P471Digitext470HOLD

WEIRD SNACK UNBOXING - WITH ELI SILVERMAN ----- 471

QUIZ: HOW MANY NES GAMES DOest thou KNOW? ----- 472

THE DIGITISER FRIDAY LETTERS PAGE ----- 473

This Month in...charts ----- 474

Violet Berlin ----- 475

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Key:
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To advance (quickly) through the pages, press right square bracket key (located near the enter key), otherwise the pages will move forward every minute

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NIGHT NETWORK

From 12am till 6am the site will play easy listening music to simulate the closedown of TV from the early eighties. This was initially started by Ceefax (the BBC teletext service) but did get picked up by Teletext.

FASTTEXT

Fasttext now added. This helped to jump to pages quickly without the need to key in the numbers. Bamboozle used this to great effect - to see this key in 452.

REVEAL

To be implemented.

ABOUT

I originally wanted to write a Windows 95 simulator as a follow-on homage to LGR's DOS portion of website - http://www.lazygamereviews.com/prompt/. I figured it should work quite well with the advancement in javascript over the years and it meant that I could utilise more JS programming skills as I don't do much of that currently.

I didn't want to use jQuery as I would only be using a small portion of that code and I wanted to try and keep the site as tightly written as possible, without excessive code. I have seen another website that does use jQuery and interestingly that is based more on Ceefax rather than mine which is Teletext based. You can find the site here: http://worldofpaul.com/teletext/.

SO WHY DIGITISER?

Around 2017, Mr Biffo (Paul Rose) of Digitiser fame, surfaced back into the "limelight" and was attending retro gaming events talking about the old Digitiser days. I thought it'd be pretty cool to make an online teletext simulator using nothing but HTML, CSS and Javascript. This would be a cut down challenge from the Windows based one and so here we are.

You stand before Knightmare Castle. With you is Treguard, Master of the Quest.

"Welcome, Adventurer! Your quest will take you to the Great Northern Ice Field, a frozen realm inhabited by ferocious Polar Bears! You travel to rescue a captive maiden. I will aid you when I can: you will hear my voice at time of need. Hold to the adventurer's code:

Answer truthfully, choose wisely, use force only in direst need. And remember

Cheats never prosper!

Treguard indicates the northern trail. Pulling your cloak tightly about you, you stride into the freezing wind. Ahead you see a tall figure: it is Hordriss the Confuser, magician extraordinary.

"Imprecations! Is this the best Treguard could find? One doubts if you are wise enough for such a Quest: one will test you. Tell me, puny adventurer those who dwell in this land are known to outsiders as Eskimos. How are they more properly called?"

Hordriss shakes his head sadly.

"One's worst fears are confirmed. One must go and find another to undertake this task. Farewell, ignorant adventurer."

He turns and leaves you standing alone in the freezing wind as the snows fall more heavily around you.

You wander through the snow as it falls ever harder and harder. All paths vanish in the white torrent that swirls about you. You tire rapidly as the warmth drains from your body. After long, confused wandering you feel yourself losing consciousness and falling into the deep, soft snow.....

You have been found wanting. This time, your Quest may not succeed. But take courage. You have journeyed far and attempted that of which many only dream

Next time you set foot beyond the walls of Castle Knightmare, who knows whence your path may lead?

"Ah," says Hordriss, " an enlightened Adventurer. Remarkable! Listen then: one's foolish daughter Sidriss has been captured by Aesandre the Ice Sorceress. Her palace lies far to the North. She awaits my rescue mission and has set magic traps for me. She will not expect YOU. There is a slight chance you might get through...

"One gifts you with a spell: HEAT. You may use it only once. Good fortune!"

You set out across the ice sheet along the path Hordriss indicates. Soon he is lost behind and you can see nothing but ice and snow in every direction. The chill enters your bones and you shiver in every limb.

Then ahead you spot a small white dome: An igloo!

Do you:

The valley path is filled with snowdrifts and as you push forward you find the snow reaches your knees. The fur coat is weighed down by heavy ice. You step boldly forward onto a slab of ice. It gives way beneath you and frozen snow closes over your head...

"Oh dear," says Treguard. "Frosted Adventurer! And not a microwave in sight!"

Inside the igloo it is slightly warmer. You find a collection of objects left behind by the owner.

A sack. Opening it you find it to be full of greasy, smelly lumps of something unpleasant.

A pair of snowshoes.

A white fur coat.

Which do you take?

Wrapping the coat around you and feeling warm and snug, you step out into the snow again. Heading ever northwards, you come to a divide in the path. You may travel down the valley or along a high rocky ledge.

Which route do you take now?

You climb up above the snowy valley, across bare rock jutting through the ice. At the top of the rise you pause to look down...

And turn at a snarling sound behind you

A large polar bear is growling and forcing you back towards the edge of the ledge.

"Very tactless to go around wearing one of his relatives," whispers Treguard as you fall from the rock-face. Oh dear

Strapping the huge snowshoes onto your feet, step out into the snow again. Heading ever northwards you come to a divide in the path. You may travel down a valley or along a high rocky ledge.

Which route do you take now?

Slinging the weight of the of the sack over one shoulder, you step out into the snow again. Moving north again you come to a divide in the path. You may travel down a valley or along a high rocky ledge.

Which route do you take now?

You climb up above the snowy valley, across the rocks jutting out of the ice. At the top of the rise you pause to look down...

A hideous snarling sounds behind you.

A large polar bear is growling and forcing you back towards the edge of the ledge.

"Decide quickly," says Tregaurd. "He looks hungry."

The valley path is filled with snowdrifts and as you push forward you find the snow spilling over your snowshoes. Once or twice you feel the ice below shifting as you step onto solid-looking surfaces but moving carefully with your snowshoes you manage to make your way to the easier path beyond the valley.

