A&F Releases

A&F Catalogue

A&F have been accused, more than once, of being a "one-hit wonder" software house. However, lest we forget, the company produced a lot of software over a large range of platforms during its lifetime. Although it is generally accepted that Chuckie Egg was their best-loved achievement, there remains a sizable catalogue of their releases containing a few other gems like Cylon Attack which was compared with Acornsoft's legendary Elite by The Micro User's Hac Man, who suggested the latter could be seen as a rich man's Cylon Attack. The following list is not complete, but highlights some of the more prominent A&F releases. Most of these games have been made available for download by sites listed on the links page, including Stairway To Hell, The BBC Microcomputer System Games Archive and the World of Spectrum archives. The Acorn computer cover scans below were all taken from the Stairway To Hell archive.

Acorn Atom

Adventure II
Released: ?
A&F Adventure II Cover Scan
Currently AWOL. If you have a copy of this game, please submit it to the stairwaytohell.com archive.
Cylon Attack
Released: 1982
A&F Cylon Attack Screenshot 1 A&F Cylon Attack Screenshot 2
This game is most well known as A&F's second star BBC Micro game written by BBC 32K Chuckie Egg author, Doug Anderson. What is less well known is that it was originally published for the Acorn Atom a year prior to its successful BBC Micro release. Cylon Attack is a first person perspective, space battle shoot-'em-up which sees you, as the sole interceptor pilot, taking on waves of Cylon attack fleets. This original version, probably due to the limitations of the Atom, does not require you to defend an earth supply mother-ship - a feature which was first introduced in the larger, more colourful BBC Micro update. The game is still highly engaging and it's easy to see why its BBC sibling became so popular. Due to it's success on the Acorn range, this game was eventually ported to the ZX Spectrum under the title New Cylon Attack: In Isometric Perspective (3D).
Early Warning
Released: 1981
A&F Early Warning Screenshot
There's quite a novel idea behind this game, considering the limited resources of the Atom. Your view is made up of a radar screen which sweeps around and shows up enemies temporarily. Your job is to move the cross hairs to the last known location and fire your weapon to destroy the enemy. This release is both original and entertaining, considering it's age.
Released: ?
A&F Polecat Screenshot
A confusing game. You control the R character, and can move around the tunnels. The game is over if the other character catches you. We haven't quite worked out what the goal of all this is ...
Space Panic
Released: ?
A&F Space Panic Cover Scan
Currently AWOL. If you have a copy of this game, please submit it to the stairwaytohell.com archive.

