History

Part I: The A&F Years

A&F Logo
The lost history of the early development of the original Chuckie Egg is somewhat shrouded in mystery. The foundation is generally attributed to the then 16 or 17 year old Nigel Alderton during a school summer holiday.
"I think I was about 15 when I got a Saturday job in [the A&F] shop serving customers, duplicating tapes, fetching bacon butties for the programmers and management and just helping out in general. I got £7 for the day, which wasn't bad at the time. I'd been working there for a few months when I told them that I was writing a game myself and asked them if they would look at it. All the programmers there had games published themselves and I was just the kid who made the tea, so they were mildly amused by my request." reminisces Nigel.
What is certain is that, after a month or two of development, one weekend saw Nigel take in an early development version of his SPECTRUM 48K code to the two year old software company, A&F. Based in Rochdale, A&F had made an inauspicious start publishing Acorn Atom titles such as Polecat and Early Warning and early BBC Micro offerings including, in 1982, a release of Frogger which was widely acknowledged to be a worthy candidate for the worst Sega conversion ever.
Nigel cheerfully remembers the first time he showed his fledgling title to someone else; "I showed one of the programmers my unfinished ... game and I still remember the pride I felt when I saw his reaction. Suddenly he was talking to me on a level - asking questions and taking an interest. I'd coded five out of the eight screen layouts before I took it to A&F, but they only saw the first level that day because the code to collect eggs and move to the next level wasn't working. The game was still in monochrome at that stage too - the colour overlaying was added later - but the majority of the game coding was complete and most of the memory was already either used or allocated for animation. I never thought of offering it to anyone other than A&F.".
The working title of "Eggy Kong", revealed by Doug Anderson (the A in A&F, with partner Mike Fitzgerald) in an Edge interview, demonstrated the clear influence of Nintendo's popular arcade hit Donkey Kong from the start - it can be seen, for example, that level eight of Chuckie Egg bears an uncanny resemblance to Donkey Kong's last screen, the rivet level. In his 80snostalgia.com interview, Nigel also gave the nod for the first time to the more obscure Space Panic from Universal, which is widely regarded as the first ever game in the platformer genre, although it was Donkey Kong which introduced the ability to jump [see Appendix].
"It was inspired by arcade games that I was addicted to at the time. The newsagent on the way to school had classic games like Donkey Kong and Scramble. Almost every weekday for a couple of years I put a good part of my dinner money into those machines. At one point it had a lesser-known game called Space Panic. Chuckie Egg is a cross between Donkey Kong and Space Panic, at the time my favourite game, so is really Space Panic 2." cites Alderton. "It's a bit embarrassing now looking back at screenshots of Space Panic and Chuckie Egg together - and how similar they look!".
One of Nigel's core objectives was smooth pixel movement which was - at the time - perceived as being 'very clever', instead of the character movement which was amazingly more typical at the time. The game was also designed around dexterity and reactions, not puzzle solving, and was intended for up to four players - two more than most similar games. Nigel, it has been said, had a particular thing about his game characters having large hats - this was supposedly to make the 'box collision detection' appear more accurate. Nigel has also revealed retrospectively that the looping nature of the game and the lack of a specific ending, was a conscious decision: "I didn't enjoy the feeling of completing a game - I preferred it to go on and on.".
Alongside Nigel's SPECTRUM 48K version, Doug Anderson, as a BBC Micro programmer, took on the simultaneous development of the BBC 32K release. Doug remembers the three month development process as a team effort with a few people chipping in ideas, whilst Nigel recalls it slightly differently:
"I'd sketch out ideas on paper or mull things over in my head and write the beginnings of core routines like the main loop and graphics routines. I took some code like the keyboard routines from my first Speccy game - Blaster - reworked it and used it in Chuckie Egg. ... It took about four or five months from starting the design to finishing the coding. ... At first the design and the program evolved together but gradually as the coding progressed, the game design crystallised in my head and I knew exactly how I wanted the game to look and play by the time the coding was about half finished. Then it was just a matter of working away until it was complete. ... Basically it was all my own work. A mate of mine - Phil Berry - was round at my house one day around the time I was designing the later screens and he helped with a couple of the screen layouts - six and seven I think - but apart from that I did the lot. Design, programming, (dodgy) graphics, sound, everything. I was fairly pleased with the outcome. ... I designed a game which I thought I would enjoy playing myself ... - more fast-and-furious than thoughtful. ... I'd managed to write a 'proper' game all by myself and I was chuffed that it had all the elements that arcade games at that time had, even down to the frilly bits like a high score table,"
Either way, in a few short weeks after seeing Eggy Kong for the first time, Anderson had completed his BBC 32K version alongside Nigel's SPECTRUM 48K version. Nigel has since described being slightly frustrated by the fact that the game was released before he could fit in quite everything he had planned even though he just about had the memory to do so, due to pressure from A&F to get the game submitted to buying meetings, on the shelves and out to magazine reviewers. He ruefully admits, however, that if they hadn't, it may never have got finished.
"I'd intended there to be more levels. There would have been a cycle which had two birds chasing you at the same time not one. One bird having half the top speed and acceleration of the other so they didn't get locked together. ... Then a further eight levels where there are two flying birds plus the ostriches. ... Then I wanted the game to not to change for a complete cycle so the player would think they had seen all there was to see. On the next cycle, ... where there are two flying birds, plus the ostriches ... I would have put breaks in one or two ladders and removed one or two ladders from each layout. It doesn't sound like much but I'd noticed that I'd developed a favourite route for completing each layout and assumed others would too. Removing ladders would probably disrupt the players favourite route which if it was done late enough in the game when the player had already put hundreds of hours into the game (on the same eight unchanging layouts) would have had a big impact for a small amount of coding. ... I could have gone on forever!"
In 1983, A&F put the game into production. "We were self published back then," Anderson remembers. "We had our own little factory unit and we had banks of cassette decks and we did our own duplication which included people sticking labels on everything. It cost about 50p to make the tape, we then sold it for five or six pounds. But there was VAT on top of that. The distributors took a bit. I think we got about 40 per cent in the end off the net price. [Chuckie Egg] never made a huge amount but it was a good steady earner for quite a long time because we kept putting it out on different machines: the Commodore and the Amstrad and the Dragon.". At this point, Nigel attributes the name of Hen House Harry to "a bloke at A&F who wrote the blurb for the back of the cassette" and similarly recalls: "If a big order came in, everyone mucked in. Blank audio cassettes were unboxed and the card inserts replaced with the ones for the game, the blank tapes were put into cassette decks to record from the master, then re-boxed when they had finished recording. All done by hand."
Early reviews of Chuckie Egg inevitably compared it to Donkey Kong, though noone appeared to notice the Space Panic influence. It was also held up against Bug-Byte's Manic Miner, which was released a few months earlier. These comparisons particularly annoyed Nigel because he hated the game: "I had a loathing (& still do) of games where the collision detection of the sprites is unforgiving pixel-to-pixel checking.".

