingdom.
Fruit has withered on the vine, grain dies of disease and springs and wells turn foul. Your people are unable to farm, and are hungry
- they cry out to you for a miracle, Meanwhile, a vision of the
Holy Grail appears to you one day, and you send a trio of
knights after it.
They fail to return and, after a time, you set off yourself in search of both them and the Grail.
Needless to say, the fate of the entire kingdom rests on your success (or failure).
Your quest begins in Camelot Castle, but soon extends to the South of England and later throughout Europe and the Middle East. That's a lot of locations (17 in England alone), and a lot of action
- hence the six disks. The first step is to successfully consult
Merlin who will furnish you with the map you need to make start
on the English part of the search.
You will need to prove your skills with the trusty Excalibur if you are to succeed in your quest, but brute force alone will not be enough. You will also need to understand matters like herbalism and the language of the flowers to help you along the way.
Many adventures look very pretty, and have appealing storylines, but its the parser that really makes or breaks an adventure. The authors of Conquest of Camelot are to be praised for their efforts in this department.
Consider the following. There I was, in Camelot castle, trying for a quick prav for spiritual guidance before starting the Quest. I saw a couple of bowls on the altar, and decided to “Examine bowls”. I was very helpfully informed, though I got the distinct impression that someone, somewhere was having a joke on me, that “They are not bowls. They are altar candles”.
Scoring operates a little differently to usual in this game. You score three different types of points
- for Skill (max of 368), Wisdom (max of 293) and Soul (max of
This system works quite well, except that unlike in previous games, scores are not continuously displayed on the work screen.
Instead you have to call up the menu bar and access scores from there. And as if to add insult to injury, scores are the bottom option on the furthest right menu.
Remember that handy invention, the 'keystroke alternative"? Well, for most of the menu options, there is a keystroke alternative, but, you’ve guessed it, not for getting a peek at your score. This makes life very tedious for those of us who want to keep track of the increments we gain from particular actions.
Conquest of Camelot will be a long time a-solving, even for the most hardened adventurer. It’s a mighty game, and one which yet again reaffirms Sierra’s position at the top of the adventuring tree, Sandra Vogel Conquest of Camelot £39.99 Sierra Aura Graphics ('amRp|ay My&s-n i i i 11 Val- HKE Overall - 83% BRUTAL PRICES!
WHY NOT OR JOIN EUROPES BIGGEST ADVENTURE CLUB NRG (Energy magazine) News. Reviews and Graphics. Screen shots, pack shots, charts, latest Giga-Savers. 40 colour reviews in every issue. Night City Cybertoon and the kill-or-die adventures of the Cyberpunk NRG street gang - It's Cyber-fantastic! NRG bi-monthly to all Special Reserve members Release Schedules, sent bi-monthly, and updated catalogue information.
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Refunds or change of order on request if delayed. C fa fjfl No Obligation to buy. Over 30,000 have joined! “ v ¦ Amiga Software Sega Megadrive .1699 15 99 29 49 T5 99 1659 i5 99 1499 15 49 799 1649 1599 ' ¦ .16.49
16. 49 .21 99 24 99 15 99 1299 999
18. 49 1349
15. 99 1999 16 49 1549 1249 .15 99 1599 .1999 24 49 .2449 1599 15
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15. 09 28 49
18. 99 16 49
15. 49 1949 1849 2849
15. 99 1899 15 99 13 49 16 49 1599 1649
25. 49 16 49 1699 1299 £29.99 Atari Lynx Official UK Version. In
IF THE GAME YOU ARE LOOKING FOR IS NOTIN THIS LIST PLEASE CHECK THE MEGA-SAVERS BELOW. PHONE US ON THE SALES LINE FOR A WIDER SELECTION.
Amiga Mega-Savers ADVENTURE CONSTR’ KIT ......13.99 ALTERED BEAST ...7.49 ARCHIPELAGOS ......6.99 ARKANOtD .10.49 AUSTERUTZ (BATTLE OF) ..11,99 BAAL . ...6.99 BALLISTIC .6.49 BALLYHOO (INFOCOM) .6.99 BARBARIAN 2 (PALACE) .....9.49 BATTLE SQUADRON .13.49 BLACK CAULDRON 7.99 BLACK LAMP ..5.99 BLOOD MONEY ......7.49 BLOODWYCH ..7.49 BUGGY
BOY .....9.49 CAPTAIN BLOOD ......5.99 CARRIER COMMAND 7,99 CHESSMASTER 2000 8.49 CHRONOQUEST2 ...9.49 CLOUD KINGDOMS 7.99 CONFLICT EUROPE 6.99 CONTINENTAL CIRCUS ....11.49 CORRUPTION (M SCROLLS) ......9.99 CUTTHROATS (INFOCOM) ..11.99 DRAKKHEN ..1399 DUNGEON MASTER (1 MEG) ......9.99 DYNAMITE DUX ......7.49 EDDIE EDWARDS SUPER SKI......4.99 ELIMINATOR (1.2 AMIGAS) ..4 49 ELITE
...9.99 EYEOFHORUS ......5.99 F16 FALCON ..12.99 F16 FALCON MISSION DISK 1......7.99 FISH! (M SCROLLS) 9.99 FOOTBALL MANAGER 2 .EXP. .10.99 FUN SCHOOL 2 (2-6. 6-3 or 8+) ...7.99 GUILD OF THIEVES ...9.99 HARD DRIVIN' ..9.99 HIT DISKS VOLUME 2 .8.49 HOSTAGES .....7.49 HYBRIS 5.99 INDIANA JONES ACTION ..11.49 INTERNATIONAL KARATE . ......7.49 IT CAME f t. DESERT (1 MEG) ...10.99
JINXTER (M SCROLLS) .9 99 KICK OFF .5.99 KID GLOVES .....7 49 KING OF CHICAGO .11,99 KRISTAL B.99 KULT . 7,49 LANCELOT (LEVEL 9) .8.99 LASER SQUAD ...7.99 LEATHER GODDESSES .9,99 LEATHERNECKS ......5.99 LOMBARD RAC RALLY .....10.49 LORDS OF THE RISING SUN ......9.99 MENACE ......4.99 MICROPROSE SOCCER .....8.49 MILLENIUM
2.2 ..6.99 NEVER MIND .....6.49 NEW ZEALAND STORY .9.49 NIGEL MANSELL S GR PRIX ......5.99 NORTH AND SOUTH 10.49 PACLANO .5.99 PACMANIA .6.43 PAWN (M SCROLLS) 9.99 PHOTON PAINT ..6.49 POWER DRIFT ..4.99 PURPLE SATURN DAY .7.49 ROCKET RANGER ...- 8.99 SHADOW OF THE BEAST .....9.99 SHOGUN (INFOCOM) 8.99 SIM CITY
.13.99 SKYCHASE .....6.49 SKYFOX .. .5.49 SPEEDBALL .....6.49 STARGLIDER ...6.49 STARGUDER2 ......11.49 SUPER WONDERBOY .7.99 SWORD OF SODAN 7.99 TEENAGE QUEEN STRIP POKER 8.49 THE PRESIDENT IS MISSING ......5.99 THREE STOOGES (CINEMAWARE) 6.99 THUNDERBIRDS ......5.99 TIME & MAGIK (LEVEL 9) .....7.99 TRIAD 2 (MENACE. BAAL. TETRIS) 7.99 TRIVIAL PURSUIT ...8.49 TURBO CUP .....6
49 TV SPORTS (U S) FOOTBALL ...11.99 TV SPORTS BASKETBALL ......11.99 UMS UNIVERSAL MILITARY SIM.. ,7.49 VIRUS ...6.49 VOYAGER .9.49 WATERLOO ..10.49 WHO FRAMED ROGER RABBIT -9,99 XENON 2. MEGABLAST .6.99 KICK OFF 5.99 POWERDRIFT 4.99 ELITE 9.99 688 ATTACK SUB ADIDAS CHAMP FOOTBALL AMOS IGAMES CREATOR) .
ANARCHY B S S JANE SEYMOUR ... BACK TO THE FUTURE 2.
BACKGAMMON PRO...... BALANCE OF POWER 1990 BARDS TALE 1 . BARDS TALE 2 .... BATMAN THE MOVIE ... BATTLE OF BRITAIN . BATTLECHESS ... BATTLEHAWKS 1S42 .... BATTLEMASTER BEAST 2 . BEYOND ZOOK (INFOCOM) BL ADE WARRIOR .. BLOCK OUT ... BLOODWYCH DATA DISK .
BOMBER .. BOMBER MISSION DISK BREACH 2(1 MEG) ..... BRIDGE PLAYER 2150 BUDOKAN . CABAL ... CARTOON CAPERS .. CASTLE MASTER ..... CHASE H O ..... I CHESS CHAMPION 2175 ..... COOONAME ICEMAN | COLONEL S BEQUEST COLORADO . COLOSSUS X CHESS ..... CONQUEROR .. CONQUESTS OF CAMELOT CRACK DOWN .. CYBERBALL. DAMOCLES ...... DATA STORM CEJA VU 2 ...... DELUXE MUSIC CONST SET DELUXE PAINT III
...... DOUBLE DRAGON 2 DRAGON NINJA DRAGON S LAIR ;1 MEG) DRAGONS BREATH ..... DRIVING FORCE DUNGEON MASTER EDITOR DYNASTY WARS ..... DYTER07 .. E- MOTION .... EAST VS WEST Elvira ENCHANTER (INFOCOM) ESCAPE FROM SINGES CASTLE ESCAPE FROM THE PLANET OF THE ROBOT MONSTERS Fl6 COMBAT PILOT .... Ft9 STEALTH FIGHTER ..... F29 RETALIATOR FALCON MISSION DISK 2 FERRARI FORMULA 1 FINAL BATTLE ... .
CIRE AND BRIMSTONE ..... ‘LIGHT SIMULATOR 2 FlIMBOS QUEST ...... flood .... FOOTBALL DIRECTOR 2 FULL METAL PLANETE......:549 FUN SCHOOL 3 12-5 YRS} .15.49 FUN SCHCOL 3 15-7 YRS) 15.49 FUN SCHCOL 3 7- YRS} 15 49 FUTURE WARS .17 49 GAUNTLET 2 . 7.99 GHOULS N GHOSTS ......16.49 GRAND PFIX CIRCUIT ...16 49 GRAVITY 16 49 GREG NORMAN S GOLF . 16.99 GUNSHIP ...... 15.99 HAMMERFST ..15.99 HARLEY DAVIDSON . .15 49 HERO'S QUEST (1 MEG} ______21 99 HEROES
... 1899 HOLLYWOOD HufNX .....19.99 HOME OFFICE KIT I KIND WORDS 2 0. MAXI PLAN.
INFO FILE PACESETTER.
ARTISTS CHOICE. FONTS) 86 49 HOUND OF SHADOW . .16.99 IMPERIUM ..16.99 INDIANA JCNES ADVENTURE 16.59 INFESTATION ..15.49 INFIDEL (INFOCOM) .....16.49 INTERNATIONAL 3D TENNIS 16.45 IRON LORD ......16.49 IT CAME FROM THE DESERT DATA DISK (l MEG) .... 10 49 ITALY 1990 (US GOLD) 16 99 JACK NICKLAUS GOLF ... .1649
J. NICKLAUS GOLF DATAl 8 99 JUMPING JACKSON ... 12 49
KHALAAN .... 15 99 KICK OFF 2 ___________12
49 KICK OFF EXPANSION DiSK .7 49 KILLING GAME SHOW 16 49 KINO
WORDS 2.0 (W r) . 29 99 KINGS QUEST 1.2 6 3 .21.49
KINGS QUEST 4 iSIERRA} 2149 KLAX
.12 99 KNIGHTS Of CRYSTALLION
19 99 LAST NINJA 2 16 49
l. FADORBOARD BIRDIE 16 49 LEISURE SUIT LARRY 1 18 99 LEISURE
SUIT LARRY 2 . 2149 LEISURE SUIT LARRY 3 .....24 49 LIFE AND
DEATH .15.49 MANIAC MANSION 16.99
MAVIS BEACON TYPING ......17.99
MIDWINTER ......13 99 MIGHT AND MAGIC 2 19 99
MOONMIST | INFOCOM) ...15 99 MUSIC X
......99 99 NECRONOM ...16 99
NINJA WARRIORS ......16 49 OPERATION THUNDERBOLT 15 99
PAPERBOY ...12.99 PHANTASIE 3 (SSI)
.....17.49 PHOTON PAINT 2.0 (1 MEG) 49 99 PIPEMANIA
.15.99 PLAYER MANAGER
.....12.49 POLICE QUEST 1 (SIERRA). 15 99 POLICE QUEST
2(1 MEG) 21.99 POPULOUS 5 6*9 PROMISED LANDS
DATA 7 99 POWERDROME . 16 49 PRO TENNIS TOUR
....16.49 PROTEXT W PROCESSOR .64.99 PUBLISHERS CHOICE
DTP KIND WORDS 2. PAGESETTEF 1 2. ARTISTS CHOICE. FONTS.
LASER SCRIPT! (1 MEGl S999 RAINBOW ISLAND ... 5599 RAMROD 16 99 RED STORM RISING ......1&49 RESOLUTION 101 .....15 99 RISK ...12 49 ROBOCOP ......15 49 RORKES DRIFT 15.99 ROTOX .....16.99 SCRABBLE DE LUXE .....12.99 SEASTALKER (INFOCOM! ...15.99 SECRET AGENT SLY SPY .15.99 SHADOW WARRIORS ......15.99 SHADOWGATE .15 49 SHERMAN M4 ..... 16 99 SHOOT EM UP CONST KIT 18 49 SIM CITY TERRAIN EDITOR 9.99 SPACE ACE .....27 49 SPACE QUEST 1 iSlERRA) 16 49 SPACE QUEST 2 iSlERRA)
.16 49 SPACE QUEST 3 (SIERRA) .2149 SPACE ROGUE 17 49 SPELLBREAKER (INFOCOM) 21 49 STARBLADE ......16.49 STARCROSS (INFOCOM)......21,49 STARFLIGHT ...16.99 STARTER KIT IKIND WORDS 2 0. FUSION PAINT. SUPER SKI. CRAZY CARS. MINIATURE GglF| 43 49 STEVE DAVIS SNOOKER... 12 49 STORM ACROSS EUROPE .19 59 STRYX ....1259 STUNT CAR RACER .... 15.59 TEAM YANKEE . 5 7 49 TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA (HERO) TURTLES 24 99 THE KEEP .. 16 49 THE LOST PATROL ...15.' THE PLAGUE ...16, THEME PARK
THIRD COURIER ..15 99 THUND6RSTRIKE .16.49 TIE BREAK ... 15 99 TOWER OF BABEL ....16 49 TREASURETRAP ... 1599 TRIAD VOL 3 .. 19 49 TURRICAN ......12 49 ULTIMAS .17 99 UMS CIVIL WAR DISK ......9 49 UMS VIETNAM DISK ...... 9 49 UNINVITED ..15 49 UNTOUCHABLES ......15 99 VENUS THE FLY TRAP ......13 49 VETTE (CORVETTE) ....18 49 WAR IN MIDDLE EARTH , . 15.49 WARHEAD ......15.99 WAYNE GRETZKY HOCKEY 15.99 WINGS (CINEMAWARE) ......5 8.99
WlSHSRlNGER (INFOCOMi 5 5 99 WITNESS (INFOCOM) 9 99 WORLD BOXING MANAGER 12 99 WORLD CUP ITALIA 90 ......12.49 X-OUT .....1249 XENOM0RPH .15.49 ZOMBI .... 16.49 ZORK 1 (INFOCOM) 16.49 Amiga 5l2K RAM upqrade 44 99 Cumana 3.5' 6B0K disk drive .
.79.99 Star LC10NLQ printer 109 gg Printer Lead 9 99 Competition Pro Extra joystick 14 99 Quick oy Jet Fighter |0ySlick 14 99 Konix Megablaster joystick 5 99 Naksna mouse with mat
32. 99 Mouse mat . .....4.99 Megadrive * Altered
Beast J Joy pad + extra Joypad FREE Megadrive Software Arnold
Palmer Golf...27.49 Revenge of Shincbi 27.49 Forgorter Worlds
. 27 49 Space Harrier 2 . 27.43 Gnouls‘n Ghosts ...34.99
Super Hang On ......27.43 Goden Axe ... .27.49 Super
Thuidertsiade 27.49 LastBastls 27.49 Thunoedorce 2
......27.49 M slic Defender 27.49 Truxton ......27.49 Rambo 3
23 99 World Cud Italia 90. .23.99 Lynx colour
handheld, mains i t)Q QQ poiverpack, California Games Ivvivv
Lynx Software Blue Lightn ng 23.49 Gales of Zenoecon 23.49
Chips Challenge ...23.49 Gauntlet 3 .....26.99 ¦ J!
SHADOW of the BEAST 9.99 Jt.
Alt the benefits of Special Reserve plus:
• Confidential. Our 32 page bi monthly magazine is essential
reading for those interested in adventures or role playing
Written by experts, Confidential has covered everything from How to Host a Murder to Which Ft6 Flight Simulator? Our agents, led by the Master Spy known as “The Boss Upstairs", seek out the secrets of RPG’s, FRP’s. MUG’S.
PBM's, Leisure Suit Larry. The Russians. Elvira... & more.
Note: You can subscribe to Confidential without joining the clubs for £15,00 (UK) by entering "CONFIDENTIAL SUBSCRIPTION” on the order form.
‘Myth. Written by Magnetic Scrolls authors of The Pawn, exclusively for members of Official Secrets. Myth is a small adventure set in Ancient Greece. In it you’ll meet The Ferryman, cheat Death and face the nine-headed Hydra. Myth includes the famous Magnetic Scrolls parser and optional stunning EGA graphics and is included in the price of membership.
Amiga Format said: "An excellent adventure... witty, cunning and just plain good fun! (f you liked Fish! You'll probabiy like this, because they're very similar in style: you may even prefer Myth, it's that good1" Myth Ratings: Crash 91%, CU 90%. Amiga Format 87%, TGM 85%
• Drakkhen or Sim City (rrp 29.99) Of Drakkhen, ST Action said:
“Drakkhen really impressed me.
For me, the game was a subtle cross between my all-time favourite, Dungeon Master, and the SSI fantasy role-playing games. The graphics are superb.... Overall, Drakkhen is an excellent RPG .. ;- .v ' one that will take quite some time to beat” 4l ’ * . .4 and Zero said: "Absolutely brilliant".
Of Sim City, ACE said: “Sim City is a politician's - or a gamesplayer's • r ~ dream .comparisons spring immediately to mind with Populous but Sim City seems to have much more depth...." and | C&VG said: "Sim City is utterly fab1'
• Help-Line, Manned weekdays until 8pm and Saturdays - with
solutions to most adventures.
AMIGA 500 Computer ...399.99 Two Jet Fighter Joysticks FREE and F29 Retalialor. Rainbow Island. Deluxe Painl 2,
E. F.l.P.o.t, Robot Monsters. TV Modulator & Mouse.
PHILIPS 8833 stereo monitor ......249.99 PHILIPS TV TUNER for monitor......49.99 MONITOR STAND fits over Amiga... 19.99 Postcode Tel. _ Computer _ *5.257*3.5' Payable to: Special Reserve or Official Secrets
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Special Reserve £6 UK, £8 EEC. £10 World or Official Secrets £29.99 UK. 234.99 EEC, £39.99 World with Drakkhen I I and Myth I-1 Annual UK Official Secrets Membership including 6 issues of Confidential, Myth. Drakkhen or Sim City. Help line and Special Reserve membership.
With Sim City I I ...... ~ and Myth I-1 AmiGA3 PLEASE ENTER MEMBERSHIP FEE Name & Address Item Item Item_ Software Prices induce UK or EEC Postage World software orders please add £i .00 per item.
For non-software items such as |oyst(ck or blank d sks please add 10% EEC or 25% World (or carnage.
Overseas orders must be paid by credit card Credit card expiry date_ ‘CHEQUE *POSTAL ORDER *ACCESSrVISA Ti ACK in the old days, before world leaders who are too wimpish to start a war (good on them), storm clouds regularly gathered over the peaceful plains of Europe. Wars were about as regular as the Olympics and about as casual.
The 20th century changed all that. No more popping off to war for a few years and coming home rich and famous. No more letters to The Times complaining that the tea supply had dried up. At last mankind had discovered total war in all it’s gore.
One man most fondly remembered for giving this country powdered eggs, gas masks, the Blitz, evacuated children, air raid shelters, one rasher of bacon a week and Messerschmitt shoulder was Hitler. Now you, too, can stand in the shoes of a man who more than any other in history had a real chance of ruling the world. Storm Across Europe covers the entire war period from the failed Munich accord to the sacking of Berlin by allied troops. The game is divided into periods of three months during which you can manoeuvre your troops and mercilessly attack weakly defended positions causing
great loss of life.
Three players are represented by the game: Germany, the Allies and Russia (who presumably weren’t as allied as the rest of the Allies). This means that up to three people can play with the computer playing the role of any country left over with the exception of Germany, which must be played by a human - the strategy algorithms obviously aren’t up to being a despotic fascist. It takes a human to do that.
Naval power is very well simulated. Actually it is only adequately handled, but that makes it superior to most other strategy games of this type. U-boat fleets will patrol the Atlantic putting paid to the Lend-Lease scheme and troop transports are absolutely vital in the Med.
Every year the production targets for each country must be reset. This includes research, which can increase the effectiveness of all your units and develop new weapons. The penalty for this is resources - the more you spend on research the less you have left to re-enforce your army. What you do here is probably more important than your strategy in the field.
Of course, resources include raw materials, your population and the number of factories, and these come from capturing territory, The real strategy to this game is the effective management of the materials involved, rather than the fighting itself.
The order-giving system is easy enough to understand and use, but it is best to approach the order phase in a systematic way to be sure you don’t miss anything out.
Storm Across Europe £24.95 SSUU.S. Gold Overall - 77% Detail is missing on the actual units - only large armies and garrisons are taken into account, but this must be considered against the scope of the game. On the whole there is not much scope for cunning Rommel Monty type tactics, just management of large armies battering against each other. And the only time tactical skills are severely tested is during a waterborne invasion.
The lack of unit tactics makes this not one for those who consider themselves the re-incarnation of General Patton, more a neo- Hitlerite interested in the management of a world domination machine.
Lucinda Orr I HAVE never understood the fascination that hackneyed plot writers have for all things animal like, This predeliction borders on the obsessive when the authors are Japanese, and becomes almost a fetish when the turgid prose acts as guideline for a leapy leapy, jumpy, jumpy ninja game.
Ninja Spirit is the latest follower of this path, casting you as Tsukikage, the spirit of the great white wolf. Why, is what i want to know? Don’t they realise that wolves are horribly smelly, moult all over the place, have fetid breath and slobber continuously ?
Is this a good role model for a ninja? Or anyone bar a Millwall supporter? No, I think not. Yet in Ninja Spirit you are the spirit of this wolf, intent on slicing and dicing the beasts in the bowels of the earth. And their masters, too.
Very laudable I’m sure. Right, just a mo while put my brain in a jar for half an hour and plav the game.
This conversion of an Irem coinop starts with you, Mr Ninja, strolling along the boardwalk (but nowhere near the sea), waving your shiny new sword around menacingly. Along come balding ninjas, leaping enthusiastically through the air, only to be skewered on your weapon.
The screen scrolls along sideways quite respectably, and a Far East tune throbs from the speakers.
Your armament is not limited to the sword, with which you can strike a number of poses, but includes throwing stars, throwing axes, and a retractable grapple on a rope.
Strangely enough the grapple is one of the more deadly weapons, if a little slow. It's main advantage is in blocking spears and other incoming missiles, while stretching out to disembowel your opponent.
After collecting the soul of a ninja (once you’ve gutted a particular one, that is) your weapons become far more effective, but unfortunately you also receive the attentions of yet more ninjas. These ones seem to squat in mid air,fading in and out of view while attempting to stick you with a spear.
These chaps wouldn't be so much of a problem if it wasn’t for the earth burrower who wriggles along underneath the boardwalk, perpetually spiking you from below. Only the sword can he used to stab downwards and finish him, which involves much frantic weapon swapping, and usually death if a mid-air ninja appears while all this is going on.
Death results in you being replaced at the beginning of the section you were traversing at the time, but the problem is that these sections are far too long, so you have to retreat too far. After struggling to the end of this level you meet one of the evil one’s guardians, who will promptly blow you off the screen. And this was only the first level.
To see bottomless marshes, fraying rope bridges, collapsing boardwalks and sheer rockfaces (up which you must go).
After I spent considerably more than half an hour trying to get that far, alas I couldn’t manage it, and neither could anyone else I asked.
While the graphics and sound are all quite reasonable, they don’t impress to any degree, leaving the Truly skilled ninjas can expect difficult gameplay to either challenge or frustrate, depending on your competence.
Armed only with a pair of pyjamas Mr Ninja meets his foe Ninja Spirit £24.95 Activision Sound Graphics Gameplay Overall - 73% Although a reasonable coin-op conversion, Ninja Spirit is really just too difficult to be worth bothering with. To be honest, the only spirit I had any interest in afterwards was not of the white wolf variety.
Duncan Evans Commodore A500 Flight Of Fantasy FLIGHT OF FANTASY AMIGA Flight ol Fantasy is the very latest Amiga 500 pack from Commodore, featuring BRAND NEW software releases, to make this the most spectacular A500 pack ever! The pack features the Amiga 500 computer with mouse controller and TV modulator, as well as four top software titles. These include the following; The Commodore A500 Batman Pack must surely rank as one of the most popular computer packs ever! The pack features the Commodore Amiga 500 computer with mouse controller and TV modulator, plus four top software titles. The
software includes: ‘Batman The Movie' - Rid Golham City of the cunning joker, in Ocean's top selling title based on the blockbuster Batman lilm. New Zealand Story - high quality conversion of the leading arcade game: Interceptor - Dogfight with two F-16's in this leading flight simulator; Deluxe Paint II ¦ top quality Amiga graphics package which set the standard for others to fallow.
Return the coupon for further details.
