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Old 29 May 2013, 14:17   #21
Coltch
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C64 for me, although the CPC was a nice machine I don't think many games were superior to the C64 , Scorcery, Chase HQ and Batman were very good on the Amstrad, but games that fully utilised the power of the VIC and SID couldn't be matched. I do have a CPC emulator on my PC that I fire up now and then.
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Old 29 May 2013, 14:47   #22
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there are a lot of "8bit wars" videos on YouTube that compare 8bit version of many games. all the systems win and lose on those comparisons. you're free to check for yourselves.

from these videos one can gather that, usually, the Spectrum wins on basic sprite look, the CPC on colour pallet and C64 on speed and sound, so it's a weird mixed bag really, with all the systems having their strengths and weaknesses.

but what i must really stress here is this:
"People get very emotional when comparing games on the Spectrum and the Commodore. This is only reasonable and expected, everyone has these memories of their first experience with these computers and games. It would be impossible to compare games on the two computers with people’s personal opinions based on their experiences when they were very young." (Philip Koekemoer, 2006)

he said, eloquently, what i tried to say before: the 8bit wars were tainted by emotion. it's rather hard to strip ourselves of these emotions when looking back. i am a former Spectrum owner. i never owned a C64 though back in the day i secretly wished i had, though i would NEVER give up my Spectrum for it. but now that i tried them both extensively via emulation, i prefer the Spectrum games more often than not. this probably has something to do with nostalgia but just as nostalgia influences and biases my perception of things, so does it influences and biases your perception of things. so, in the end, the machines that win, they win for each one of us individually. you cannot separate gaming experience from emotion and a simple scientific look at the games will not show the whole picture.
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Old 29 May 2013, 14:58   #23
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It has nothing to do with nostalgia, emotions, or being too young at that time. It's simply a game by game comparison. Of course the people are always a bit subjective/biased when it comes to "their" 8bit experience.

Doesn't change the fact that the C64 was the best choice in general. No matter if you could afford the computer or not, which was the point why the cheaper ZX Spectrum was successfull in some countries.
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Old 30 May 2013, 00:44   #24
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C64 was such a best choice, that it flopped out badly in france.
It didn't worked because people here were not attracted by the colors / look / overall.

French prefered the CPC because it had this mix between Workstation and game machine mix. The word spread out very fast in engineers circles here. So much that on 100 people, you could find back in the day 80 having an amstrad CPC. C64 anyone ? Nooo !!!

Otherwise, we were very fond of the amiga, because it brought up Speed AND colors !
it was the best of both worlds.
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Old 30 May 2013, 01:54   #25
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Yes, Denis. We know you "color" argument. And we know that France was "CPC land", and a few other countries too. Besides that the C64 was the dominant 8bit Computer for gaming in Europe and USA (till 85-86). For a reason as it seems.
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Old 30 May 2013, 08:18   #26
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Well the Amstrad was a kind of all in one computer so parents will kept their TV.
Add to this that a C64 was expensive even more with a 1541 not counting A monitor.
I went the Oric way, but I wouldn't have bought a CPC having seen and heard a C64. Same story goes for Atari ST and Amiga.

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Quote:
Originally Posted by dlfrsilver View Post
C64 was such a best choice, that it flopped out badly in france.
It didn't worked because people here were not attracted by the colors / look / overall.

French prefered the CPC because it had this mix between Workstation and game machine mix. The word spread out very fast in engineers circles here. So much that on 100 people, you could find back in the day 80 having an amstrad CPC. C64 anyone ? Nooo !!!

Otherwise, we were very fond of the amiga, because it brought up Speed AND colors !
it was the best of both worlds.
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Old 30 May 2013, 14:56   #27
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I loved the Amstrad, still oen various versions. Have rom
boxes, firmware manuals etc.

For a look at how good the cpc could be look at operation wolf . Was awesome.