Part II: The A'n'F Years

A'n'F Logo
On release, the majority of Chuckie Egg ports - including the DRAGON, COMMODORE CM64 and ELECTRON - were received warmly, securing A&F's immediate financial future. After a small rebranding exercise, with a new A'n'F logo that dropped the ampersand and added the tag line NULLI SECUNDUS (Latin for "second to none"), A'n'F began porting Chuckie Egg to the most popular 8-bit platforms of the day. At one point, Nigel remembers it charting at number one on one format for nine consecutive months.
"Most of the conversions are excellent, especially given the hardware restrictions of some of the machines like the C64 and Acorn Electron. I think the BBC version is probably the slickest, but I prefer my Spectrum original!"
At the same time A'n'F continued to release original titles such as Cylon Attack, Kamakazi, Orpheus and Pharaohs Tomb. Nigel, meanwhile, was not a full-time member of A'n'F's staff and continued to develop Spectrum & Amstrad games freelance, joining Ocean for a year working on such titles as Kong Strikes Back. Before signing on with Ocean, Nigel had been developing a Mr. Do! style game on the Spectrum that featured the 'Hen House Harry' character from Chuckie Egg. With a working title of Chuckie Apple, it was rumoured to be looking really good - with lots of bouncing apples and things, according to Joffa Smifff, a fellow-coder at Ocean. Sadly, it was never finished.
"Like Chuckie Egg it borrowed heavily from arcade games, but it barely got past the concept stage because I went to work for Ocean Software as an employee and I lost interest in it," according to Nigel. "I did do some drawings at the time which I found recently. I don't think it would have been as good as Chuckie Egg.".
A'n'F, like many software developers in the 1980s, was hit hard when the 8-bit micro bubble burst and blamed large losses on software pirates - some of whom were even found to have broadcast commercial software releases over the radio waves before the Internet was around to be used as a distribution medium. One story even relates how Acorn themselves were discovered using a modified, disk-version of Chuckie Egg - which was only ever available on cassette - on display at one of their Acorn roadshows, without permission. A'n'F took a very hard-line approach to all forms of piracy and were quoted as budgeting £100,000 worth of legal action one year, solely intended to prosecute every pirate they could catch for copyright infringement, whilst simultaneously offering £5,000 to anyone who could help them manufacture copy-proof tapes.
In April 1984, A'n'F cited the sudden increase of sales of Cylon Attack as proof of wide-spread piracy and that high-scoring gamers with pirated copies were purchasing legitimate ones in order to obtain the entry form for the £200 launch competition which ended in March. Sean Townsend remembers that this wasn't the only controversy to surround the competition:
"I do remember ... the competition for Cylon Attack. There was some kind of reward, and a lot of effort had been put in to prevent people cheating, anyhow this young lad comes into the office to collect his reward, but before he could he had to prove to some degree that he was capable of reaching the score he had submitted, which of course he couldn't, I think A&F did pay out, but they were more interested in how he had overcome the cheat mechanisms than the hi score."
In the same vein, June saw A'n'F report, to The Micro User, of the £20,000 development of a piece of software which was intended to enable an anti-copying device to become 95% effective and scupper the school children and computer clubs they believed to be illegally sharing copies of their software, as well as the professional pirates. Unfortunately, A'n'F's costs continued to mount - perhaps in part because the hardware device that had originally prompted the discussions A'n'F had begun, was snapped up by the Ministry of Defence and an embargo placed on it, forcing A'n'F to evaluate an earlier system from the same manufacturer.
However, in November 1984, the firm's managing director, Mike Fitzgerald, reported to The Micro User magazine that after three months agonising deliberation they were regrettably abandoning in-house development of games for the BBC Micro market, due to software piracy on a massive scale and announced the forth-coming Snarl-Up, companion to the best-sellers Cylon Attack and Chuckie Egg would be the last in-house BBC Micro release.
"It was a sad decision to take" and "regrettable in that the BBC is a fine machine, but unavoidable in view of the financial situation". Fitzgerald explains, "but the pirates are so highly organised on such a massive commercial basis, we really had no choice. It costs us £35,000 to develop and market a new program and we need to sell 22,000 copies to break even. Wholesale piracy is cutting into sales to such an extent we're walking a financial tightrope. We just can't protect our BBC games completely enough against the powerful equipment pirates can buy over the counter these days and use to get into our tapes. I'm not talking about the kids who get together to run off a few copies - that doesn't worry me particularly. It's the big boys who are producing cassettes with up to 30 games on them who are really hurting us." Fitzgerald confirmed that A'n'F hadn't abandoned the BBC Micro completely, and would continue to publish other people's programs on the A&F label. "But our future in-house development will concentrate on the Spectrum and Commodore, with projected heavy support for the MSX and Amstrad systems", he said.
Without Nigel Alderton, A'n'F's internal development team continued to release Chuckie Egg ports on various platforms and also proceeded to capitalise on the original's success by releasing a sequel in 1985, the aptly named Chuckie Egg 2 (Choccy Egg), across the three major formats of the time, SPECTRUM 48K, COMMODORE 64 and AMSTRAD. This was received to mixed reviews both critically and commmercially - perhaps because it was a complete change of genre from the former. The sequel had Harry called in to help run a chocolate factory attempting to collect the ingredients to create Easter Eggs, including one of four different toys, and get them sent off for delivery. It was a graphic adventure with over 120 screens, looking more like a forerunner to the classic adventure Dizzy than resembling its own predecessor. Harry was no longer immune to gravity, and could move between the different screens at will. This sequel cannot be said to have stood the test of time, and is generally considered to fall under the original title's shadow.
"I wasn't involved in Chuckie Egg 2 at all," Nigel states categorically. "I didn't like the original concept, nor did I like the way A&F went about fleshing out the design, which was basically 'design by committee'."
It is remembered fondly, however, by some fans of the genre and was successful enough to be ported to the Atari ST and Amiga after A'n'F's eventual demise.
Unfortunately despite selling over a million copies, the cult-following Chuckie Egg had received couldn't keep A'n'F Software afloat indefinitely. The BBC micro, Electron and Spectrum versions of the best-selling title were re-sold on Beau-Jolly's 10 Computer Hits compilations in the UK and the Spectrum port appeared on the cover tape of Issue 2 of Spanish computer magazine, Juegos. A'n'F continued to struggle; Snarl-Up for the BBC Micro never appeared and, finally, in 1985 the company went bust. Some remaining A'n'F-branded stocks of Chuckie Egg and Cylon Attack eventually turned up as a free gift for The Micro User and Electron User magazine subscribers. Whilst other development studios were being gobbled up by publishers, A'n'F had struggled in vain to meet the demands of advertising rates and distribution prices.