PACK INCLUDES: A500 Computer & Mouse £399.99 A520 TV Modulator £24.99 Batman The Movie £24.95 New Zealand Story £24.95 Interceptor £24.95 Deluxe Paint II £49.95 FOR FURTHER DETAILS OF THE AMIGA RANGE, COMPLETE THE COUPON AND RETURN IT TO SILICA SHOP THE UK’s No1 AMIGA SPECIALISTS TOTAL RRP: £549.78 Less Pack Saving; £150.78 PACK PRICE: £399.00 For the more serious or professional applications user, Commodore have a selection of systems based around the expandable Amiga 2000, at prices from £1295+VAT, The A2000 features a full 1Mb RAM (expandable to 9Mb), 9 system expansion slots, plus IBM
compatibility with the use of PC-XT or PC-AT bridgeboards. Complete and return the coupon, putting a tick in the A2000 box, for details of A2000 computer systems. +VAT- £1489.25 The high quality grannies program that set the standard for other Am;ge art packages Deluxe Paint II includes powerful easy to use tocts that bring out the artist in you Create masterpieces. Presentations. 30 perspectives or just doodle.
KmmmiEEnniza Here's something completely & Iterant
- a science fiction story with comic book style graphics. Our
heroes Jake and Duke are on the Planet X rescuing Humans who
have been captured by the Robot Monsters and forced to create
an evil Robot Army to DESTROY EARTH* Jake and Duke fight their
way through hordes of evil Robots to help the Humans escape.
MnnzMmmm Slip oh your magic shoes, practise throwing a rainbow and you're ready to gc island hopping. From the Island of Doh to Monster Island, you will encounter Doh himself, stinging msects, let hi' combat machines, mechanical assailtits. The formidable beings of legend and folklore Finally enter the world ol darkness and its inhabitants The ultimate in flight simulation with a choice ol two aircraft and lour battle environments with dozens o! Different tactical missiors Aerial combat, strategic bombings, interactive ground based battles, seagoing carriers the list of featuies is endless
Real time Cockpit displays, including 'true radar' enhance the realistic (eel ol this stunning simulation PACK INCLUDES: A5QQ Computer & Mouse £399.99 A520 TV Modulator £24.99 Deluxe Paint II £49.95 Escape Robot Monsters £19.99 Rainbow Islands £24.95 F29 Retaliator £24.95 TOTAL RRP: £544.82 Less Pack Saving: £145.82 PACK PRICE; £399.00 FREE OVERNIGHT COURIER DELIVERY: On all hardware orders shipped in the UK.
TECHNICAL SUPPORT HELPLINE: Team ol Amiga technical experts at your service.
PRICE MATCH: We normally match competitors on a ‘Same product - Same price-' basis.
ESTABLISHED 12 YEARS: Proven track record in professional computer sales.
£13m TURNOVER (with 60 staff): Solid and reliable with maintained growth.
BUSINESS EDUCATION GOVERNMENT: Volume discounts available for large orders.
SHOWROOMS: Demonstration and training facilities at our London & Sidcup branches.
THE FULL STOCK RANGE: All of your Amiga requirements from one supplier FREE CATALOGUES Will be mailed to you with offers and software peripheral details.
PAYMENT: By cash, cheque and ail major credit cards.
CREDIT PAYMENT TERMS: Silica are licensed credit brokers - return coupon for details.
Be‘ore you decide when to buy your new Amiga computer, we suggest you think very carefully about WHERE you buy it. Consider what it will be tike a lew months after buying your Amiga, when you may require additional peupherals or software, or help and advice with your new purchase And will the company you buy from contact you with details ol new products? At Silica Shop, we ensure that you will have nothing to worry about Silica have boon established for over 12 years, and have an annual turnover of £13 million. With our unrivalled experience and expertise, we can now claim to meet our
customers requirements with an understanding which is second to none. But don't just take our word for it. Complete and return the coupon now for our latest Free literature and begin to experience the "Silica Shop Service" ILICA HOP RETURN THE COUPON NOW FOR FREE BROCHURES MAIL ORDER: 1-4 The Mews. Halherley Rd. Sidcup, Kent. DA14 4DX Tel: 081-309 1111 Orflef Lines Open Mon-Sat 900am-6.00pm No Late Night Opening___ Fax Mo: 081-308 0608 LONDON SHOP: 52 Tottenham Court Road. London. W1P OBA Tel: 071-580 4000 Opening Hours: Mon-Sat 930am-6.00pm Late Night: Thursday until Bpm Fax No.
071-323 737 SIDCUP SHOP: 1-4 The Mews. Halherley Rd. Sidcup. Kent. DA14 4DX Tel: 081-302 8811 Ocemng Hours: Mon-Sat 900am-5.30pro Late Night: Friday until 7pm_________Fax No: 081-309 0017 BUSINESS EDUCATION: 1-4 The Mews, Halherley Rd, Sidcup. Kent, DA14 4DX Tel: 081-308 08B8 Order Lines Open: Mon-Fri 9,OOam-6QOpm Closed On Saturdays Fax No: 081-308 06OB To:*Sl7!ca Shop. Dept"AMCOM-0990-32 4 The Mews™HatPerley BcTsidcup! KenTbAl DX _ikL I Mr Mrs Ms; Initials: . Surname: Address: S Postcode: . Tel: I j Vhich compufer(s), if any, do
you own? A200f tiUt * M.ert *ea pnce* and »p*ciT *!*n* may enange • please return rne coupon tor the ires! MmnHOSn FAR out on the western spiral arm of the galaxy is a small blue-green planet called Earth, The ape-descendant inhabitants of Earth are still a bit on the primitive side, for although they now know that digital watches are not the peak of technological achievement, they still get very excited by personal CD players.
They also spend a great deal of time and money building themselves various electronic computing devices to perform routine tasks, such as payroll accountancy and word processing, in an attempt to save time and money.
PT TTIT7TI nnm tit txtvt He's back - and this time he's mellow Then one day, a man with a rather bad cold walked into a computer shop somewhere in England and bought a Vic 20, This man was called Jeff Minter, and this is not his story.
Lnstead.it is a story of what he created, his favourite animals and some of the best rock music ever recorded. In other words it’s about computer games, llamas and Pink Floyd.
If you have never heard of Jeff Minter, nor “Attack of the Mutant Camels” then either I'm getting old or you have lived a sheltered life.
Minter’s games have a simple approach to things. You shoot them.
Many ape-descendants find this activity strangely relaxing. The complete non-use of their brain (achieved by linking a joystick directly to the eyes via an overworked central nervous system) can cause great enjoyment.
The Earth inhabitants who own Amiga computers have been unlucky in that Minter games have not been available.
Until now, that is. For creatures who hand over quite a small number of coloured pieces of paper in shops will now be able to play a genuine Minter game at home.
The graphics are simple, colourful and flash so brightly that any life forms more advanced than humans (dolphins, mice and so on) may find that actual physical pain is induced.
Sounds are similarly pyschedelic (if such a word may be applied to sounds) and when amplified are almost, but not quite, totally unlike a Disaster Area concert.
There are a large number of levels with which the earth creature may choose to begin the mindless destruction.
These proceed with a definite lack of seriousness. Some might say they are fun. They would be right. They are indeed, as they say, fun.
John “Douglas” Kennedy Super Grid Runner £10.95 Llamasoft Sound Graphics Gameplay | | I'HIITI ITU Overall - 86% A ATARI ST and C* Sixteen Bit Superdeals from the Sixteen Bit Specialists!
CUSTOMERS PLEASE NOTE! When comparing prices remember ours include fast delivery by courier NEW! Fantastic value for money pack includes:
* 520 STE 512K memory keyboard with built in 1 megabyte double
sided disk drive and TV modulator
* Game Pack including OUTRUN, SPACE HARRIER, CARRIER COMMAND and
* UTILITY PROGRAMMES inc STOS GAME CREATOR, NEOCHROME painting
package and FIRST BASIC programming language
* ST tutorial programme and ‘DISCOVER YOUR ST’ beginners guide to
the ST computer
* PLUS MOUSE, MOUSE MAT. MANUALS, ALL LEADS. METACOMCO BASIC AND
MAINS PLUGl PowerPack includes: ? 520 STE 512K Keyboard with
Built-in 1 Megabyte disk drive and TV Modulator ? Over £550
worth of games software, including OutRun, Gauntlet 2, R-Type,
Space Harrier, Super HangOn and 16 more Top Games ? Organiser
Business Software including WORDPROCESSOR, SPREADSHEET and
? First BASIC and First Music Utility Software.
? FREE JOYSTICK AND FREE MOUSE MAT WORTH £4.95. ? All leads, manuals PLUS MOUSE and free mains plug!
? Hyper Pack S W inc Hyper Draw, Hyper Paint and Borodino Battlescape War Game worth over £70.
? Includes the new 1 megabyte 1040STE keyboard plus over £200 worth of business software including K-WORD wordprocessing software. K-CALC spread sheet and K-DATA Database software. Also includes Metacomco BASIC, Mouse Pad, all Leads, Manuals and Mouse.
520STFM DISCOVERY PACK £279.00 520STE Power Pack £349.00 inc. VAT and Next Day Delivery 1040STE Business Pack £449.00 Amiga A500 BAT Games Pack featuring BAT PACK or the new FLIGHT OF FANTASY PACK £399.00 Inc. VAT and Next Day Delivery BAT Games Pack includes: ? Amiga A500 512K Keyboard with Built-in 1 Megabyte disk drive ? Free TV modulator worth £24.99 allowing you to use the Amiga with a normal TV ? DELUXE PAINT II GRAPHIC PACKAGES ? FREE HOLIDAY 14 day accommodation ? FREE, only-just-released BATMAN - THE MOVIE games software.
? FREE, only-just-released BATMAN-THE MOVIE games software.
? NEW ZEALAND STORY arcade games software.
? F18-INTERCEPTOR - amazing 3D flight simulator software.
? A further £230 worth of Games Software, Including BUGGY BOY, MERCENARY. BARBARIAN, WIZBALL & six more games, ? FREE MOUSE MAT JOYSTICKS and 10 BLANK DISKS.
? Amiga BASIC, Amiga EXTRAS 1,3, Workbench 1.3 PLUS the Amiga Step by Step Tutorial ? All leads, manuals PLUS MOUSE and mains plug!
FLIGHT OF FANTASY Pack Includes: ? F29 RETALIATOR - fantastic NEW flight simulator - replaces Batman ? RAINBOW ISLANDS - smashing new arcade game - replacess New Zealand Story ? ESCAPE FORM THE PLANET OF THE ROBOT MONSTERS - replaces F1B ? Everything else listed for BAT Games Pack.
AMIGA 1 MEG BAT GAME PACK £499.00 1 Meg Bat Games Pack includes: ? Fitted 1 Megabyte Memory Expansion + Real Time Clock Card ? Everything listed for the A500 Bat Game Pack ? DRAGON’S LAIR 1 MEG MEGAGAMEf MEGA 1 Business Pack £529.00 Features: ? Separate Keyboard and System Unit ? Inc. all software supplied with 1040 STE Business Pack.
? Blitter chip installed for faster graphics Inc SM124 Mono Monitor ..£628.00 ACCESSORIES AMIGA A500 CLASS OF THE 1990 s BUSINESS + EDUCATION PACK £549.00 Features: ? Maxiplan 500 spreadsheet ? Amiga Logo. BBC Emulator Deluxe Paint !l ¦k Mouse Mat, 10 Blank disks, and disk wallet ? Amiga A500 + TV Modulator ? Midi Interface + Software ? Kind Words II word processor ? Page Setter DTP ? Super Base Personal Database Quickshot II Turbo Joystick £.9.95 Plain blue Mouse Mat ...£4.95 Branded Memorex 3.5'’ DS DD Disks Box of 10...... £13.95 Memorex Disk Box For 40 3.5”
Disks ..£8.95 Competition Pro 5000 Joystick...,£13.95 Competition Pro with Autofire £14.95 Konix Speedking Joystick £11.95 Red Mouse Mat with Amiga logo ..£5.95 Naksha Mouse for ST, Amiga or PC ... £29.95 Contriver Amiga and ST Mouse with FREE holder and Mouse Pad £20.95 PRINTERS Star LC10 including interface lead for ST Amiga .£169.00 Star LC10 colour including interface lead for ST Amiga .£219.00 Star LC24-10 24 pin including lead for
ST Amiga £249.00 Citizen 120D + NLQ including interface lead for ST Amiga ...£139.00 Citizen Swift 24 pin letter quality including lead for ST Amiga ...£309.00 Colour Version .... £349.00 EXTERNAL DISK DRIVES Cumana 1 Megabyte Atari or Amiga ..£89.95 NEC 1 Megabyte Atari or Amiga ..£79.95 Atari SF314 1 Megabyte .£139.00 Amiga
A1010 1 Megabyte . £99.95 Atari Megafile 30 Hard Disk ...£439.00 New! Commodore A590 20 meg hard disk ..... £369.00 A590 Hard Disk & Memory Upgrade installed ...Phone MONITORS Commodore Amiga A1084 Stereo colour Monitor inc. lead ...£259.00 Atari SC 1224 Colour Monitor inc. lead ..... £259.00 Atari SM124 Mono Monitor including lead ......£119.00 Philips CM8833 stereo colour monitor
inc. lead for ST or Amiga £249.00 CREDIT CARD ORDERLINE ® 0908 378008 To order: either call the orderline above with your credit card details OR make a cheque PO payable to: Digicom Computer Services and send it with your order to the address below. Callers are also most welcome at the address below. Showroom open at the address below Mon-Sat 10.00am-5,00pm 3 DIGICOM Unit 36, Wharfside, Fenny Stratford, MiLTON KEYNES MK2 2AZ All prices indude VAT and next day delivery by courier.
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R, MmmM .
FIDING around the perilous streets of the City of London on a Honda HlOOs is one tiling but roaring around a race track with a colour co-ordinated sidecar is another.
That’s not to say that I wouldn’t like to try, but I’d like a little practice on say a Kawasaki Gpz 550 first.
However, failing to raise three grand for such a machine, I’d rather spash out 25 quid for Combo Racer and play that.
After all, Combo Racer does have the advantage of being some £2975 cheaper, you don't get all hot and sweaty from wearing all the protective gear, your hair doesn't feel lousy as the sweat circulates over your scalp, and the only real damage you can do to yourself is to contract joystick finger or fall off your chair when you realise that this is a very good game (Bah! You big pansy).
Combo Racer is the product of one of the best programming teams in the country, Imagitec Design. It’s playability largely depends on whether you like fast action racing game. Personally, I’ve had enough to last a lifetime, although i must admit I'd much rather play this than many others.
My first impression of the game was one of disbelief. The title pages makes use of a truely awful digitised black and white picture of a motorcycle-sidecar combination.
There are eight tracks to race around and you will need to qualify for a starting position on each of these. Once you have completed all eight, you progress to the next level where the going gets tougher.
There are three levels and each must be completed before being promoted to the more difficult stages.
Your vehicle, equipped with a side car, carries both you, the rider, and a pillion who's job it is to keep the bike balanced around those tight comers.
What makes Combo Racer so playable is the inclusion of team spirit. Two people can play at once.
However, they don’t compete against each other but instead have ultimate control of the combination.
Joystick one has control of the machine while joystick 2 controls the pillion. Once both players have got the hang of the controls and know how to balance the machine.
Some pretty hair raising speeds can be maintained around those corners. In single player mode the human controls only the machine, the pillion crawls about under automatic supervision.
Although eight tracks are more than you find in many games, Combo Racer has the added advantage of a track editor. Accessible from the main menu screen, the track editor allows you to modify any of the existing tracks or begin from scratch and design your own.
Edited tracks can be saved to memory or permanently to disk.
Those saved to memory can be practised and then edited again if required.
There’s nothing more boring than racing around flat lanes, so the track editor allows you to create hills and valleys with fantastic effect. You can even dig out a tunnel or two along the course. One thing however you can’t do is make crossroads - a shame but not too disappointing.
On technical merit, Combo Racer scores highly. It's graphics are fast and colourful with a rescaling routine that's second to none. The undulating motion of the screen when ascending or descending hills is very good, however hills do not seem to affect the performance of your engine.
The sound too is not harsh as in some racing games and the noise of other vehicles indicates that there's someone up your rear end.
My one complaint is of other racers passing - the bikes simply fly, especially when you've crashed. Whoosh - a noise then a dot on the distance. Still this dosn’t spoil what is really an enjoyable game.
Andrew Banner Combo Racer £24.95 Gremlin Graphics Sound Lli I 1 1 1 I I.J1L Graphics fTTTTT Gameplay V e HM OveraU - 81% 'VE been late for appointments before, but four years is stretching it a little. Still, this is roughly the time that has .expired since the president of Eris sent out a call for help, before you crash landed on Targ. Four years after the events of Mercenary and the Second city, you are back on course to Eris, answering the plea for help from the doomed planet.
Of course you probably finished Mercenary a long time ago, and have had to spend the rest of the time waiting in hyperspace for Paul Woakes to finish Damocles, the solid 3D polygon successor to Mercenary.
And now he has, but was it worth the wait, and is the game worth all those 90 per cent plus reviews that hordes of other magazines give to an unfinished game?
Read on and see.
Travelling to Eris reveals the same dull control panel used all those years ago, which is fine for continuity’s sake, but scores nil points for style. Sadly, the very same squeeky sound effects have also been lovingly dusted off and represented for your dismay.
Never mind, once you land on Eris things start to look up, and not just at the stars. Landing at the spaceport reveals a solitary structure with a car outside. Your key is inside the building, along with directions to the president's apartment block.
A nice drive follows as you navigate down a road towards the apartments and your long-delayed appointment. Yon can, of course, simply not bother going but head off in any direction you like, admiring the flat and barren landscape.
Obviously there weren’t any overcrowding problems on Eris because even the cities consist of great empty tracts rather than cosy suburbia or densely-packed and decaying inner city. This rather detracts from the game, giving it a lifeless and empty feeling. Of course there aren’t any citizens around either because they’ve all been evacuated or fled.
Why? You find that out when you converse with the president’s voice in her office. The comet Damocles is heading this wav, and in only three hours will impact the planet, utterly destroying it - well, what do you expect when you name a planet after the goddess of discord?
A timer counting down adds to the tension, but the fact that the spaceship vou are given by the president is capable of interplanetary flight, maiing escape at any time, possible tends to reduce it considerably. What you are doing is rescuing an empty planet from destruction. The president offers you a bagfull of cash, and sends you off to a professor’s lab, as he was working on a solution before you arrived.
Apparently he had found one, and then disappeared without trace. One fast flight over pancake land later, and you can investigate further, as clues are profferred, along with the method of destroy* ing the comet. You want bombs and explosives, and are set on a trail to follow.
This trail will lead you through a mere 20 per cent of the game- world, so there is plenty more to explore. It isn’t pointless exploration either, as there are apparently numerous ways in which to rescue Eris if you should chance to find them or think of alternatives.
Either way, finding the teleports that allow you to travel from planet to planet without time-consuming spaceflight is essential.
While the flight aspects of the game are undeniably very fast, they are so because of the simplistic nature of the planet. No other moving objects (save planets), flat and empty landscapes, and buildings which appear half sized rather than growing from a small blur.
Inside the various buildings it’s Freescape time, with exactly the same lumbering movement, and exactly the same blank painted walls. This is allied to a message and document reading interface which can only be described as tedious.
Overall - 73% So four years on, has it been worth the wait? Does Damocles deserve the rave notices it has attracted? Is it worth shelling out £24.95 for?
Well, if you like Freescape-style games, with an unfolding plot, a chance to try out alternatives that are not signposted but may work, and some very fast flying thrown in just to keep things moving, then yes it is worth buying.
1 don’t think Damocles is worth the 90 per cent scores though, I’m not impressed with a product that has taken nigh on four years to complete, and with its barren and empty atmosphere, not interested enough to play it in my own spare time either.
Duncan Evans Damocles £24.95 Novagen SOFTMACHINE SOFTWARE AMIGA HARDWARE PERIPHERALS BOOKS A 500 Flight of Fantasy F29 Retaliate* Rainbow islands Escape from the Planet of ttve Robot Monsters Deluxe Paint fl E374.99 A 500 Batman Pack Batman - The Movie New Zealand Story Interceptor Deluxe Paint II E374.99 A 500 Class of the 90’s Superbase Personal Maxiplan 500 Publishers Choice Dr T's Midi Recording Studio Amiga Logo BBC Emulator Deluxe Paint II Midi Interface 10 Disks + Disk Wallet Mouse Mat £52459 Amiga B2000 Systems Latest revision UK B2000's available singly or bundled with 20 40 Mb Hard
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bit of pot-holing? A bit of old fashioned underground
exploration of the hack and slay variety? Good, because that's
what we have here.
GreySlayer is an arcade adventure. You take control of an armoured knight and must guide him through a maze of 78 underground caverns, most of them containing resident nasties. But things aren’t quite as simple as they seem.
Somebody has built doors down there. Red ones and blue ones. And whoever built them didn’t forget to add the Chubbs, so to complete your quest you’re going to need some coloured keys.
Release the prisoners and they’ll each leave you a gift. It could be a key, a weapon or some food. If it’s not a key, you’ll have to search elsewhere for the means to get past that door.
Once the appropriately-coloured key is on-board you'll be able to pass through the door to the next level bv getting as close as you can to the door and using the key.
* ** • " A Ww ' f ¦ m GreySlayer button on your joystick to
use it, but make sure you are facing your enemy and close
enough for combat or he might just steam in and waste you!
Before helping the prisoners, of course, you’ll probably have to light off a few baddies. When you start the adventure you are armed with only a sword. Press the fire Later on you’ll be able to collect a couple of other weapons - a longbow for dealing with fast moving enemies and an axe for throwing at heavily armoured beasts.
Again, press fire to activate these weapons once they have been chosen from the menu.
Ah yes, the menu. To call up the menu screen pull back on the joystick and press fire while still pulling back. On the menu screen you'll see two rows of icons. Move the stick left or right to move the cursor, move the stick up or down to choose which of the two cursors to move. Pressing fire carries out the command. For example, if you wanted to look at your sword you would move the top cursor on to the sword, move the bottom cursor on to the Look command and then press fire.
Tread with care underground because your field of vision is only a few yards in each direction.
There are many nasties lurking just out of sight and lots of fatal slime wells and fire pits waiting for the nonchalant knight.
README FIRST GREYSLAYER is a big game - it takes up the best part of a disk - so we put it on the cover disk in a compressed format called an archive. You can’t run the game from the cover disk. First you’ll need to prepare a blank disk and run a script file which creates a game disk for you.
Booting from your standard Workbench, prepare a blank disk in the normal way. Make sure you name the blank disk GreySlayer and install it after it has formatted.
Then boot from the cover disk and double click on the GimmeGREYSLAYER icon in the GREYSLAYER drawer. (If you don't want to boot from the cover disk, make sure you Assign C: to CD011:C before running Gimm- ups into consideration. If MusicBox you have two or more drives you can put your blank GreySlayer disk into Dfl:t DF2: or DF3:. If you have only the one drive but a ram expansion fitted, the script will attempt to keep disk swapping to a minimum by using your extra ram in the copying process.
If you have one drive and no extra memory, then I’m afraid you’re in for a fair bit of disk swapping. Sigh.
At the end of the process you’ll have a bootable game disk. Stick it in DFO: and boot it up to play.
(If your GreySlayer disk won’t boot it is because you forgot to Install it) GREYSLAYER was written by Steven Macilwee and is Copyright © 1990 Amiga Computing, ANOTHER month, another tune.
This one, MemoryDust, is my personal favourite. Reminds a bit of the stuff they play in discos in those old sixties and seventies films. Very Starsky and Hutch.
There was a massive response to the Name That Tune competition a couple of months back. Just about everyone agreed that the tune was the soundtrack from the classic DOC demo called Demons are Forever, and most people spotted that the MusicBox version played slightly slower than the original.
I’d like to thank Chris Caines of Bristol for the one-thousand- mil- lion-squillion pound cheque he sent as a bribe. Unfortunately The Whistling Bank refused to cash it due to insufficient intelligence.
Rick Lemon of East Grinstead tried to put the squeeze on me by suggesting that Pink Floyd is the greatest rock band the world has seen. Can’t argue with that. I almost let him win.
Richard Wykes of Harrogate says that if I don’t let him win he’ll pack up his Amiga and buy an ST. I should see a doctor about that, Rich. They’ve got all sorts of cures these days.
Ashley Howes of Norwich even drew me a picture of the demo, which we all had a good laugh at.
(Don't call us...) But the winner is Chris Freestone from Windsor. Chris wins for having the stupidest nickname this year, The Atombender.
MUSICBOX is freeware but remains Copyright ©1989*90 Peter L. Dunlap. This program is distributed courtesy of CMOS BBS (0101-303-322-4078).
CONVERTER is a utility that allows you to transfer graphics between a number of different formats. If you are a programmer involved in graphical manipulation you should find this a very useful program.
It will work with any type of IFF graphic. All screen modes including HAM mode are supported. Two types of bitmaps can be loaded or saved, sequential or interleaved, and both can be saved with or without masks and or colourmaps, before or after the main bitmap data.
Converter Ever found yourself needing the colour values of a graphic so you can include it in your own program? Normally the only way of getting them is by looking at each colour in an art package and writing them down.
Converter will make your life easier by saving colourmaps separately. It’ll save the full 32 colour palette either as a binary dump or as assembler source code. A special feature, block cut-out, takes the current graphic and splits it into 16 x 16 blocks, each saved one after the other, making it easy to insert graphics into a game.
Useful for maps and the like.
Again, sequential and interleaved formats are supported.
A graphic can be saved as a sprite file if you like, either as assembler source code or binary data in 4 or 16 colours.
If you need to transfer graphics to or from the Atari ST, then CONVERTER vl.00 is Copyright © 1990 Steve Chalmers, All Rights Reserved.
It is shareware. If you start using it regularly, please send a fee of £10 to: Steve Chalmers, 10 Overton Park, Dyce, Aberdeen, AB2 OFT.
Send the fee along with your name, address and version number of Converter that you are using. This will entitle you to Converter is just the ticket because it can load and save in the Degas Elite .PIl low resolution graphics format.
Detailed instructions of all Converter’s functions are on the disk - double click on Converter.DOC to read them.
Updates as and when they appear, help with any problems and news of other programs that Steve has written.
Of course, if you don’t use Converter, then don’t bother.
Converter runs in PAL mode only. If you would like an NTSC version, get in touch with Steve at the above address and he will code a version for you for a small fee.