You climb up above the snowy valley, across bare rock jutting through the ice. At the top of the rise you pause..

A hideous snarling sounds behind you.

A large polar bear is growling, forcing you back towards the edge of the ledge. It leaps towards you...

...and rips the sack from your back. As you hurry away Treguard whispers: "You may not like the smell - but some regard two-week old whale blubber as quite a delicacy!"

The valley path is filled with ever deeper snowdrifts and as you push forward you find the snow reaches to your knees. The heavy sack makes you sink deeper in.

As you step boldly forward onto a frozen slab it gives way beneath you and the freezing snows close over your head.....

"Oh dear," says Treguard. "Now you know how a frozen beefburger feels!"

You trip over the heavy snowshoes you are wearing as the bear pounces on you. You have a last impression of its mighty jaws, gaping wide....

"Oh dear," mutters Treguard. "Still never mind: think of it as doing your bit to preserve an endangered species."

You are temporarily refreshed, but the icy wind blows you harder from the north. Your fingers and toes go numb and your vision blurs. The icy cold extends its reach into your very lungs. It seems that you can go no further.

What do you do?

Summoning your last reserves, you push forward and suddenly the blizzard falters. Ahead of you is, miraculously revealed, the ice palace of the sorceress! Its crystal walls, carved from ice tower hundreds of feet into the air. Within, lie the captive - and the enemy!

A desperate final effort propels you to the entrance.

The spell conjures a glowing ball of red light. You step through it and an invigorating rush of warmth floods your limbs and seems to cause the blizzard to falter for a moment. Ahead of you is suddenly revealed the ice palace of the sorceress! Its walls, carved from ice, tower hundreds of feet into the air. Within, lie the captive - and the enemy

You make for the entrance.

Inside the palace, a great hall of ice stretches out before you. At the far end Aesandre stands on a high platform beneath a glittering ice-chandelier. Beside her, frozen in a block of ice is Sidriss.

"So," cries Aesandre, "That old fool Hordriss thinks he can outwit me by sending a young fool in his place. Absurd!"

She raises her hands above her head: she is casting a spell! Do you:

Tregaurd whispers in your ear: "You used your only spell outside. Do you think you can cheat the Quest?"

A bolt of magic force strikes you as you stand there dithering and blackness falls around you.

"And thus fail all who try to cheat their fate." Tregaurd adds. "Be off with you!"

Inside the palace, a great hall of ice stretches out before you. At the far end Aesandre stands on a high platform beneath a glittering ice-chandelier. Beside her, frozen in a block of ice is Sidriss.

"So," cries Aesandre, "that old fool thinks he can outwit me by sending a young fool in his place. Absurd!"

And she raises her hands above her head to cast a spell at you. What do you do?

But before you can manage a single step a bolt of mystic energy flies from Aesandre's fingertips and strikes you full upon the chest. You feel a strange tingling spread through your body...

In this arctic wasteland you cannot survive long without food. Sheltering in a frozen ice-cave you come across a ragged hermit.

"I have food - but share it only with the wise," he says. "You may eat of my bread but only if you can answer me this: The North people believe in a hammer-god.

Which day is his?"

Invoking the spell conjures a ball of red light to form in your right hand. It pulses with warmth as you look up and try to identify a target upon which to use it.

Do you aim for the:

The red sphere flies straight and true towards the evil figure of your enemy.. She deftly bats it aside, causing it to crash out through the ice wall. With a malicious grin she unleashes her own spell which strikes you full in the chest. You feel a strange tingling spread through your body...

You look down at yourself. You seem to be wearing an ill-fitting dinner jacket and baggy trousers. Then you notice that your nose seems to have got longer your arms shorter and the floor closer.

Yes, you have been turned into a PENGUIN!

"Oh dear," says Treguard. "I hope you like fish dinners...."

Your heat spell flies off above the sorceress' head but misses the chandelier. It strikes the ceiling and for a moment there is silence. Then the great sheets of ice above your head shiver and crack. You hurry for the door but before you can reach safety...

CRRRRRRRASSSSSHHHHHHH!!!!!

"Well," says Treguard, "that certainly brought the house down!"

The Sorceress blinks with surprise as the ball of HEAT flashes past her. She turns with alarm as the block the ice containing Sidriss shatters, exploding under pressure from within. The heat ball turns upon Aesandre and she abandons her attack on you to raise a hasty defence.

For a few moments you watch anxiously as the fight rages at the far end of the hall. But then the floor there melts, and with a hideous curse Aesandre sinks from view.

Sidriss conjures the ice to reform and runs towards you.

"At last one of my spells has worked! Now we must hurry from here. I doubt my magic will hold her long. Spellcasting: H.O.M.E........."

In the merest instant you are returned to Castle Knightmare. Hordriss is reunited with his daughter.

"Foolish one to risk the perils of the Ice Palace," he chides her.

"Well Done, brave traveller," says Treguard. "You have proven worthy and have achieved your Quest. You may now count yourself among the Knights of Knightmare Castle."

Written by Mike Cule. "Knightmare" is a Broadsword Production for Anglia TV

Digitext would like to thank castleteletext.com for permission in allowing this on here

Credits

Story written by Mike Cule

Original Teletext artwork by Mr Biffo

Thanks to Al for archiving the original Teletext pages. ROBOTFUZZ

Thanks to Mark from ‘Fighting Fantasy (and other gamebooks)’ for mapping it out FFAOGB

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Bamber Boozler poses another 12 questions. Answer using fasttext at the bottom. One wrong and you must try again.

Can you answer all 12 in one attempt?