BBC Micro

180! Darts by G.R. Owen
Released: ?
A&F 180! Darts Cover Scan A&F 180! Darts Title Screen A&F 180! Darts Screenshot
A rather mediocre darts game. Written in BASIC, it takes a short time for the dartboard to be drawn each time - each of the circles are drawn on top of each other. It has four modes of play which sounds impressive but is let down by the overriding flaw - that the game is two player only. There is no option to play against the computer, which makes it a bit pointless if you don't have a friend to hand.
Bouncer by Brian and Marian Clark
Released: 1983
A&F Bouncer Title Screen A&F Bouncer Screenshot
A moderately entertaining game in the style of Atari's Missile Command, which requires you to catch Space Bouncers in the centre of a circle of anti-matter that takes the place of the original's cross hairs. If you take too long, the anti-matter circle hits the ground or a Bouncer hits the side of the circle then a life is lost. This game is written in assembly and therefore responds adequately enough to the keyboard. The graphics are colourful, though they lack detail and the animation suffers quite badly, with the Bouncers moving about in a jerky fashion. Overall, it becomes fairly tiresome after the first couple of stages unless you're a big fan of games of this type. Not the worst A&F game by far, but hardly a classic.
Copter Capers by David Tolchard and Jeffrey Siddle
Released: ?
A&F Copter Capers Cover Scan A&F Copter Capers Title Screen A&F Copter Capers Screenshot
An entertaining clone of Sega's classic arcade game Choplifter, which appeared on many platforms of this period (it first appeared on the Apple II). The game itself involves rescuing hostages, one at a time, from the sea and dropping them off on land, whilst avoiding fire from submarines and the heat seeking missiles dropped by the patrolling airship. You are provided with a strictly limited supply of fuel for your helicopter and ammunition in the form of guns and depth charges. Every couple of levels you need to land your helicopter as close to the centre of the landing pad as you can, in a bonus stage. As the game is written in machine code, the helicopter responds well to the controls and there are lots of flashy effects used to polish off the experience. All in all, an enjoyable early BBC Micro release.
Cylon Attack by Doug Anderson
Released: 1983
A&F Cylon Attack Cover Scan A&F Cylon Attack Title Screen A&F Cylon Attack Screenshot
A&F's other star BBC Micro game. The well-known columnist Hac Man, in the September 1990 edition of The Micro User, went so far as to suggest Acornsoft's venerable Elite could be described as a rich man's Cylon Attack. Cylon Attack is a first person perspective, space battle shoot-'em-up written by BBC 32K Chuckie Egg author, Doug Anderson. The brief scenario describes you as the sole interceptor pilot given the task of defending an earth supply mother-ship from waves of Cylon attack fleets. The game is highly engaging and was received warmly by all who played it. It also featured the ability to save the 50 name high score table to tape, which could be submitted to an A&F competition, after the game's release. Due to it's success on the Acorn range, this game was subsequently ported to the ZX Spectrum under the title New Cylon Attack: In Isometric Perspective (3D). However, what is less well known is that this game originally appeared - in a simpler form - on the Acorn Atom, as detailed above.
Deathwatch (BBC), Minefield (Electron), Battlefield (BBC Hacked)
Released: ?
Currently AWOL. If you have a copy of any of these, please submit them to the stairwaytohell.com archive.
Released: 1982
A&F Frogger Cover Scan A&F Frogger Title Screen A&F Frogger Screenshot
A candidate for the worst conversion ever of Sega's classic arcade game, Frogger. Written in a combination of BASIC and assembler, this conversion features some truly terrible gameplay. There are other ports of Frogger for the BBC Micro which really put this one to shame - most notably Acornsoft's Hopper and Program Power's Croaker. The less said the better.
Haunted Abbey by Dr. Leslie E.Klein
Released: 1984
A&F Haunted Abbey Cover Scan A&F Frogger Title Screen A&F Frogger Screenshot
A fairly primitive text adventure, this is not a particularly large game, it suffers from slow down due to being written in BASIC. This one is hardly likely to challenge the dominance of the classic IF games from Level 9 and Acornsoft, but may be worth a look if you're a fan of the genre.
Horror Castle by R. Dunn (BBC conversion by J. Snowden and R. Dunn)
Released: ?
A&F Horror Castle Cover Scan A&F Horror Castle Title Screen A&F Horror Castle Screenshot
This text adventure's parser, like many of the early examples of interactive fiction, is limited to two words. A simple game, being written in BASIC, the room descriptions are minimal at best, and the storyline - rescuing a beautiful princess from Horror Castle - is pretty unoriginal. This one is hardly likely to challenge the dominance of the classic IF games from Level 9 and Acornsoft, but may be worth a look if you're a fan of the genre.
Howszat by G.R. Owen
Released: ?
A&F Howszat Cover Scan A&F Howszat Title Screen A&F Howszat Screenshot
A very simple cricket implementation. Not only does it suffer from slow down, as it's coded in BASIC, but the user doesn't get to play much of the cricket at all - they instead spend most of their time filling in the names of the players on the team, and assigning them a simple style of play directive. Even once the game is in flow, it's exceedingly hard to see what's going on due to the poor graphics. Again, there are much better examples of this genre on the BBC Micro, so look elsewhere.
Lunar Lander by R.G. Stamp
Released: 1982
A&F Lunar Lander Cover Scan A&F Lunar Lander Title Screen A&F Lunar Lander Screenshot
A fore-runner to Superior Software's massively popular Thrust, this title features jerky graphics thanks, once again, to a BASIC implementation. It is colourful, and the screen is redrawn at a larger scale as you reach the planet's surface. The controls are overly complex, however, and the gameplay itself suffers. A less complicated and less colourful, but more entertaining, BASIC version of this game compatible with the BBC Micro, known as Mars Lander, was provided on the Acorn Electron Introductory Cassette supplied freely with the machine when it was launched a year later.
Released: 1985
A&F Orpheus Cover Scan A&F Orpheus Title Screen A&F Orpheus Screenshot
An entertaining game which sees you, as Orpheus, in the Underworld guiding a boat across the River Styx, ferrying shields from one side to the other, whilst battling the currents and avoiding rocks and sea dragon-type monsters, with only smart bombs and discuses to defend yourself. The game itself has bright, colourful graphics and is quite enjoyable to play, if a little limited in long-term appeal.
Painter by D.G. Anderson
Released: 1983
A&F Painter Cover Scan A&F Painter Title Screen A&F Painter Screenshot
An addictive puzzler based loosely on Taito's arcade classic Qix. The task is to guide your painter around the rectangles, in order to fill them with colour. Along the way, you must avoid the chasers which also patrol the tracks. Your only defense is your own speed and skill and the ability to fire up to three temporary gaps in the lines. Very simple graphics, with equally simple gameplay that add up to a classic puzzler, which should appeal to any fan of the genre.
Planes by Brian and Marian Clark
Released: 1982
A&F Planes Cover Scan A&F Planes Title Screen A&F Planes Screenshot
A typical clone of Namco's Galaxian, this version is surprisingly playable considering it's written in BASIC. There are a number of differing waves of colourful invaders and the game is fairly responsive. Overall, there are better versions out there - Acornsoft's Arcadians springs to mind - but this release can still prove to be quite captivating. For some reason, this game was ported to the Acorn Electron and ZX Spectrum under the title Kamikaze.
Shrinking Professor by J. Snowden and R. Dunn
Released: 1983
A&F Shrinking Professor Cover Scan A&F Shrinking Professor Title Screen A&F Shrinking Professor Screenshot
Like Horror Castle, also from A&F, the parser here is limited to two words. The story is straightfoward with you, as the professor, trying to find the crystals that will return you to normal size, after a dropped potion shrinks you to the height of 1 inch. As with the other A&F interactive fiction efforts, this one is unlikely to challenge the dominance of the classic IF games from Level 9 and Acornsoft, but may be worth a look if you're a fan of the genre.
Tower of Alos by D. Howard
Released: ?
A&F Tower of Alos Cover Scan A&F Tower of Alos Title Screen A&F Tower of Alos Screenshot
A somewhat tedious RPG made up entirely of ASCII graphics. This BASIC game involves wandering around the main ASCII map, fighting randomly-appearing goblins etc. and collecting gold & experience points to advance your character's level. Only for the die-hard, hardcore ASCII RPGers.
Towers of Hanoi by B & N Clarke
Released: 1983
A&F Towers of Hanoi Title Screen A&F Towers of Hanoi Screenshot
A BASIC MODE 7 version of the classic, traditional puzzle. This implementation allows up to eight rings to be moved across three towers and animates each move the player selects, whilst timing the duration of the game and identifying the optimal number of moves that can be used. This interpretation also features support for a light pen as well as keyboard input. This is a good, solid and simple adaptation of the original brain-teaser.