Print gadget. If you want to customise or play with the listing you'll have to decrunch it first.
Use the Decrunch command from the CLI: decrunch cd011:tem effeetsmachine, ba
s. pp ram:tein,bas Then copy the tem.bas file from ram to your
regular source code disk. Decrunch is in the C: directory of
the cover disk.
Remember, TEM is written in HiSoft Basic, not AmigaBASIC. If you try to run the listing with AmigaBASIC you’ll get a number of errors and, very probably, a guru.
TEM TEM is The Effects Machine, a sound sample utility' which allows you to load or create samples, edit them, perform special effects on them and save them.
TEM will load standard IFF samples or the binary-type samples used by Soundtracker, Noisetracker, MED and the like.
There are four short samples on the disk in TEM Sounds for you to play with.
If you’re interested in how the program works, the source code is on the disk (EffectsMachine.BAS.pp) crunched with PowerPacker.
Double click its icons to view it.
You can get a hardcopy of the listing by clicking PPMore’s Menfree Length Address Finish Period Channel entree : Length ! 2882 Address ! 155960 Finish ! 158842 Period ! 350 Channel : 1 Nane= Scratch, sntl General Menu PLAY START: Type in the address of where you want to play the sample from.
PLAY END: Type in the address of where you want the sample to end.
PLAY PITCH: Type in the pitch you want the sample to plav at.
NEW CHANNEL: Select this item to change to a new channel.
The Effects Machine has 20 channels, meaning you can have a maximum of 20 samples in memory at once. When you start The Effects Machine you are automatically in channel one.
You can use the cursor keys to change channels - the right cursor key increments the channel by one, the left cursor key decrements the channel by one. - SYNTHESIZE: This allows you to create your own sounds consisting of three basic waves - sine wave, square wave and ramp wave.
For example, if you are working with a music program such as Soundtracker or MED, here is how you would create an instrument that would be compatible: Make the sampling period 302, the volume 63, the note F , the octave 0 and the length 10000.
The volume value is set to 63 because this sometimes helps to reduce overload errors when performing effects on the sample.
REPEAT PLAY: Toggles between the sample playing continuously and the sample stopping when it has finished.
FILTER MODE SWITCH: Effects the band pass filter (see Special 2 menu).
GET VOLUMES: Gives you the average volume of the sample.
MEMORY HACK: Allows you to pull samples from memory that aren’t stored in an Effects Machine channel. Use with extreme care because this allows you to alter what is stored in the Amiga’s memory.
KEYBOARD: Lets the Amiga keyboard (qwertyu, zxcvbnm) act like a two-octave musical keyboard.
Caps Lock must be off for this feature to work.
OCTAVE: Change the octave of the keyboard.
FILTER CORRECT: This deals with waah and various filter functions of the Special 2 menu. All it does is place a zero at the start and end of the sample. It sometimes improves filtering.
METALLIC: The smaller the number you enter, the harsher the sound.
BACKWARDS: If you enter 2, half the sample will be reversed.
FLIP: Flips the whole sample backwards.
MIX: Digitally mix two samples together. Before selecting the mix menu you are advised to change the current channel to the channel of the sample you want to be mixed into.
On selecting mix enter: 1) The channel of the sample you want to mix, 2) The channel of the sample you want it to be mixed with, and
3) The address in the sample to be mixed with where you want to
mix the sample.
EXPAND: Lets you stretch out the sample without altering the pitch.
COMPRESS: Does the opposite of Expand.
TREBLE WAAH: This makes the sample start out dull, then gradually get brighter, A good value to use is about 10.
FADE IN: This works in the area between the Play Start and Play End markers.
FADE OUT: Does the opposite of Fade In.
ECHO: Echo Rate states when you want the echo to start. If you enter 2, the sample will echo half way through the sample, if you enter 8, the sample will echo an eighth of the way through the sample. Echo Decay states how quick you want the sample to get quieter. If you ?
Enter 32 (out of 64) the sample will decay by half of its volume every echo, if you enter 48 the sample will decay by one quarter of its volume ever}' echo.
ALTER VOLUME: If the sample is too loud, distortion will occur. If the sample is too quiet, aliasing distortion (hiss) becomes more audible.
WAAH IN: This is virtually the same as Treble Vvaab. The only difference is that this function doesn’t make the sample get brighter, it muffles it gradually. So the sample is muffled at the start and not muffled at all at the end. If you want to do a Waah Out, you will have to flip the sample, do a Waah In and then flip the sample back again.
INTERPOLATE: Allows you to change the period, pitch, frequency of the sample, thus altering its length.
Special 2 Menu DISTORT: How to make a weird instrument: Select Synthesize and synthesize a ramp wave. Make the sampling period 302, the volume 63, the note F , the octave 0 and the length 10000. Select Treble Waah, using the value 10. Select Waah In, using the value 20. Flip the sample. Select Distort. Eh, voila, you have a weird instrument.
To use this instrument with Soundtracker, select Save As Dump from the Projects menu, and save it on to a Soundtracker disk.
Project Menu LOAD & CATALOGUE: Select this if you're not sure where your file is.
QUICK LOAD: If you don’t like the file requester, you can choose this option instead. You must type the exact path to your file, not forgetting the filename itself, of course.
LOAD AS DUMP: Soundtracker and its many clones use samples that are binary dumps, not IFF files. Choose this option if you know your file is in this format.
RENAME FILE: You’ll be asked for the old and the new filename.
DELETE FILE: For when you want to make a little extra room on your samples disk.
SAVE AS IFF: Writes the file to disk as an IFF 8SVX sound file.
SAVE AS DUMP: Writes the file to disk as a binary dump.
QUIT: For when playtime’s over.
Special SPECTRUM GRAPH: Displays the harmonic components of the sample.
The volume of the component (harmonic content) is vertical, and the frequency of the component is horizontal. The graph helps you find the actual frequency of the sample, if you know its sampling period.
Note that you must select Spectrum Analysis before selecting Spectrum Graph because this only displays what a previous analysis has SMOOTH WAVEFORM: Smooths the waveform, muffling it slightly.
LOW-PASS FILTER: Removes high frequencies like hiss and whistles.
HIGH-PASS FILTER: Removes low frequencies, like rumbles and bass.
BASS BOOST: Allows you to alter the volume of the bass frequencies.
CENTRALISE: Makes the sample central on the graph.
BRIGHTEN SOUND: Adds a harsh whistle, which can sound good on some samples and awful on others. Mainly awful.
TREBLE BOOST: Allows you to alter the volume of the treble frequencies.
BAND PASS FILTER: Handy for removing clicks and pops, plus it 1 Menu stored in memory, it doesn’t actually do any calculation.
T H INVERT SOUND: Turns the sample upside down.
SPECTRUM ANALYSIS: Otherwise knows as Fourier Analysis, this calculates the data for the spectrum graph.
Once done, you don’t need to do it again unless you want to see the spectrum of a different sample.
HARMONIC FILTER: This is a graphic equalizer.
Sometimes decreases hiss.
You have to state the range of frequencies you want to remove. If you are in detailed filter mode (Filter mode switch) you will be asked the filter depth. The larger the number you enter, the more the frequency is reduced.
The band pass filter allows you to remove frequencies of a certain volume. You have to state the maximum volume of a frequency that can be removed. This is handy for removing hiss, as hiss is normally quiet, so you enter a small volume, and thus only the hiss is removed.
TREMOLO: Adds a warbling effect. Typical values to enter are 200 and then 64.
CHIP MEMORY: Allows samples to be loaded only into chip memory.
To play a sound sample you must have it loaded into chip memory.
FAST MEMORY: Allows samples to be loaded only into fast memory, in other words a memory expansion.
Note that you can’t play the samples that have been loaded into fast memory.
FAST TO CHIP: Transfer a sample from fast memory to chip memory.
CHIP TO FASTi Transfer a sample from chip memory to fast memory.
EDIT WAVEFORM: Allows you to edit a section of the current waveform by using the mouse. You enter the address of where you want to edit and a window displays a section of the sample starting from the address yon entered. You then press the left mouse button to draw on the sample.
To exit from this function you have to press the Q key, making sure Caps Lock is off when you do it.
CUT SAMPLE: Sets the current range - the section of sample Disk problems?
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Menu between the Play Start and the Plav End - to zero.
DELETE SAMPLE: Removes the whole of the current sample from memory.
COPY TO NEW CHANNEL: Copy the section of one sample and place it in a new channel.
ADD CHANNEL TO CHANNEL: Sticks sections of two samples together and places the result in a new channel.
CLEAR MEMORY: Removes all samples stored in the Effects Machine’s memory. Use with care.
THE EFFECTS MACHINE is Copyright © 1990 Amiga Computing. It was written by 17- year-old Robert Slater from Stockport over a period of two years.
Name .... Age ...years Address Robert is a bit of a sound and music synthesis freak. In between studying for his A levels he has also written a 4 track sequencer similar to Soundtracker. (Which we’re all dying to see, Robert!)
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ORDER FORM I enclose a cheque Postal Order for £349 (inc. VAT} payable for- SOLID STATE LEISURE LIMITED ¦ Lattice C v5.05 C159 ¦ Dos-2-Oos 34,4' ¦ Amiga Logo 39 4' ¦ C64 Emulator v2 39.r ¦ SuperBack 2 39 9 ¦ Workbench vl.3 Enhancer 14,9 Relational database power. Without programming1 59 9 The Rolls-Royce of Amiga databases" (NCE) 154?
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Teh f0933} 880877 - Monday to Saturday 9.30+5*30pm P ease allow up lo 28 days tor delivery LAKESIDE HOUSE. KINGSTON HILL, SURREY, KT2 70T. TEL 081-546-7256 THE Amiga might appear an odd choice of computer on which to use a word processor , Renowned for exceptional graphics, stunning sound and amazing processing power, doing nothing more than typing letters to the milkman on it might seem akin to dispatch riding on a Honda Gold wing. As a result, programmers have two extremes to aim between: 1 • Completely ignore all the Amiga’s bits and bobs and treat it as if it were a PC, or: 2 * Go
completely over the top in graphical user interfaces.
This means you have a nice choice of style when it comes to Amiga word processors. If you can’t stand the cute and furry Amiga interface, you can plump for something like Protext which can bear more than a passing resemblance to a CLI window.
If you want a maximum user-friendly extra-sweet drinking chocolate type program, then you can try something more like the PenPal’s of this world.
With respect to documentation, it was a great relief to note that all manuals - even of the cheapest package - were of a very high standard.
All programs also made the most of any extra hardware available, and could easily be installed on a hard drive.
After using many, many products. I can safely say that word processors bring out the best in the Amiga.
In the Pipeline FOR those prepared to wait, there are new versions of several packages “coming soon". The new version (number five) of Protext promises to be well worth the wait. Probably the only feature it won’t support will be Arexx. ProWrite is just into incarnation version 3, so keep a look out for it too.
Rumour has it that at long last an update to Word Perfect will be released. With Commodore trying to convince a sceptical business world that IBM isn’t the be-all and end-all of computing, this could be good news.
In the second part of our word processing special we concentrate on the various packages available for your Amiga. Which is best for which application? Find out as the team puts the products through their paces FKOTD'T :*:) Arno?-. LETTER () Page 1 Line 11 Col i t No Markers set A Tmt ii ilw jI rvrr fit* aL'iUMnran«Tir.TW:ii .juunr..rm*t cninn- Protext v4.2 Insert Justify Off Md-Mrap SCR """ PROTEXT has become a firm favourite in the Amiga Computing offices, more for historical reasons than any other. Originally written to run on the Z80 based Amstrad CPC micro, it has a solid following
mostly consisting of 8 bit up-graders.
Pancdn Evans, freelancer tk'iter** 41 When John Kennedy telephoned and said, .“You're a ta'iter, write 380 words on why you use a word processor instead or ae typewriter. I thought, huh, noney for old rope. I use a word** Krocessor because tty typing is hopeless, hy spelling none toot* ot. Ny thoughts are usually huddled so I need to see what st* in front of tie and then rearrange it into sone senblance of** coherent English, and I can never find the right words to usee1 so a built in thesaurus is a godsend.** ** Actually ny typing isn't too bad, for the two fingered** variety (or five if ny
fingers feel like co-ordinating with nyt* brain), I can type quite quickly but tend to hit the wrong key** fron tine to tine so I often need to jump back and edit.** I only use a spelling checker if I have plenty of tinet* and the work is for soneone reasonably 1 up or t ant. For Amgat* jConputing I don't bother. Ihey check it any way. ** (Rearranging paragraphs. Andt cut and pasting aren't.that** The features loved by these people may be despised by others. Protext is totally text based and will not support graphics other than simple IBM style boxes.
LIlfUriAlllr lur JVW3, UU| MJIVII ,vu .'«TU « «¦**»•. YvrwH words on six tank ganes as I did recently then it's nice to be** able to chop everything around into whatever order you like.** Then sonething occurred to ne. Up at Macclesfield they** The display is brief and functional, with status lines at the top, and the text edited in a (sometimes) resizable window underneath.
All functions are available from pull-down menus, but once you get to know the package, keypresses can totally take over. You only need to touch the mouse to click on the Protext icon in the Workbench.
There are two main modes of operation, easily toggled between with a single press on the escape key. The first is the text entry and editing mode, where you spend your time entering your new novel.
The second mode is a cut-down CLI, where you can change directories, look at the contents of a disk and perform features such as spell checking and text formatting.
One of the few concessions to user- friendliness is a simple Wysiwyg option to display bold, italic and so on. Typically, it can be switched off and replaced with on-screen printer codes for the hard-line hackers.
Printer drivers are custom and plentiful. Mail merging is useful, and made more so with the provision of a simple form of programming language.
The spelling checker is worthwhile, but the pattern recognition is exasperatingly awful. The dictionary is English, but you’ll soon come across words it doesn’t know.
Installation is eased with a special program to guide you through the various options and configurations.
Protext will work with your set-up, no matter what it is. A special version for vanilla 512K ram A500s is provided for when memory gets a bit tight.
Protext sits uncomfortably on top the Amiga’s Intuition operatingsystem.
Incredibly powerful but tricky to get to grips with, you’ll either love it or hate it.
Platinum Scribble v3.02 at Platinun Scribble* Copyright 1988,89 Hicro-Systens Software, Inc H Project: Untjtjed--2.doc ¦PI Well. It all started sone tine ago, when Green popped his head through the office door. I say "through" and not around" because he is quite a violent chappie, and likes nothing More that to scare the living daylights out of people.
"Hey, yout" he growled, spitting snail pieces of wood and glass fron his nouth. "Hey, you! I have to write nearly all the ganes reviews again this nonth so I'll need a good word processor. What have you got?"
H Project: UntjtJed-J.doc ¦HrcnvBRnsiKRnvn SCRIBBLE lies somewhere between the totally Wysiwyg multiple font graphics processors and the serious CLI lookaiike systems. I can’t help thinking it’s the offspring of a ProWrite ProText alliance. Perhaps it should have been called WriteText. (Hey, what brilliant name!)
Font control is limited to the standard italic, bold and underlined affairs.
There can be four documents open at any one time, each a fully sizable window. Scroll bars move you around the text, and the current word count can be popped on to the screen with a single keypress.
If there is a gimmick with which Scribble hopes to stand out from the crowd with, it’s the inclusion of a thesaurus. No similarly priced word processor has this facility. Would you use it? Erm, I don’t know. I rarely do, PEN PAL could only happen on the Amiga. At first glance it looks more like an art package than a word processor.
As you might expect, graphic support is good. Picture files in IFF format can be inserted, resized and moved around. There are also a good selection of lines and boxes to draw with, ideal for borders and highlighted areas of text.
When you think you have finished, a delightful preview option will draw a miniature version of the screen to let but they are people who would.
Even with American spellings. Still, it’s nice to know it’s there, just in case you do need it.
Scribble is the smaller brother of the Excellence! Word processor. The missing features include font and text layout support, grammar checking, Postscript output - in other words the kind of stuff that you won’t need if you’re a home user typing out “I’m sorry Johnny wasn’t in school today” letters.
As such, it represents good value for money. If the missing facilities are going to annoy you, perhaps you should save up. But remember - you’ll be paying around three times the price of Scribble for them.
You see what is going on.
R Statistic freaks will love Pen Pal.
Instead of a common or garden word count facility, you get a complete breakdown of your text: Average length of words, that sort of thing. It even has a readability index so you know if you’re pitching your prose a bit high.
Fonts can be selected by name, or rather cunningly, by size as well.
Something which may take a bit of getting used to is the way the pointer changes shape depending on what you are doing a the time.
It’s not like an art package where the arrow changes to a little paint brush, it’s more a piece of on-line help. As you move the pointer over an icon, some text appears telling you what will happen.
In use, Pen Pal seems a bit sluggish.
Nothing severe, the letters just take a fraction of a second to appear after you hit the keys. You wouldn’t notice if you stare at the keyboard while you type, but those with more than just a little keyboard experience will get a dose of jet lag.
Pen Pal is unique in that it comes with an integral database. This is quite a good idea when you think about it, because when you're writing text you are probably making reference to pieces of information such as names and addresses so it makes sense to keep them in the same context. Keep this is mind when you compare the price of Pen Pal to other word processors.
Pro Write v2,5.1 WHEN Pro Write loads you might think "Uh,oh...this looks a bit like Notepad to me”. And you’d be right
- it does look a bit like Notepad.
The reason for this is that ProWrite has a wonderfully Amiga-ized front end. It is so refreshing to use a program which uses Intuition so completely. By doing so, you’ll probably never need to look at the manual.
Like Notepad, you can play with fonts. In fact all the fonts can be pwoumvre occofoo focn of different fontu to ie uued on OCS.OCT* o.t the same rime, picture*. Uuch an the uiondeuful wayTraced linage to the left. Can also 6e easily Incow ponatcd.
Thto interlaced din pi ay can Ac ?unrobed off if you deal we.
On-screen at once, simultaneously even. In different colours. Interlaced or not interlaced.
It’s great for producing a fancy letterhead. Plus, if you are lucky enough to own a good quality printer - a laser or 24 pin - you will be able to output the fonts with extra smoothing.
Not perfect, but belter than nothing.
To speed things up when you aren’t using fancy fonts or pictures, you can choose to use the standard printer output.
For an even fancier letterhead, you can incorporate all types of IFF graphic files directly inlo the text, HAM format included. Once in place they can be resized, shaded for black and white printers and have text flowed around them.
Although lhe number of menus might seem minimal, they are jam- packed with features. Spell checking, date or time insertion, word counting: they are all here.
ProWrite seems to be the ideal word processor for new Amiga owners. If writing letters on Notepad is too tedious, and the thought of having to learn how to use a whole new program fills you with fear, then this is the package for you.
It’s friendly, flexible, fast and what’s more it’s actually fun!
Transcript vl.O GOLD DISK, perhaps better known for its DTP titles Pro Page and Pagesetter II, released the first version of Transcript two years ago. It is still in the original Vl.O form.
Two versions of Transcript Transcript and Transedit - come on a single disk, along with the bundled spellcheck program. This may seem to be a Bad Thing - when you spend money on a professional program you like to see about twenty disks packed tight in the box, not one rattling around on its own - but it shows how compact and efficient the software is.
Find iikat; an iqtfTtsMns carter ftr?l«r Hi Ifc:'ccHEJltC. JSUFftllU*!!- All OfNH Zllf tmer lljit tin*, iiteen Er.-ic*s. wi-r thoiinu tlMir «kK Mjitrd Hi Fwvrr K lawd fw IK? Aun 5H( Ilf imv circrnl cralil I* lUlltFis ttt i SISK nii is it tlirs Mhlr Uil tk* biiii'i "tpjpteffp" f oifliioo f-ni Tba.fi Jitn sinilu-iiy n ti fcewttr. ' u iktt littlt cw*i tverltle «irt Ml, 94 and KS-Htir *iiliUK.T (PJIkf i• u di*d ef *nalitit« is vtrv htffc. Wtlk Frwins luck at ; Kerin.*-, UtifliJ. Mrt **d a «tl ar aaviiaiiaii r«i*j't Of course, being on a single disk also makes it ideal for unexpanded machines - if
you’ve only got one disk you're not going to be spending a great deal of time doing the disk-swapping dance.
Although quite old Transcript boasts a lot of features which are yet to find their way into more recent releases.
One of these is the automatic index generator. Simply mark words in the text and the program will compile a complete alphabetical, multiple- reference index for inclusion at the end of your printed document.
Macros, multiple windows, block functions - Transcript is coming down with features, not flash gimmicks.
One of the advanced interfaces is the printing menu. All options are set by gadgets and there is even a nice CYGNUS ED Professional (known to its friends as CED) is something of the odd man out in this word processor round-up. It claims to be a text editor, but it is so full of features that leaving it out on these grounds would be a sin.
CED is aimed squarely at the Amiga programmer, for it is an ideal system with which to enter source code. And yet it can do so many other things that you can happily use it for typing novels. The only drawback in this CED File: showreport 1 which got nope attention at the Am or stand: J xt "the last before v5, really” or- the Amga 338® tion of Fro text itakes sone concessions to I] e pull-down Menus, hot keys and requestors. With i _ and (pelieft) s n inproved spelling checker. 1 ive iseomng in August with a introductory £125 price tag- Aversion t File: i astblit he ceiling and mtnaung please
mm, oft please end, staring at iwork ,1!
I .fortunatelyas the tine for conpila-ions grew and grew, the w 5 rogr aimer heeded sonething nore. Sonething to fiddle with. He tried U executive toys, pieces of Modelling clay and even rubber bands. *j
* ’o thing would do= until he discovered juggling.I The act of
juggling is a very relaxing one. Gently tossing three I]
objects froM hand to hand is the perfect way to free one7s mnd
of Tj searthly things and becone one with the very deepest
structure of a ipreogran. Mhai’s More, juggling is a tricky
thing to do, It requires II practice and dedication, ihe
advance in skill couici be. Measure ii iron respect is the lack
of a spell checker.
However, the provision of Arexx support means that CED is only as limited as you want it to be.
Theoretically, you will be able to link CED to a separate spell checking program.
CED has clearly been designed for people who use their Amiga to enter text a lot. . The “Hot Key” feature alone is worth its weight in floppies in my opinion.
There you are, ideas flooding through your brain in a sudden surge of inspiration, and you have no time to muck around with clicking this and loading that. Just hit ALT, SHIFT and RETURN and CED pops into being. Completely brilliant.
Cygnus Ed Profession V2 Another feature which may appear as nothing but a gimmick is autosave .
After a pre-determined period the program will remind you that you haven’t saved your text for a while and ask permission to do so. It can prevent untold misery. As can the resurrection program, which in the unlikely (ha!
Not with my code!) Event of a Guru will worm its way through memory and try to rebuild your files.
Add multiple files, plus multiple windows on the same file, user- definable just-about-everything and you have a complete text workstation, if such a thing exists.
CED appeals to me a lot. It must be the ultimate text editing system. If you want a fast, efficient and powerful way to write code and still want to write the occasional letter, then you need it.
Screen preview option which creates a giant scrolling bitmap of your text.
The only real niggle is the spell- checker. This has to be run separately, although it is supported by both Transcript and Transedit. There are Id* found: Status Bar ON r OFT!
Insert Hod I OH 1 OFF P Rau expansions over the 148 nark software then you software alike so Save Icons f YES 1 NO tent Color I I I I Page Color I I !
Border Color I WMM i 1 I Iitle Color I I ¦¦¦¦ J Paragraph Synbol I ON f Off f around 90,000 words in the dictionary, but of course they’re all in American. Nevertheless it is fast and intelligent.
Fast, smooth and powerful, not to mention easy to use, Transcript is still in the running as a professional class wordprocessor.
Cursor Flash Cursor Hidth Style Codes Nutter ic Keypad Tab Spacing cizza FAST rstoiri OFF | » lActivel Shown tDTgi Fsl Cursor r A)CoI our Picture Short and Sweet P For the first KCS Pouer PC Boar ills taken for a 51 “trapdoor" expans as this little uoU and DOS-Help utili he standard ol star, Lotusl2; emulation is very high, with prograns such as % , Sage and a well-known car navigation package r Word Perfect v4.1 IF it's pedigree in a word processor you’re after, then look no further than Sentinel’s Word Perfect. Although the program never really caught on amongst Amiga owners, it is in
constant battle with WordStar as the number one word processor on PC compatibles.
The Amiga version is a powerful multi-window affair that will happily edit several documents simultaneously. Unlike Protext, switching between them is simply a matter of activating the appropriate window and you’re away. Although the program supports most of the elements of Intuition, it still retains a very PC-like feel to it (the program doesn’t even have a file requester!).
If you’re an ex-PC owner then you’ll no doubt rejoice at such a situation, otherwise it’s all too easy to get lost.
Editing functions are pretty comprehensive - all the standard operations such a block manipulation, search and replace are there in abundance.
However, one of the most surprising failings of the program is its inability to display justified text onscreen - although the document will be printed fully justified, the onscreen text remainsjagged (whatever happened to Wysiwyg?).
On the plus side. Word Perfect boasts powerful macro and indexing facilities which can be a real timesaver when carry out laborious word processing tasks.
Backing up a darned good text processor are both thesaurus and spell checking facilities. These can either be called from within the main program or (in the case of the spell checker) run as an independent task, therefore allowing you to spell check disk-based documents without having to wait for the main program to load. The spell checker and thesaurus share a common set of dictionaries.
For such a well respected program, Amiga Word Perfect is something of a disappointment. It’s undoubtedly a powerful program which will easily handle even the most demanding of word processing tasks, but its PC-feel makes it a rather cumbersome program to work with.
And what about the price? I just can’t help feeling that you’re paying for the Word Perfect name.
XF YOU are in the market for a similar package to CED but with an infinitely programmable interface, you should also consider ToolBox from Mirage Studio (0734 788965) reviewed in the June issue of AMIGA Computing.
The programmer is working towrards including an Arexx interface, which will make all sorts of even more wonderful things possible.
For those who already have a word processor but lack word power.
Kunia have produced a stand-alone version of Longman's pocket Roget’s Thesaurus. It will sit with its little window behind your application (boy, don’t you just love multitasking) ready for you to click it to the front when you’re stuck for words. The dictionary consists of 150,000 words which may be browsed through under categories such as ‘'abstract relationships”, “spatial relationships" and “the material universe". Words are accepted phonetically in case your spelling isn’t up to skratch - typing “nieeve" will correctly find “naive".
