Grange Hill (Argus Press) Review | ZX Computing - Everygamegoing

ZX Computing

Grange Hill
By Argus Press
Spectrum 48K/128K/+2

Published in ZX Computing #37

Grange Hill

An animated adventure with the kids from Grange Hill

Grange Hill: The Computer Game has been designed as an easy-to-play adventure with drop-down menus and cursor-control cutting down the amount of typing instructions required. All you are required to type in is speech when you want to talk to a character or use an object in some way not covered by the verb options.

The plot concerns Gonch and Hollo's attempt to break into Grange Hill after hours and retrieve Gonch's walkman which has been confiscated. Only by getting the walkman back can Gonch avert the wrath of his mum.

Gonch is controlled directly by joystick while Hollo generally just tags along, although at times he needs to be encouraged or reprimanded in order to keep him following you.

Conventional commands such as pick up, drop, examine, use, take, etc are accessed using pull down windows. So with all these commands taken care of what are you supposed to do? The trail to the staff room is strewn with puzzles to solve and hurdles to overcome. As you would expect, the objects along the way come into unexpected use later on. By dispensing with the mapping aspect and concentrating on the puzzles, Grange Hill proves to be an enjoyable game with a few surprises in store - if, for instance, you meet "the pusher" and take what he offers, you are instantly out of the game. This is just one of a number of quick exits for the game - but you only get caught once!

To add a degree of urgency, there is a time limit - you have to get the walkman back to Gonch's house by midnight and the game offers a fairly stiff challenge, although seasoned adventurers may find it a bit of a breeze. Obviously aimed at the same age group as Grange Hill viewers, the game with its easy access system, animated graphics, familiar characters and puzzles will certainly appeal to its target audience.