Spectrum was defo the worst of the 8-bits(amstrad eventually bought them out, hence why the spectrum 3 looks like a cpc)

I never really sae much of the 64, though my friend has one, and would generally say the cpc looked better, though agian this probably personal preference
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Old 30 May 2013, 23:10   #28
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Amstrad cpc was released two years after the Spectrum, I'm glad they did improve upon it. They bought Sinclair because they couldn't win with the Amstrad line of computers, if not why bought Sinclair? They could have just pushed the CPC and pray for it to win the crown but they didn't.
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Old 30 May 2013, 23:19   #29
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Amstrad cpc was released two years after the Spectrum, I'm glad they did improve upon it. They bought Sinclair because they couldn't win with the Amstrad line of computers, if not why bought Sinclair? They could have just pushed the CPC and pray for it to win the crown but they didn't.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wikipedia
The combination of the failures of the Sinclair QL computer and the TV80 led to financial difficulties in 1985, and a year later Sinclair sold the rights to their computer products and brand name to Amstrad
I'm sure if Sony had money problems Microsoft or Apple etc would buy them out.
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Old 31 May 2013, 13:29   #30
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exactly sinclair were going to the wall , amstrad bought them out
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Old 31 May 2013, 14:42   #31
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CPC sound chip is awful, that Batman demo is just painful to listen to. A true bleep bloop machine.
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Old 31 May 2013, 23:41   #32
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I had a spectrum, my mates had a c64 and another had a cpc. I was envious of the c64 gfx but the resolution always seemed to be blocky. The cpc seemed to have the same res as the spectrum but not as good sound as the +2.

the last spectrum magazine was on the shelves in july `92, i cant recall if either the c64 or cpc were still around then.

All 3 machines had thier good points, c64 soundtracks of action biker and turbo outrun were amazing and THE best game soundtrack ever...

robocop 128k soundtrack on the spectrum, still sends shivers down my spine even now.

[ Show youtube player ]

This is the c64 version of the same tune and i dont think its as good

[ Show youtube player ]
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Old 01 June 2013, 00:00   #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mrbob2 View Post

robocop 128k soundtrack on the spectrum, still sends shivers down my spine even now.

[ Show youtube player ]

This is the c64 version of the same tune and i dont think its as good

[ Show youtube player ]
CPC version (rather similar to the Spectrum version):
[ Show youtube player ]


I think I already posted it in another thread, but the CPC music for Saboteur 2 is very nice:
[ Show youtube player ]
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Old 01 June 2013, 03:02   #34
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Sinclair ZX Spectrum was lame. I had a ZX-81 with Indescamp 64 Ko memory extension and this one was good enough to learn programming. The ZX-81 was the real pioneer in personal computing. Then ZX Spectrum was released but it wasn't enough an improvement, so I bought an Amstrad CPC 464, much much better with a lot of colors, plus I had a couple of friends who also bought this one.

Games on Amstrad were even better than those I had on my second computers, a portable Toshiba Papman then another Portable Toshiba, an AT-286 (but Bard's Tale was really good), although the latters were at least four times as expensive as the CPC.


---Why Amstrad were leader in France and why they finally lost the market to the Amiga---

I agree to some extent with dlfrsilver. In France at some point (maybe 1985-1986) there was something like 80% geeks owning Amstrad CPCs (good reason enough to have one), 19% owning a mix of Thomson TO7/MO5 (not so good), Oric Atmos (really bad) and MSX (good Japanese standard stuff). There was maybe 1% owning C64s and I just don't know where they managed to buy them.

This points to the true reason why C64 didn't sell very well in France. Of course it was not that French people have bad taste - hey, they bought so many Amigas that they can't be bad! It was just that Commodore at that time didn't consider France as one of their primary objectives and they didn't bother opening a subsidiary and/or finding a good distributor/reseller here.

Later they realized their mistake and gained a little more market share but it was just too late. Amstrad already ate the market, and Atari ST was already there. So Commodore didn't repeat the same mistake with the Amiga. They finally developed the appropriate sales channels and the Amiga nearly killed Amstrad (who was trying to upgrade its user base towards its new PC line of computers) and Atari in the same blow.


