The Great Escape

  • Ocean Software

  • FormatVideo and Arcade
  • TypeAction Adventure
  • SystemMicrocomputer

This is my first review for the ZX Spectrum which was a very popular computer back in it's day. The review I will be looking at is from Ocean Software and it's called The Great Escape which comes from the film of the same name.

You can score points and increase your morale by discovering objects, using them and escaping - each of these activities will increase your scoreWyn James

Sadly you don't get to see Steve McQueen in this game. Ah well, I guess you can't have everything. Anyway, I was quite fond of playing this game for my Spectrum + 48K but I didn't get round to completing it. Got so many things to do in one day. Wouldn't it be nice to have more leisure hours during the day eh! Right, on with the game then....

The year is 1942, the place Germany. War has broken out and you have been captured and placed in a highly security POW camp. So your duty is to escape, but it will not be easy. It will take careful planning and much patience, culminating in a skilful and resourceful implementation. In the camp, you are closely guarded but while you follow the daily routine you will need to slip away unnoticed to reconnoitre the situation and collect tools and materials necessary for your chosen escape route.

The gaming environment is displayed in isometric 2.5D with the player's character initially in bed at the beginning of a day in the camp. The prisoner has a daily routine, along with all the other prisoners, which includes roll call, exercising, mealtimes and bedtime. The other prisoners will follow this routine and, if the player does not control the main character for a short period of time, their character will join in the routine. There are soldiers guarding the camp and they will attack the player if he is seen out of routine (prison guards only detect prisoners in their line of sight)

You can control your hero with either joystick or keyboard. At the bottom centre of your screen you will see an Alarm bell, and it has 2 functions.... when it sounds in a short burst it denotes the commencement of meals, roll calls, etc. and a message will appear at the bottom of the screen with the relevant information.

When a potential escape is discovered out of bounds the alarm bell will ring continuously and this is the signal to the guards that an escape is in progress. You also get news bulletins during the game too which will be vital. If you are in bounds, your Morale flag which is seen at the left side of your screen will be green, but if you wander out of bounds the morale flag will soon turn red, which means you will be liable for arrest....so you better watch out!! As for objects you can only carry two at a time.

You can score points and increase your morale by discovering objects, using them and escaping - each of these activities will increase your score.

That year in 1986 what I remember, I'm staying with the topic of films from 1986, because I was an avid film watcher. These are some of the great films I enjoyed watching during the year above: Aliens, The Golden Child, Top Gun, Crocodile Dundee, Platoon, The Karate Kid part II, Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home, Big Trouble in Little China among many others I could think of.

Review by Wyn James - @Hekatonchieres

The Great Escape - ZX SpectrumCLICK the carousel below to see the gaming pics and videos:

The Great Escape Intro

  • Ocean Software

  • FormatVideo and Arcade
  • TypeAction Adventure
  • SystemMicrocomputer

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