Press RED to begin

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Seann William Scott is 43 this year. In what film did he star with David Duchovny?

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Red:The One


Green:Evolution


Yellow:The X Files


Cyan:Bulletproof Monk


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Internet. What does URL stand for?

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Red:Unique Records List


Green:Uniform Resource Locator


Yellow:Undefined Restricted Learner


Cyan:Universal Robot Location


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Games. Prince of Persia celebrates its 30th anniversary this year. What was the original sequel called?

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Red:The Shadow and the Flame


Green:Prince of Persia 3D


Yellow:The Sands of Time


Cyan:Prince of Persia: The Two Thrones


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TV. On this month in 1969, which BBC comedy series was first aired?

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Red:Monty Python's Flying Circus


Green:Are You Being Served?


Yellow:Dad's Army


Cyan:The Good Life


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Geography. Mount Vesuvius overlooks which modern Italian city?

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Red:Venice


Green:Bari


Yellow:Florence


Cyan:Naples

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Bad luck!

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YOU'VE BEEN BAMBOOZLED


Do you wish to play again? If so, press red below

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Cartoons. What does M.A.S.K. stand for?

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Red:Mutant Armor Squad Killers


Green:Mini Army Special Kombat


Yellow:Mobile Armored Strike Kommand


Cyan:It doesn't stand for anything


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Films. Stargate is 25 years old this month. Which planet did Jack O'Neil's team arrive on?

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Red:Heliopolis


Green:Altair


Yellow:Abydos


Cyan:Kheb


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What word completes this: ________s & Desktops. ________s & Dragons. ________ Keeper.

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Red:Book


Green:Inn


Yellow:Tower


Cyan:Dungeon


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Comics. Which Robin was killed off by telephone poll?

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Red:Jason Todd


Green:Tim Drake


Yellow:Damian Wayne


Cyan:Dick Grayson


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Which is the odd one out of these Crispin Glover films:

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Red:Charlie's Angels (2000)


Green:Hot Tub Time Machine


Yellow:Twister


Cyan:Back To The Future 2


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Software. What does DOS stand for?

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Red:Disk Operating System


Green:Dark Operating System


Yellow:Dark Option Screen


Cyan:Deep Opportunity System


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Politics. Who succeeded Neil Kinnock as Leader of the Labour Party?

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Red:Michael Foot


Green:Margaret Beckett


Yellow:John Smith


Cyan:James Callaghan


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Well done! How many did you get right first time? Check your rating below

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This week we have a new Eagle Quest game to play. A new adventure will appear here on Wednesday afternoon 29 December. Bamboozle will return in January. Press red to enter the mysterious world of Castle Knightmare...


This is an adventure game using the fast text colour buttons on certain televisions. Once you begin your adventure, you will undertake a fantastic journey. Mistakes may force you to retrace your steps - only perseverance, wit and courage will take you to the end of the Knightmare trail.

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Special guest Eli Silverman, from Barshens and Cheapshow, joins Biffo and Gannon to ubox their mystery mail, which includes practical jokes, weird snacks from around the world - and even more random items. A series of taste-tests ensues!

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Before Nintendo got its act together, the company's NES covers adopted a sort of uniform, pixel art, approach. Though it didn't seem to "prang" the success of the NES too badly, the results were, it needs to be said, mixed.While third-parties were slathering glorious, fully-painted, artwork on their facades, Nintendo's game covers were rather ugly, and sometimes bore little resemblance to the games they purported to portray. Suffice to say, many of its earliest NES games were subsequently re-released with new, less humiliating, artwork.Here's a gallery of original NES game covers of said pixel art variety - but wait - the titles have been changed! Using your knowledge, reason, and a very long pole with a hook on the end, can you identify the real titles?!Don't worry: it's just a bit of fun. Chill out, yeah?

PRESS REVEAL FOR ANSWER:

ICE CLIMBER

PRESS REVEAL FOR ANSWER:

10-YARD FIGHT

PRESS REVEAL FOR ANSWER:

WILD GUNMAN

PRESS REVEAL FOR ANSWER:

SOCCER

PRESS REVEAL FOR ANSWER:

KUNG-FU

PRESS REVEAL FOR ANSWER:

TENNIS

PRESS REVEAL FOR ANSWER:

GUMSHOE

PRESS REVEAL FOR ANSWER:

HOGAN'S ALLEY

PRESS REVEAL FOR ANSWER:

WRECKING CREW

PRESS REVEAL FOR ANSWER:

PRO WRESTLING

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Who remembers Mr Biffo's Found Footage? That was good wasn't it. Can you believe it's three years  since the first full episode went out? Now that Digitiser has a lot of new subscribers on its channel, I feel we must make them aware of its existence.I have a plan to do this, prior to possibly, probably, crowd-funding something new along similar lines. As I told my Patrons recently, I'm planning to take on a less paid work over the coming year, and part of the reason for that is I really want to focus on building the channel.It feels like we've gained a degree of momentum, and though I think we're a long way from it ever bringing in anything like a real income, between us... events of the past 12 months have demonstrated that what I want and need more than anything is to work on stuff that makes me happy and fulfilled. Obviously I need to still be able to pay my mortgage, mind.Where am I going with this? I dunno. Just to say, your support - whether it's through Patreon or Kickstarter, or by helping tell people about the channel - is appreciated. If you want me to keep doing more, and not work myself into an early grave... well, I can't do it without you.That is all. LETTERS NOW.  