---Why some people say that Amstrad games were good and others say they were bad---

There were many localized games on Amstrad. In countries having a well established C64 customer base and little or no CPC, yes some video games producers didn't bother doing something else than porting ZX Spectrum games to Amstrad CPC. Except for a few good companies with international strategies, such as Ultimate, Elite, US Gold and Ocean (great ports of arcade games under the label Imagine-the name of the game), simple ports from Spectrum were a lot cheaper to do than full redevelopments for their home markets. That's just basic marketing strategy.

Ultimate released not only the great CPC recolorized version of Knight Lore isometric 3D game (which inspired Batman and Head Over Heels by Ocean), but also Sabre Wulf, and the way underrated Gunfright, really improved as compared to the ZX Spectrum version.

On the Japanese & American arcade side, let's quote great ports such as Space Harrier (Sega/Elite), Arkanoid (Taito/Imagine), Renegade (Taito/Imagine), Ghost'n'Goblins (Capcom/Elite), Ye'Ar Kung Fu (Konami/Imagine), Strider (Capcom/US Gold), Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (Sega/US Gold), Kung Fu Master (Data East/US Gold), Gauntlet (Atari Games/US Gold), Commando (Capcom/Elite), Bomb Jack (Tehkan-Tecmo/Elite), Ikari Warriors (SNK/Elite), Rygar (Tecmo/US Gold)

On the other hand and for the same reason, in countries where Amstrad was the market leader, software vendors did an excellent job releasing proprietary games for the CPC. In France for instance, most games by Ere Informatique (later Exxos then Cryo Software) were just brilliant. They included Macadam Bumper, Get Dexter 1 & 2, Eden Blues, then direct ports from Atari ST of Bubble Ghost, Teenage Queen and Captain Blood. Ubi Soft released Zombi, Fer & Flamme, B.A.T, Masque and other great games. There were also Titus, Infogrames, Loriciel, Cobra Soft, and more French vendors.

Oh, and get the facts here: http://www.cpcwiki.eu/index.php/Speccy_Port

One more story - a case study about Double Dragon - illustrates that a good customer base deserves good games while a bad customer base only deserves bad games. Read it here:
http://doubledragon.kontek.net/featu...admystery.html


---Was the C64 really better than Amstrad CPC? Why do some people say that Spectrum was better?---

Hahaha the old war resumes. C64 wins of course, but the only reason of this is sound and music. Let's figure out why.

Good sound and good music, combined with just ok graphics, gave birth to the demo scene, and there was no real demo scene on the other platforms. There's a popular misconception that old crack intros with static text or simple scrolltext were at the origin of the demo scene. That's just wrong. Demos are creativity, art, expression. Printing a "cracked by" text is only boasting. So, what gave people the desire to create demos? Music, of course. And what is the best in computing? Large communities sharing the same hobbies, as a good way to make friends.

Apart from this, comparing graphics gives a small lead to the CPC, with a slightly better palette. As for the number of good games. That's where my response to the second question comparing CPC with Spectrum is a laugh. With poor graphics, few colors, poor sound, the only reason why some people believed that the Sinclair machine was better was the number of games and the gameplay. People even say that they had 800 games, wow! Eight hundred! C'mon, I had more than 1,000 on my CPC. WTF!!!

Comparing the quality of the Arcade ports also gives a lead to the CPC as compared to the poor Spectrum (unexpensive for poor people), and even often as compared to the C64.

At last powerful programming even in Basic on the CPC was a real pleasure. The system was very stable and responsive.

Still, C64 was the best thanks to sound, networking, and the scene. Period.


---What's up with these undocumented video modes on the CPC?---

I personally used the fullscreen trick back in the mid-80s so there's nothing new here. A simple call command to a ROM subroutine, yes, that's all! This combined with some basic corrections of course, in order to redress the diagonal screen display.

Explanation of these modes here: http://www.cpcwiki.eu/index.php/Video_modes

The article says "Too bad too few graphically-heavy Role-Playing Games were produced." - but in France we had plenty of them in French language, unavailable in other countries. That was another good reason to own a CPC here.