Half of the fun of this program comes from just wandering around the dictionary, picking up new words.
In use, K-Roget is a fast and useful way to expand an existing word processor setup.
Finally, for those writh big plans but small budgets, take a look at the Exlrasl.3 disk which came with your Amiga. Inside the drawer marked Tools is a program called Memacs (for MicroEmacs, whatever that means). In case you urere unaware, its a totally useable word processor. Of course, it might lack one or two special features but what the heck - it’s free!
WORD processing for grownups, that’s what Excellence!
Feels like when you have it running.
If you’re mountain climber, you get the right equipment. When you spend the day repairing cars, you get the best tools. If you’re a professional writer, you want a solid, reliable, feature packed word processor. Price is simply not relevant when you're going to be using a program all day, every day.
Excellence! Comes pretty close to being the ultimate system, never mind the ultimate on the Amiga.
Proper font support, graphics and column layouts make it a worthwhile DTP tool. With the Postscript output option, we’re talking seriously high quality with a laser printer or printing bureau on the other end.
For the writer, the fast spell checker is an essential item. The thesaurus is useful in case you get your synonyms and antonyms confused.
The grammar checker? It’s like a slap in the face. Well, it is if you take it’s comments to heart. Any sloppy writing and it’s a “Hackneyed, cliche or trite” warning. Makes a change from ‘‘syntax error”, anyway.
If you like the Amiga feel to the program (and let’s be honest here - not everyone does) you’ll be mightily impressed. If you don’t need as many features or don’t want to splash the cash but like the way it works, try Scribble. And if you don’t like Intuition, either buy a PC or try Protext or Word Perfect.
The table below details the various features of all the word processors reviewed - with the notable exception of MicroEmacs which is included for comparison purposes only. The price listed for each package was found by looking around the various advertisers in the magazine - something you would be well advised to do if you are thinking of purchasing.
Reviewers: Nic Veitch - Transcript fason Holborn - Word Perfect John Kennedy - All the rest Features Word Processor Price Min. set up Spell check Thesaurus Word count Arexx Mail merge Wysiwyg Graphics Amiga fonts Macros Multiple tiles Ease of installation Manual Ease of use Speed Robustness Pretext v4,2 £74.99 512k
70. 000 English No Yes No Yes Yes No No Yes Yes Good Good Medium
Medium Good ProWrite V2.5.1 Cl 02.50 512k
95. 000 English American No Yes No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Good
Good Good Good Medium Cygnus Ed Prolessional v2 £85.95 512k
No No No Yes No Yes No No No Yes Good Good Good Good Good
Word Perfect v4.1 £164.00 512k 115,000 English
115. 000 English Yes No Yes Yes No No Yes Yes Medium Good Medium
Medium Good Pen Pal vl.3.4 £99 1Mb American 100,000 No Yes
No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Good Good Good Good Medium
Platinum Scribble! V3.02 £41.50 512k 104,000 American
470,000 American Yes No Yes Yes Yes-ish No No Yes Good Good
Good Good Good Excellence!
104. 000 American 470,000 American Yes No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Good Good Good Good Good Transcript £32.50 512k
90. 000 American No Yes No Yes Yes No No Yes Yes Good Medium Good
Good Medium MicroEmacs Free 512k No No No No No No No No No
No Good N A Medium Medium Good Thanks must go to HB
Marketing, Word Perfect Corporation, Kuma Computers, ASDG
Incorporated and Mirage Studios for supplying us with the
THE AMIGA 500 PC XT IS HERE ( f&t* : Run Professional MS DOS Software on your Amiga 500 at a price you can afford Cf powtv.'* A590 in pipeline) Including MS DOS Including English Microsoft books + KCS manual + FREE software Further exciting software upgrades in the pipeline Why did you buy an Amiga 500?
Of course, because of its superb graphics, music and animation capabilities. However if you want to get serious, you soon realise that it is distinctly lacking in memory and professional software.
Well - they said it could never happen - but it's here at last!
You! In your own home can transform your Amiga 500 into a real IBM compatible with Amiga memory expansion up to one and a half megabytes.
It's simple - no screwdriver, no soldering iron and no technical knowledge required. Just turn your Amiga over, open the cover, slide the Power PC Board into the connector, close the cover and your Amiga PC XT is ready. (In other words, no loss of guarantee) You are now ready to use a wealth of professional MS DOS software at speeds faster than a PC XT (ind. Review), and in colour, with compatibility thanks to Phoenix-Bios.
You can also rely on the correct date and time at any moment in Amiga and MS DOS mode (with the aid of a battery).
? Video support: monochrome, Hercufes and Colour Graphics Adaptor (CGA) (4 and 8 colours)
* Dis* jjsk support: internal 3.5“ external 3.5“ external 5.25“
drive. (Software-upgrade to H D Including MS D( S 4.01, MS DOS
shell and GW Basic (market value approx £130.00) ‘ * **
- .....' "REE " Available memory: 704KB + 64KB EMS in MS
DOS mode, 1 megabyte + 512KB RAM (disk) buffer in Amiga mode No
extra power supply necessary thanks to the most modern CMOS and
ASIC technology OK with TV. No special monitor required Price:
£320.00 including VAT.
Access and Visa accepted.
For export price please contact us Trade enquiries welcome (UK - Scandinavia - Bitcon Devices Ltd.
88 BEWICK ROAD, GATESHEAD, TYNE & WEAR, NE8 1RS ENGLAND.
Tel: (091)4901919 4901975.
Fax:(091)4901918 _ _ Compatibility is excellent but no-one can guarantee every single program available, therefore if your purchase depends on a particular program, please ask us first or send In a copy of the program. (With suitable S.A.E. if to be returned). Price subject to change without notice.
Australia NZ and all English language.)
THE s DIAMOND’S Southampton (0703)232777 Fax 232679 Poole (0202) 716226 Fax 716160 London 01-597 8851 Fax 590 8959 Midlands (0928)312155 Fax 883432 Bristol (0272) 693545 Fax 693223 cr DIRTY DOZEN AMIGA (AN EXTRA 12 SIZZLING GAMES) Nettie- awftfcttp te&i!
SUMMER SALE DURING THE MONTH OF AUGUST - 40% OFF SOFTWARE DIAMOND PACK 2 ALL OUR AMIGA A500 PACKS CONTAIN MACHINES WITH THE FOLLOWING STANDARD FEATURES DIAMOND PACK 1 ALL OUR AMIGA A500 PACKS CONTAIN MACHINES WITH THE FOLLOWING STANDARD FEATURES
• 512K RAM 1 Meg Disk Drive + 4096 Colours
• Multi Tasking Mouse Built-in Speech Synthesis Two
Operation Manuals Operating System Disks All Appropriate
• Two Operation Manuals
• Operating System Disks
• All Appropriate Connecting Cables V,
• 512K RAM 1 Meg Disk Drive
• 4096 Colours
• Multi Tasking Mouse Built-in Speech Synthesis AMIGA 500,
Batman the Movie, New Zealand Story, F18 Interceptor,
Netherworld. Star Wars, Total Eclipse, Saint and Greavsie,
Table Tennis, Clownomania. Paperboy. Mike Reid's Pub Quiz,
BAAL, Menace, Bloodmoney, Deluxe Paint II, Microswitch
Joystick, 10 Blank 3.5" Disks, Disk AAAA Library Case. Mouse
Mat. Amiga ¦ W w Dust Cover, Tutorial Disk. TV [Mr' AT
Modulator and 23 PD Programs IIMO VAI f AMIGA 500. F-29
Retaiiator. Rainbow Islands, Escape from the Planet of Robot
Monsters, Netherworld, Star Wars, Total Eclipse, Saint and ,!
Greavsie, Table Tennis, Clownomania, Paperboy, Mike Reid's Pub
Quiz, BAAL, Menace, Bloodmoney.
Deluxe Paint II, Microswitch Joystick, 10 Blank
3. 5" Disks. Disk Library Case, L 00 Mouse Mat- Ar™9a Dust Cover,
INC VAT Tutorial Disk, TV Modulator and 23 PD Programs CLASS
OF 90's PACK £499.00 TREAT YOURSELF TO AN EXTRA 5 GAMES FOR
£25.00 OR 10 GAMES FOR £35.00 RIBBONS Quantity 2 6 12 OKI 20
COL £7.00 £6.50 £6.20 OKI 20 BLACK £6.60 £6.20 £6.00 PANASONIC
KXP 1124 £7.50 £7.00 £6.50 KXP 1080 1 2 3 £3.95 £3.80 £3.60
JUKI 6100 £1.75 £1.60 £1.50
M. TALLY MT80 £3.50 £2.70 £2.50 STAR LC10 £3.90 £3.70 £3.50 STAR
LC1DC0L £6.50 £6.00 £5.50 STAR LC24-10 £6.50 £5.90 £5.50
CITIZEN 1200 £3.25 £3.10 £2.90 LX800EPSON £2.50 £2.10 £1.90
AMSTRA0 PMP 4000 £3.85 £3.70 £3.40 Commodore Amiga 500 Batman
Pack or Flight of Fantasy Plus extra 512k RAM plus Battery
Backup Clock plus extra external disc drive DIAMOND PACK 3
Word Processing Pack If you thought our Diamond Pack 1 was
good value just look at our Diamond Pack 3.
SAME AS PACKS 1 OR 2, BUT WITH PHILIPS COLOUR VISION MONITOR (U.K.) DIAMOND D501: TWO YEAR WARRANTY BATTERY BACKED CLOCK CALENDAR lr FREE UTILITIES DISK WORTH £49.95 lr ON-OFF SWITCH £39.95 INC VAT £49.95 inc VAT with IT CAME FROM THE DESERT or PHOTON PAINT II ?
£625.00 ONLY INC VAT DIAMOND PACK 4 Same as Pack 2 with Philips Vision monitor but includes 24 pin Colour Printer only £725.00 INC VAT with Kindwords ver 2.0 Word Processor £459 Inc. VAT OKIMATE 20 24 Pin Colour Printer £149. Inc VAT & Delivery While stocks last I DIAM0NI D-T HE NAME YOU CAN TRUST EXPORT HOTLINE (0272) 693 545 EXPORT FAX NO (0272) 693 223 WE ONLY SELL NEW CHIPS A590 CHIPS
0. 5Mb £29.95 inc VAT 1.0Mb £58.95 inc VAT
2. 0Mb £115.00 inc VAT A590 £319 +VAT A590 2Mb Populated £399 +
VAT 8 UP BOARD CHIPS 2Mb £99 6Mb £279 4Mb £195 6Mb £369 8 UP
Board Supra only £139 8 UP Board 2Mb Pop £229 CHIP SHOP PRICES
* SPECIAL ?
DIAMOND DRIVE. THRU PORT ON OFF SWITCH only £49.95 with metal case £69.95 INC VAT WITH 10 BLANK DISKS £53.95 INC VAT 84 Lodge Road, Southampton.
Diamond Computer Systems Ltd 406 Ashley Rd. Poole. Dorset BH14 0AA Diamond Computer Systems Ltd, 227, Filton Avenue, Bristol.
LAN Computer Systems Ltd, 1045 High Road, Chadwell Heath, Romford.
LHC Microsales, 121 Regents St., Leamington Spa, Warwickshire.
Diamond Computer Sytems Ltd, Ballina, County Clare, S. Ireland [Your AMIGA 500 is worth over £800!!
When you part exchange it for a 1*2000 with an autoboot hard disk!
AMIGA 2000 from £499 inc VAT When you part exchange your existing system Phone or call in to a Diamond store for details RENDALE 8802 GENLOCK £179 INC VAT FUCKER FIXER REAKTHROUGH A590 2MB POPULATED INCLUDES THE EXTRA 2MB VIDI AMIGA £99 INC VAT HI RES MONO CAMERA £199 INC VAT VIDI + CAMERA £279 INC VAT CITIZEN SWIFT 24 PIN PRINTER £249 DIAMOND MULTISYNC MONITOR £295 DIAMOND MULTISYNC 3D 47Mb Autoboot, Fast file System Hard Disk for B2000 - only £395 Autoboot A2092 (20Mb Hard Disk) - £199 HIGH QUAUTY 3.5" RETAIL PROMO ONLY BULK DISKS jNC-
10. .... £5.00
25. . £12.00 STOP PRESS!
2 Meg AMIGA 500 RAM BOARD Expandable to 8 megabytes £99.00 inc. VAT when you part exchange your 1 z meg board
50. .... £23.00
100. ... £45.00 200 £80.00 Add £4.95 for
80 capacity lockable box NEW COMMODORE AMIGA 3000 DIAMOND
16 40 A3000 ...,£2499 DIAMOND 25 40 A3000 ,..,£2999 DIAMOND
25 100 A3000 £3299 CALL FOR VOLUME DISCOUNTS WITH CBM OS 2
MUSIC X SPECIAL OFFER £69.95 INC VAT PRINTERS All printers
in our range are dot matrix and include the following
features: Standard centronics parallel port for direct
connection to Amiga, PC’s. ST. Archimedes etc. Tractor and
friction paper feeds.
PHILIPS MNS 1432 £99 HIGH QUALITY 9-PIN PRINTER CITIZEN SWIFT-24 £249 WITH COLOUR £295 PANASONIC KXP-1124 £199 24-PIN D.MATRIX PRINTER OKIMATE 20 £130 24-PIN COLOUR THERMAL DOT MATRIX PRINTER STAR LC-10 MONO £125 Multiple font options from front panel, excellent paper N handling C64 128 version available STAR LC-10 COLOUR £165 Colour version of the popular LC-10, allowing the effect of full colour on screen dumps (requires colour printer driving software). C64 128 version available STAR LC-24-10 £199 24 Pin version of the popular LC series with exceptional letter print quality.
STAR XB 24-10 £439 24 PIN COLOUR PRINTER (INCLUDES COLOUR OPTIONSI Diamond Configured Packs: AT System Amiga B2000 AT Bridgeboard 2090A 20Mb Autoboot HD 1084S Colour Monitor XT System Amiga B2000 XT Bridgeboard 2090A 20Mb Autoboot HD 1084S Colour Monitor Basic System Amiga B2000 2090A 20Mb Autoboot HD 1084S Colour Monitor Audio System Amiga B2000 + 2090A 1084S Colour Monitor Music X & Midi Interface Visual System 1084S Colour Monitor Amiga B2300 Genlock Deluxe Video III Phone for our incredibly low prices on the above systems!
COLOUR PIC Real Time Frame Grabber £349 MONITORS PHILIPS 8833 (U.K.) COLOUR MONITOR WITH STEREO SOUND ONLY £199.00 DIAMOND MULTISYNC MONITOR ONLY £295.00 COMMODORE 1084 S STEREO MONITOR ONLY £199.00 ALL PRICES EXCLUDE VAT. COURIER £7.50, NEXT DAY SERVICE £10 E & OE. All prices correct at time of going to press and are subject to change without notice.
UNDERGROUND Nic Veitch investigates rumours that the A500 is a museum piece Two actors relive the good old days in a rebuilt * 1890 train which forms part of the exhibition ENTION London Regional Transport to your average capital city dweller and it is unlikely their first response will be anything along the lines of what wonderful hi-tech state of the art frontier breaking technology is involved. But the times they are a changin LRT has woken up to Amiga technology and all the 16-bit advances it can bring, eliminating all that hand- driven stuff and creating true user friendly environments.
Of course, all this is nothing to do with die transport system itself. No, all this wonderful interactive, cutting edge 68000-based equipment is to be found in the museum.
The equipment forms part of one of the interactive displays in the new tube centenary exhibition just opened at LRT’s museum in Covent Garden.
Two trains are simulated - firstly a reproduction of one of the first tube trains from a hundred years ago, then the new updated 1990 version.
The two A2000's in their modest surroundings - the A500 sits on the floor!
Controls for the earlier train are a little primitive, in keeping with the time. The throttle is nothing more than a large rheostat controlling the current to the engine, the brake lever is a valve controlling the pressure to the airbrakes. Or rather they're not.
The other setup is a bit more cunning. The train of today has a large weighted arm control. By twisting the lever and pushing it forward the arm will release the brakes and an optomechanical coupler will respond to the arm being moved forward and drive the motors.
This also fulfils the function of a “deadman’s switch” - pressure must be applied to keep the train moving forward, otherwise the arm will slide back and the brakes will come on.
The arm itself was quite easy to read, simply taking the optical driver output and patching it into the parallel port of a 2000, The cab A rod rotating thorough the rheostat operates a potentiometer, the brake valve contains a hidden microswitch.
Both of these devices are read by a B2000, which performs a few rudimentary calculations to determine just whereabouts the train is and updates the animation. One feature of the old trains which is thankfully not reproduced on the simulator is the tendency of the throttle to arc, sending showers of white hot sparks all over the cab.
Window display is then driven in the same way as before, but there is a another output.
In the 1990 train drivers are aided by an illuminated odometer, which not only indicates their current speed but also has a row of lights showing the “correct speed”. Bv matching both sets of lights they know they are not going too fast (unlikely in my experience) or too slow. In the ¦ FEATURES ¦ simulator this extra display was driven by an A5G0, getting its data from the 2000 via the serial port.
The animation frames for the cab display would have taken a theoretical 8Mb of memory as conventional IFF anims, but the team working on the project, Aeon Design, put to work their obvious programming talent to squash it into one meg.
The technique involved storing a number of repeatable backdrops and overlaying bobs (or Blitter-objects, the Amiga’s software sprites) which are updated for each frame. Cunning frame- swapping provides the feeling of motion.
The result is a rather smooth display which could easily be straight from Dpaint but in an eighth of the space.
UIGITISED sound effects accompany the simulation. In order to faithfully reproduce the underground atmosphere the sounds were recorded by dangling a microphone out of the cab window. To get the realistic speech effect Brian Van De Peer shouted at his Amiga from across the room!
Why do all this on the Amiga? The museum way of doing things usually runs along the lines of commissioning a model-maker to produce an exhibit, with twiddlv-knob devices in glass cases to provide the interactive Getting to grips with the simulator this guy's doing well.
He has already assumed the posture and expression of an LRT driver.
Perhaps the drivers of the future will be trained on equipment like this element. While these types of display are likely to remain in exhibitions into the distant future, the interactive computer approach is bound to have a major role to play.
Computerised displays are, basically, cheap and flexible. It is a lot easier to pay some highly intelligent chaps to write some software than it is to pay a craftsman for six months’ work. And what happens at the end of the exhibition? Expensive models have to be stored somewhere - or worse still - broken up. A piece of hi- tech computer hardware can always be re-used in the next exhibition.
The basic requirements for this project were that the computer involved be flexible, reasonably cheap, easy to interface and have excellent graphic capability - basically the design spec of the Amiga.
An ST was originally considered but sense prevailed - as Rob Lansdown of the London Transport Museum says “it's a different kind of animal entirely”.
The museum are so pleased with the the project (it has already being wrecked a few times the sign of success for a museum exhibit) that they are already thinking ahead to the next exhibition, which may have even more Amiga-based displays.
Aeon Design is hoping to be in on that and perhaps catering to the needs of other museums as the century draws to a close.
The moral of the story? Your Amiga is a serious piece of gear easily capable of handling more tasks than you can possibly imagine - don’t let it vegetate in the role of a games machine and above all don't underestimate it. In the meantime, your past is part of its future.
Demos Application Miscellaneous Utility PDOM 212 - Red Sector CEBIT ’90 demo.
Another excellent demo from RSI!
PDOM 213 - Rebels Coma demo an absolutely brilliant non stop demo totally different, and very original!
PDOM 214 - Fractal Flight. Created by HyperCube Engineerings' fractal landscape generator.
Requires 1MB RAM BRILLIANT!
PDOM 148 - Escape from Singes Castle another amazing animation demo of the interactive game. Excellent follow up to Space Ace!
PDOM 1 - The Walker Demo ! Is a mega animation demo that requires 1Mb RAM, PDOM 2 - The Walker II the mega mega animation demo that requires 1Mb RAM.
FFISH 196 - Stunning digitised HAM pictures.
Excellent! The quality is astounding. PDOM 27 - Alcatraz Mega Demo II.
PDOM 65 & PDOM 66 Red Sector Mega Demo.
THE best demo on the Amiga! Amazing graphics, fabulous sounds, astounding vector graphics!
PDOM 73 - Star Trek The Enterprise Leaves Dock.
PDOM 74 - Star Trek the Starship Enterprise flying around in a circle.
PDOM 76 - Star Trek Shuttle landing on the SS Enterprise, PDOM 83 - Space Ace demo. Excellent nniamtion with excellent sampled sound!.
We’ve 100’s more demos!
PDOM 211 - NorchC the latest all features excellent C compiler.
Suitable for beginners and the knowledgable alike.
FFISH 171 - Sobozon C a port of the Atari ST version of this full K&R C compiler, assembler and linker. Not for the beginner.
FFISH 193 - Zc V1.01 modified version of the Sobozon C compiler from disk FFISH 171. It now generates code compatible with A68k assembler and has a front end to allow easier useage.
FFISH 337 - Cmanual V1,0 is a complete C manual for the Amiga which describes how to open and work with screens, windows, graphics, gadgets* requesters, alerts, menus, 1DCMP, sprites, etc. Includes huge manual file and over 70 fully executable examples with source code. When unpacked fills up 3 disks.
FFISH 314 - A68k v2.61 the 68000 macro assembler. Excellent.
FFISH 339 - PCQ V 1,1 cis a freely redistributable, self compiling, Pascal compiler. The only major feature of Pascal that is not implemented is sets.
FFISH 349 - MED V2.0 is a music editor much like SoundTracker with MIDI sequencing.
AMPll - 5 disks full of Sonix files with the PD Sonix player. £12.50!
AMP23 - 5 disks full of Soundtrackcr files includes Sound Tracker versions 1,2,3 and 4. £12.50!
AMP1 - Home Business Pack : Uedit word processor, Visicalc spreadsheet, RIM and Hyperbase databases and spell checkers etc. 3 disks only £7.50!
APDC 17-2 Micro Emac editors: Micro GnuEmaes MtcroEmacs.
FFISH 144 - Analytical V22.3D is a large & powerful spreadsheet program requires 1 MB RAM and one floppy.
AMICUS 17 - Communications: COMM vl.33, Aterm V7.2, VT-100 V2.6, Vtek V2.3.1, Amiga Host V0.9 for CompuServe.
PDOM Clip It! Voll.
Nearly 3Mb of clip art in standard IFF format.
Subjects covered are varied but arc mainly: sports, flags, animals, cartoons, humorous, Christmas, Jewish, borders, Halloween, Valentines, horses, eyes, alphabets, hands, 1930's trade marks, zodiac, cars and many more. All compatible with Dpainc II. All in black and wrhite. 5 disks full.
PDOM 1MB RAM UPGRADE Upgrade to I Mb RAM, amazing price : without clock £48.50!
With clock £55.00!
Just plug in!
FFISH 327 - Msh handles MSDOS ST formatted disks. You can use files on such disks in almost exactly the same way as you use files on native AmigaDOS disks.
This is a fully functional, read write version.
PDOM 62 - The Public Dominator Ami Virus Disk: Virus X V4.0, Vcheck Vl.2 (for memory), Vcheck Vl.9 (for disk drives), Zero Virus VI.3 the fully integrated virus detector and killer. Also Boot Block Champion the utility and information on boot blocks.
PDOM 93- ARPvl.3. The AmigaDOS Replacement Project includes text manual files.
APDC 15 - Icon utilities: full of icon files and creators. Some animated! Brilliant disk for icon manipulation.
APDC 18 - Floppy Disk Utils: Quick Copy VI.0, Disk Mapper, Disk Salvage, Virus check, System Utils: Blitz V1.0 text editor, TimeSet.
Acalc, Amiga Monitor
VI. 1, MeM Grab fast memory grabber and Di rectory Master V1.1.
FFISH 342 - IE V 1.0 is an icon editor up to 640x200 pixels
in size also dual render. Fully featured.
FFISH 244 - Boot Block Champion V3.1 load, save and analyze boot blocks. Boot Intro V1.2 you specify The headline text of upto 44 characters and the scrolling text of upto 300.
AMP8 - Game Pack 1 - Clue as in Cluedo, Othello. Klondike, Canfield, Cribbge, ackgammon, Yahzee, Tvision, Missle ommand, Cosmo 2, 3D Breakout, Empire, Gravity Wars, Hanoi, Hockey, ikoff, Jackland, Othello Master, Pacman, all rilliant PD games. 3 disks only £7.50!
AMP22 - Games Pack 2
- Amoeba space invaders, CosmoRoids, Stone Age a Boulder Dash
type, Back Gammon, Chain Reaction, Master Mind, Reversi, Black
Jack, Crazy Eights, Klondike, JigSaw, Keno, YachtC, Daleks, Rat
maze, Monopoly and Escape From Jovi the excellent game.
PDOM 90 - Tennis! The best shareware game on the Amiga. Excellent!
Requires 1Mb of RAM.
PDOM 79, PDOM 80 & PDOM 81 - Star Trek 3 disk game. Amazing graphics! Fully working.
Brilliant! Requires 1MB RAM.
PDOM 215, PDOM 216
- Star Trek 2 disk game.
Totally different, and even better excellent game!
AMP3 - Graphics Pack 1 Clip It! Clip any part of the screen and save to disk, filter Pics manipulate pictures with enhancers, edge definition, colour and size shifters, Amiga MCAD excellent CAD package. IFF to pieces jigsaw program, ROT 3D drawing prog, Vdraw
VI. 19 brilliant painting program, Ray Tracer Generator.
AMP21 - Graphics Pack 2 - DBW Render a very good Ray Tracing utility, Mandelbrot Explorer.
Excellent full features mandelbrot designer, ST2IFF convert Atari ST pictures to Amiga IFF format. HAM Editor drawing program. HAM to IFF convertor.
FFISH 295 - Mandel Mountains VI.]. Mandel Brot Generator.
FFISH 334 - FBM is an image manipulator and convertor : Sun, GIF, IFF, PCX, PBM bitmaps, Can input raw images, and output PostScript & Diablo. Also does rectangular extraction, density and contrast changes, rotation, quantization, halftone grayscahng etc. etc. etc. All prices are fully inclusive. To order please send a cheque or postal order payable to Pdom PD Atari or Access & Visa credit card details to: Pdom PD Amiga Dept AC, PO Box 801, Bishop s Stortford, Hertfordshire, CM23 3TZ.