Part III: The Icon Design / Lothlorien and Pick & Choose Years

M.C. Lothlorien Logo
Nigel left Ocean to become a freelance games programmer and then aged 19 was contracted by Elite Systems to work on Z80 ports like Commando and Ghosts And Goblins at their Aidridge headquarters. At about the same time, most of what was A'n'F eventually found itself bought out by M.C. Lothlorien and became Icon Design, PC Chuckie Egg coder Ste Cork recalls.
"By '86 there weren't many people from the original company, and only Doug Anderson (the A of A&F) left of the management, but he'd reverted to programmer-only status and it was by then being run by the managers of Lothlorien."
As Icon Design, a new generation of young programmers and artists, including Neil Thompson who joined in 1987, cut their teeth creating arcade ports like Rockford and sequels to popular licenses, such as KikStart 2. Whilst enjoying his time there, Neil also has no illusions of the company which gave him the first break of his career.
"In a word: disorganised... I don't think anyone really had any idea on future projects or company growth, it was all hand to mouth. The company expanded to have three offices at one stage (Prestwich was the original site, but then there was a site in Ardwick (Manchester) where I worked briefly and where [Amiga/Atari ST] Chuckie Egg was done and also in St Helens), but it wasn't sustainable and it ended up back at the Prestwich site, which was amongst a row of shops."
By 1988, the 16-bit Amiga and Atari ST platforms were eclipsing earlier 8-bit micros and it was a logical move to port the company's most popular licenses such as Chuckie Egg to them, potentially bringing in a decent profit with a minimal outlay of development resources. Neil, as digital artist, collaborated with Pete Waterfield to hurriedly create a next-generation re-imagining of the original title in a matter of weeks.
"I think they decided it would be a good way of milking the cash cow," winks Neil. "You know, I don't think I really did any research into the original game other than look at a few screenshots. I thought it'd be a good idea to change the lead character from a farmer into an egg. I was listening to stuff like Anthrax back then, so I gave the egg a baseball cap and boots. Not sure if that was a successful strategy..."
Pick & Choose Logo
Icon Design signed an agreement for the new 16-bit versions to appear under the distinctive sky-blue Pick & Choose label with Manchester-based Pick & Choose Ltd under the direction of Asif Kowaji (sp?). These new titles were accompanied with re-releases of many of the 8-bit CE cassettes and - a year later, after Icon Design had rebranded as Lothlorien - Pete Waterfield's pair of 16-bit ports of Chuckie Egg II.
The clear lack of time and care spent on the 16-bit Chuckie Egg ports was cited as disappointing by many fans of the original. Despite working on a plethora of other projects for a variety of publishers, this became a financially turbulent time which saw the company cycle through various guises, as Ste Cork remembers.
"M.C. Lothlorien and Icon Design were really one and the same. Originally, M.C. Lothlorien were an old speccy wargaming company ("Johnny Reb" etc), they ended up shelving the name when the managers bought out A&F, then renamed that company to Icon Design ('86?). They ran it as that name for a while, then for tax reasons they de-mothballed the Lothlorien name (dropping the MC I think, though not 100% sure) and switched to that again. A few years later it even (for tax reasons again) briefly became "Tudor World" - a company name bought off the shelf, under which it ran for another month or two before going under again somewhere around 90-91."
Unfortunately, before the official PC port created by Ste in a single month in 1989 could be released, Lothlorien ran too far into financial difficulties for it to recover and eventually went under. Those coders still with the company went their separate ways. This, coincidentally, saw Doug later working for a time at Runecraft alongside Matthew Smith, the author of the equally legendary platformer Manic Miner.
Pick & Choose Ltd. was a general retailer, with little or no aspirations to move seriously into software publishing, so once the range of Chuckie Egg titles became unprofitable and the stocks gradually sold out, the official Chuckie Egg brand slipped quietly away from the software scene, unnoticed by most.