---And what about networking? Why was C64 better with a reasonable number of BBS's?---

Because the countries where the CPC 464 most succeeded were France, Italy and Spain. In the 80's the standard of living in Southern Europe countries was lower and good modems were expensive, so France was the only country where it could have started. But it failed. BBS's were extremely rare on the CPC scene, mostly crack-oriented, with very few groups and individual crackers relying on post trading.

Any clue why it happened at all? Was France bad with technology? No, exactly the opposite, in fact. The Minitel, of course, was the cause. Here anyone could have one in paying a very small bi-monthly borrowing fee to France TÚlÚcom. So millions of French people already had a modem with access to all kinds of services, information, messaging boards, and even chatrooms like on IRC. The Minitel was a precursor of Internet available to the masses. As France was the only one country to have it, it eventually forced the country to stay apart from the others for a while, curbed the need to jump into the BBS's wagon, and later became a burden for fast Internet adoption. On the other hand, it trained a generation of good hackers. Every progress has its advantages and drawbacks.


I hope this long post has not annoyed you too much. Smart reactions and constructive critics are of course welcomed.

Last edited by n00w; 01 June 2013 at 09:03. Reason: false friend/inappropriate word in English
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Old 01 June 2013, 12:35   #35
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Quote:
---Was the C64 really better than Amstrad CPC? Why do some people say that Spectrum was better?---

Hahaha the old war resumes. C64 wins of course, but the only reason of this is sound and music. Let's figure out why.
Ermh, no. Music is important for games, true. But the main reason why the C64 wins in the game category so easily is simple. It was designed as a video game console, and later Tramiel ordered to extend it to a full computer. Hardware scrolling, Hires sprites AND the good sound chip. All that things, that are important for creating good arcade games, lacked the CPC.


Quote:
This points to the true reason why C64 didn't sell very well in France. Of course it was not that French people have bad taste - hey, they bought so many Amigas that they can't be bad! It was just that Commodore at that time didn't consider France as one of their primary objectives and they didn't bother opening a subsidiary and/or finding a good distributor/reseller here.
I agree. If the French gaming freaks would have had the choice....

Quote:
...simple ports from Spectrum were a lot cheaper to do than full redevelopments for their home markets. That's just basic marketing strategy.
True, but the C64 also sufferd from some ports that looked like running a Spectrum emulator on the C64.


Quote:
The article says "Too bad too few graphically-heavy Role-Playing Games were produced." - but in France we had plenty of them in French language, unavailable in other countries. That was another good reason to own a CPC here.
Another good point, also some nice graphic/text adventures. But were they all that good? I know that especially French magazines overhyped games tremendously.

Last edited by Retro-Nerd; 01 June 2013 at 13:14.
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Old 01 June 2013, 16:18   #36
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Originally Posted by dlfrsilver View Post
C64 was such a best choice, that it flopped out badly in france.
It didn't worked because people here were not attracted by the colors / look / overall.

French prefered the CPC because it had this mix between Workstation and game machine mix. The word spread out very fast in engineers circles here. So much that on 100 people, you could find back in the day 80 having an amstrad CPC. C64 anyone ? Nooo !!!

Otherwise, we were very fond of the amiga, because it brought up Speed AND colors !
it was the best of both worlds.
I remember that the C64 was much more expensive than the CPC6128 especially if you include the color monitor. At the time in France, I could find maybe one C64 for 10 CPC at my school mates' places. Probably because the Amstrad CPC was a "supermarket" machine widely distributed at a discount price and in the opposite, the C64 being a "connaisseur" machine with a much higher price (well, I won't talk about the Apple II...).

Now, there's no photo between the two machines regarding performances: the C64 was a rolls-royce with its great sound, scrolling and sprite. The colour seemed to be a bit dark/ grey or something on a TV, though. Something I could improve later through emulation using palette loading.

And well, I've not seen many ZX Spectrum back in the days. Maybe one that didn't work well, uh.

