2008 Competition Results: (5:8-Bit Mash Up)

1st Place – Sportz Daze – Total: 325

sportz-daze

Ian:

Q: What do you get if you cross a Spectrum schoolboy simulator with a Konami athletic arcade game?

A: This!

(Thompson, see me after class as “Phillips’s Mum, Sir” is not a valid answer).

This keyboard masher uses the updated imagery and setting from SkoolDaze with the athletic style events seen in games like Track & Field and HyperSports.

Requiring ultra fast, repeated button bashing, you need to increase the momentum and power of your schoolboy avatar to compete and beat a specified time/distance/score in school sports day events.

Whilst the in-game graphics are pretty simple the intros, title screens and outro imagery are all wonderful realised cartoons that really set the scene. Music and sfx are also perfectly suited to the game.

The only real downer to this game is the high difficulty of some events (even on easy) and the lack of sporting activities on offer; there are only four. The ability to use a joypad/stick or mouse would have been nice too.

77%

Spray:

Tossing my balls has always been a favourite pastime of mine, so imagine my delight when I discovered that I could use my PC to assist me and even provide school uniform clad helpers.

I refer, of course, to tossing the tennis ball, one of the events in the Skool Daze / Hypersports / DTD mashup that is Sportz Daze.

Now, Rich has history with Skool Daze and a sequel to his remake of that game, Klass of 99, has been long anticipated. Well, wait no further. It’s sports day and the class has to take part in a series of playground style activities to find the true champion of the year-group.

Only 4 of the planned events have been included in this release and three of them are your standard key bashing fare that can be found in most athletic computer games, albeit wrapped in a pretty retro package.

The fourth, however, is an outstanding welcome to the genre. Catapulting. The satisfaction of popping that last balloon in the 3rd round to nudge you over the score needed to qualify for the next event is almost unparalleled in modern gaming. Well, that might be over-egging the semolina somewhat, but you get my drift.

Graphically, Rich has gone with a very similar style to KO99 and this suits the game perfectly. It’s a shame that there wasn’t enough time to add another couple of new events in as this really could be a cracking little game. There is, of course, hope for the future, but we must judge on what we have before us.

75%

Oogy:

I don’t have alot of fond memories of playing sports in school when I was younger. I was never good at anything and almost always ended up being the last person choosen for any game. Such is life I guess. Now through the power of this competition I am able to relive those fine moments, except no one gets to choose me last! Whoever claimed that sportsgames on the computer weren’t fun, clearly never played this game.

This is a mash-up between Skool Daze and Hyper Sports. And one that works very well indeed. You get to play the part of Eric who needs to score a certain amount of points to advance to the next stage, four stages in all. Running, catapult, ball throwing and swimming.

The entire game sports way above average graphics, it really is a treat for the eye. From the title screen to the game, you can tell someone really liked making this. And as you play each section you notice that alot of care has been put into the playability factor. None of this game seems repetitive. The sound also matches the game beautifuly, and really the only complaint I can think of is that there aren’t enough events in the game.

It’s not too hard to finish the game on Novice level, but I haven’t been able to get past them all on any other setting. I sure am going to give it my best shot though.

94%

Geekay:

There aren’t enough School Daze sequels out there.  I was in my element to find out that Rich Jordan was making a Track & Field game within the world of Eric. No more reports cards, no more stink bombs – just plain and simple Daley Thompsoning it.

I haven’t played this type of game in years and I must be getting old as no longer have the dexterity of my fingers to be any good. It took about 5 attempts just to complete the first event.  I wasn’t letting that wee twat Einstein get the better of me so my stubborn streak kicked in and I persevered.  After that, I managed to complete the game in one go.  And what fun it was.

The graphics are either new or taken from the his previous excellence of KO99.  They work a treat and the new additions such as the swimming pool blend in perfectly.  It makes me think that if he were to do a new Skool Daze game, these mini games could be added in to Gym lessons during the days timetable.  Nevertheless, it does feel that a new game has been released and it certainly satisfies my hunger for a new game (for a the time being).

The music is perfect for the game, it really sets me in mind that I am playing this on my 128k Speccy (colours aside).
The spot effects are what you’d expect of Skool Daze and there are no surprises there.  Rather than getting lines, I though it was a nice touch that you get a bollocking from Mr Rocket and a threat of disqualification if you start racing to soon. It’s small touches like this that make the game enjoyable to play.

It’s a shame the game is so short though, with only a handful of events.  I’d be up for this being expanded to something like a dozen or so events.  It is certainly worth doing as this is a great addition to the series.

79%