Telephone 0279 757692.
PD Disk Prices: f to 5 disks£3.00 each, 6 to 10 disks £2.75 each and 11 or more disks £2.50 each!
Send now for our FREE information booklet.
Orders sent by 1st class post on top quality disks.
Blank disks 10 - £7, 50 - £33 100 - £61 Blank labels 100 -£3,1000 - £15 Mouse Mats A4 - £3.50 Cleaning Kits - £2.50 Full details of all the disks are available on our disk based catalogue only 70p!
EVERYONE has run into a part of ARP (AmigaDos Resource Project) at one time or another, that I can guarantee. The near standard file requester was done by the ARP head man Charlie Heath.
For most people, that’s as much of ARP as they’ll see. There’s more than just a file requester, though
- there’s a complete replacement for Commodore’s commands, plus
an improved Shell environment contained in the ARP Release 1.3
And all of this lives on TBAG Disk 31.
Why would anyone in their right mind want to replace Commodore's commands ? They work, do thev not ?
Well, no and yes. They’re written in C, which makes them bigger and slower than ARP’s assembly language ones.
The Commodore commands also don’t quite work as they should. ARP on the other hand, is very well behaved. ARP commands usually have more options and better Help facilities than the supplied command set.
IF ALL this seems rather dull, you might appreciate the fact that installing ARP gives you much more room (over 60k) on your boot disk than before. This is partly due to the smaller size of the assembly code, and also due to ARP’s use of a shared library.
This shared library, called arp.library, contains mostly housekeeping routines. It also contains the much-used file requestor, used by more programs than it would be wise to shake a stick at. OK, so it’s not 100 per cent big or clever to shake sticks at any kind of software, but at least it breaks the tedium.
ARP’s shell, Ash, is more intelligent and more compact than Commodore’s Stewart C. Russell demonstrates how to rebuild your Amiga from scratch using the multitude of available public domain utilities offering. It has most of the script control commands - like If, Else, Endif and Execute - built in, so your scripts run far more quickly.
Ash supports environment variables properly, unlike Commodore’s, which still uses an awful kludge to work properly. Additional commands have been added to the c: directory to give you parsed input of variables. Gone are the days of the simple yes no question.
If you’ve used proper Shells before, you’ll be wanting to use pipes, command substitution, and I O redirection. Maybe "wanting” is too strong a term, but “able to find a use for” was just too long.
Ash allows you to use all of these, but you need to get another piece of software to do the first two. ConMan
vl. 3 on Fish Disk 165 (Shareware, $ 10) is what you need, since
it implements a proper pipe.
O WHAT is a pipe, and what use is it ? All a pipe does is collect output from one program, and feed it as input to another. A simple example is “List I Type OPT N” (the I being the pipe) - this creates a numbered listing of the current directory.
Command substitution isn’t as useful as a pipe, but it’s fun to be with anyway. It can be used to substitute the output from a command into the output from another command.
Swallowed that ? Good.
Msdos (a Dos which has the latter quality of its near-homophonic bleach) isn’t the only one which can have the date in the prompt - Prompt "*$ (DateJ” gives you the same from Ash. That’s what a command substitute is.
AmigaDos has always had output redirection dir t:tnip and input redirection type t:tmp but what if you wanted to append output to a file ? You’d have to redirect to another file, and then join two files together.
Ash has append redirection (using ») which, surprisingly, appends the output on to an existing file. If the file doesn’t exist, it gets created - no nasty late-night meetings with Mr. File-Not- Found!
Apart from being a file requester, a set of commands, a Shell and a way of life, ARP is also a software development philosophy (woo!). ARP is a cooperative effort to provide enhanced commands and to provide a better user interface through the arp.libra nr The work is fully documented, and has been made available to Commodore for use in future releases of AmigaDos.
Commodore now supports ARP (in the US, at least) and most of it is included in AmigaDos 2.0. Yes, that means there will be a standard FILE selector in 2.0 ... ARP may be used and distributed without charge. In the year or so that I’ve been using ARP 1.3, it has served me very well, with no bugs, crashes, or general weirdnesses. It’s perfect, I CAN tell what you’re thinking - Russell’s gone and run out of interesting things to write about. Here he’s going on about IFF picture readers, possibly the most common type of PD program there is.
OK, I admit that ShoWiz is rather good at reading IFF pictures - but then so is Deluxe Paint 3. But what other picture show program can show text files, play sampled sounds, use requesters or run other programs?
ShoWiz - not just another IFF reader... ShoWiz can do all this (plus the customary and much more) in only 23k. It has a smaller relation, ShoWiz Junior, which is designed for more limited work, as Junior can’t handle scripts and only has 10 different ways of wiping the picture on to the screen.
The full ShoWiz has more than 20 different wipes.
Both programs can be used to show a single picture or text file, or can be given a directory to slideshow through in alphabetical order. If your slideshow is a continuous loop, ShoWiz will usually manage to use a different wipe for each picture.
It’s ability to run external tasks was originally coded to allow animations to be played from the script. Any program can be run from ShoWiz: I used it to automate the installation of a user-hostile software package.
If this had been a commercial package it would have had the multimedia albatross hung round its neck. Multimedia is a cute way of saying that you get sound and graphics at the same time.
Text is handled neatly, with 80 by 25 drop-shadowed text. All text must be set up in a special template, which means you must prepare all your text page by page.
ShoWiz is definitely one to consider if you have to create slideshows and presentations. Whatever the purpose, from education to advertising, ShoWiz will show your best side.
ShoWiz v2.0 is on TBAG Disk 31, and has the very reasonable shareware fee of $ 10.
LIFE’S hard for the average Workbench user. I mean, people who use the Shell can create script files to automate repetitive tasks.
Workbench forces you to do everything by hand.
Wouldn’t it be good if you could load your favourite program, and for it to automatically set itself up the way you like it ? Well, for this sort of thing, Scripit on Fish Disk 288 is your program.
Intuition, the Amiga’s graphical user interface, makes Scripit’s task fairly simple. Every time you select a menu, click the mouse, or whatever, Intuition sends a message to the current program detailing what you’ve just done.
What Scripit can do is send these messages direct to your program without all that tedious mucking about with the mouse. To make writing scripts more straightforward, Scripit has an auxiliary program to record your actions in a plain text file. It can also compile scripts to a more compact and faster file format. This can save a lot of space with long scripts, since compiled commands are only a few bytes long.
Scripit is much more than just a mouse recorder. It’s a mouse organ too; a complete language in itself. It has WORKBENCH can seem a little creaky at times. Well, OK, very creaky. The waiting involved when all the icons are being read from disk or when Files are being copied is very tedious.
Jazz up your Workbench Workbench annoyed David Navas so much that he wrote a replacement. Instead of just getting rid of the annoying delays, he produced what he thought Workbench should have looked like all along - a sort of concept front- end, as it were.
Fazzbench isn’t actually complete in the version that’s available. It’s rather buggy too, and prone to crashing. It really needs a megabyte to run properly. So why do I mention it?
Well, fazzbench actually does a better job of supporting the Intuition graphics system than does Workbench. Jazzbench window contents scroll smoothly when a slider gadget is moved: Workbench only moves the icons once the gadget has stopped. Windows also have liny icon gadgets on them, which allow windows to be kept on the screen without taking up useful space.
Workbench’s unused device icons are implemented - if you have an icon for your printer, dragging a text file over it will print the file.
Unfortunately, Jazzbench currently opens an icon for every device mounted (including CON: and RAW;), so you’ll find your screen littered with useless icons.
If you’re working on files without icons, Jazzbench can display them either by listing them, or by creating temporary icon files. It doesn’t mean, though, that CLI-only programs suddenly become Workbench aware.
The annoying warning screen flash has been patched to play a sampled sound. The default is HAL’s “I’m sorry Dave, I’m afraid I can’t do that” from
2001. Also patched is the Workbench screen backdrop, to give a
very simple pattern, and the window close routine, which
looks a little Mac- esque.
In common with Mac Finder’s Das, and ST GEM’s ACCs, Jazzbench supports desktop accessory programs.
These are generally small programs like a calculator which it’s handy to keep loaded for instant access. This is more useful under a non-multitasking front end (like Finder and Gem) but is handy to have anyway.
Jazzbench promises more features in later releases, such as automatic display of IFF pictures. With a bit more work it could become a Workbench 2.0 clone for ordinary The mechanical mouse organ [Workbench release.
2438344 free menory GAME MONTH rj* BSD6-RRH RflH DISK Graphics on the Workbench?
'Ere, that's a hit clever
- Lmsaa BmqaLibDisk288 Laurence j Is it possible to draw graphics
YES! ! Scripit can do it?
.. V V F YOU frequent the arcades you will probably find a Qix machine hidden in a dark corner. Qix is a very old and simple game, which won a small but dedicated band of followers in the early 80’s. Trix is Qix, basically All you have to do in Trix is Trix to corral a randomly-moving line segment in less than 40 per cent of the screen area.
String and integer variables and flow control (IF...THEN...ELSE, GOTO, GOSUB, WHILE). Control can be passed to new scripts with the SCRIPT command, and the SUBSCRIPT command acts like a GOSUB between files.
You want graphics commands? You got them - circles, points, lines, ellipses, boxes, filled rectangles, text- the kitchen sink’s in there somewhere.
There’s also a command which will draw directly onto Deluxe Paint’s screen.
The syntax of the Scripit language is similar to Arexx, so it’s no surprise that Scripit has full Arexx support. So even programs which don’t support Arexx can now be controlled by it.
For something as stunningly clever as Scripit you’d expect quite a hefty shareware fee. You’d expect wrongly then - Khalid Aldoseri has released the package as freeware.
The player is a small and rather unexciting blob which travels along the edges of the screen.
You create solid areas of colour which the Trix cannot enter. The Trix and its attendant Foos (or Sparx in the original) lose you a life if they touch you. What else did you expect? Free artichokes?
Trix is pretty much identical to the original - there’s a definite look-and-feel case in there somewhere. Most of the minimalist addictiveness has been retained. So has the annoying drone of the Qix, erm, Trix.
Good, solid, reliable, nonviolent, non-sexist simple fun.
Not the sort of game I’d play all the time, but a couple of games every day should be enough for a year or so.
Trix is on SACC Disk 23. The ultra-sparse documentation mentions nothing about money; so I guess it has to be freeware.
Snap, crackle and plop!
COMPUTERS are supposed to make paper obsolete. So why is it that every computer desk in the known universe has a wad of scribblings covering every spare inch of surface?
Bing, bong - Amiga calling The annoying things about said scribblings is that most of them have appeared on the screen have been noted down, and must be retyped later. Why can’t you just pick the text off the screen and let the computer retype it for you?
That’s what the people at the Xerox Palo Alto Research Center (it’s in the States, hence the spelling) thought.
They designed a system where text could be “clipped” from the screen and then retyped at the press of a mouse button.
The Amiga does have a Clipboard, but precious few programs make good use of it. Mikael Karlsson’s Snap vl.4 uses the Amiga Clipboard and the original ideas from Xerox to make a Wonderfully Useful Program.
Dunno about you, but for me a Wonderfully Useful Program is one which has found a place in my Startup-Sequence the first time I see it.
Not merely does Snap save all the hassle of writing things down, it can also clip graphics from any screen.
The text clipping has a few limitations. It can only clip text that is fixed width (non-proportional) of less than 16 pixels height. Considering that all system text currently conforms with this, that’s not so bad.
Text can be clipped from anywhere - window title bars, icon names, gadgets, wherever. As long as the text font is the same as the Intuition Screen font (which it usually is) you’ll be able to clip it.
Snapping graphics is really neat.
You can clip an area of any screen (be it HAM, half bright, interlaced, 2 to 32 colours, overscan or whatever) and a window opens on the Workbench screen containing your clip.
This window has a little icon in the title bar. Clicking on it produces a WHEN your Amiga wishes to warn you about something, it flashes the screen rather than sounding the more usual beep. This is due to the slight possibility of another task using the audio device and not allowing the beep. Whatever the reason, if you happen to blink, you’ve missed your warning.
Even worse, if a program decides to send out a rapid string of warning flashes, the screen goes wild. Even just thinking about it gives me a headache that will require a few hours’ kip to recover from.
It is here that InstallBeep comes to the rescue. What it does is intercept the system’s screen flash and re-route it to a little IFF sound playing routine.
As you can choose your own sound file, you can personalise the way your Amiga behaves. I have my own Save gadget, which allows you to save the graphics clip as an IFF file.
Snap saves all the correct system information along with the clip, so that rather messy clip on the Workbench screen which was from a HAM screen regains its former beauty.
There are three minor problems concerning Snap. The first is Commodore’s fault; some versions of the clipboard.device have a bug which causes a little memory to be lost every time it is used. Not fatal, but it can be annoying.
The second problem concerns Snap’s Setup Tool. It requires Arexx, which most people don’t have. It’s possible to set up Snap by hand, but it requires much perusing of documentation and head scratching.
The last problem is neither machine set to warble like a loon, which just happens to be Minnesota’s state bird, and a terrific non-sequitur into the bargain.
InstallBeep plays the sound asynchronously, so your program won’t have to wait for the sound to finish. Better still, multiple beeps just fill up spare audio channels to give a stereo echo.
InstallBeep is very small, but it has to install the sound driver and the sound file in chip ram. For that reason I wouldn’t recommend it to folks who spend all day drawing pictures in overscan interlace HAM. For the rest of us it gives us one of the neater features from David Navas’ JazzBench without the hassle.
InstallBeep by Don Wilhey and Tun Friest is on Fish Disk 217, and is freeware.
Commodore’s nor Mikael Karlsson’s.
ScAne programs will not accept input as quickly as Snap can provide it.
Other programs strip out very rapid repeat keystrokes, as they could be caused by keyboard bounce. QED (PDs passim) is a major culprit where the latter is concerned. This means that you generally have to set the delay between sending characters to be quite large - around 20 milliseconds. That works out to be just under 50 characters per second, which is still many times faster than I can type.
Snap is wonderful, is on Fish Disk 326, and is “Freely distributable copyrighted software with a shareware option”. That basically means that Mikael Karlsson wouldn’t mind some dosh, but isn’t going to get heavy about it.
Ilisk lit ?It adds, substracts, multiplies and divides ?It works out VAT and other percentages ?It has a powerful three-key memory ?And it's solar powered!
(But just don't put it in your computer!)
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They can also be used very effectively with text and other types of illustration. Pie charts are improved greatly by a drop shadow as it lends more substance to the quantities being compared.
The one important thing to remember about drop shadows is not to overuse them (otherwise everything looks like it’s floating away) and try to get them equal.
Most importantly the shadows lie in the same direction (unless you are trying for some weird effect) otherwise the page just looks wrong, often without the reader realising the cause.
Photographs PHOTOGRAPHS are reality - well, more or less. As such, they bear close examination. You want to make sure above all else that they are communicating the reality of that you are putting forward in the text. It’s no good doing a report of a show claiming big business, overcrowding and crush victims alongside a snap showing only a few people milling around.
This ploy requires care, as hair partings, double breasted jacket lapels, wristwatches can give the game away. And with cars some smartalec will always be quick to inform you that a particular model isn’t available in left-hand drive... Remember people's faces are eyecatching, as is the way they are facing.
Much can be made of the fact that Continuing his investigation into this thing known as DTP, Nic Veitch confirms that the eyes have it they are facing away from or towards a particular block of text.
Remember, if there is no text in the background it is generally considered quite all right to reverse the photograph so that objects are facing in the direction you want them to.
IT was, I believe, Bismark who said that politics is the art of the possible* Well, that may be, but I believe that publishing is the art of the possible.
There is more to that analogy than meets the eye, but it is to the eye we go first, as we discuss artwork.
Very few, and here I shall add the qualifying adjective “successful” publications carry on without some vague interspertions of a more nobler form of art - an illustration, a photo, even a cartoon.
The reason for this is quite simple.
No matter how brilliant the text is, no matter how fervently you worship the great god Uni vers, people’s eyes can only have so much of a good thing.
Ever wondered why you can read a newspaper right through and yet you’ve been reading “Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance” for three years? Now you know - eyes are fickle things. They just like everything nice, and don’t want to do any work.
They are slackers.
So, everyone has lazy eyes, what are we going to do about it? Well, it’s no good beating them, we have to coax them into work. Basically fill the page with stuff that they just can’t help themselves from looking at, the equivalent of a “Free Bird Seed” sign in a Roadrunner cartoon.
Tvack’em, trick’em and trap’em.
Some things eyes just find irresistable, like more eyes for example - that’s why pictures of people are so good, that’s why racks full of magazines have a portrait on the cover. There are more and more ways of leading the eye, but just as important as sending it off in the right direction is having an oasis of art somewhere in the desert of text.
Eyesavers don’t have to be just artwork, they can be text too - or rather text can be artwork too. This is Tints HEADINGS or important paragraphs of the text can be emphasised by running them against a light grey (or coloured if you’ve broken the mono barrier) background. This is known as a “tint” or a “screen”.
This technique can equally well be applied to complete boxes of text. It is most effective when drawing attention to sidebars - small, self contained articles which are in some way related to the main topic of the body text.
Don’t get too carried away - always check to make sure that there is enough contrast between the text and the background to make it clearly legible. Also check the typeface serifed typefaces are easily lost if the background is a grainy mono colour.
Bleeds ¦ FEATURE ¦ A BLEED is where a piece of artwork, illustration or even just a block of colour extending to one of the physical boundaries of the page.
A powerful effect is caused by some nice artwork “breaking out” of the apparent confines of the page margins. The artwork actually O u overwhelms the space and becomes the physical boundary itself.
It is important to note if you are working at home that many printers will not allow you to print to the very edge of the page. The worst protagonists of this anti-DTP style Col ur ADDING colour to your publication needn’t be expensive - don’t think you’re going to have to start outputting on four colour films. It can be easy as just printing on different paper.
Various papers suitable for this purpose are available from most good stationery shops. They are a cheap way of brightening up a dull and monotonous black and white publication.
Always remember to check that your ink colour will stand out against this background - it may be an interesting way to torture your enemies by slowly blinding them, but not very sound financially.
You may not have to go completely colour to brighten up your pages. Just one extra colour, used for key lines, drop shadows or tints, can really make a difference. Blocks of colour can be used as a background for a page full of boxes.
Remember that the text can go in a different colour, too.
Behaviour are laser printers. The HP laserjet in particular requires that you leave a substantial amount of space around the edges,which makes it a bit difficult to do bleeds unless you photo-reproduce them on later. Watch out for this.
Rml ¦¦Fl State of the Union CONTENTS Super Souiet Strip!
- --- I'S i!!n;!i III fig Even the use of just one colour can
have a dramatic effect. This page is totally made up from
black, red and the shades that these give vou achieved in a
rather simple fashion by adding tints, reverses, stretching
and or compressing both horizontally and vertically, boxing
out, using colour. Basically, the art of possibility.
Photographs and illustrations cannot just be pasted on wherever a convenient break in the text evolves, but must be planned out. They contribute to not only the colour, style and “emotional tone” of the page, but also it’s legibility. Remember that eyes can be directed away as well as towards... Artwork must follow the same rules of hierarchy as headlines when it comes to size - the more important, the bigger they go generally. There’s no point having a minor decorative piece of artwork bigger than some important photo or diagram, no matter how much prettier it is.
The page is a battleground. You must make sure that the correct amount of authority goes to the correct part of the page, otherwise the reader is given the impression of conflict and confusion, not to mention the psychological distress it causes anyone who does know anything about DTP.
Photographs are funny things. It is said that a picture is worth a thousand words. This may well be true, but in the case of photographs at least half of them are irrelevant and, like other irrelevancies in the text, must be stamped out ruthlessly.
However, be careful when you are ruthlessly stamping. There comes a point when information as well as irrelevancy is being lost. How much information to lose is very much a personal matter, but just be gentle OK, the old iron foot in a velvet sock or whatever.
Cropping a shot shouldn’t be as a Spock, you’ve botched it!
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surprise I'm not the ho thought he CATALOGUING all of the
mistakes you are likely to make would take the Amiga Computing
team of highly trained monkeys so long that they wouldn’t he
able to make my coffee, so in this section I’ll just point out
a few of the most common mistakes.
If you haven’t made any of these mistakes then I salute you. You are obviously a born practitioner of the art - or too stubborn to admit you are wrong. If you have...well, at least it’s one less mistake you’re going to make in the future Underlining: Oh dear - you’ve gone and underlined a whole paragraph or something haven't you.
Excessive underlining is probably one of the nastiest things you can do to eyes. If the text follows for more than one line this problem is compounded.
The eyes are tom between focussing on the actual words and the solid line beneath them. If this wasn’t bad enough, descenders from some letters will be lost in the line, making words hard to identify. Like most emphasis tools, use underlining sparingly.
There 13 a tendency in reports and other such documents to underline entire paragraphs of text by way of e mphasis. This shou Id be discouraged as although the function of drawing attention to the text is tu Ifil I ed. At the sam e ti m e it becomes guite unreadable.
Compared that ia, to normal te?rt which hasjustafew key words highlighted. The eyes are drawn automatically to the really important words because they are the only ones higl ighted 9 Angles: Type set at an angle may be fine for thin strips across an article or “teasers” on the cover, but generally they should be kept as short as possible.
Setting the text at an angle forces the reader to slow down to take it in.
This is great for things like teasers, since the object is to draw attention to them and get the message through (which is achieved by the reader spending more time on it, and thus becoming more aware of each word).
Over long passages it soon becomes to irritating to read and the slow progress only heightens boredom.
That is why teasers should be brief and every word chosen with care.
• Widows and orphans - solitary words at the foot of a column, or
the top of one: It is not a crime to leave copy full of widows
and orphans...but it should be. The thing about them is that
they look so awful, but the remedy is so easy. Simply add or
delete a few words in the rest of the text.
In fact even breaking a paragraph will affect a cure - you don’t even have to tax your brain as to which words to delete or which words to add, just press Return at the appropriate point.
In a new book recently published by Fetherins and Ffos I was surprised to learn that good old King Richard was in fact an over large satsuna orange, This wi11 no doubt Unequal spacing: Oh you wicked,wicked person. The human eye is incredibly perceptive to variations in spacing, I knew a man once who could accurately adjust his spark plug to within fractions of a millimetre purely by eye - it’s not unusual either.
The thing about this is, what with the human brain striving for order, symmetry and above all sense, it just perceives these little inaccuracies as sloppy work.
Watch out particularly for distances between headers and body copy, space between headers and side borders, captions and artwork, artwork and copy, and of course, columns and top bottom margins.
It is also a dead giveaway if your gutters are not consistent.
• Exaggerated space: When placing text, tabs and indents should
be adjusted to remain in proportion to type size and column
width. Nothing looks quite so unsightly as vast tracts of
virgin paper wastefully squandered.
The book soes c claiM that this was actually the of England, an « at ion that has r the acadenic wor who were, until al1 convineed th was just a bus c tor on the Greal negative thing though. In effect you are not really losing anything at all.
The primary purpose of the photograph is to convey information.
If that function is better served then you have only gained, not lost. What the public never saw, they won’t miss and may be happier for it.
Obviously, cropping a shot can help it fit in better with the relevant copy.
If you are running a feature on “the loneliness of the long-distance runner” then you want to make quite sure you crop any other persons out of the shot.
Similarly, if you are doing a feature on the thankless wretched torment of being a well-renowned journalist you may want to come in tight on the subject with his head in his hands - thoughtfully leaving out the information that his elbows are supported by a table containing 30 pints of Boddingtons and a few of his inebriated acquaintances.
Now. No matter how brilliant I have been so far, some of you are bound to have botched it. Well, I can’t say I’m surprised really. I mean - it stands to reason. DTP is a bit like cooking - with practice you can produce almost anything, but how quickly you progress and how high the standard you eventually achieve is down to natural talent. On the other hand, at its basic level, almost everyone can do it (otherwise they’d starve to death).
The one thing that you must always remember is communication. It’s not enough for the information just to be there, it has to be communicated - Silhouettes ONE way of emphasising the important information contained in a photograph is by silhouetting it. This means masking out all the irrelevant background detail so that only the primary subject is left.
One of the effects, in addition to the normal advantages of cropping, is that the shape of the artwork is completely changed - you are no longer restricted to a square or rectangular shape.
If, as in some cases, this is a disadvantage then the resulting silhouette can always be put in a box, with a background tint if necessary.
Nothing that is except for...
• Ransom notes: Oh dear. You are the worst, and most common,
Why did you do it? Hmm...just couldn’t resist all those nice fonts, could you The biggest single mistake most people make is to use too many typestyles, weights and faces on a single page. The result tends to look like several species of alphabeti- spaghetti mixed into one - If yon are going to nSe So many different, fonts On a page ™hy not go the mhole hog and ExP a ranSom note?
Remember: Less is more that's the difference between reading through a symphony and hearing it played. Remember that.
News-sheets are in a bit of a different boat since very few editors actually consider that everyone is going to want to read right through the complete paper. Therefore a choice of what to read has to be made and it is part of the designer’s job to make that choice easier.
Most common mistakes boil down j to the use of flash gimmicks.
Remember the age-old guideline, and is about as appetising.
¦ FEATURE ¦ Basically it results in an amateurish, disorganised appearance.
You must restrain yourself. Try keeping one face in one style to do a particular job. They can even double up sometimes. Use the minimum number of faces and sizes to establish the hierarchy of the text and leave it at that.
More of your best blunders next time laid down by the first Thane of Amiga Computing, “Less is more”.
Don’t get carried away - art for arts sake is a waste of space.
Remember, above all, people have to read it - try making it easier for them rather than harder. A confusion of different sizes and styles is only going to make people hate you. Try and work out different styles and sizes for different purposes, then slick to them. Consistency doesn’t have to mean boredom.
Glossary CROPPING: The technique by which irrelevant or unwanted material is removed from a photograph or illustration. This used to involve a ruler, a scalpel and a keen eye, but nowadays is handled by almost all DTP systems.
GUTTER: the space between two adjacent columns or, more properly, the space between the copy and the bound edge of the page.
ORPHAN: A single word or partial line of text that has wrapped around to come at the top of a column. An unsightly blemish on the face of your work
- get rid of it.