Anyway by the end of the 80's, I chose to wait two more years to get the A500. I found the 16bits, including the Atari ST, way more attractive !
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Old 01 June 2013, 19:38   #37
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Originally Posted by mrbob2 View Post
The cpc seemed to have the same res as the spectrum but not as good sound as the +2.
The soundchip in the amstrad is essentially the same one as the +2

blip blip.
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Old 01 June 2013, 20:05   #38
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something amazing
Boing [ Show youtube player ]
Amiga emulator [ Show youtube player ]
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Old 01 June 2013, 22:28   #39
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Sure? http://www.marketingallinclusive.com/articole/latest-news/sony-faces-financial-trouble:-it-expects-to-lose-$29-billion-this-year-10577.html
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Here.



I'm sure if Sony had money problems Microsoft or Apple etc would buy them out.
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Old 01 June 2013, 22:40   #40
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When you had an Oric 1 and see for the first time Knight Lore you are jaw drops. Then Psytron, Ant Attack, Exploding fist... The CPC was ok, the Oric games were not as good but years laters programmers push it to the limits. See 1337, Stormlord, SkoolDaze, Space 1999, Impossible mission at : http://space1999.defence-force.org/ Kamelito
Quote:
Originally Posted by n00w View Post
Sinclair ZX Spectrum was lame. I had a ZX-81 with Indescamp 64 Ko memory extension and this one was good enough to learn programming. The ZX-81 was the real pioneer in personal computing. Then ZX Spectrum was released but it wasn't enough an improvement, so I bought an Amstrad CPC 464, much much better with a lot of colors, plus I had a couple of friends who also bought this one.

Games on Amstrad were even better than those I had on my second computers, a portable Toshiba Papman then another Portable Toshiba, an AT-286 (but Bard's Tale was really good), although the latters were at least four times as expensive as the CPC.


---Why Amstrad were leader in France and why they finally lost the market to the Amiga---

I agree to some extent with dlfrsilver. In France at some point (maybe 1985-1986) there was something like 80% geeks owning Amstrad CPCs (good reason enough to have one), 19% owning a mix of Thomson TO7/MO5 (not so good), Oric Atmos (really bad) and MSX (good Japanese standard stuff). There was maybe 1% owning C64s and I just don't know where they managed to buy them.

This points to the true reason why C64 didn't sell very well in France. Of course it was not that French people have bad taste - hey, they bought so many Amigas that they can't be bad! It was just that Commodore at that time didn't consider France as one of their primary objectives and they didn't bother opening a subsidiary and/or finding a good distributor/reseller here.

Later they realized their mistake and gained a little more market share but it was just too late. Amstrad already ate the market, and Atari ST was already there. So Commodore didn't repeat the same mistake with the Amiga. They finally developed the appropriate sales channels and the Amiga nearly killed Amstrad (who was trying to upgrade its user base towards its new PC line of computers) and Atari in the same blow.


---Why some people say that Amstrad games were good and others say they were bad---

There were many localized games on Amstrad. In countries having a well established C64 customer base and little or no CPC, yes some video games producers didn't bother doing something else than porting ZX Spectrum games to Amstrad CPC. Except for a few good companies with international strategies, such as Ultimate, Elite, US Gold and Ocean (great ports of arcade games under the label Imagine-the name of the game), simple ports from Spectrum were a lot cheaper to do than full redevelopments for their home markets. That's just basic marketing strategy.

Ultimate released not only the great CPC recolorized version of Knight Lore isometric 3D game (which inspired Batman and Head Over Heels by Ocean), but also Sabre Wulf, and the way underrated Gunfright, really improved as compared to the ZX Spectrum version.