If you want to appear here, or you've something you'd like me to give some attention to in our occasional Plug Zone, please send your filthy emails to this place here: digitiser2000@gmail.com

ZIPPY-DE-DOO-DAH

The way Beanus talks has really reminded me of something, and it's taken me ages to work out what it is, but now I have and I am - as the kids say - shook. He's a little bit George off of Rainbow, and a little bit Zippy off of Rainbow.​Since it's been long established that Zippy off of Rainbow was in fact a sentient baked bean, I now find myself obsessed with the notion that Beanus is perhaps the unholy lovechild of these two 1970s children's TV faves. Could it be true?Please please please give me the answer I crave.Dan Whitehead

Wait a minute... what do you mean Zippy is a sentient baked bean? Is this canon? Was this actually mentioned in the show, or was it some stupid Rainbow expanded universe thing that got mentioned in one of the many spin-off novels?

WRONG OPINION

I don't agree with your opinion on reviews, including your own. The best reviews tell you if you will find something to like, regardless of the reviewers final opinion. Your review of Jedi fallen order basically said there's issues, but a deep love of Star Wars will cover some cracks.I like classic Star Wars enough to let issues go, I'll check out that game when its cheaper.A better example would be EDGE's review of Mario Kart Double Dash, which scored 5 out of 10. (For any readers unfamiliar with EDGE, this means average, like 7 out of 10 everywhere else)They described the game and features well and compared it badly to Mario Kart 64. They described it well enough for me to think that's good for me, having not owned mk64, so I bought it and got years of fun.In short, stop being so dismissive of yourself, you big hairy git.Yours,Another big hairy git. 

You are a big silly. I wasn't being dismissive of myself; I wouldn't write reviews if I didn't think there was some worth in them. And of course I read reviews! My point is... I don't just read one, and I don't always trust that a reviewer will have the same likes as myself. ​I guess it's also; I think a review should be entertaining in and of itself, and not simply just describe a game... or something....Look, the main thing to take away from this is that I wrote that article last week and I can't remember what I said in it. 

CHEESUS CHRIST

I've often wondered why there aren't more games based on cheese, I'd love a game where I'm one of those digestive-like crackers - the sweet ones - and you have to catch a piece of Morrison's Red Hot Dutch cheese.Or you play a piece of Edam, driving about like in Driv3r shooting water biscuits.Or a skydiving Leerdammer collecting shards of Jacob's crackers while flying through holes in family size cracker selection boxes, trying to land on a China plate on a doily.An open world game where you navigate the blue/green roads in Stilton while using a bow and arrow to kill yeast microbes.You could even put all these ideas in to one game, call it "Churn".If you can pass these ideas on to the AAA publishers for me I'll give you a 20% cut of any sales.Squits

Do you remember the game Alfred Chicken? There was a cheese-based level in that. I don't know why or how I remember that, but it's probably because I had a copy of it for the Amiga CD32 that was floating around my house for years without ever getting thrown away. I think the game's logo was rendered in the form of a cheese. 

JOSHIN'

So it's December again, Beanus made me pee a little and my wife didn't laugh once. Indeed, she left the room shaking her head. But we won't let that stop us, oh no - because December means, Christmas story time!(Just to get into the Chrimble spirit a bit more, the entire scene below has a background soundtrack of atonal discordance, deep breathing, slow heartbeats etc)-------------- Josh did it again! He always does! Instead of a tray of Morrison's Mince pies like the rest of us. He brought an 'organic' Panettone he'd made himself, with ingredients sourced from the Vegan shop in that there London.Every year we are socially pressured into bringing something to a 'gathering' of forced jocularity, to celebrate another year as a wage slave. Josh loved these events, as he loved everything, tedious smiling ultra-runner. Self aggrandising holier than thou HR nu-male. Why does he get away with wearing jeans at work?!I loathe him, and I loathe his sort. Whilst the rest of us are content to see the bars of the prison and aim for a pension, he was out 'making something of himself' and in doing so drove the knife into every one of our flaws. Like he was put on this planet to remind us that we are not exceptional, we are the herd.The weak willed and easily lead fawned all over his bon-mots "oh yes, I 'always' use ghee instead of butter.... yes the raisins are ethically sourced" Listening to this banality I snapped and surreptitiously unleashed my intimate and forgotten knowledge of the reality of humanity.With a smallish hand gesture, Josh dropped his organic fruity barollo all over the pretty white table cloth that Miriam had brought in to decorate the trestles. She didn't tell him they were a wedding gift, she just laughed and played with her hair. SHEEP.He laughed it off, as he would, and the rest of the herd baa'd in agreement. So funny, so Josh. I had dropped a glass of water after a difficult mornings meetings and was scorned for my clumsiness.Another gesture, Josh began to stumble over his words, further focusing my will his bon-mots became bon-whats? But the herd still guffawed "oh Josh, he's finally had one too many, ah ha ha ha ha haaaa!"Josh joined in and 'coincidentally' laughed so hard he inhaled a piece of artisan quiche...the laughs became coughs became choking sobs, became panicked stumbling and clawing at his face. The spittle pouring forth, the eyes bulging."Oh my GOD! Somebody help him. Somebody please. Josh, just relax. Call 999... Josh, Josh"A tray of sausage rolls was upended, the tree descended in slow motion, a symphony of shattering baubles. Beautiful, I played that moment back and forth endlessly.The room faded, skin tones turned ashen, and the brightness obscured itself. Josh raised his head, a last look at the world, noticing there was one in the room wreathed in purple flame staring contentedly at the chaos he had wrought.After years of fighting it, I'd learned that the Dark Ages were not so named due to an absence of history, they were named after good triumphed and the dark was driven under, but it's there if you look for it. Citalopram and Fluoxetine and the like are not there to protect us, they're there to protect them. They chemically suppress the demons, but some of us are meant to be demons, it's a balance. Good vs Evil, so it should always be. Good has had it too...well...good...for too long now.I walked slowly over the broken glass, savouring the crunch, back and forth back and forth, the shards splitting my toes.-------------------Merry Christmas everyone. If you or any of your loved ones are affected by any of issues highlights in this drama, please phone 111. ;-)Dave G

Well, that Josh sounds like an awesome guy!