REVERSE: or WOB (White on Black). This is where the ink colour and background colour are, funnily enough, reversed. A useful effect, especially if the output is only black and white.
SCREEN: another term for a tint.
A tint which has 30 lines per inch (Ipi) is known as a 30 line screen.
SIDEBAR: This is a term used to describe a small (compared to the main feature) item of text which is related to the main text through its subject matter.
Sidebars are usually tinted or boxed-out in a magazine.
TEASER: A small strip of concise text, placed in a prominent position (usually on the cover) with the primary objective of enticing the reader and instilling the desire to learn more.
TINT: A shade or halftone which replaces a solid block of colour (for example in reverses or drop shadows). Particularly useful in mono work. Also see screen.
WIDOW: Similar in unsightliness to an orphan, however this time it is a word or fraction of a line which appears isolated at the bottom of a column or paragraph.
The amount of white space left draws attention to these blemishes.
ZEN: A popular religion which actually has not very much to do with fixing a motorbike - and come to think of it, is of even less relevance to DTP THROUGH THE WORLD'S MOST POWERFUL FREEZER-UTILITY JUST LOOK AT THE UNMATCHED RANGE OF FEATURES ¦; AMIGA ACTION REPLAY SIMPLY PLUGS INTO THE EXPANSION PORT OF YOUR AMIGA 500 AND GIVES YOU THE POWER TO FREEZE MOST ANY PROGRAM, THEN YOU CAN:- ¦ SAVE THE ENTIRE PROGRAM IN MEMORY TO DISK ¦ SAVE PICTURES AND MUSIC TO DISK Special compacting techniques enable upto 3 programs to Pictures and sound samples can be saved to disk. Files fit on one disk. Unique
FDOS power means that the pro- are IFF format suitable for use with all the major graphic .grams reload at upto 4 TIMES FASTER than Amiga Dos - and music packages, even independantly of the cartridge.
¦ SLOW MOTION MODE Now you can slow down the action to your own pace. Easily adjustable from full speed to 20% speed. Ideal to help you through the tricky parts! Y ¦ UNIQUE INFINITE LIFE TRAINER MODE Allows you to generate more and even infinite lives, fuel, ammo etc. Perfect as a trainer mode to get you past that "impossible" level. Very easy to use.
¦ SPRITE EDITOR ¦; RESTART THE PROGRAM The full sprite editor allows.you to view modify the Simply press a key and the program will continue where whole sprite set including any ’attached' sprites. YOU ]efi off.
¦ VIRUS DETECTION Comprehensive virus detection and removal features to ¦ FULL STATUS REPORTING protect your software investment. Works with all At the press of a key now you can view the machine status presently known viruses, I Including Fast Ram.Chip Ram, Ramdisk,Drive status.etc. PLUS THE MOST POWERFUL MACHINE CODE FREEZER MONITOR MORE FEATURE THAN YOU COULD feVER NEED. HERE ARE JUST SOME; Full M68000 Assembler Disassembler Full screen editor Load Save block Write string to Memoiy Jump to specific address Sho Ram as text Show Frozen picture Play resident sample Show and edit all CPU
registers and Hags Calculator Help command Full search feature Unique Cutom Chip Editor allows you to see and modify all chip registers-even write only registers Notepad Disk handling - show actual track. Disk Sync pattern Etc. Dynamic Breakpoint handling Show memory as HEX, ASCII, Assembler,Decimal Copper Assemble Disassemble.
REMEMBER AT ALL TIMES YOU ARE INTERROGATING THE PROGRAM IN IT'S "FROZEN" STATE WITH ALL MEMORY AND REGISTERS INTACT.-INVALUABLE FOR THE DE-BUGGER OR JUST THE INQUISATIVE!
HOW TO GET YOUR AMIGA ACTION REPLAY... TELEPHONE (24 Hrs) - - CREDIT CARD ORDERS ONLY WE WILL DESPATCH YOUR ORDER QUICKLY & EFFICIENTLY TO ENABLE YOU TO START RECIEVING THE BENEFITS OF YOUR PURCHASE WITHIN DAYS NOT WEEKS ORDERS NORMALLY DESPATCHED WITHIN 48Hrs.
ALL CHEQUES POSTAL ORDEKS MADE PAYABLE TO... DATEL ELECTRONICS LTD., GOVAN RD., FENTON INDUSTRIAL ESTATE, FENTON, STOKE-ON-TRENT, ST4 2RS, ENGLAND TECHNICAL CUSTOMER SERVICE 07B2 744324 Fast FAX Station Setup Alert When a Fax is Received? FAX machines are wonderful things. You can use one to send an almost exact duplicate of a document to someone who could well be thousands of miles away, get them to sign it (or whatever) and then fax it straight back to you - all within a matter of minutes.
It’s enough to make you wonder why people ever bother using the great British postal service at all.
If fax machines are so wonderful, you’re probably asking yourself why everyone doesn’t have one sat snuggly next to that other great communicating device, the telephone.
The answer is simple - the price.
Even the cheapest fax machine will set you back at least £500, but don’t expect it to feature all the latest bells and whistles.
For that kind of money, you’re probably looking at a fax that will only handle single pages and send them to a single destination.
These days, a fax machine with that kind of specification is practically prehistoric. Modern faxes can handle multi-page documents, process images with up to 16 grey scales and even transmit to multiple destinations at pre-programmed times, but that kind of power costs money. Expect to pay around the £1500-2000 mark for a fax with that kind of spec. Fax machines can also be incredibly complicated beasties - all those buttons to press is just too much for most mere mortals. Anyway, if you Ye anything like me I still haven’t worked out how to program my video recorder - you’ll break out in a
cold Fax machines aren’t just tools of rich businessmen and the toys of yuppies - you too can send and receive faxes using your Amiga.
Jason Holborn doesn’t let the fax get in the way of a good story Flash lone Alert When a Fax is Sent? ) Set Station to Send Only Mode? Just like a real fax, Fast Fax can be set up to print your company name at the top of every page sent Cancel sweat if there’s more than two buttons on the front panel. Why do such devices have to be so damned complicated?
Specific fax NOW, thanks to Microdeal, there is an alternative which offers the power of a top flight fax machine for a budget price. To save idiots like myself from having to press loads of buttons, it is even controlled by the most friendly computer available - your Amiga.
Microdeal’s Fast Fax consists of a fairly small box - about the size of your average modem - which connects to the serial port of your Amiga.
Externally it looks pretty dull - just a couple of non-BT phone sockets at the back and a row of LEDs adorning the front.
As Fast Fax is hardware based, it is not possible for it to send printed documents in the same manner as a conventional machine.
Instead, the Fast Fax software will allow you to send either standard Ascii text files - such as those produced by most word processors - Epson printer files, a fax that it has previously received and stored, and an ASCII file containing its own special “dot commands”.
Although there is no direct support for sending IFF pictures as faxes - which is a strange omission - the program disk includes a wondrous little utility that will convert all your IFF art to a suitable format for transmission.
Why Microdeal didn’t include direct support for IFF files within the main program, I’ll never know.
DOT commands are the secret to the power of the Fast Fax system. When you're sending a document such as an official letter to someone, you’ll no doubt want to include such things as letter heads and even your own signature.
Fast Fax gets around the limitations of being computer-based with the help of its powerful dot commands. These are inserted at the start of an ASCII document and basically tell the Fast Fax to pull in and send either a cover The heart of the Fast Fax hardware is a dedicated 68000 processor (just like the one inside your Amiga) with 32k of RAM and 64k of ROM.
For those of you who know about such things, the Fast Fax hardware is compatible with a CCITT Group III fax and offers V29 (9600bps, 7200bps), V27 (4800bps, 2400bps) and V21 (300bps) transfer rates.
Page, letter head, signature or a text file.
Signatures could easily be scanned in using a video digitiser and then converted using the included file conversion software mentioned above.
Just like a real fax, Fast Fax also has the option to place both your name (and the name of your business) and your fax phone number at the top of every page.
To receive a fax it is necessary to switch the software into sleep mode.
Fast Fax will now happily receive any incoming traffic and then automatically save it to disk for viewing later.
Once recalled, you can use the built in view facility to either save the fax as a separate IFF compatible file or print it out using any preference- supported printer.
Not surprisingly, faxes cannot be saved in ASCII format if you want to edit the text from a received fax within a word processor, you’ll have to either retype the lot from scratch or, for the adventurous among you, use some kind of OCR (Optical Character Recognition) software to read the fax once it has been saved in IFF format.
To save you having to look up fax numbers every time you wish to send a fax, the Fast Fax software provides space for up to 1000 commonly used fax numbers to be defined within its built-in phone book. Sending a fax is now simply a matter of selecting where the fax is to be sent and you’re away.
The software also includes powerful scheduling options. When used in combination with the phone book, it is possible to send a preset list of files to a particular location (or locations) at a pre-programmed time. Multiple files may be sent to a single location or a single file to multiple locations - such is the power of Fast Fax.
Surprisingly, although fax machines are really nothing more than glorified modems, Fast Fax can only be used as a fax - it surely wouldn’t have cost Microdeal too much to add the extra circuitry to allow fast fax to also be used as a modem. Such an addition would have made the product ever better value (are you listening, Microdeal?), Fast Fax certainly isn’t perfect, but for the price it just blows away dedicated fax machines. However, unless you feel you really need a fax, Fast Fax could easily become an unused luxury - how many people do you know who also have Fax machines?.
For those who are considering buying a dedicated Fax machine, Fast Fax could well be what they’ve been looking for it is well designed, powerful, and is certainly the easiest to use fax machine I’ve ever come across.
REPORT CARD Fast Fax Microdeal (0726) 68020 £688.85 EASE OF USE... HHHH Using a fax machine has never been so easy. Even if you can't work out how to use it yourself, the manual will make it simple FEATURES .. A more integrated phone book would have been nice, but otherwise the Fast Fax software is stocked ivith features.
MANUAL .... Very well written, includes sections on all aspects of both the hardware and software. For quick reference, it even includes an index!
VALUE FOR MONEY £700 may seem like a lot of money, but when compared to dedicated Fax machines. Fast Fax is a steal.
OVERALL 85% Would have been nice if you could also use the Fast Fax hardware as a modem, but apart from this, Fast Fax gets the thumbs up.
READER OFFERS M P U T I N G When you're developing vk software, the last thing you '*s want is to hang around for ages while your assembler processes your code - when you could be getting on with further program development.
ArgAsm Probably the fastest assembler ever for the Amiga!
But now all that waiting's a thing of the past, because ArgAsm from Argonaut Software is a revolutionary machine code development system.
It assembles at an incredible rate of 250,000 lines a minute!
- at least five times faster than anything else, and over 100
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remains fully compatible.
What's more, ArgAsm is the first assembler to be compatible with all the three major assemblers; Assem, Devpac and Cape. So if you're • looking to upgrade, the chances are you'll be instantly right at home with ArgAsm. : - And fora limited periqd we're exclusively knocking £5 off -J0 the recommended price.
If you're serious about producing professional ;§|k quality software - fast, V this is THE assembler for *4 you. But remember, this ' k is a limited offer, so to j be sure of yopr copy T place your order today. F J ASSEMBLER ? Fast one-pass design ? Code limited only by memory ? Unlimited number of labels ? Long label names ? Unlimited macro nesting ? Unlimited include nesting ? Include binary data ? Extra-helpful error messages ? Instruction cycle timings ? Processor flag display Exclusive price for readers of £54.95 RRP £59.95 SAVE £5!
EDITOR ? Multi tasking ? Full multi-file capability ? Unlimited split views of files ? Cut paste between windows ? Insert delete blocks etc. ? Full configuration facilities ? Save restore environment ? Extremely fast text scrolling ? Fast page update rates ? Assemble from any window ? Works on Workbench screen Place your order today, using the form on Page 111 Send for the full version of the great programs on the Amiga Computing cover disk - and SAVE £64.90!
CHARIOTS OF WRATH TRAINED ASSASSIN RRP £24.95 RRP £24.95 RAIDER This blockbuster combines the best features of some of the most popular games ever to have appeared on the Amiga.
It features five action-packed leveis with different varieties of scrolling and gameplay, with the fifth level guaranteed to raise your joystick’s temperature by a few degrees (if not your own).
“Trained Assassin is of a standard that could probably survive unaltered in a real arcade - few games could manage that”. - Stewart Russel, Amiga Computing.
Chariots of Wrath combines the best features of some of the greatest games ever written, resulting in an action- packed mega adventure.
Each phase of the game features impressively designed graphics, superb sound effects and highly addictive game play.
As you traverse through the levels, amassing firepower and points, you'li find you just have to keep coming back to complete that next level.
RRP £24.95 TO ORDER USE THE FORM ON PAGE 111 A SPECIAL OFFER f AMlGA COMPUTING Thanks to a breakthrough by Rombo Productions in frame-grabbing technology, you can now produce good colour images quickly and cheaply with Vidi-Amiga and the VidiChrome colour software.
• Take snapshots in 16 shades live from video Multiple frame
store Dynamic cut and paste
• Full palette control
• Hardware and software control of brightness and contrast
Compatible with all video standards "Vidi must be one of the
most exciting peripherals you can buy for your Amiga" - Amiga
Computing, March 1990 RRP £134.95* OUR PRICE £119.95 While
stocks last, use the form on page 111 IF YOU reinember, a
couple of months ago I said the most common queries we received
at Amiga Computing were requests for information on programming
These questions have now been superceeded by a new one: “I want to start programming my Amiga, but I don’t know how to start. What language should I use?” With hardware as sophisticated as the Amiga’s, programming has come a long way from the good old 8-bit days.
If you had a Spectrum, a CPC or a C64, chances are you knock up a game in a day or two.
The advent of the Amiga has laid bare the fact that computer languages have lagged behind advances in computer hardware to an incredible degree. The average user may feel so isolated from the programming environment that they may never write a single line of code.
This would be a great pity, because with only a little effort, the Amiga can produce some amazing results.
However, somehow a feeling has developed that to program the Amiga you have to be American, Canadian or just slightly eccentric.
But let’s get down to business, and Programming your Amiga: Is it too complicated to even consider? What’s the best way to start?
John Kennedy checks out the language options, with only a slight bias towards his favourite have a look at the various tools available to help you start to make use of your hardware.
It is possible for you to start programming your computer, and it might not even cost you a penny thanks to the public domain.
THERE are many, many languages available to the programmer, each with their own strengths and weaknesses. By definition, there is nothing you can do with one language that can’t be done by another. It’s just that with some languages, certain things are a lot easier than others.
On the level For example, you might swear by COBOL but Fd be very impressed if you could write the sequel to MiniBlast with it.
Languages are traditionally split into “levels”. A low level language is fast and affords good access to hardware but is difficult to use. A high level language makes things easier for the programmer, but as a result runs more slowly and sometimes actively prevents access to the deeper recesses of the machine.
More jargon for you: Interpreters and Compilers. If a language is interpreted then a run-time module looks at and executes each line in turn. AmigaBASIC is an interpreted language. Yes, interpreted languages are a bit on the slow side at times.
Compiled languages get all the work done on them at the start, leaving a nice lump of code that will happily run on its own. C is a compiled language, and it runs quite fast.
Programming with compiled languages involves a number of steps. First the code must be entered with a text editor. This is the bit where some brains are needed and a knowledge of the language used comes in useful.
The next stages are sometimes incorporated by a clever “front end”, but they still take place. The text file is compiled into a mixture of assembler mnemonics and references to any libraries used.
Then the code is assembled, and finally put through a “linker” to produce the object code - a complete, no-messing-about, ready- to-run file.
Low level MACHINE Code is the stuff of life itself. No serious arcade games programmer will touch anything else.
You simply can’t write a program which is any faster than a good machine code program.
Because you have complete freedom INSIDE THE MOTOROLA 68000 8 DATA REGISTERS S ADDRESS REGISTERS 2 STACK POINTERS PROGRAM COUNTER STATUS REGISTER C The Motorola 68000 CPU internal register set to do what you like, the computer becomes a very fragile system. Make one mistake and it’s time to meet the Guru. If you program without using the operating system you’ll be lucky to even to get this much information.
With 16 bit processors the complexity of the instruction sets have grown so much that for some people, much of the fun has been lost. Why bother spending sleepless nights developing a fantastic subroutine to handle division, when the 68000 has a divide routine built in?
For the newcomer, this works the other way. Programming the 68000 family is not quite as difficult as you might think. For a start you have many more registers than you would have on an 8-bit system, and each register is a whoppingly huge 32 bits long.
WHEN it comes to programming, the best place to start is with a trip down to the library to get a book called something like “68000 Machine Code Programming in a Nonpatronising Style”. There are quite a few about, so ask the librarian if you can‘t find them.
The next step is to get of the PD program A68K. . It’s a complete Assembler package, and totally free.
Can’t say fairer than that. You’ll also need a linker, such as the equally PD blink, to produce a piece of executable code.
With this package you can tinker about and have your very first DIY software failure.
If you don’t have a nervous breakdown after writing your first machine code program, then you can think about getting serious about coding.
Now you’ll need to spend some money.
You'll need the books (see Amiga Computing July 1990 for information on the official manuals) and you’ll also need a nice, friendly programming environment such as Devpac.
Pretty soon you’ll be able to talk directly to the hardware registers and control sprites and set up scrolling bitplanes. After a while, you may realise that this way of coding is great for shoot-’em-ups, but a hit archaic for something half-way complicated. In fact, you may discover that the existing operating system wasn’t so bad after all. Quite a few people spent quite a few man-hours developing the multitasking wimp system, so reinventing the wheel yourself in an afternoon is a bit of a forlorn hope.
Aj’s opinion: machine code on the Amiga is a lot easier than you might think. However, if you plan do anything other than a maga-fast blast- 'em-up, you would do well to consider a language that does a bit more of the work for you.
Medium level C is a strange language. Against all the odds it has become an industry standard. It’s peculiar because it was originally written to be a “high level assembler” for a specific model of mini-computer.
At first glance it looks like a quick burst of line noise. On closer inspection it looks a little like Pascal, with some assembler mnemonics thrown in for good measure. After a really hard look, you know it's going to be fun.
There used to be good reasons for not mentioning C. Like “it’s too expensive” and "no one really uses it on the Amiga”. Both these excuses are now invalid, because some very useable C compilers are available in the public domain. At the very least, you'll be able to write a program to say “Hello World”.
There have been some snags with the libraries which the C programs need to talk to the outside world, High level Basic EVERYONE has loaded AmigaBASIC, grimaced and decided that there must be a better way. It’s slow, buggy and exceptionally difficult to use.
However, it does come free with ever}7 Amiga and had a reasonably good manual.
With this in mind, several brave individuals have persevered, and the results are a testimony to their skill.
For an example, take a look at Make Money on last month's cover disk. Fast graphics, sampled sound, scrolling screen - it could have been written in machine code.
Other versions of Basic are available: HiSoft and GFA to name two. HiSoft Basic is what AmigaBASIC should have been. It is compiled instead of being interpreted, which improves execution speed considerably.
On a 1 meg system it can also produce "stand alone” code which doesn’t require Basic to be resident. An extension library is available to make namely Commodore say they're theirs, and no one else can have them.
Alternative PD libraries are now available and included in most PD compilers. (Note: There was a C programmer's joke in the last sentence.
Commercial compilers come with the full set of libraries, and are generally much more fun to be with.
You also get some whoppingly huge manuals which will make things a lot easier.
Programming in C is a Good Thing.
The code produced is very, very fast and making use of all the Amiga's extra bits and bobs is a relatively simple task.
C is definitely the best language for programming the Amiga, no questions asked. However, it is not a particularly easy language to learn. OK then, at times it’s a real pain in the neck.
Aj’s opinion: It’s wonderful. A real challenge of a language.
Displaying IFF screens and requestors a relatively easy matter.
GFA Basic is Basic for hackers. Also compiled, it has good support for sprites and general messing around with Intuition. An example GFA Basic program is on the cover disk in the usual place.
Aj’s opinion: Nearly everybody knows how to program in Basic because it’s not something you forget.
It is a terribly un-structured language, showing its age in this age of "Oops” (Object orientated programming). A good way to knock-up simple programs quickly, but not recommended as a way to make your Amiga push back boundaries without immense effort.
Pascal & Modula 2 BOTH these languages have more academic interest than Amiga appeal. I don’t want to run them down - I have used both many times - but I wouldn’t It’s about here that the similarities with other Basics stop. AMOS has lots of commands. Lots and lots of commands. Commands for just about eveiything.
Although it's interpreted, AMOS can hardly be described as slow. It’s not quite as fast as other compiled Basics at number crunching, but then again, that’s not what it was designed to be.
Consider using them on the Amiga for serious programming.
There was a time when Modula 2 seemed to be the in language on the Amiga. For a start, the original version on A68K was written using it. It was soon overshadowed by C, and most programmers defected.
Pascal is a good second language to experiment with after Basic. It’s a nice user-friendly, relaxed kind of programming experience and is widely used in universities.
Aj’s opinion: There are good versions of both in the public domain, but look as them more as way of learning new languages than learning to use the Amiga. Of course, if anyone would like to prove me wrong, I’d love see some Pascal and Modula 2 Amiga programs.
Mandarin don’t want AMOS just to be seen as a games creator package, however it is with DIY arcade games where it shines. It has wonderful graphics and animation support, through an interrupt driven sub-set of itself. It will even play Sound Tracker modules.
Serious programmers, and here I mean folks who like knocking up CLI based utilities and 100 per cent Intuition-compatible code, won’t even bother to look at AMOS until the compiler comes out to produce standalone code. Even then, it will be a look that says “cheat - it took me three months to do that”.
Amos SOMETHING of a newcomer, AMOS is the language that would-be programmers have been calling out for. It’s based on Basic, so practically everyone will feel immediately at home.
Although it was written by the author of STOS, it has been so improved that any similarities are unintentional.
Aj’s opinion: For the game players who have longed for an easy way to get inside the Amiga, AMOS is what they have been waiting for. If you haven’t the time to spend on learning C, this is the one for you.
Run Indent Blocks Menu Search Menu Run Other Edit Other Overwrite Fold Unfold Line Insert Text-32326 Chip-292376 Fast-1483360 Edit: Even the AMOS editor goes over the top ‘: *p j ., v*;v'; v: -y '.yyMn The results from AMOS have a definite hacker- type feel to them Programming in C THE C example comes from Carl Beech from Stoke-on-TVent, and will provide a useful addition to your library of subroutines. It’s also a pretty good example of one of the trickier parts of C - passing parameters in and out of routines.
Pascal allows variables to the sent to functions in two ways - read only, or read and write. By using the read only approach, you can keep track of where changes are made and so keep the bug count down. Read and write access allows functions to perform a single task, such as reading a file, to be packaged up out of harm’s way.
C tackles this problem by allowing only read access.
“But,” you may say, “Isn’t this a bit limited? Short sighted even?” “Ah,” I say, “But in C we have pointers.” “Oh no,” you say* “I hate pointers.
They’re so tricky!” * And so the conversation goes on.
What it means is that to get write access to a variable, you must pass the address of the variable into the function. The function can then do what it likes with this address, and one such option is assigning a new value to it. This is how the example listing gets the state of the joystick from the routine.
The joystick reading routine itself is on the cover disk, the listing here is an example which uses the routine to print the direction on- screen.
I* Joystick test routine. Lattice C *1 finclude stdio.h Iinclude exec types.h Iinclude hardware custom.h tinclude hardware cia,h tinclude Library_routines Joy.h f* The previous routine has been saved in the user's library, in this example, called Libraryj:outines * VOID main!)
ULQNG i; int j„val, dmyj for (i=Q; iclOQG,* i++) f }_val = 0; Joy (&J_val); if (j_val & 1) printf('Left *); if (j_val & 2) printf('Right ¦); if (j_vai k 43 printf("Up "); i£ (j_val & 8) printf("Down printf ('Id n*,j_val); ] 1 MATHEMATICS - don’t ya just love it?
Well I don’t know about you, but I’m partial to a quick mathematical investigation and so is Chris Hellen from Alresford in Colchester. Instead of calculating 71 to 30 decimal places, he has written a program that will obtain e to as many places as you require.
The program was originally written in 1975, and when running on a mainframe it took 23 minutes to calculate 200 digits. Using AmigaBASIC the same program takes 6.5 minutes.
Programming in HiSoft Basic If you have studied maths to A level, you will have come across e as you explored logs and integration. You will therefore know that it is defined using a series, thus: 1 + 1 1! + 1 2! + 1 3! + 1 5! + ... where ! Stands for factorial (for example, 4! = 4 * 3 * 2 * 1).
The supplied program will calculate the series to any number of places you like, dependant only on memory and the amount of time you have to spare.
It works like this (takes a deep breath}: The first term of the series is placed in both the first and second arrays. From then 011 the term in the second array is converted to the next term in the series and is added to the first array (which always holds the latest value of e).
This first array is compared to the third array. If they are equal then processing stops and e is printed out.
If they are not equal, then processing continues and the first array is copied to the third.
Finally the next term is calculated in the second array. This technique is quite useful and can be easily adapted to generating other mathematical constants.
The Basic source code is in the Code Clinic drawer on the cover disk, and has been re-written to be totally compatible with HiSoft Basic. As you might guess, using HiSoft Basic speeds things up considerably. Some might say it takes away from the fun... t59662M3 845984523 « - mzwi The program calculates e to as many digits as you want... Send your clever solutions or techniques to: The Code Clinic Amiga Computing Europa House Adlington Park Macclesfield SK10 4NP MicroLink: Mag048 CIX: amigacomputing Explore Virtual Reality!
Step into the picture with Vista’s camera.
What you set is what you get.
Fc.-: A.;:3 Crater Lake National Park Yosemite 4 Billion Imaginary Fractal Landscapes Crater Lake "**¦ Creates Frames for Animation ,n* Mr. Sr. Helens Intuitive Interface Mons Olympus (Mars) “* Landscape Featuring Control I meg required • 2.0 compatible • Lisr price S 99.95 Virtual ‘fyafity Laboratories, Inc. 2341 GanadorCourt, San Luis Obispo,CA 93401 805 545-8515 Reality prime will never look the same again!
For further details.
Contact H. B. Marketing Ltd on 0753 686000 HELP!!!
Amiga Computing is looking for some reinforcements to help maintain it's position as the more intelligent guide to the Amiga. We are looking for an enthusiastic Amiga user to fill the position of Staff writer.