The Screaming Abdabs by A. Ball and J. Twiddy
Released: 1984
A&F The Screaming Abdabs Title Screen A&F The Screaming Abdabs Screenshot
This is a bizarre platformer which involves you collecting items of food and drink, whilst avoiding the other dangerous objects. Quite what you're supposed to do once you've retrieved all the collectables is beyond us, at the moment ... Still, it's surprisingly addictive, considering it's counter intuitive gameplay.

Acorn Electron

Kamakazi by Brian and Marian Clark
Released: 1983
A&F Kamakazi Cover Scan A&F Kamikazi Title Screen A&F Kamikazi Screenshot
This is an almost exact clone of the BBC Micro shoot-'em-up Planes, detailed above, which was ported to the Acorn Electron and ZX Spectrum as Kamikaze.
Pharaohs Tomb by Marian and Brian Clark
Released: 1982
A&F Pharoahs Tomb Cover Scan A&F Pharaohs Tomb Title Screen A&F Pharaohs Tomb Screenshot
An RPG with a smattering of fairly large MODE 6 ASCII graphics. Another game which involves you collecting coins, along with a mask, to escape the Pharoahs Tomb, this involves wandering around and solving various puzzles along the way. Although the screens look good at first - considering their BASIC origins - this game is, unfortunately, only likely to appeal to a minority of players.