ELF SERVICE

It's that time of year. Eggnog. Overpriced crap in stores. Cold weather, and the diseases it brings. Jack Frost nipping at your extremities. Rude, homicidal holiday shoppers....AND...​ELF ON THE SHELF. Ours has... peculiar tastes.Arnold J. Rimmer

I wish Elf on the Shelf had been a thing when my kids were growing up. The closest I ever got to making up something like that was telling my daughter not to look out of her bedroom window because it was "Duck Night". When she inevitably pulled back the curtains, I made my hand into the shape of a bird's beak, and thrust it at her going "QUACK! QUACK! QUACK!". I thought it would be funny, but, with hindsight, her shrieking meltdown suggests it wasn't a good idea right before she went to sleep, and may have given her long-term psychological problems. 

BINFORMATION

I've been so busy lately, what with Super Enquiry Simulator being strangely popular in Portugal and Spain, that I haven't made enough time for what really matters.So, here's a new picture of my bins, for all the Digi bin-lovers out there! This is rather a candid snap, stains and all, but some people pay extra for that sort of thing.Back in a moment, there's a van pulling up outside. Probably just another parcel for next door.David W

Red bins. Very racy, David...! Here we have a blue bin for the recycling, a green bin for general waste, and a brown bin for organic/garden waste. what are red bins for? Raw meat?

T-DOG

Any use for filling a gap somewhere in the letters page?David W

Unfortunately, we've got no space for that this week.

RESI DOODLE

Looks like some artwork has been leaked confirming a Resident Evil 3 Remake. The article is over at Euro Gamer and can be read here for anyone interested:Resident Evil 3 Remake cover art leaks ahead of official announcement.When this does get developed and released one thing I most certainly want to see done with this remake is being able to play threw story mode with Nemesis and having an alternative ending. Hey, I can only dream can't I, Digitiser?gamertag (gaz be rotten)
Gaz, adding "Digitiser" into this one isn't fooling anybody. 

We've already know you send the same emails to us as you do to Metro's Gamecentral.

32 4 LIFE

I wanted to write a brief note about my fond memories of the Amiga CD32. Not that it had a bum rap – it was objectively terrible - but I look warmly back on mine, and not only because I managed to sell it to Andrew Ferris for the £300 I paid for it to buy a PlayStation (despite it being commercially dead with no further games in the pipeline).Whether it was completing D-Generation in one sitting with my friend Paul, playing the interminably dull yet somehow compelling Diggers, or playing a cover disk demo of Banshee for the hundredth time... I had fun with it.I had many better games for my PlayStation I'm sure, but I don't really remember what they were. They might have been polished, 3D "experiences", but looking back they seem oddly sterile. The CD32 games, and by extension the Amiga games, of the time just had something about them. Perhaps it was a certain Britishness. I'll concede the CD32 was rubbish.​I'm just not sure the first PlayStation was all that, either. Anyway! What stuff from the past do you think is retrospectively over or underrated, or which you have feelings about that differ from the prevailing historic consensussssssss?Tata,James Holloway

I don't know whether the PlayStation was underrated, but a lot of the games haven't aged well. The CD32 also wasn't quite as bad as people remember - certainly, there were some good games on it. It's more that everything about it felt a bit cheap and rushed and desperate. It's hard to say whether there's a thing that I recall differently to the consensus. I guess I never loved much in that first generation of 3D games; the PS1, Saturn and N64 were pioneering, but I sort of always felt we weren't quite there yet. It was similar to the home computer games of the 80s; they felt like the ideas were too ambitious for the technology, and it wasn't until the subsequent generation that the ideas and the hardware aligned.So... that. I suppose. 

UNBOXING DAY

Hello!I really, really enjoyed the unboxing post video. The slightly more casual atmosphere was really enjoyable - thank you for sharing it.Happy December! I hope you have a wonderfully festive month.Love,Chai xxx

Here's the thing... I feel bad about not putting out the earlier post unboxings, because people have kindly taken the time to send us stuff, but this was the first time we a) Were a little more on-form doing the unboxing (as explained, we use them as our warm-up), and b) There was stuff we received that we could realistically make interesting nonsense out of. It takes me roughly two days to edit one of our videos - how I was managing to do two a week earlier this year, and keep up daily posts on here, and do a job, and put on a live show, I'll never know (actually I do know: by burning out) - so it sort of has to be worth it in terms of the channel. And worth it in terms of whether I'm going to enjoy editing it. The tricky thing when we're opening post is how to make it interesting to more casual viewers, and it's hard because we never know what we're going to receive, and often it's just a load of random tat.On YouTube, we're learning that it works best when there's one central idea per video; it was the challenge we faced with Digitiser The Show, which was a magazine format, and never really broke through. It has been underlined by the way our recent Ashens crisp-tasting videos have got a lot of traction. A video that took almost no planning has done as well as a series that was so much hard work it nearly killed us. The crisp tastings are much more straightforward and less manic than most of our videos - and, if I'm honest, less typical of the channel - but I guess they're an easier thing for people to wrap their head around (the jerky tasting was popular too).I'm a bit surprised that the Bum-Bo/Beanus interview hasn't done better, but that might be because I labelled it wrongly; I shouldn't have mentioned Beanus, and just billed it as a straightforward interview with the game's creators. Again, though, I felt that would be disingenuous.It's a ruddy minefield... But! We'll see how this weekend's unboxing one does. It has Eli from Cheapshow and Barshens in it, I've labelled it as a "weird snack unboxing", and if it does well... I might take a look at the other ones. Incidentally, there have been less posts on this site in the last couple of weeks, because I've been working on our Christmas special. One three-minute segment has taken me almost four days to edit... and it'll be a bit more magazine-y than most of our videos, so it's not like I've not learned my lesson. Also: thank you for our Christmas cards, Chai!!

