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I enjoyed this walk down memory lane. The format is simple, and works well. Each game is represented by a short essay. These are collected as chapters with different themes:

- The Classics (Manic Miner, Jet Set Willy, Jetpac, Atic Atac, Ant Attack, Horace Goes Skiing, Wheelie, Alchemist, Chaos, Everyone's a Wally, Deathchase, Head Over Heels. You'll have played them all).

- The Pioneers (Games that were groundbreaking at the time: Skool Daze, Feud, The Hobbit, All or Nothing, Dark Sceptre, Redhawks, The Wild Bunch, Deus Ex Machina, iD, Slaine, Driller).

- The Greats (Games that are still worth playing to this day: Where Time Stood Still, Cybernoid, Nodes of Yesod, Knight Tyme, Jack the Nipper, Zoids, Firefly, Thanatos, Turbo Esprit, Daley Thompson's Decathalon, They Stole A Million)

- The Dark Horses (Games I had never heard of, but which sound intriguing: Flunky, Survival, Agent X, Friday the 13th, Alien, Death Wish 3, How to be a complete B*stard)

- Never Again (Games that would never be made today: Trashman, Mrs Mopp, Mad Nurse, Death Star Interceptor, Starring Charlie Chaplin, Cannibal Island, The Rocky Horror Show, Frankie Goes to Hollywood, Give my regards to Broad Street)

The writing is witty, breezy and fun to read. The selection of games is smart, and I am grateful to the authors for introducing me to some brilliant games that I'd never heard of before. If you enjoyed reading Crash and Your Sinclair all those years ago, then you simply must read this book.
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on 4 November 2015
As a physical coffee table book with some glossy pictures this might have been much more enjoyable publication. Even the paper back version with pictures and wacky fonts looks like it would have been a quite a bit more fun. But for me, the plain formatting and lack of pictures in the Kindle edition makes it a bit of a failure.

Having said that, I enjoyed being reminded of the games I knew, but was a bit bored by the reviews of the games I didn't know.
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on 26 September 2012
30 years. 30! Good grief. The time is certainly ripe for people to start writing about the history of the little black box with the silly rubber keys. The humble ZX Spectrum has a lot to answer for in my life. It is directly responsible for the fact that I now work in IT. Responsible for my life long love of computer games. And through the existence of the wonderful magazine Your Sinclair, responsible for shaping my sense of humour and expectations of what computer game journalism should be like. Speccy Nation seems to be coming from a similar background, being a 120 page love letter to the greatest computer of all times. It was never the best computer in terms of technical specification or hardware, yet there was something about it that caused people to write these bizarre, brilliant, and uniquely British games. Speccy Nation emphasises this perfectly. The book may be a little sloppily written, and at times it tends to just review games (I don't need a review of a game from 1985 that I played for hours and hours once upon a time), when the real strength of the book is Whitehead's interpretation of Speccy games and how they entwined with British culture of the time. It doesn't just pick the big names, but goes delving into the creativity, looking for those that inspired games that were to come 15+ years later on more modern formats. There are some fascinating thoughts on some very odd games that I never played, and some eulogies to other games that absorbed days of my youth, once upon a time.

Look, this isn't a work of art, much like the Speccy itself, but it is the work of someone who the Spectrum means an awful lot to. And for other people who are in that same boat, this is a brief read that you will very much appreciate. If you were some kind of loser who owned a Commodore 64 though, I am sincerely sorry that your childhood gaming experience was merely a vacuous waste of time instead of being part of a delightfully mad movement that most people will never really understand.
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on 6 October 2014
covers a bunch of games, some not so famous ones. doesn't give a lot of details more like an overview of each
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on 16 September 2012
A very well written history of the best games the rubber keyed Spectrum has to offer. The book takes you back to a time of innocence when individuals could write a commercial game in the confines of their own bedroom. The games are classics - those who wrote them are heroes. Dan Whitehead is a hero for putting this book together to ensure we never forget 'that' time.
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on 18 November 2012
Great nostalgia book taking me back to my teen years and ownership of this classic British computer BUT in the Kindle edition why are the images missing?
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on 7 January 2017
Writer claims that Your Sinclair was the best Spectrum magazine and Sinclair User the worst. A man who will, without shame, admit to such an incorrect opinion simply cannot be trusted. I suspect he actually owned a Commodore 64 (I apologise for swearing).
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on 29 September 2012
Very funny and witty insights into many of the iconic games that came out on the ZX Spectrum. I like the way many obscurer titles are featured, although there's plenty of stuff on the more famous games too. Highly recommended for any 8-bit fan.
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on 15 November 2016
I love to remember those lucky old times. Okay, and I actually owned a black&white TV back then. But I wish I could have paid a few pennies more to get the book in higher quality including color-printed screenshots, and it would just bring the famous colorclash-fx back :-) The grayscale screenshots are making me sad a bit.
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on 27 July 2016
If you lived through the 70's and 80's and started using ZX80 or 81 and then got a Spectrum and then like me went to Sinclair QL and then to Atari ST (or Amiga) and finally to PC this is a great recollection of those days and makes compelling reading. If your my kids then it explains why I am the way I am around computers and programming!
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