10th Frame (US Gold) Review | Your Sinclair - Everygamegoing

Your Sinclair

10th Frame
By U. S. Gold
Spectrum 48K

Published in Your Sinclair #16

10th Frame

A-ha! I was nearly fooled by this one. But I soon sussed that 10th Frame is neither a snooker game or a tomato growing simulation. In fact it's a worthy if not wow ten pin bowling lookalike.

You're given the option of Open or League bowling. The latter allows up to five teams of four players to play three games, all of which are statistically presented with an exact replica of a bowling scoresheet. Most people, though, will go for the Open Bowling allowing five games between up to eight individuals.

The screen splits between your score card and a representation of several alleys, though you can only use the middle one. You have lateral control of your bowler to give you some sort of aim. Most importantly you must learn how much pace and swerve (or hook) to put on the ball.

This is the real skill behind the game and you'll need a rapid touch on the fire button as the two guides to optimum hook and pace (one ascending, one descending) slide swiftly across the screen. You'll have to get to grips with this aiming caper if you're to get a strike or pick up on the spares. The diagrams of the various shots to practise so that you can cope with splits (when your pins are a long way apart) are very useful.

There are three levels of difficulty starting at kiddies, though this one's a waste of time as most people including the 'kiddies' will quickly graduate to the professional level.

10th Frame requires a lot of skill and is a pretty good simulation, though I found it frustrating waiting for the pins to be reset after each game. It's a shame really that the packaging looks so dull and dated 'cos there's a really good game in there trying to get out!

Rick Robson