WHO WATCHES THE WATCHMEN

It’s pretty good isn’t it? The Jeremy Irons bits are hilariously dark.J Is Manchild, Tunbridge Wells

It's beyond pretty good. Already it's one of my favourite tv shows ever. It's a slow-burn though, in much the way the comic was; it's only once all the threads start coming together that you realise how profoundly clever the structure is. Absolute intimidating genius. 

HOW TO DO CHRISTMAS

Hello Lord Biffo!It's been a while since I got myself involved with the letteringz recently, eh? Hmm, hope you've been keeping well though! It's officially December now, so it's time for some festivity! I'll be spending my time this month downing as much coffee as possible and avoiding all who try to stand in my way of making everything a much, much more... interesting place, you could say.​That leads me to Asho's Big Boi Question Time: How will you be spending the holidays? Anything, in particular, you'll be hoping for?Also, quick additional question (since I am a big idiot and keep forgetting to watch out for info): Is the PO Box still open and how many bean-related items have you received?Have an excellent week, King Biffo.Regards (HAH),Asho (@catastroasho)

I usually enjoy the run-up to Christmas, and the week afterwards where we just laze around watching telly. However, the last three Christmas Days have been pretty stressful and miserable for us, mainly because somebody was ill each of the years, and the fact we've an enormous family - my wife and I are the ones who end up doing the bulk of the work.In all honesty, I've sort of grown to dislike Christmas Day due to the amount of effort that goes into Christmas dinner, which is a meal I don't particularly enjoy apart from the pigs-in-blankets (or "bacon roll-ups" as my family calls them). We start preparing about 7am, and don't finish cleaning up the mess until about 4pm. It feels absurd and unnecessary and unfair, when all I want is for us to spend time with people, but the day just goes by in a blur. When I think about it I get a bit irrationally angry. In fact, itt's one of the few things that I get really worked up about. However... this year we've fewer people on Christmas Day to cater for, and because my step-daughters are Italian we're doing an Italian Christmas lunch, which is lasagne. It should be a lot less work. Boxing Day we're catering for about 15 people, but we're doing a ham and a cold buffet, and people are bringing stuff, so - again - it'll be less work than a full Christmas meal. I've also managed to wrangle some time off work before Christmas this year, thus the short of it is... I'm actually looking forward to it.Also: the PO Box is still open, but please don't send anything until the new year. My house is full. I've actually got a skip outside at the moment, because I'm trying to get rid of a lot of the stuff I've acquired over the past three years of Digitiser and Mr Biffo's Found Footage, before Christmas happens. 

KEYHOLE

On keyboards, it is convention to hold down the shift key to get an uppercase character. However why has the colon got short shrift? The poor thing literally halves when given the upper case treatment. Hollywood acting superstar Tom Hanks actually collects typewriters and he may be in the position to proffer some reasonable explanation for this; I would ask him about it but I don't have his email address, only yours. CarlosPS. I do not wish to infer that Tom Hanks is an acting superstar, I think he is probably a superstar full time by now. Tinkerty Tonk.

You write to us, and then say that Tom Hanks might be able to offer an explanation. Just because we're on the Internet doesn't mean we have a direct line to Hollywood, Carlos. Write to him! 

WHIMSICAL SPRITE

What's Digi's stance on sprites vs polys? I swear the older I get the more I appreciate a game using sprites. Is this dementia? Nostalgia? Brilliant artistic taste?Also - if you don't mind a minimum 1850 case order, you could have Beanus brand Baked Beans -  https://www.alibaba.com/showroom/private-label-canned-beans.html  Cheers,Mike

No, I'm with you. I was a bit anti-sprites and pixel art for a while, because every indie game seemed to go that route. Now I love pixel art. At the same time, how rubbish would it be if polygons went away? I love my big 3D games. And yes: beans. Every time I log into Twitter at the minute, I've been tagged in about 50 posts of "Beanus de Milo" or a picture of something bean-related. Yes: I get it. Beans exist. And I thought it was bad when they were doing it with goujons. 

IN SECURITY

Sir Biffo of the Digi World,In this heightened state of readiness, where all things are scanned, prodded and poked, the gaming characters fraternity, must be able to form some sort of security firm or a rudimentary system of protection racket for everyone's safety.Does it mean that Bowser and Dr Robotnik will be on the doors at some night club in Nuneaton called Chunkies?Why also Sonic and Tales are reloading cash points around the Louth area, driving a battered old Ford Transit van with "Secure-it-all" painted badly on the side using one of those tester pots of paint you could get.Mr T said he would sort out his own bin security himself.All with Princess Peach and Toad doing the admin back at the office wondering why Lara Croft hasn't reported in guarding the National Gallery as of yet.Plus also be smart, be safe, in an Alvin Stardust Public Information Film type of way as well! (Boxing's Joe Bugner or Human Perm Kevin Keegle, to substitute for Alvin if raining.)Security Officer Bob Jobbies

This has reminded me of a holiday excursion I went on in Italy years ago. We were on a coach with a load of other tourists and it stopped next to a G4S security van. A stupid American boy sat in front of us remarked to his younger brother that the logo read "Gas". I suppose it could be read that way, but... actually, I've just looked it up and it really does look like "gas"...​Now I feel bad for mocking him.

