A great way to warm up
If you intend competing in the 1988 Winter Olympic Games you had better begin your training straight away. And what better way to do it than with Tynesoft's Winter Olympiad '88 - a compilation of six strenuous and skilful events for you and up to three friends to compete in.
Event number one is the bobsled run. Looking at a cross sectional view of the bob and the course, you try to maintain the highest possible speed. This is achieved by holding the sled as high as you dare on the bends. However, stray too high and you'll find yourself doing 60mph on your rear end.
Speed skating is the first of the keyboard-bashing events. The micro provides three different displays for this discipline - these include shots of the skater from the front and side, and a cursor moving around an oval circuit. Ignore all these and concentrate on the speed indicator at the bottom of the screen - by timing your key presses to keep this at its maximum value you'll win your first gold medal.
Whooshing down the 90 metre ski jump, you pound the keyboard for extra speed. A few seconds later you're airborne and fighting to keep your skis parallel - this is essential for both distance and marks for style.
The giant slalom is the first of the two slalom events. Looking down from a vantage point high on the mountain, you must guide the skier to the left of the red poles and to the right of the black ones - each pole struck adds a five second penalty to your time.
Next comes the Ski Slalom. Viewing the skier directly from behind, you must manoeuvre him accurately through the gates. This is the best event so far, the large sprite ducking and weaving athletically as you struggle to get him from one gate to the next.
Event number six is the Biathlon - my favourite event of the compilation - which involves alternating between cross country skiing and target shooting. Using the Z and X keys you slowly build up speed. Just as you reach top speed you'll find that it's time to stop and take your first series of shots.
The screen is filled with a large drawing of the competitor and five targets. A cursor falls in front of each target in turn - hit the spacebar when the cursor is over the bull to register a hit. Failing to hit the bull results in a time penalty of three seconds.
You are given three attempts at each event, but you can abort either of the last two if you are satisfied with your performance. There is also no need to qualify at one event before being allowed to compete in the next - a common feature of this type of game. Tynesoft has got it right with Winter Olympiad '88.