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Classic Game Review: California Games 1987

The detailed graphics, excellent presentation and refined game play of Summer Games put it head and shoulders above other comparatively crude joystick- waggling sports games. In the following three years, during which time US Gold took over their UK distribution, Epyx continued to produce sports simulations in the same innovative vein, constantly bettering each previous release in terms of graphics, sound and depth of game play.

Having set new standards, and surpassed all expectations in the process with Summer Games II. Winter Games, and World Games, Epyx can only do the same again witty California Games – the fifth release in the Games series, featuring six new events based on the exploits of the beautiful people who live in America’s Golden State.

As is the case with the preced­ing three titles in the Games series, up to eight players can compete in one some or all six of the events – or you can practice an event to your heart’s content. On the Com­modore 64 disk version, the high score table that records the best scores or times achieved is saved to disk for posterity 안전놀이터.

Unlike its predecessors how­ever California Games does not allow players to play for the coun­try of their choice – instead, a choice of nine relevant American sponsors is displayed, including Casio and Kawasaki. US Gold hope to persuade nine UK sponsors to buy space, replacing the names featured on the American version. Another difference is that trophies are awarded after an event – presumably a Californian custom.

HALF PIPE SKATEBOARDING

After sweeping the nation in the late seventies, the skateboarding craze has since died down and we don’t hear about the sport in Bri­tain. Major competitions are still held in the States though, and this event is based on one part of such a competition. You have one minute and 15 seconds to man­oeuvre a skateboard inside a large pipe, performing tricks to earn points. Three different moves are available and all take a bit of get­ting used to – kick turns and aerial turns are hardest to perform, but the hand plant comes easiest with practice Repetitive but fun.

FOOT BAG

The Foot Bag didn’t make much of an impact in the UK, despite a devoted cult following in the States. Set against the tranquil location beside the sea points are scored by juggling a pseudo- spherical leather bag with the head and feet. Pressing the fire button at the correct moment hits the bag into the air, and bonus points are earned by performing tricks such as Half Axel, Full Axel, Axel Foley, and Jester. Foot Bag is very play­able, requiring a great deal of co­ordination, and has more scope than other events.

SURFING

The aquatic forerunner to the skateboarding craze. The aim is to catch a wave and ride it for one and a half minutes, collecting points for turning and riding under­neath the curl of the wave or near the break – wipe-out four times and your surfing exploits are over. The surfing judges are even more impressed if you can ride to the top of the wave, clear it, turn and land without wiping out. This is not the easiest of events to score points in, as it seems to take some pretty radical surfing to impress the computer-controlled judges. Either that or the computer is biased.

ROLLER SKATING

With wheels on your female feet, speed is of the essence as you negotiate a horizontally scrolling beach boardwalk, avoiding obstacles that include cracks and gaps in the pavement, banana skins, beach balls and puddles of water. Performing simple stunts such as ducking and 360 degree spins earns the approval of the judges. Speed, and a commendably authentic skating feel is achieved by sweeping the joystick from top to bottom and vice versa to push off from either leg. The event finishes when the skater has fallen three times – or reaches the finish line.