On the Japanese & American arcade side, let's quote great ports such as Space Harrier (Sega/Elite), Arkanoid (Taito/Imagine), Renegade (Taito/Imagine), Ghost'n'Goblins (Capcom/Elite), Ye'Ar Kung Fu (Konami/Imagine), Strider (Capcom/US Gold), Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (Sega/US Gold), Kung Fu Master (Data East/US Gold), Gauntlet (Atari Games/US Gold), Commando (Capcom/Elite), Bomb Jack (Tehkan-Tecmo/Elite), Ikari Warriors (SNK/Elite), Rygar (Tecmo/US Gold)

On the other hand and for the same reason, in countries where Amstrad was the market leader, software vendors did an excellent job releasing proprietary games for the CPC. In France for instance, most games by Ere Informatique (later Exxos then Cryo Software) were just brilliant. They included Macadam Bumper, Get Dexter 1 & 2, Eden Blues, then direct ports from Atari ST of Bubble Ghost, Teenage Queen and Captain Blood. Ubi Soft released Zombi, Fer & Flamme, B.A.T, Masque and other great games. There were also Titus, Infogrames, Loriciel, Cobra Soft, and more French vendors.

Oh, and get the facts here: http://www.cpcwiki.eu/index.php/Speccy_Port

One more story - a case study about Double Dragon - illustrates that a good customer base deserves good games while a bad customer base only deserves bad games. Read it here:
http://doubledragon.kontek.net/featu...admystery.html


---Was the C64 really better than Amstrad CPC? Why do some people say that Spectrum was better?---

Hahaha the old war resumes. C64 wins of course, but the only reason of this is sound and music. Let's figure out why.

Good sound and good music, combined with just ok graphics, gave birth to the demo scene, and there was no real demo scene on the other platforms. There's a popular misconception that old crack intros with static text or simple scrolltext were at the origin of the demo scene. That's just wrong. Demos are creativity, art, expression. Printing a "cracked by" text is only boasting. So, what gave people the desire to create demos? Music, of course. And what is the best in computing? Large communities sharing the same hobbies, as a good way to make friends.

Apart from this, comparing graphics gives a small lead to the CPC, with a slightly better palette. As for the number of good games. That's where my response to the second question comparing CPC with Spectrum is a laugh. With poor graphics, few colors, poor sound, the only reason why some people believed that the Sinclair machine was better was the number of games and the gameplay. People even say that they had 800 games, wow! Eight hundred! C'mon, I had more than 1,000 on my CPC. WTF!!!

Comparing the quality of the Arcade ports also gives a lead to the CPC as compared to the poor Spectrum (unexpensive for poor people), and even often as compared to the C64.

At last powerful programming even in Basic on the CPC was a real pleasure. The system was very stable and responsive.

Still, C64 was the best thanks to sound, networking, and the scene. Period.


---What's up with these undocumented video modes on the CPC?---

I personally used the fullscreen trick back in the mid-80s so there's nothing new here. A simple call command to a ROM subroutine, yes, that's all! This combined with some basic corrections of course, in order to redress the diagonal screen display.

Explanation of these modes here: http://www.cpcwiki.eu/index.php/Video_modes

The article says "Too bad too few graphically-heavy Role-Playing Games were produced." - but in France we had plenty of them in French language, unavailable in other countries. That was another good reason to own a CPC here.


---And what about networking? Why was C64 better with a reasonable number of BBS's?---

Because the countries where the CPC 464 most succeeded were France, Italy and Spain. In the 80's the standard of living in Southern Europe countries was lower and good modems were expensive, so France was the only country where it could have started. But it failed. BBS's were extremely rare on the CPC scene, mostly crack-oriented, with very few groups and individual crackers relying on post trading.

Any clue why it happened at all? Was France bad with technology? No, exactly the opposite, in fact. The Minitel, of course, was the cause. Here anyone could have one in paying a very small bi-monthly borrowing fee to France TÚlÚcom. So millions of French people already had a modem with access to all kinds of services, information, messaging boards, and even chatrooms like on IRC. The Minitel was a precursor of Internet available to the masses. As France was the only one country to have it, it eventually forced the country to stay apart from the others for a while, curbed the need to jump into the BBS's wagon, and later became a burden for fast Internet adoption. On the other hand, it trained a generation of good hackers. Every progress has its advantages and drawbacks.


I hope this long post has not annoyed you too much. Smart reactions and constructive critics are of course welcomed.
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