Daley Thompson's Olympic Challenge (Ocean) Review | Zzap - Everygamegoing


Daley Thompson's Olympic Challenge
By Ocean
Commodore 64

Published in Zzap #42

Daley Thompson's Olympic Challenge

Daley Thompson has a big, bushy moustache and drinks Lucozade a lot. (Just thought I'd make sure that everyone knows who the hell I'm going on about in this review!) he competes in ten events in one competition. This is known as a decathlon (still following this, are we? Good!).

Being a fit and healthy kind of guy, Daley must work out in his gym every day. To tone up your biceps, triceps and leggy muscles (well, I'm no doctor!) you (as Mr. Thompson) lift weights and perform sit-ups and leg extensions by waggling the joystick (yes, it's one of those games). As you exert yourself, a bottle suspiciously like Lucozade gradually fills up. The total amount of golden liquid (no, Paul Hogan *isn't* featured) collected affects your performance in the events.

It's a little known fact the Daley's prowess is reliant on his... trainers!! Woo! You need to select the most suitable pair before embarking on the events.

The leaps and bounds of the long jump are simulated by pressing the joystick as near to the take-off board as possible, and keeping it depressed (by playing The Smiths' albums to it?) until the desired angle of launch is reached. This control method control is used in the pole vault, high jump, hurdles, javelin, shotput and discus.

Straightforward distance running ranges from the joystick-breaking 100m sprint, to the arm-destroying 1,500 metres, with the 400 metres striking a happy medium.

All this physical exertion will hopefully be rewarded by the winning of a gold medal. You'll probably sleep for a week after all that hard work!


Ocean's last game featuring a certain sportsman, Daley Thompson's Decathlon, merely took an average Track And Field conversion and put in a dwarfed Daley-like sprite - an uninspiring licence. This latest game, though, has some of Daley's jokey character, clearly shown in impressively large detail in the training section (accompanied by the sounds of deep breathing from you as well as the TV loudspeaker!)

Joystick waggling features heavily - so heavily, in fact, that that's all there appears to be to the game.

This is a clear disadvantage, and is a situation which is helped little by the trainer-choosing element which eases joystick strain by some degree but obviously does nothing to change the control method.

If you plan on doing some body-building but can't afford a set of weights, buy a copy of this and an extremely sturdy joystick and you'll be kicking sand in people's faces long before you get a gold medal.


I always thought that Summer Games II was the best sports sim on the C64 because of its brilliant graphics and interesting control methods.

It took thought to get through all the events instead of thrashing the joystick to death. Here we are, two and a half years later, and we have a sports sim that relies on the good old 'waggle factor'.

Some of the events look like a cross between Summer Games II and the Konami arcade machines, the gameplay leaning more towards the latter. It is quite a lot of fun just pumping hell out of the joystick, but even more fun watching fellow reviewers doubled up with agony after completing ten biceps curls!

Ultimately, Daley Thompson's Olympic Challenge is a nicely presented and entertaining game which is just a little bit too strenuous. Excuse me while I get an icepack!


Just when you thought it was safe to go back to sports simulations... Daley Thompson's Olympic Challenge appears. This is the most exhausting joystick-waggling game I've ever played! At one point, four reviewers were playing a sort of relay to get to the next stage.

The events cause a critical condition amongst computer gamers: 'Serious Arm lock-up', a most painful experience. The presentation is good though, and the graphics very effective: some very realistic animation, especially on the weight training events.

A little strategy is required in selecting the right shoes for each event, but it's hard to think straight when you're running around screaming "Oh God! My arm!" - I've seen tough sport sims in my time, but this is shattering!!


Presentation 78%
Nicely done, from an aesthetic point of view, but the constant joystick-waggling control method is a pain - literally.

Graphics 89%
Highly presentable decathlon events and excellent Daley character in the training section.

Sound 83%
A sportly title tune with some unusual voices, grunts and groans from our Daley.

Hookability 74%
Strong graphical impression is offset by tortuous waggling.

Lastability 66%
Sporting skills can be honed but the control method may well deter.

Overall 79%
A new slant on sporting games and an effective licence (for a change), but it is slightly marred by an exhausting joystick system.