BEANUS LIKES CHRISTMAS BEANS

Hey Mr. Biffo, Merry Bean-mas! It’s that most wonderful time of the year again!Remember Christmas themed games like James Pond Robocod & Christmas Nights? You don’t get them anymore do you?Shame.​Anyway, here’s another Beanus pic, also Christmas themed. Hope you like it!

Luke Adams

I love it. See, everyone - I like fan art. Fan art is good. What I don't need us to see a picture of some beans you're having for your tea.

500 Qs OF WHYTE: PLAYSTATION 25TH ANNIVERSARY SPECIAL

476) The jump between 16-bit systems and 32-bit - in my case from Amiga to Playstation - is arguably the most dramatic we will ever see. I remember playing a demo of WipEout 2097 and genuinely not believing what it was like. The only modern equivalent to me is trying VR for the first time. When you were a games journalist, was it obvious that the Playstation was going to have such a big impact, or did it take you by surprise?477) How do you regard Sony's place in computer games history? Did they invent modern computer gaming?478) What was the best thing that the original Playstation brought to computer games and what was the worst?479) What is the most iconic Playstation game? Obviously I wouldn't say it's the best but I cannot think of anything I associate with PS1 more than Ridge Racer. WipEout maybe, but Ridge Racer could only have been on that system at that time.480) As it's the 25th anniversary of the first Playstation, what are your five best moments related to it - it doesn't have to be only games.John Whyte

476) Oh, it was pretty apparent that it was a watershed moment. Aside from anything else, Sony's marketing was next-level. That's what people forget: it wasn't just the visuals. Everything about gaming felt like it was growing up, almost overnight. 477) I don't really give Sony that much credit. They built upon what came before, and they were instrumental in broadening the demographics, certainly. But as for them inventing modern gaming... nah. They just perfected how to sell it. 478) The best and worst are the same thing: polygons. It ushered in true 3D worlds... but it was also a bandwagon that everyone jumped on, regardless of whether they were ready to. 479) I too would say Ridge Racer, but I'd also argue for Tomb Raider and Resident Evil. Lara Croft, certainly, was synonymous with the PlayStation branding. ​480) Good question! 1) Seeing a PlayStation display unit for the first time at a trade show, 2) Playing Tekken for the first time, 3) Playing music through it and playing around with the visualiser, 4) Black CDs...! They felt very futuristic, 5) Probably... playing Resident Evil, and jumping out of my skin at that bit where the you-know-what crashes through the window.  

BEANUS Vs NIXON

Loved the video with the Beanus interview, and I was wondering if this would become a regular feature?I'd like to see Beanus do an interview with Hideo Kojima next, asking him lots of questions about beans as usual. When he protests "This is too weird, I don't understand what's going on!" you can respond "Yeah? Now you know how everyone feels when they play one of your games!" before high-fiving Gannon, laughing uproariously and breaking the Skype connection.The video would inevitably go viral and get you millions of new subscribers, and possibly your own late-night Channel 4 show like that bloke who reviews chicken shops. Fame and fortune await!Richard Lyth

That chicken shop bloke has his own Channel 4 show now? Well I never. You know he's in his mid-20s? He looks about 12. Yes, we would like to do more Beanus interviews. James Interactive, who co-created Bumbo, is a big Digi channel fan, and has offered to help us arrange some more interviews with other developers. That said, the video hasn't done as well as we'd all hoped, so maybe less Beanus is better. Or maybe the Beanus bubble has burst! Or maybe people don't want to tune in expecting a serious interview which them gets undermined by a bloke raving about beans.All the more reason to carry on doing it...

MORE 500 Qs OF WHYTE

481) What's the best game that, for whatever reason, you never want to play again? 482) Is the apparent size of Cyberpunk 2077's map a sign that open-world games have reached their maximum usable size? Perhaps the next generation will use resources to pack more into similar sized game areas to today rather than making them bigger? 483) If Sony exited the computer games market (for some mysterious reason), who would benefit more, Nintendo or Microsoft? 484) Is Half Life: Alyx the potential 'killer app' for VR or is it too late to have as big an impact as it could have? 485) What is the most difficult game that you have completed? I don't like especially hard games myself. Strangely I didn't find Bloodborne too difficult and finished, but have been put off by the difficulty of many (supposedly) easier games. For example, I found one boss battle in Devil May Cry too hard so I just gave up. John Whyte

481) Probably the original Half-Life. I have tried to go back and play it, but it does look ollllllddddd now.482) I think there has to be a limit in terms of a game world's size, just because of what is practical in terms of what the developers can create, and what the player can see. Even something like GTAV, I know I've not seen everything. Also, didn't the Cyberpunk developers say that the map is misleading, because it expands vertically, with lots of different levels? I dunno. 483) I still don't see Nintendo as competitors to Sony, so I'd have to say Microsoft. Nintendo is just doing its thing regardless of trends.484) I'll reserve judgement until I play it. I'm hopeful, given the series' pedigree, but we'll see whether it's just an extended demo or a full game. 485) Like you, I don't like games being too difficult. I'd actually say Breath of the Wild, not because it was difficult overall, but there were some difficulty spikes that nearly finished me off. 

SANTA'S SACK

What have you asked Santa for? Have you been looking through the Argos catalogue and circling the items?Xmas Lee

I mainly asked for books. Lots of coffee table-type books. All the new Rise of Skywalker ones. I can't remember what else I've asked for. Though I have just bought myself a new air fryer as an early present to myself, as our last one is three years old, and was falling apart due to its daily use.Everyone: BUY AN AIR FRYER. 