Part IV: The Internet Cult Status

Ordinarily, this would be considered the end of the line for what had been a very successful 80s software title. However, as we know, Chuckie Egg has earned itself a special place in the heart of many UK gamers and, after a time, and with the development of the World Wide Web, it became clear that Chuckie Egg still flourished in the underground scene with gamers who had grown up with Harry. In the BBC 32K version, he had found himself very popular in UK schools of the time, as many predominantly ran networks of BBC Micros until the mid-90s, and Chuckie Egg proved itself the ideal lunchtime distraction due to it's instant playability, combined with the fact that, with minimal copy protection on the release tape, it could be converted to disk relatively easily and copied into large numbers of eager student hands.
As the WWW began to grow in popularity, a number of Chuckie Egg fan sites sprouted up. One of the first contained a DOS remake which used the capabilites of the more modern PCs to bring Chuckie Egg into 3D. Of the fan sites, The Chuckie Egg Appreciation Society and The Chuckie Egg Site from Chris Skepper, were amongst the most popular and subsequently became some of the first to try to show gamers with fond memories of Chuckie Egg how to play the original titles once again, as the emulation scene began to take shape.
Also around this time, the retro remakes genre began to seriously rise in popularity and John Blythe's Chuckie Egg '99 remake was seen as a worthy download by any Chuckie Egg fan. It is no surprise, then, that he released a second Chuckie Egg remake four years later ...
On the eve of the new millennium, Mike Elson unveiled to the Internet his DirectX remake of the BBC 32K original release. With this almost perfect clone, gamers were able, for the first time, to play Chuckie Egg faithfully without the need for original hardware or complex emulation. The game quickly became the focus for players to enjoy the Chuckie Egg magic all over again and has, since its inception, drawn more and more gamers back to the legendary platformer and helped cement Chuckie Egg's place in gaming history.
Nigel is suitably impressed by the sheer number of Chuckie Egg ports and remakes that continue to be developed by fans, "The amount of work that must go into them is incredible and very flattering. I've played a few of them, and some of their creators have been in touch by email just out of curiousity. One guy has even printed a Chuckie Egg T-shirt!"
In 2001, Chuckie Egg was even the subject of a scientific study into the effectiveness of emulation as a digital preservation strategy.

