Born in 1988
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- FormatVideo and Arcade
Back in the glory days 1.99 games available in newsagents, pharmacies hardware stores and pretty much anywhere else, there ran a series of 'Advanced Simulator' games.
Once experienced, the shocking possibilities act as a constant reminder of our own mortality in the real world, where even the most mundane circumstances can prove lethal.
These ranged from the serious 'Advanced BMX Simulator' and 'Advanced Soccer Simulator' to the more left-field 'Ninja Scooter Simulator' and the subject of this review 'Advanced Lawnmower Simulator'.
Only in this era of eccentric British bedroom coders could a game like this be dreamt up, let alone be given the magnetic tape enough to be distributed. While first loading the game, you naturally find yourself wondering how the designer will inject gameplay, skill and excitement into such a mundane task and due to the blessedly short loading time, you're not left in suspense for long.
First up, a range of tools: The player must choose between a range of excitingly named lawnmowers. What could be more manly than shopping for a lawnmower? Once youve endured the agony of choice and you're properly equipped, it's time to hit the turf in the glorious British summer time. No effort has been spared in rendering the lavish English country garden bathed in a tangible glorious sunshine with large country pile in the back ground. Mowing the lawn may not be the most interesting or taxing operation, but the sight of the beautifully uniform lawn resulting from your toil is it's own reward. This is a simulation of an operation rather than a game an one that mirrors the mind-numbing graft and resulting satisfaction.
Be careful though; this work is not without it's risks. Once experienced, the shocking possibilities act as a constant reminder of our own mortality in the real world, where even the most mundane circumstances can prove lethal. I for one find it refreshing and insightful that a mere 8-bit came can comment so deeply and profoundly on our humanity and particularly in the way we experience life.
I find comments on our motivations, from where we derive pleasure and ultimately our demise. and our ways of coping with the constant knowledge that our life is fleeting and fragile. Advanced Lawnmower Simulator epic in its lack of vision, scope, imagination and gameplay. And yet it speaks so loudly of our very nature. The complete lack of any gameplay is glorious and it makes me proud to be British.
Review by Andy Pryer @clammylizard
Advanced Lawnmower Simulator (1988) - Sinclair ZX Spectrum
Advanced Lawnmower Simulator | Strange Game Saturday
- FormatVideo and Arcade