ZX Spectrum

Agent Orange
Released: 1987
A&F Agent Orange Cover Scan A&F Agent Orange Title Screen A&F Agent Orange Screenshot
Fairly detailed but monotonous graphics accompany what is essentially an intergalactic farming simulation. You must compete against an alien race to seed eight planets and harvest your crops, with the ultimate aim to finding the mysterious Agent Orange to wipe out your oppositions crops completely. A curious plot with little explanation leads into a game which is hard to stick with.
CORE - Cybernetic Organism Recovery Expedition
Released: 1986
A&F CORE - Cybernetic Organism Recovery Expedition Cover Scan A&F CORE - Cybernetic Organism Recovery Expedition Title Screen A&F CORE - Cybernetic Organism Recovery Expedition Screenshot
CORE is an arcade adventure which sees you, as Andrew Angello, searching Eroc 1, a Deep Asteroid Mining Project (DAMP) for remnants of the colony's computer which has been fragmented by the same thing that apparently wiped out all 720 personnel. Large, challenging and complex.
Crazy Balloons by Mike Webb
Released: 1983
A&F Crazy Balloons Cover Scan A&F Crazy Balloons Title Screen A&F Crazy Balloons Screenshot
A simple game which requires you to manouevre your balloon to the cyan landing square before the time limit expires. There are extra points available for heading through the coloured sections of the maze. Overall, a very tricky and frustrating game due to the speed with which the balloon changes direction.
Frogger by ZX Incorporated
Released: 1983
A&F Frogger Cover Scan A&F Frogger Title Screen A&F Frogger Screenshot
The ZX Spectrum port of the Sega classic arcade game Frogger suffers from gameplay on a par with A&F's BBC Micro release, described above. Despite having all the required features of Frogger, the response to key presses during play can only really be described as abysmal.
Jungle Fever by Mike Webb
Released: 1983
A&F Jungle Fever Cover Scan A&F Jungle Fever Title Screen A&F Jungle Fever Screenshot
This is a rather primitive game of the Pitfall variety in which you must guide your player past the usual obstacles such as rivers, pits, natives, deadly spiders and crocodiles. The graphics are fairly rudimentary and do not take advantage of the Spectrum's capabilities, resulting in a game that actually looks simpler than the Atari 2600 original. The sound is restricted to basic effects during gameplay and simple tunes between lives. Overall, although colourful, this game quickly becomes tiresome and it doesn't really inspire you to persevere even to the third screen.
Released: 1983
A&F Kamikaze Title Screen A&F Kamikaze Screenshot
The BBC Micro shoot-'em-up Planes, described above, was ported to the Acorn Electron and ZX Spectrum as Kamikaze. It remains a fairly uninspiring clone of Namco's Galaxian, but this port seems to have lost the playability elements of the Acorn originals.
New Cylon Attack: In Isometric Perspective (3D)
Released: 1984
A&F New Cylon Attack Cover Scan A&F New Cylon Attack Title Screen A&F New Cylon Attack Screenshot
Due mainly to it's success on the BBC Micro, this title was ported to the Spectrum where it captured the spirit of the original game, though at the expense of it's predecessor's large viewscreen. Still an enjoyable shoot-'em-up, however ...
Painter by ASB
Released: 1983
A&F Painter Title Screen A&F Painter Screenshot
A rather formulaic arcade puzzler which sees you filling in the grid between a screenful of paintpots. Overall, quite dull.
Wibstars by Argus Press Software Ltd (Ivan Horn, Ste Cork)
Released: 1987
A&F Wibstars Screenshot 1 A&F Wibstars Screenshot 2
This is a bizarre game that sees you attempt the successful operation of a computer goods distribution company. You must collect products from a central warehouse and then deliver them to the customers, whilst trying to make a product. Colourful products but the idea, although original, may not appeal to everyone.
Xeno by Binary Design Ltd (Ste Pickford)
Released: 1986
A&F Xeno Cover Scan A&F Xeno Title Screen A&F Xeno Screenshot
This is essentially a simplified form of hockey - a little like air hockey, but not quite. It plays well and gives off the air of the later classic, Speedball. Well worth a blast, especially with two players.