Part V: Return of the Egg

Elite Logo
In 2003, public demand was finally rewarded with the first official release of Chuckie Egg in 14 years. Elite Systems who had contracted Nigel Alderton as a coder in the late 80s, negotiated a new license to release Chuckie Egg for Java-enabled phones. Elite's Steve Wilcox engaged Lee Miles, of TheIMode to create a J2ME port. Early in the project, Lee developed several early variants for different handsets, before a faithful conversion of Nigel's original SPECTRUM 48K release was eventually agreed upon. This was produced for the Sharp GX10/GX20 and made available through the Vodafone live! games portal.
TheIMode unfortunately dissolved less than two years later due to a couple of contractual agreements related to big projects not working out as planned. When Elite decided at the end of 2005/early 2006 to extend the range of their earlier J2ME port and re-release it for a new range of Nokia phones, therefore, Matthew Hyden - who had only joined the company in January 2005 - set about arranging for various developers including Alexei Kuznetsov from Nikitova and Antonio Vera of Psytronic to port the Sharp GX10/GX20 J2ME code to the new target devices. These re-release Nokia ports were then sold through the Elite website, and many other J2ME application resellers.
In 2009, Elite saw another opportunity to exploit their Java-based port again on the modern Android 1.5 (Cupcake) mobile operating system from Google. Elite had already approached mobile developer Gareth 'Gaz' Murfin to work on a J2ME port of Paperboy 2 after seeing a YouTube video he published describing the behind-the-scenes development of a J2ME title from scratch. Elite floated the idea to Gareth of re-writing the J2ME Chuckie Egg code for the Android Java interfaces to take advantage of the new platform's features and growing user-base. Despite having no experience with Android at the time, Gaz accepted the challenge and Elite sent over a T-Mobile G1 handset. Development took three to four months in early 2009 and with occasional pointers from the one of the porters of the J2ME re-releases, Gaz was able to hand over the port to Elite who released the game to the Android Market in late September. For the first time, Elite received direct feedback from fans via the Android market. Many comments were negative, with some purchasers complaining of bugs, lack of controller configuration options and several finding the Spectrum port very different to the BBC Micro port they may have been expecting. The average rating (2.13 / 5 stars) from users was disappointing, as were the number of downloads, all of which may have contributed to Chuckie Egg being removed from the Android Market in January 2010.
With the critical response to the native Android release showing the port was not as well received as might have been hoped, Elite chose to take a different approach with the licence on the Apple iOS platform. Elite Systems built its reputation on many classic Spectrum titles, including Chuckie Egg, over the years and had relationships with a significant number of 80s developers and publishers. Rather than spend more developer time on porting each Spectrum game they potentially had secured the rights to individually, Elite used most of 2010 to create a generic Spectrum emulator app, ZX Spectrum: Elite Collection, which could then be used to run any Spectrum game they could license. October saw the initial launch of the app, which included Nigel's original Spectrum Chuckie Egg in the first volume of six bundled games. Initial reviews were positive about the concept of a licensed Spectrum emulator for the iPhone, but raised concerns about the games control methods. Elite listened to the feedback and developed a customisable control system, dubbed "iDaptive", which was released in a free app update in late November, that appeared to be much preferred by the app's purchasers. The app has since gone on from strength to strength - a HD iPad port quickly followed, as did many more licensed Spectrum games for purchase through an in-app store and Elite has reported notable profits made from the available classic licenses, including Chuckie Egg. The app's technology has continued to be developed and Elite's latest press releases indicate that other 8-bit computers are now being targetted, following their success with the Spectrum catalogue on the iOS platform.