The successful candidates would:
• Hove a sound working knowledge of the Amiga
• Be able to convey their ideas in an entertaining and
• Enjoy working under pressure and to tight deadlines
• Live (or he willing to move to) within travelling distance off
our offices near Macclesfield, south of Manchester
• Know a good game when they see one
• Be able to juggle or unicyde, or at least want to learn!
If you think you're person enough for the job send in your CV now before you sober up. Please enclose copies of any previous published work and or 500 words about either a recent game or an interesting technical subject. Applications should be made to: "Staff writer application", Amiga Computing, Europa House, Adliagton Park, Macclesfield, Cheshire SKIO 4NP.
3(it Se ap-toa f
- Devpac has it all plus a lot more99 - sr Format, Dec as
Consistently acclaimed as the best assembler development system
for the Amiga, Devpac Version 2 is a complete package
including: Powerful, extremely fast assembler with macros,
conditional assembly, include, optimisations, local labels,
multiple hunks, producing executable or linkable o p.
Advanced, multi-window symbolic debugger with single-step, dynamic conditional breakpoints, full expression evaluator, disassembly to disk etc. Integrated, fast and easy-to-use editor so that you can create, assemble, debug, edit, assemble etc. all without leaving the editor. CLI versions are also included for those who have strong editor preferences.
Fast Linker, standard 1.3 Include files and full documentation.
With full technical support and constant improvement, Devpac has no rivals - most of the top software houses who develop on the Amiga use Devpac - why don't you?
0 Lattice C Conpilep Version 5,85!
A very professional packagem - Transactor May 89 Quite simply. Lattice C 5 is the best C development system you can buy for your Amiga.
Having sold more than 12,000 copies worldwide, the package is used by professionals and hackers alike - just look at what you get: Powerful, enhanced C compiler with full 68020 68030 68881 68882 support plus screen editor, linker, assembler, librarian, code profiler, disassembler and more.
Advanced global optimiser which gives your programs performance improvements of up lo 40% You can optimise for execution speed or program size.
The CodeProbe source level debugger with 4 separate windows, allowing you to single-step through source code, set source line breakpoints, examine, modify and continuously monitor your C variables and much, much more - invaluable.
Comprehensive two volume, ring-bound documentation in a quality package.
Lattice C 5 has improved ANSI compliance, function prorotyping, is multi-tasking and reentrant. Has nearly 300 library functions and comes complete with full technical support.
- HiSoft BASIC is an excellent choicem - ST Amiga Format March 89
HiSoft BASIC is the answer to your programming prayers, an
extremely fast, interactive, standard and easy-to-use system,
used by many top software houses all over the world.
Modern, structured programming with long Ifs, multi-line functions, subprograms. REPEAT. DO. CASE, full recursion, local & global variables etc. ; Sill :L,. , : : % I. . .
... . ' - -- * ' , ¦ ! L 1 ;..... ..... ” L - it , , ' v , ... : : . . .. :• . .. . .
No limits to your program size and no limits on the size of any variable, memory permitting. Plus the ability to link easily with C and assembler programs.
Totally interactive system with easy-to-use Intuition editor allowing mistakes to be corrected simply and quickly, substantially reducing development time Extremely close compatibility with AmigaBASIC and Microsoft PC QuickBASIC 3.
Complementing HiSoft BASIC. HiSoft Extend is a comprehensive set of library routines for IFF files, gadgets, menus, sub-menus, sound. HAM mode and more.
Extend costs only £19 95. Works with both AmigaBASIC and HiSoft BASIC 1.05. and is supplied with a host of useful example programs and a helpful manual, Sp&c oJto Afft’ijf'Q. Cofnpatiny R&adws
v. -:- :¦ I I :: ' ' V * ¦ •;
• ¦ ¦...... .. . ... .. ¦: Use the order form below to order any
HiSoft products and we will send you, totally free of charge,
an Amiga Starter Pack consisting of: a mouse mat with the Amiga
Character set, a stylish disk wallet holding up to 8 disks and 4 quality double-sided diskettes; a package worth over £14 if bought elsewhere!
High Quality Software ; LTV v. The DH School. Gr :Iford MR45 5I Bedford: MK45 51 Tel:l0625}7l6 ' ¦ F& 71*.
7:;'-';: y: ¦ ¦ ¦: Please rush me the following software together with my free starter pack: (all prices include 15% VAT and postage and packing within UK, Please phone for export details) I | Devpac Amiga 2 159*95 I I Lattice C 5 5 £2X9*00 ? HiSoSt BASIC £79.95 ? HiSoft Extend £19-95 I wish to pay by: ? Cheque POs Q Access ? Visa 2 William Clowes Street Burslem Stoke on Trent ST6 3AP Tel: 0782 575043 COME TO THE PROFESSIONALS!!!!
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Tei No: AMC SEPT Proprietors S.A and R.A Beach RECORDING COMPUTER GRAPHICS ONTO VIDEO G2 Systems shows you how... Greater London Computers HARDWARE A New Video Tape instructing Amiga users in the mysteries of CODING • GENLOCKING • KEYING 'Video and the Amiga'£10 inc. p&pfrom: G2 Systems, 5 Mead Lane, Farnham, Surrey GU9 7DY Tel: (0252) 737151 AMIGA 500 BATMAN pack ..£379.95 AMIGA 500 Flights of Fantasy Pack......£379.95 AMIGA 500 Class of the 90's pack .£559.95 MONITOR A1084S Stereo Colour Monitor ......£249.95 Philips CM8833 Colour Monitor ....£299.95
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Plus Lots of Games, ring for details AMIGA 3000 Now available See our Full page advert on Page 10 Advanced Orders and information from our Sales Lines: 081-527-0405 481 Hale End Road, HighamsPark, Chingford, London, E4 9PT Tel: 081 527-0405 Fax: 081 503-2341 Delivery All orders include free delivery.
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BASIC £13.95 Insde Amga Graphics ......£15.95 Insde the Amiga with C 2nd Ed ...£19.95 Kickstart Guide to the Amga ......£12.95 Kids & The Amiga .....£14.95 More lips & Tricks For Amiga ......£17.45 Programmers Guide to the Amiga £22.95 Amiga Graphics Inside & Out ..£31.45 RIBBONS ¦ HIGHEST QUALITY GUARANTEED ¦ F = Fabric C = Carbon Multi-Strike AUS’HAO H 3+ CEN1ROWC u h JUKI 1 * 3* QUUE 1* 3* DMP20CC300C F) DM P31603250(F) £3.50 £3.00 GLPHP30,156(F) £395 £3 50 6100(C) £2 95 £250 Spirl 35,1,11.111(F) £495 £453 £3.50
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R Education, Govt. Authority Official order welcome (Min. £50) .. STEAVEN HEPPENER is a 21-year- old salesman from Elland near Halifax in West Yorkshire. He has two main loves - computers and art.
He is therefore quite lucky because he owns an Amiga which excels in the art department. And we are quite lucky because he has sent some of his excellent work in to Portfolio.
Steaven graduated from the Commodore 64 after seeing the quality of the graphics which could be produced on the Amiga. His current kit consists of a 1Mb A50Q with an extra drive and a standard 1084 monitor. When it comes to software he uses the old favourites Photon Paint, DigipaintIH and DpaintlH. Not a ray trace package in sight!
By some miracle of evolution, his eyes have adapted to find screen flicker acceptable, and he does all his work in Interlace mode to make the most of the higher resolution.
Contributions, on disk please, to: Portfolio, Amiga Computing, Europa House, Adlington Park, Macclesfield, S C10 4ZVP.
COMPANIES or individuals wishing to commission any of our Portfolio artists should in the first instance contact the Amiga Computing editorial offices. Tel 0625 878888, Fax 0625 879966.
T faateiet&l TECHNOLOGIES LTD UNIT 12a, MILLMEAD BUSINESS CENTRE, MILLMEAD ROAD, LONDON N17 Tel: 081-365 1151 5 lines) Fax: 081 885 1953 NORTH LONDONS AMIGA SPECIALIST COMPUTERS AMIGA A500 BATPACK £355 BATPACK +10 STAR £395 CLASS OF 90 S £509 AMIGA+ 1 MEG £P.0A FLIGHT OF FANTASY £359 AMIGA 2000 RING FOR PRICES PRINTERS CITIZEN SWIFT 24 £245 CITIZEN 120D £129 EPSON LX400 £169 EPSON LQ400 £229 EPSON LQ550 £299 NEC P2200 £249 NEC P6+ £P.0.A. NEC P7+ £P.0.A. PANASONIC KXP 1081 £155 PANASONIC KXP 1124 £249 STAR LC10MK2 £179 STAR LC10C0LMK2 £209 STAR LC24-10 £289 MONITORS PHILIPS CM8833 £249
CBM1084 £229 NEC 3D £499 NEC 4D £P.0.A. NEC 5D £P.0.A. QUADRAM MULTISYNC £399 LASER INKJETS XEROX 4020 £1050 HP DESKJET+ £699 HP QUIETJET £429 HP PAINTJET £899 PANASONIC KXP44501 £1779 HP LASERJET II £1495 EPSON GQ5000 £1349 WE ALSO STOCK A LARGE RANGE OF POSTSCRIPT PRINTERS HARDWARE PERIPHERALS
1. 3 ROM £32.00 FAT AGNUS 1 MEG £60.00 512K EXPANSION £69.00
1. 8 MEG EXP512K POP £219.00 BOOT SELECTOR SWITCH £15.00 EXT.
3.5" DRIVE £75.00 EXT5.25“ DRIVE £99.00 MINIMAX PLUS 1MB
£239.00 A590 HD £369.00 VORTEX 2000 £459.00 1 2 MEG EXP FOR
A590 £39.00 A501 EXPANSION £110.00 MIDI INTERFACE £30.00
ACCESSORIES MOUSE MAT £5.99 BOX 10 SONY DISCS £10.00 DUST
COVER £5.99 MOUSE BRACKET £3.99 STORAGE BOX £8.50 SOFTWARE
GRAPHICS SOFTWARE AEGIS ANIMATOR £59 AEGIS ANIMAGIC £59 COMIC
SETTER £45 DESIGN 3D £59 DIG IPAINT 3 £59 DELUXE PAINT 3 £69
DELUXE VIDEO 3 £85 FANTAVISION £35 PASE £65 PHOTO PAINT V2 £69
PRO VIDEO PLUS £199 PAGE FLIPPER FX £79 SCULP 3D XL £119
SCULPT ANI4D £369 SCULPT ANI4DJNR £119 TURBO SILVER £105
ZEOTROPE £69 MUSIC AMAS £79 PRO SOUND GOLD £65 FUTURE SOUND
£65 PERFECT SOUND £65 MUSIC X £189 DIGITIZERS DIG IVIEW 4.0
£129 DIGI DROID £65 VIDI AMIGA £99 SUPER PIC £490
D. T.P. PRO PAGE V1.3 £199 PAGE SETTER V2 £79 PAGE STREAM £149
CITY DESK V2 £129 GASTEINER Mega Pack Flight of Fantasy Pack
10 Blank Discs, Dust Cover, Mouse Mat, Mouse Bracket, Disc
Storage Box, ONLY £395 DTP, GRAPHICS AND DESKTOP VIDEO SYSTEMS
BUILT VARIOUS MINI GEN £95 RENDALE 8802 £P.O.A. SUPERPIC
£P.0.A. RENOALE 8806 EP.O.A. XCOPY II £20 XC0PY II + HD W £29
ACTION REPLAY £59 tZoAteitten technologies ltd ALL PRICES
INCLUDE V.A.T. TEL 081 -365 1151 FAX 01-885 1953 GOVERNMENT &
CORPORATE SALES WELCOME ¦ SHORTIES ¦ seems to work together on
the Amiga in perfect harmony. It works so well in fact that
the new CDTV (the new combination Amiga-CD player multimedia
engine) is the only Amiga to have an integral MIDI interface.
Magical musical interface Traditionally the st has scored over the Amiga when it comes to music software. This was largely due to the ST’s built-in MIDI interface - a brilliant piece of foresight making the ST one the first micros ever to make use of this wonderful standard.
Of course the Amiga was soon to answer back through a veritable plethora of third party interfaces.
Thankfully the big C had laid down some ground rules for the interfaces, and so all MIDI software and hardware For those not in the know, MIDI is the musical instrument digital interface, and physically takes the form of a set of five-pin DIN plugs. It allows you to connect your synthesiser
- be it a keyboard, pretend saxophone or drum machine - to your
computer and record the entire epic masterpiece.
As you are recording the control signals that trigger the external musical instruments and not the sounds themselves, you have an incredible degree of flexibility over the md survive editing. Even folks with minimal keyboard skills (like me) can produce compositions which sound at least slightly akin to how they were envisaged.
If you plan on interfacing your Amiga to just one keyboard synth, then you need two MIDI ports: In and Out, to carry signals to and fro. If you wanted to connect further musical bits and pieces you would make use of your interface’s Thru port.
The archetypal interface is a small ugly looking black box which connects via a short ribbon cable to the parallel port. It may require external power. It has one In, one Thru and several Outs. It also costs a few bob.
To complement their Quartet sequencer and sample player, Microdeal have released a mini-MIDI interface. It is rather cunningly totally built in to the casing of the 25-way parallel printer plug, and has a pair of YOU don’t need to be told what nasty things viruses are. The scourge of all Amiga users, they can be a real pain in the neck. No, worse than neck. I'll go further They are a pain in the backside.
Only last week I received a visit from the deadly Lamer virus. A momentary aberration -1 switched VirusX off for a reason that made good sense at the time - and the next thing I knew several text files had gone missing. Several important text files That I needed. Were gone. I was annoyed.
For this reason a hardware device which plugged into the back of the computer and stopped the little beasties dead in their tracks was something I was immediately interested in.
The way it works is quite simple: It prevents the bootblocks of the floppies from being written to, therefore stopping the virus from spreading. If something tries to write to that part of the disk, AmigaDOS gets that Write Protect feeling. Useful? You bet!
Drawbacks? 'Fraid so. For a start, there are a small number of viruses which don’t live in the bootblocks, so you can never guarantee complete freedom from the blighters.
The other problem concerns the design of the device itself. Because it stops everything from writing to the bootblocks, you may find problems when you want to legitimately write to that part of the disk. For instance, when you want to format a disk.
CaarseFpulse U LFO Amp filtfos filtAtl filtSUS ATTACK For this reason there is a switch to toggle the device on and off, and an LED to tell you what state it’s in. So whenever you need access to these forbidden disk sectors, you just flick a switch.
Fine F LFO F FiltF filEnvA filtDCY filtREL DECAY RELEASE I see a danger here. Remember at the start I got rid of VirusX but forgot to run it again? What was to stop me switching off the hardware widget, doing the biz and then forgetting to switch it on again?
Well nothing. Except the little red light. Hopefully it is more noticeable than a message in the screen title bar.
The Vaccine unit is best seen as another line of defence. With it plugged in (switched on) and VirusX running from a startup-sequence, I can begin to feel confident that my computer isn’t going to tell me something wonderful is about to happen.
John Kennedy The Vaccine virus protector costs £19.95 from European Peripheral Distribution, 0602 841640 The Microdeal MIDI interface comes complete with a disk of public domain utility programs. This one is a comprehensive MIDI patchhay.
Two metre leads for MIDI In and Out.
It conforms to the Commodore standard perfectly well, with full opto-isolating components to buffer all the equipment from nasty things such as floating earth loops. It will, of course, work with any Amiga MIDI package, not just Quartet.
It’s small, compact, reasonably cheap and ideal for Amiga owners just bitten by the MIDI bug.
John Kennedy The Microdeal MIDI interface costs £29.95 and is available from Microdeal on 0726 68020 Reader offers ETOT?
HiSoft Basic is THE language to get you started with programming the Amiga.
? Runs ip to 30 times faster than AmigaBASIC ? Produces stand atone programs 'k Compatible with PC Quick Basic & AmigaBASIC HiSoft Basic is easy to use ? Supplied with a high quality manual ? No upper limit to program or data size ? Multi-tasking editor and compiler HiSoft extend is the natural enhancement for HiSoft Basic users ? 50 functions and subprograms ? Load and Save IFF pictures ? Use all the commands in your own programs Together both programs would usually set you back almost £100, as a special offer to Amiga Computing readers both programs are available for just £69.95. Need some
AMIGADOS: A Dabhand Guide Is a comprehensive guide to the Commodore amiga’s disc Operating System (Versions 1.2 and 1.3). it provides a unique perspective on this powerful system in a way which will be welcomed by the beginner and the experienced user alike.
Rather than simply reiterating the Amiga manual, this book takes a genuinely different approach to understanding and using the Amiga and contains a wealth of practical hands-on advice and hints and tips.
The many features of this book include:
• Full coverage of Amiga DOS 1.3 functions
• Filing with and without the Workbench
• The Amiga's hierarchical filing system
• Pathnames and Device names
• The Amiga's mutl(tasking capabilities
• The AmigaDOS screen edtor
• AmigaDOS commands
• Batch processing
• Amiga Error code descriptions
• How to create new systems discs
• Use of the RAM discs There’s always a demand for spare Amiga
disks - and at Amiga Computing we have lots we will be happy to
sell off at a really exceptional price. They are all disks that
have been prepared as monthly cover disks, but they are brand
new and have never been used, so you can safely reformat them
and use them for any purpose you like. Look at these prices: 5
for £7.50! 25 for £20!
£14.95 - Mavis Beacon Teaches Typing Learn to type quickly, easily and perfectly - the fun way This is an artificial intelligence software system from the writers of Chessmaster 2000 - winner of the US Chess Federation Computer Chess Championship.
It checks your progress lesson by lesson, every step of the way, though a typing course tailored to your individual needs.
Mavis makes the learning fun when creating your lessons by selecting quotes from history's greatest writers, countless riddles, rhymes, jokes and hundreds of fascinating facts from the Guinness Book of World Records If you feel your typing could be better, this is the ideal way to learn!
RRP £29.99 OUR PRICE £24.99 Sells for £39.95 ... but yours only £14.95 Some of DG Calc’s numerous features: 512 rows by 52 columns Menu or command driven Adjustable column widths Text overflow Instant recalculation Intergrates with other program Window feature User definable formulas GOTO feature Password protection Cell justification Powerful line deitor UNDO feature Beginner’s tutorial Supports keyboard or mouse UK only DG Calc is one of the most powerful and easy to use spreadsheets in its price bracket. It offers all the features you could think of, and many more besides.
Specially written to make the best use of the Amiga's features, DG Calc is an invaluable addition to your business utilities.
SEE ORDER FORM ON PAGE 111 Just how good is Protext?
‘...merely the best wordprocessor for the Amiga’ SAVE £20 EXCLUSIVE!
‘Anyone with a professional interest in words is likely to find it pays dividends’. - PC Business World
* It is a refreshing change to review an inexpensive WP package
which livos up to every expectation". - Which PC "Pretext
deserves to be Ihe system by which all other word processors
are judged". - Your Computer "The great strength of the package
is its ease of use". - CPC Computing "Deserves very serious
consideration". - Ametrad Professional Computing Reveiwed in
Amiga Computing, January 1989 RRP £99.95 OUR PRICE £79.95
Automatic rtfwmtttng of Wt Page Mfct Cm k»i cnec* u you type Ow
73.330 mvd English (*eicn*ry Macro 'eeo'p ~xa FooPwbi Me a;
trvfl- onfgwstan program
A. t) .mer". for program adtng Lne Crtwrg Fat*, md fai ae ! -e
and replace PnwU iraknarga faci.y Bex rode for caaing cdjnrj
Edtaro ieiitttrre Keyward or mouse o perron be beaten. It can
be used as simply as nes... in short, it can be what you want
it Protext is acknowledged by many as THE word processore for
most home micros, and the Amiga version is no exception.
What you get with Amiga Protext is a powerful workhorse with a proven track record. Plus a saving of £20 off the retail price of the new version 4f Press comments "For power and vaJue for money, I don’t think that Protext can you choose, or can handle the most complex mailmerge routi to be". - Micro net Reader offers Binder £5.95 Twelve rods hold your issues in place and keep them in pristine condition in this smart PVC binder.
Disc storage box £4.95 This luxury padded box is the ideal storage medium, holding up to FIFTY 3.5“ discs RRP £24.95 Our Price £16.95 Home Accounts Day by Day RRP £54.90 OUR PRICE £34.90 ? Updating of regular appointments ? Comprehensive search facility ? Automatic reminders ? Al-a-g!ance week and month summaries ? Print option ? Grouping of related messages ? Fast one-pass design ? Code limited only by memory ? Unlimited number ol labels Long label names ? Unlimited macro nesting ? Unlimited include nesting ? Include binary data ? Extra helpful error messages ? Instruction cycle timings ?
Piocessor flag display £54.95 RRP £59.95 SAVE £5!
Both of these powerful programs are excellent value on their own, but if you buy this exclusive combination package we’ll knock £20 off the combined retail price.
Home Accounts has been designed to make full use of the Amiga’s features, giving you the widest range of home accounting facilities available at this price.
The program lets you set budgets and control up to 13 separate accounts, with optional printouts of any data.
Within seconds of loading you data disc you can check your budget or any account, and even display or print the data in bar or pie charts.
Day by Day replaces your manual system for diary, business organiser, notepad, planner, reminder and so on.
It's suitable for both business and home applications, including numerous useful functions which serve every requirement.
It’s suitable for both business and home applications, including numerous useful functions which serve every requirement.
Among its many features are: ? Calender diary planner ? Categories such as bills, birthdays and letters ? Appointment sorting ? Urgent’ notice board ? 'Overdue' notice board ? Advance notice ol forthcoming events Keyboard dust cover (A500) £4.95 Protect your Amiga with this top- quality cover made from clear, water-resistant vinyl.
It’s bound with strong cotton and features the Amiga Computing logo.
MnilQp The perfect desktop environ- ment for your mouse with its
• viat specially-designed, perfect- grip surface. It ensure much
£6 95 smoother movement, gives super-positive control and
protects your table top from scratches.
Whether you are designing a simple flyer, creating a newsletter, banners, posters, or even producing a magazine, Publishers' Choice offers a comprehensive solution to your Desktop Publishing and presentation requirements.
With the program you can easily combine text in a variety of styles, in multiple columns and with customised graphics. It comes with over 200 professionally designed images, and high quality “Headline" fonts.
In fact, Publishers’ Choice combines the Kindwords 2.0 wordprocessor, PageSetter 1.2 page composition package, Artists’ Choice art program, and the Headline fontpack.
Because the Amiga is multi-tasking you can have all the programs working on the screen at the same time, or just use them individually as powerful stand-alone programs.
ArgAsm Probably the fastest assembler ever for the Amiga!
Exclusive price for readers of PUBLISHERS CHOICE ? Multi tasking ? Full multi-file capability v Ur limited spkl views ol Hes ? ClL paste between windows ? Insert delete blocks etc ? Full con bgu ration lad li tics ? Sj e resrore environment ? Extremely fast text scrolling ? Fas! Page update rales ? Assemble from any window ? Works on Workbench screen m*cMne?
5 software (see the r-.ri annroDfistc comrriL &ii w«n need is a modem a rthnnp and a 5 K a -s-.-ssSS rateSSUi MicroUnk. With MicroU y sen(j telemessages and much mQre create your own closeduse gr P d]rectly into your micro ... the world, download tree But Why use Telex 7 businesses. Today i i«£-:;==r 1 ssrsrai hi «»- - "s EE r e--' £19.95 genuine leather personal organiser Worth over £30, the personal organiser is crammed full of pages of information including year planners, first aid tips, international holidays, mileage charts, dialing codes, weights an measure conversions and locations
of motorway service areas.
There's also a daily diary section for 1989, 1990 and 1991, maps of the UK and the London underground, an appointments schedule, several pages for notes, a personal finance organiser, expense sheets, a telephone index, and much, much more!
Each section is marked using plastic tabs - making it easy to find the page you need. There are special pockets for your credit and business cards, and you get a handy plastic ruler which you can also use to keep your place.
So get yourself organised on us. Order today and we'll mail your personal organiser by return!
Order today, using the form on Page 111 Just aome of the personal organisers information-packed pages X-COPY II v2.9 X-COPYII is the ultimate disc duplication system for your Amiga Designed specifically for your Amiga... The most comprehensive back-up facility ? Mouse controlled ? Also backs up ST, IBM etc ? Adapts itself to any configuration ? Checks discs for errors ?
Formats discs in 36 seconds ? Optimises data, re-organises files for faster loading ??? Full update service AVAILABLE NOW ONLY £29-99 + £i.oo postage & packing.
X-COPY n is a hardware & software package. Although it will work happily on a single drive system, superior results can be achieved with an external disc drive.
1988 COPYRIGHT ACT. SIREN SOFTWARE NEITHER CONDONES NOR AUTHORISES THE USE OF ITS SOFTWARE FOR THE REPRODUCTION OF COPYRIGHTED SOFTWARE. THE FACILITIES OFFERED BY X-COPY TI ARE INTENDED TO BACK UP USERS OWN SOFTWARE, PD SOFTWARE & OTHER SUCH PROGRAMS WHERE PERMISSION HAD BEEN EXPLICITLY GIVEN. IT IS ILLEGAL TO MAKE COPIES OF COPYRIGHTED MATERIAL WITHOUT THE PERMISSION OF THE COPYRIGHT HOLDER.
X-COPY II IS THE BEST, GUARANTEED OUR GUARANTEE:- At time of purchase, if you can find a program that is more powerful than X-COPY II, we will refund your money.
Ordering x-copy D Access Visa orders can be placed by telephoning 061 228 1831. For mail order, fill in the form below and send with a cheque or postal order to:- Siren Software, 84-86 Princess St., Manchester Ml 6NG. England.
NAME AC ADDRESS .. YOU NEED 512K NOW HOW MUCH WILL YOU NEED TOMORROW?
THE NEW ASHCOM RAM EXPANSION IS EXPANDABLE TO 1.8Mb GIVING YOU 2.3Mb OF SYSTEM RAM FEATURES: ? Real Time clock calendar with high capacity Nicad battery backup ? Memory disable switch ? Low power consumption ? Buffered Data Bus (Essential for high capacity Ram boards) ? Plugs in as A501 NO SOLDERING!!
? 12 Months warranty ONLY £74.95 for 512K version.