#FREEHORACE

I know Super Bad Advice already reviewed Horace for Digitiser, mostly because he was quite annoyed at me for not reading his review when I started talking about the game, but I would also like to review it so here is my review:I love this gameOh you BASTARDThis game is amazingYOU COMPLETE AND UTTER SHITThis is the best thing I've ever played in my lifeYOU WORD BETWEEN CUNNING AND CUP IN THE DICTIONARYI do not have the patience for pixel perfect jumpers that have slightly wonky controls sometimes and kill you if you even slightly mess up, but Horace was so utter beautifully brilliant I was hooked, even though it sometimes took me 40 minutes to kill a boss or 30 minutes of deaths to complete a single room.  Because I HAVE to know what happens next, and I want to achieve that without going and watching the cutscenes online.  Just when you're thinking you're fed up, it chucks another minigame or twist at you that is hilarious or compelling.  It is ENDLESSLY INVENTIVE from start to finish.I laughed.I almost cried (but held it in admirably because it was all on stream and I'm a big boy).I cleaned up one million things.It's just been on sale but even at it's full price of £10.99 on Steam it is such incredible value for the love and effort that has been put into it that I will struggle to find another bargain that even compares.BUY HORACE EVERYONE, IT IS A JOY AND WHAT GAMES SHOULD BEONE MILLION PIECES OF JUNK OUT OF ONE MILLIONI know that's more of a stream of consciousness guff than an actual piece of writing, but I thought everyone should know that I really like this game.THANKS BABES.MrPSBPS. if you want to look at me losing my mind completely I have a playlist of all of my streams of it here (warning: I SAY BAD WORDS A LOT IN IT): https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLCzWwpOOBkpbVN5XZMRIW5HvrK2wZPRiHPPS. There's a Digitiser tribute hidden in the game that reviews the game that is basically making the same points SBA made, and it amused me greatly.PPPS. OK BYE.

I'm real upset I've not been able to play Horace, due to being a Mac Boi, as it looks like exactly the sort of game I want. Also, wait: what Digitiser tribute. What are you talking about?!?Anyway. That's it. Watch Digitiser on Sunday. It's more laid-back and chatty than usual, but also there's some electrocution in there, and unusual foods.

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This Month in....1984 (ZX Spectrum)



ZX Spectrum Charts taken from Crash

Others will be added when available

This Month in....1989 (ZX Spectrum)



All Charts taken from C&VG

This Month in....1994 (Amiga)



Sega Charts taken from C&VG

Nintendo Charts taken from C&VG

Amiga Charts taken from Amiga Format or C&VG

This Month in....1996 (Saturn)



Sega Saturn Charts from Sega Saturn Magazine, with thanks to @SegaMags

This Month in....1999 (PC)



N64 & PlayStation Charts taken from C&VG

PC Charts taken from PC Zone

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Sun Dec 08 10:11:00 +0000 2019

RT @GarethJonesTV: Wow, great news, How2 is now on #AmazonPrime https://t.co/tLXZtwGqGf

Retweeted: 10
Liked: 0
Sat Dec 07 13:15:38 +0000 2019

As well as making me roar with laugher, and tear up at the end, this left me with a longing that one day @frankieboyle would write for #DrWho https://t.co/GMF60QXD3v

Retweeted: 2
Liked: 6
Fri Dec 06 22:12:22 +0000 2019

RT @GarethJonesTV: Gareth Jones On Speed at Number 4 in the top ten of all time bestsellers in the automotive section of iTunes podcasts, y…

Retweeted: 5
Liked: 0
Tue Dec 03 22:23:55 +0000 2019

@mrbiffo @TheFerretLives I do agree ... still there's the fear that it will it keep unwinding and never resolve. Like Twin Peaks or X-Files.

Retweeted: 0
Liked: 5
Tue Dec 03 14:22:17 +0000 2019

@benmoor I was good. I got it. I have also been loving The Good Place. See I read it too :)

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Sat Nov 30 21:57:23 +0000 2019

@PeteWilliamsMus @halesowencycle A brrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrilliant evening #petewilliams - thank you!!!

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Liked: 1
Thu Nov 21 10:23:35 +0000 2019

@rEtRo_sPexX @RetroLaird @russty_russ Agree. Although Lynx was dreadful on batteries, none of the early backlit handhelds had good enough life to let you stray far from the plug socket anyway.

Retweeted: 0
Liked: 1
Thu Nov 21 10:19:31 +0000 2019

@RetroLaird @rEtRo_sPexX @russty_russ ☺️

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Liked: 1
Thu Nov 21 08:36:30 +0000 2019

@rEtRo_sPexX @russty_russ 🙏

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Liked: 1
Wed Nov 20 12:02:05 +0000 2019

@Notagoth Fascinating. It suggests (to me anyway) that government could fund authors to write science fiction based on current AI situation in order to help future policy.

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Liked: 0
Tue Nov 19 23:35:20 +0000 2019

RT @Stephen_Curry: We’ve all been there. (From the @NewYorker) https://t.co/rVCa8J3Ihy

Retweeted: 4
Liked: 0
Tue Nov 19 22:38:24 +0000 2019

RT @thatginamiller: This the most ridiculous position for any media outlet to take - much less the BBC. Trust in democracy is on the floor…

Retweeted: 8003
Liked: 0
Tue Nov 19 22:22:50 +0000 2019

@MuseumsShowoff @David_Hingley Enjoyed it soooo much! Your visitor flow diagram still has me chuckling on bus home 😀

Retweeted: 0
Liked: 1
Tue Nov 19 22:14:31 +0000 2019

@MuseumsShowoff @sarah_____j Those toes! 😍

Retweeted: 0
Liked: 1
Tue Nov 19 22:13:21 +0000 2019

@mattdwills17 @MuseumsShowoff @ZeyArkeoloji Loved it - all of it - but especially the modern day archaeology in Finsbury Park 🤓

Retweeted: 0
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