Part VI: The Future

Now over 25 years on since it's first release, it is no understatement to describe Chuckie Egg as one of the greatest computer games of all time (28th, according to one recent source). Modern remakes continue to be developed promising bigger and better features, and native, unofficial, Chuckie Egg ports often appear on new platforms, while Neil Crutchlow's popular Flash port allows gamers to play with nothing more than a web browser. Mark Lomas' site, launched in 2009, provides visitors the option to play a realistic port of the original game in their browser, using Dynamic HTML or an opportunity to download binaries and the GPL code for the most faithful modern source port yet for Windows or Linux SDL, which should be very useful for anyone wanting to port the original to new platforms.
The game continues to be fondly remembered in the public eye - it may just be a naming coincidence, but 2004 saw the launch of a five-piece Portuguese band called Chuckie Egg! More recently, in 2006, one enterprising retro gamer hooked up his BBC Model B to a brand new Epson LCD projector in order to play monster-sized Chuckie Egg on a wall, as nature intended.
"I'm very proud. I haven't made any money for years but the bragging rights are priceless," Nigel says. "I can't pinpoint the secret of it's success if it has one, but at the time I designed it I was addicted to arcade games and I'm sure that helped somehow."
Chuckie Egg remains A&F's most enduring title, and a supreme example of speed, simple design and a gentle learning curve combining to produce a piece of videogame magic which can never be traced among any number of subroutines and integer arrays. A true Easter classic.
Sources
80snostalgia.com - An interview with Nigel Alderton
Edge presents: Retro "The making of ..." special - Chuckie Egg
Your Sinclair magazine: May 1986, Issue 5 - Show Us Your Wimpy! Interview with Nigel Alderton and Karen Trueman
Ste Cork, author of PC release
Joffa Smifff's C.V.WEBSITE
The Micro User magazine Volume 2, Number 1, March 1984, News: £5,000 BAIT TO BEAT PIRATES
The Micro User magazine Volume 2, Number 2, April 1984, News: Why Cylon Attack took off
The Micro User magazine Volume 2, Number 3, May 1984, News: SOFTWARE PIRATES ON THE AIR
The Micro User magazine Volume 2, Number 4, June 1984, News: Anti-pirate breakthrough
The Micro User magazine Volume 2, Number 9, November 1984, News: PIRATES FORCE A&F OUT OF BBC MARKET
Electron User Volume 3, Number 2, November 1985, A'n'F subscription offer
The Micro User Volume 3, Number 8, October 1985, A'n'F subscription offer
CRASH magazine Issue No. 4, May 1984, Editorial column: HAM PIRATES
Emulation vs. Migration: Do Users Care?
- Margaret Hedstrom and Clifford Lampe, University of Michigan. RLG DigiNews: Dec 15 2001, Volume 5, Number 6. ISSN 1093-5371
Retro Gamer Issue Forty, August 2007 - The Making Of... Chuckie Egg
Gareth 'Gaz' Murfin, developer of Android 1.5 (Cupcake) port
Lee Miles, author of original J2ME release
Matthew Hyden of Elite Systems plc, producer of J2ME re-releases
Retro Gamer Issue Seventy Seven, June 2010 - Desert Island Disks: Neil Thompson
Neil Thompson, graphical artist of Amiga/Atari ST release
Elite® Announce Apple's Approval of 'ZX Spectrum: Elite CollectionTM (Vol. #1)' - for iPhone & iPod Touch
Elite® Seeks to Manage Expectations on Release of 'ZX Spectrum: Elite CollectionTM (Vol. #1)' - for iPhone/Pod
iphonefreak.com - ZX Spectrum: Elite Collection Vol.1 iPhone App Review – 8-Bit Fun! (7/10/10)
criticalgamer.co.uk - ZX Spectrum: Elite Collection Vol 1: review (25/10/10)
Elite® Releases 'ZX Spectrum: Elite Collection HDTM (Vol. #1 & #2)' for iPad.
Elite® Announce 'ZX Spectrum: Elite CollectionTM (Vol. #2)' - for iPhone/Pod with iDaptive Controls
 
 

Appendix: Influences on Chuckie Egg

Space Panic
Universal's Space Panic (information from The Killer List Of Videogames (KLOV))
Released: 1980
Number of Simultaneous Players: 1
Maximum number of Players: 2
First platform game
You control an astronaut who ventures through caverns beneath a planet. Climb ladders and move from floor to floor avoiding alien creatures. Trap the aliens by digging holes for them to fall into and then hit them over the head to eliminate them.
On each level, your oxygen supply is limited. After you dig holes, you must lure the aliens into them to trap them. As you go to higher levels, you will have to dig two holes, perfectly placed, one above the other, to keep an alien in.
 
Donkey Kong
Nintendo's Donkey Kong (information from The Killer List Of Videogames (KLOV))
Released: 1981
Number of Simultaneous Players: 1
Maximum number of Players: 2
First platform jumping game
Spin-offs: Mario Bros. and Super Mario Bros.
You are a workman named Mario -- originally known as Jumpman -- who climbs girders and ladders and will stop at nothing to reach his goal and save his stolen love from the clutches of the giant ape before the time runs out.
Using the joystick and the Jump button, you maneuver Mario over rolling barrels, away from falling barrels, over or away from flames and cement tubs, away from bouncing rivets, up and down ladders, along girders and conveyor belts, onto elevators, over rivets to remove them and over dangerous crevices, to get to where the ape holds the girl captive. For additional points, Mario gathers umbrellas, hats, purses and other bonus items that the girl has dropped on her way to the top of the building. Mario can also grab a hammer (by jumping up to it) to smash barrels, fireballs, and cement tubs for additional points but the hammer can only be used for a limited amount of time.
On the Girder, Elevator and Conveyor Belt levels (structures), whenever Mario reaches Pauline, Donkey Kong will grab her and carry her off to the next higher level. But on the Rivet level, Mario must remove all the rivets on each and every floor by running or jumping over them. After all the rivets are removed, Donkey Kong will fall head first onto a stack of girders and be knocked out and then Mario and Pauline will be together again for good. Afterwards, the game starts over again with increased difficulty.