Rams only £35 per 512K Expander Board £19.95. Expanded to 1Mb £116.95 Expanded to 1.5Mb £147.95 Fully expanded to 1.8Mb only £1 79.95 All prices include VAT and delivery.
Trade enquiries welcome. British made.
Please make cheques payable to Ashcom ASHCOM 512K RAM EXPANSION WITH REAL TIME CLOCK CALENDAR ONLY £40.00 AND DISABLE SWITCH WITHOUT CLOCK £36.00 8372A FATTER AGNUS £59.00
1. 3 KICKSTART ROM £28.00 Only from ASHCOM, 10 The Green,
Ashby-De-La-Zouch, Leicestershire, LEG 5JU Telephone: (0530)
411485 Fax: (0530) 414433 Ear shattering offers for Amiga
Computing readers Make the most of your Amiga’s superb sound
capabilities by connecting Soundblaster’s high quality stereo
amplifier and speakers.
SOUNDBLASTER Using the latest microchip technology, the specially designed amplifier can deliver an ear-shattering five watts of music power, with twin controls provide complete control over volume and balance.
The fifty watt speakers consist of a woofer, a mid-range and a tweeter for the highest possible sound quality. Thumping bass, crisp trebles: You’ll hear them all with incredible clarity.
The Amiga Soundblaster comes complete with mains adaptor and full instructions. No alterations to your computer are required
- just plug in and switch on to re-discover sound on your Amiga.
UARTET if Hi 11
* jjn sir KTE-T Make beautiful music on your Amiga Quartet is a
stunning sequencing package that will allow you to compose
anything from a jingle to a symphony.
Making full use of the Amiga's unique four channel stereo sound system, Quartet is equally at home playing Depeche Mode or Debussy. Quartet comes complete with complete instructions, a disk of full of sound samples and full source code to allow you to intergrate your tunes into your own programs.
What's more, Quartet is MIDI compatible, so you can connect a suitable keyboard or synthesiser to enter notes directly.
It’s the ideal sequencer package to complement the excellent Master Sound sampler
- Amiga Computing, August 1990 I Quartet comes with full
instructions and two disks for £49.95 Master Sound Capture any
sound you hear and replay it in seconds It’s so easy to use:
Simply connect the sampler to your Amiga, load the software and
immediately you have the ability to capture sounds with amazing
Connect your compact disc player or personal stereo and digitise sounds to incorporate into your own games and tunes.
The supplied software provides complete control over the sampled sounds: Cut and paste them, flip and fade them and you’re still only using a tiny fraction of the sound processing tools available.
Best of ail, the comprehensive instructions will soon have you creating your own public domain demo disks complete with IFF picture files.
The perfect sound sampling package for beginners and experts alike.
Master Sound is a complete hardware and software sampling system for only £39.95 “Is it real or is it Master Sound?”
- Amiga Computing, May 1990 See order form on page 107 mm READER
OFFERS Valid to 30.9.90 Offers subject to availability Back
issues Mail Order offers (seepages 106 107} March 1990 £2.10
9721 April 1990 £2.10 9722
* May 1990 £3.10 9723
* June 1990 £3.10 9724 ’July 1990 £3.10 9725 ' Aug 1990 £3.10
9726 Publishers Choice £79.99 9867 Mini-Gen £98.85 9869 Word
Perfect 4.1 version
178. 85 9870 X-Cad £89.85 9871 Small Business Accs Xtra £89.95
9873 Mavis Beacon Typing £24.99 9874 I__ Home Accounts Day
by Day £34.90 9851 ArgAsm £54.95 9858 Flight Simulator
£35.95 9868 Pair of Scenery Discs £31.90 9872 Flight
Simulator + Discs £65.85 9878 ' Includes cover disc Bargain
bundle Six issues of Amiga Computing (ManAug) £16.00 9910
tAdd £3 Europe & Eire £12 Overseas Summer Games Clearance
33 (see page 94) £19.95 9911 Rom bo Vidi-Chrome (see page
94) 1 g g5 gsg 1 DG Calc £14.95 9875 Pro text Version 4 (see
pages 107) £79.95 9530 Batman - The Movie Game £14.95 9882
Hi Soft Basic (see page 106) Basic Compiler £69.95 9896 Dust
covers 9507 £4.95 Battery charger £19.95 9861 Plus post and
packing £1.50 Mouse mats £4.95 9508 Amiga Music Soundblaster
£44.95 9912 Quartet £39.95 9913 Master Sound £35.95 9914
Package of all three £99.95 9915 (seepage 110) Binders £5.95
9509 Disc boxes £4.95 9860 Addition for postage: Europe &
Eire add £3 _ Overseas add £5 Unless otherv ise indicated
Amiga DABhand Guide (see pages 108 109) A comprehensive
guide to the Amiga's disc operating system (versions 1.2 and
1.3) £14.95 9866 TOTAL Send to: Database Direct, FREEPOST,
Ellesmere Port, South Wirral L65 3EB (No stamp needed if
posted in UK) Products are normally despatched within 48
hours of receipt but delivery of certain Hems could take up
to 28 days Payment: please indicate method (V) |
Cheque Eurocheque made payable to Database Direct
Access Mastercard Eurocard Barclaycard Visa Corwect No . J I
II I I LX Expiry Date Order at any time of the day or night
. Signed Post Code AMC9 NEW-WIZARD'S GUIDE TO BASIC-NEW
Months of research and programming have gone Info developing
this highly effective and enjoyable way to team BASIC. The
whole concept is designed to help you learn more quickly
and achieve impressive results In no time. Your confidence
and skills will rise rapidly as you make your way through
this course. The Wizard s BASIC Guide comes on two disks
with a sophisticated electronic book - You can get help In
the form of text, moving demonstrations, graphics, sound
for speech with just the touch of a button. This Is far
better than any paper book and you can access it while you
are working on any of the programs. The course starts at
beginner level, and carefully rises to expert level. You
will learn to master graphics, colour, sound, movement,
speech, windows, menus, dataprocesslng etc. Hundreds of
example programs are included. We have also included a good
number of exciting and useful demo programs - e.g. speaking
mastermind with animated head, an electronic address book, a
fast moving racing car game, a synthesiser and many more.
This Is a value packed package which will leave you with a
wealth of knowledge and expertise.
Exceflent value - £12.95 BEGINNERS GUIDE TO AMIGADOS This Is a new and effective way to take you from a beginner to and expert on AmigaDOS.
This highly popular package has now been updated to cover BOTH 1.2 and 1.3 versions. The package consists of a guidebook, a tutorial DISK, a crib card and FREE additional software which could cost you over £20 to buy elsewhere. This Is clear and well thought out guide to AmigaDOS commands. The emphasis is on learning through experience and doing - not just reading like most other books. It shows you how to set up your own boot disk with your own customised messages that will boot in seconds unlike workbench!). It will show you how to make your Amiga independent of the workbench disk - no more
"Please insert workbench disk". We include the new and incredibly fast Lazer-Load picture loader so you can Include your own pictures (e.g. from Dpalnt) on your boot up sequence. The disc also Includes a gallery of high quality pictures. We supply a password system which will prevent unwanted users from using your Amiga. Also, Included are several other high quality programs. Guide Book, disk, cribcard etc. Only £12.95. MASTERPIECE "THE BEST PICTURES I HAVE EVER SEEN ON THE AMIGA" reported a recent reviewer. This package takes you on a spectacular trip through the world of art. We have
selected many masterpieces from the world's art treasures and take you on a historical guided tour. Every picture is of true quality and is displayed using thousands of colours. To help you enjoy the world's heritage of art to the full we have Included comprehensive notes on each artist and painting. All the famous names are there - Leonardo Da Vinci. Monet, Renoir, Constable.
Picasso and many, many more. Whether you are and art expert or know nothing at all about art, this Is a wonderful way to appreciate the great paintings of the world (and appreciate the graphic capabilities of your Amiga as well). The package comes with two disks packed full of pictures and information.
Excellent value - £12.95 SALE PRICE - This month only - MASTERPIECE ONLY £7.95 UK P&P - FREE and by FIRST CLASS post Overseas orders welcome - Europeans please add 50p Outside Europe please add £1.50 for Airmail All payments In pounds sterling please.
Cheques P.O.'s to; Wizard Software (Dept A.C.1) 20, Hadrian Drive, Redhills, Exeter, Devon, EX4 1SR AMIGA DTP AT LAST ... A POSTSCRIPT LASER BUREAU FOR AMIGA USERS!
Simply mail us your Professional Page PageStream DTP files or your word-processor ascii files, on floppy disc for professional quality postscript laser output by return post.
? High-res scanning service also available (IFF format) ? Ring for large order discounts or more information.
? Only £1.25 per page. (Minimum order 5 pages.)
COMPUVISION 0642-850759 2A OXFORD RD, MIDDLESBROUGH, CLEVELAND TS5 STD NOW ONLY £1.50 PER DISK!
Here is a small sample of our software: Outsiders Acid Demo: A great demo disk containing a BRILLIANT video!
Digital Concert 4: 3 great digitally sequenced tracks, the best yet.
Kefren's Megademo 8: The best ever megademo. Better than Red Sector" Scoopex Mental Hangover: Amazing Filled Vectors and haunting music... All New Star Trek: A great new version by AGAtron. Great playability.
JTS Music Ripping Disk: Lots of utils to rip the best music from demos.
Home Business Pack: 3 disks containing a spreadsheet, wordprocessor and database. All come with instructions.
JTS Soundtracker Compilation: Various versions of Soundtracker. Plus 4 instruments disks. Great value!
OR WHY NOT BUY 10 PD DISKS FOR £12.50 (inclusive!)
SEND 4 BLANK DISK OR SAE FOR OUR FREE CATALOGUE To order: Please make cheques or postal orders payable to J T S F* E and then send your order to: 2 ASHFIELD, WETHERBY, LS22 4TF Telephone: 0937 63834 icanHOEM IBESQDH 68000 APL.68000 costs &99 .95 and is supplied with a comprehensive manual, reference card and keyboard stickers. P&P S3 (inc. VAT). To order, contact: Micro APL Ltd South Bank Technopark 90 London Road London SE1 6LN Tel: 071 922 8866 i APL for the Commodore Amiga The APL programming language is used by many of the world’s largest corporations because it is easy to learn and
extremely powerful in operation. APL’s concise notation and array handling features make it ideal for applications involving large amounts of data or frequent code alterations. APL.68000 is the only version of this unique programming language which is available for the Amiga.
Amiga Specific Features APL.68000 ? Unique array handling language Standard Amiga user interface APL multi-tasking. Full access to Amiga sound and graphics APL terminal emulator ? Symbolic notation ? Fhst program development ? 15 digit accuracy ? Easy to learn Standard implementation 68881 support version Versions of APL.68000 are available for most 68000-based computers APL - the Alternative Programming Language AMIGA (UK MODELS ONLY) B2000 with t Mb Chip RAM ..949.00 B2000 + 20 40 80 Mb Autoboot + S W .1099 1279 1495 B2000 + XT Bridgeboard + 20Mb MISCELLANEOUS
A2000 RAM 8Mb Populated 2Mb 279.00 A2000 Hi res Video Card for A501 RAM Clock 512Kb (Commodore) ...99.95 A500 RAM Clock 512Kb with B2000 +¦ AT Bridgeboard * 40Mb Autobcat + S W 1759.00 Commodore 1084S Stereo Mon A500 RAM Clock 1.8Mb Internal Amiga 500 FLIGHT OF FANTASY PACK .. .359.00 PRINTERS Kckstart V1.3 ROM for A500'200 .... 28.00 1 Mb Fat Agnus 8372A .69.00 CIA Chip 8520 ..15.00 Star
LC-10 159.00 minGen low cost Genlock ...99.95 Vidi-Amiga PAL Frame Grabber inc filters ..129.00 Star LC-10 Colour ......199.95 Star LC24-10 24 pin ..239.00 Okimale 20 consumables normally in stock ....PHONE Surge Protector 4-Way Distrib Unit......15.95 Surge Protector 13A Plug 3-Way MONITORS Philips 8833 Stereo Colour Monitor....249.00 Interquad Multi-scan Monitcr .349.00
Adaptor, ..12.95 19.95 I SOFTWARE TV'TEXT Professional Titler .129.00 TV'SHOW 2 Presentation ..54.95 DISK DRIVES TV'TEXT + TV'SHOW 2 ..169.00 Pro Video Plus Tiller .189.00 Drgiview Gold V4 Digitiser 119.00 A2000 Autcboot 80Mb Drive 549.00 Amiga A59Q Autoboot 20Mb Drive + S W .359.00 Internal 3.5' Disk Drive for A500 or A2000 .p&p £2 69.95 Home Ottice Kit: Kindwords 2, PageSetter
1.2, Maxiplan i .9, InfoFile, CaleFonts & Artists Choice...129.95 excellence! WP ...139.00 Professional Page DTP ....179.95 Amiga External 3.5* Drive with Disable Sw Thro’ Port .....p&p £2 59.95 Music-X .....175.00 ALL PRICES INCLUDE 15% VAT CARRIAGE £5 (EXPRESS £10) SOFTWARE £2 1AUTHORISED DEALER FOR * AMIGA * STAR * Price subject to change without notice. E. & O. E. 8 Ruswarp Lane, WHITBY, N. Yorks Y021 1ND TEUFAX: 0947 600065 (9am-7pm) AMIGA PUBLIC DOMAIN LOOK!!
• HUNDREDS OF TITLES' ’STARTER PACKS'
• FAST, RELIABLE SERVICE' LOOK!!
£1.80 each of £16.50 10 Delirious !. 2. 3. 4 (xxx) .(4 Disks) £6.50 Titanix. Crusaders,Trash & TIB Music ..(3 Disks) ....£5.00 Every inch a Lady, Sam Fox, Sabrina Demos. , (3 Disks) ....£5.00 Tiffany. Kylie. Debbie Gibson, Madonna Demos ......(3 Disks) ....£6.50 Mayfair. BFPO 2 & 3, Calendar Girls (xxx) ......(4 Disks) .....£6.50 Body Talk A & B*. Showering Girls* (xxx) ......(3 Disks) .....£5.00 + + * SPECIAL OFFER * * * Pack A + Pack L + Pack O
(xxx) ...... (11 Disks) £16.00
* 1 Meg or more (xxx) Adults only Callers welcome Monday to
Saturday 09 30-17.00, Wednesday 09.30-13.00 Send a large SAE
for latest catalogue PLEASE MAKE CHEQUES POSTAL ORDERS PAYABLE
TO: MAGNETIC MEDIA PRICE INCLUDES VAT, VICTORIA ARCADE,
ALDERGATE 1 s( CLASS POST IN UK ™ ’ISSJ"- SJAFFS 679 7DL f*™1
**** *** 9“"*"* TEL: 0827 59566 . Other countries £6.50 10 MAKE
YOUR AMIGA EARN!
Yes making money with your Amiga becomes incidental when you know how.
Your micro is, if only you knew it, a gold mine. The size and make is irrelevant. Make the initial effort. NOW by starting your own HOME BASED BUSINESS.
This may be the most impotarrt move you will ever make!
REMEMBER: You'll never get rich by digging someone else’s "ditch". Anyone in the country, including YOU, can become very rich in a relatively short period of time just by doing a few basic things! It’s more rewarding than playing games. The benefits are many and varied, Full or part time. For FREE details send S.A.E. to: Computer repairs
- FIRST AID FOR TECHNOLOGY ATARI ST AMIGA Simply send your
machine along with a .£15 diagnostic fee an .. you will be sent
a written quotation lor the cost of repairing your machine.
? TYPIBP&IX £45. 1 WEEK TURNAROUND
W. T.S. ELECTRONICS LTD, CHAUL END LANE, LUTON, BEDS LU4 8EZ Tel:
0582 491949 (4 LINES). Fax: 0582 505900 PRICE INCLUDES VAT &
LABELS ALL OUR DISKS ARE FULLY GUARANTEED DSDD DISKS 100%
CERTIFIED ERROR FREE P ONLY POOLS AND HORSES The Tipster This
HORSE RACING software was used to select the 100 1 NORTONS
COIN outsider in this years GOLD CUP.
Phone for details.
£29.95 The Punter Let your computer WIN THE POOLS for you with our latest software. We have used the same sums that the TIPSTER proves can beat the odds to give you a better chance with ANY POOLS COMPANY.
100 Capacity Disk Box £5.50: With Disks £4.50 12 Capacity Boxes 95p each £7.50 for 10 Quality mouse mats £2.50 All our disks are of the highest quality and are made by leading manufacturers_ PLEASE ADD £2.95 P+P PER ORDER Cheques PO's to MEDIA DIRECT - DEPT AMC 11 SAGE CLOSE, HANLEY, STOKE ON TRENT, ST1 3SF TELESALES HOTLINE: 0782-208228 £29.95 r VISA TAM Marketing (S West) 7 GD UNITS Marsh Barton Trading Estate Exeter EX2 8QD DEVON Telephone: (0392) 215485 |a|Tlie Last Blit LOST productivity is a serious business, especially in the computer world. The trouble with programmers is, well
basically they are more flighty than artists, more unreliable than an engineering student and more likely to have a breakdown than a Skoda.
:MC| mis Hex Mostly, they are easily distracted by music, food, women men and virtually everything else. This is OK - the industry has grown up around these problems, they know they exist.
Now there is a new plague waiting to sweep across happy programmer land. A foe so fiendish, so cunning, so despicable they have no natural defence to it at all. By it’s very nature this disease is catching. I speak, of course, about juggling.
Oh yes my friend, the simple task of keeping more balls in the air than you have hands is the enemy of which I speak. Ha, I bet you think it’s ridiculous, and indeed it is - this is also part of the cunning defence mechanism: It is so ridiculous as to seem completely harmless. But be warned.
At first you think you can handle it - “So I do a few jugs now and then, so what? I could give it up any time 1 wanted - couldn’t I?” It starts slowly. First three balls, then four and five. You move on to clubs. You learn inverted cascades. You start mucking around with Fire-clubs, diablos and devil-sticks.
Before you know it vouTe wobbling on top of a six-foot unicycle and it's only then you realise that you need help and support. Where are all your friends? Well usually they are forming a large circle around you, laughing and pointing,.
And who gains from it? Satan himself, under the guise of one of his alter egos, purveyor of quality juggling equipment to the unsuspecting. In a perfect world this business would be illegal, but in the spirit of Thatcherite free enterprise these peddlars of addictive implements go unpunished.
Be warned Amigans. There is a real virus at large, and even Steve Tibbet can't save you from this one.
A-Z Computer Services 101 Applied Research Kernal 85 Ashcom ...109 Blenheim Database ..34, 35 Bitcon Devices .....73 Calco ..66 Castle Software .100 Compuvision ......112 Computerwise ....114 Database Software .....93 Datel ...48. 90 Delta Pi Software ......112 Diamond Computers .74, 75
Digicom .....57 Digita International ......28 DPL Video Services ....60 ELSPA 84 European Peripheral Distribution..! 7 Evesham Micros ...14. 15 Gasteiner 104 Greater London Computers..10,101 G 2 Systems ......101 Hampshire Micro Computers 60 Hi-Soft .99 Home Based Business .113 JTS Public Domain ...112
Llamasoft ..45 Mandarin Software 6 Mgnetic Media ...113 MD Office Supplies .....13 Media Direct 113 Memory Expansion Systems 29 Micro APL ...112 MicroLink ..16 Overseas Media ....3 P Dorn PD Amiga 78 Rombo ....115 Silica Shp ..55 Siren Software ...109 SK
Marketing 47 Softmachine ... 60 Softsellers ......18, 85 Software Business .2 Solid State Leisure .....66 Special Reserve ..52 TAM Marketing 113 Track Computer Systems 116 Virtual Reality ... 98 West Midlands Amiga ...113 WTS Electronics .23,113 Wizard Software 112 COMPUTERWISE ADVERTISERS’ INDEX BRIGHTON S (0273) 674626 j FAX [0273J684383 AMIGA A500 £369.00 inc vat Workbench
1.3, Extras 1.3, The very first English version, four software titles, all leads and modulator.
We have I Oos of software titles in stock at all times, as well as books and peripherals.
Up to £1000 instant credit for personal callers. Full written details on request. We are your Amiga specialists, so phone or call in today for all your Amiga needs.
Open 10am to 5.30pm Monday to Saturday 44 George Street, Kemptown, Brighton n George Street is opposite American Express* Building z WESTMIDLANDS AMIGA Tired of dumb shop assistants, Don't like packed out shops, Would like a back-up service.
THEN TALK TO US We deal only in Commodore Amiga's and offer a User friendly informative service, not the usual take the money and don’t come back approach.
El (0905) 794955 for an appointment with no obligation Buisness hours MON-FR! 18:00-21:00 SAT 09:00-21:00 87,Westbury Av., Droitwich, WestMidlands WR9 ORT VIDI-AMIGA SCREEN SHOT AVAILABLE FROM ALL GOOD COMPUTER SHOPS Take snapshots in 16shffles-liv * Iroin video.
Multiple frame store will all available memory .
I) namic cm and paste.
Full palette control.
1 lard ware and sol i ware control of brightness and contrast.
0 Compatible with all video standards colour, hlaek and vvhire. I IS. Beta.
I pgradable to full colour with additional IDICHRO.ME’ park.
11)1 ENABLES YOU TO.. Ammuu f, PAL VERSION £114.95 YIDI FEATURES ... Rombo Ltd., 6 Fairbairn Road, Kirkton North, Livingston, Scotland EH54 6TS.
TEL: 0506-414631 FAX: 0506-414634 Limited TRACK COMPUTER SYSTEMS Department ACO! F P 1 Blacksmiths Y a r d Sadler Gate Derby DEI 3PD Telephone; (0332) 41817 FAX No (0332) 44001 O I l PUTER SYSTEMS COMPUTER is our middle name is our middle name in this magazifi Jased on like for PHILIPS CM8833 COLOUR MONITOR 14" Stereo High Resolution Colour Monitor with FREE Connecting Leads to your Amiga at a Remarkably LOW PRICE!!!
1 Mb. AMIGA A500 FLIGHT OF FANTASY STD AMIGA A500 FLIGHT OF FANTASY Track's Standard Amiga A5Q0 Flight of Fantasy PackjAs listed left) Plsfc-om Trud-
0. 5Mb RAM UPGRADE to 1Mb including a Free 1Mb Game (Title may
vary, Phone for details) Plus some really GREAT SOFTWARE to
get you going!
ESCAPE FROM THE PLANET OF THE ROBOT MONSTERS RAINBOW ISLAND F29 RETALIATOR DELUXE PAINT II Standard Amiga A5QG... 512K RAM, 1Mb Drive, 4096 Colours, Mouse, Multi-Tasking, Built in Speech Synthesis, Workbench 1.3 System Disks, Kickstart 1.3, All leads to connect up.
A fantastic monitor that brings out the best in your Amiga with Superb Stereo Sound and a Green Screen Switch etc. .95 INC VAT .95 INC VAT gofer £399 Or take advantage of our Credit Facilities* STAR LC 10 - 9PIN COLOUR PRINTER .95 INC VAT Colour version of the ever popular LC Series of Printers. Get it down on paper IN COLOUR at a price that won't make you see red!!!
Allows full colour f £ j afac atsJf... screen dumps and super text quality. 95 INC A500 FLIGHT OF FANTASY TRACKPAK Standard Amiga A500 Flight of Fantasy plus our Trackpak (Amiga A500 F.O.F, as listed above) Pius Quia firOrt Truly Versatile GUMANA CAX 354 DISK DRIVE .5* TOTAL AMIGA DIGITISING PACKAGE .95 Everything you need to Oigilise pictures on your Amiga in ONE VALUE PACKED PACK!
• Hitachi Mono Mk JM Qli Video Camera JM W ¦ -
• Camera Copy jT U fl U* INC Stand u VAT Or take advantage of our
Credit Facilities* awiiga SOFTWARE mo ACCESSORIES SUPERBASE
PERSONAL SUPERBASE II Package of...SUPERBASE PROFESSIONAL &
SUPERPLAN V& 7~rtac£ BSC rt BBC TRANSFER UTILITY Real
Translation program to get those BBC files to your Amiga
complete with cable to link machines together TRACK BBC
TRANSFER UTILITY £49.95 + BBC EMULATOR SOFTWARE 512K MEMORY
UPGRADE Make your Amiga 1 Mb £44.95 £15.00 £29.95 £149.95 K
CLUB IN IEIX IBERSHIR Because Track are well respected Software
Developers see our new BBC Transfer Program) and UK
Distributors we are able to offer EXTRA SPECIAL DEALS to ALL
our customers BUT, when you join the TRACK CLUB you will
actually SAVE EVEN MORE! RWaC Membership is ONLY £10 per annum
but as soon as you join you wilt W H receive a FREE DISK
including a Football League Program, a great Xaf 4 I u
collection of unreleased Digi-Fonts, Original Music Scores and
More! 22" f r Annum fVPUBLIC DOMAIN b SOFTWARE Track carry huge
stocks of Public Domain Software, from all A CURRENT PD
Libraries, from Demo’s to full blown programs... M ALL AT ONLY
£1.50 per disk!!! Phone for full list of titles now.
£19.95 a BOOKS.
OVER 100 BOOKS for AMIGA ON STOCK!
Phone now for full details of titles, avaifabiiity and prices.
WE STOCK OVER 2000 AMIGA PRODUCTS SO IF THERE'S ANYTHING YOU NEED AT A REALLY GREAT PRICE JUST PHONE TRACK NOW!!!
RING MADE EASY. ..ORDERING MADE EASY Phone our Fast Order Line, using Access, Visa or Lombard Charge Cards or send us a Cheque Postal Order with your order details.
* Credit Terms are avilable to customers over 18 (subject to
status), just phone and we will be pleased to send written
details and an application form. Requests for credit are
required in advance and are available to UK Mainland residents
only. APR 36.8% (Variable) Postal delivery and VAT are included
in the prices shown, but Next Working Day courier service is
available at an additional cost of £7.50 large item (UK
Mainland only). All goods despatched same day payment is
confirmed, but note cheques need bank clearance before goods
can be despatched.
Track Computers reserve the right to alter specific offers or change prices without prior notice.
Goods advertised are subject to availability. E&OE.
1 Holds disk drives, genlocks etc...
• Easy access to joystick parts
• Monitor sits about A500 £54.95