Skateboard Kidz

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You’re looking at a computer game called Skateboard Kidz for the Spectrum (Sinclair) computer. The game was released in 1988 according to World of Spectrum, which would explain why it came on a cassette tape. Yes, that’s right, you used to have to load computer programs on some home computers via a cassette tape deck. Skateboard Kidz was made by Silverbird Software in the UK, and as such, all the radical 80’s dialect has a distinctly English accent. You can hear it yourself because the program files are downloadable from several places on the web, and if you don’t have a 25 year old computer, you can run it in a web browser with a Javascript MESS emulator. (FYI – Emulator does not seem to work with Safari.)

The actual program cassette is available to buy for roughly $1.50, in a handful of places, but it’s just that UK postage that will get you. The original UK price of £1.99 is just twice what it goes for nowadays. I’m not sure if that’s an accurate comparison, though, surely the cost of a computer game was more than the equivalent of $6 in US dollars. (Actually, according to Wikipedia, the pound would have been worth $1.70 which would be about $8.00 today depending on how you measure it. That still seems cheap. Who’s an economics major here? )

Here’s a nice photo of the cassette and cover from a UK seller.

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The text file that comes with the program:

Put your board and trucks through the punishment in this skate spectacular!

The Game:

The object of the game is to collect parts of the bronze, silver and
gold skateboards, by collecting the letters S, K, A, T, and E as you skate
your way around town.

To collect the letters you must jump over them by hitting the ramps. But look out, too slow or too fast and you’ll wipe out!

Next, do your good deed by clearing up the garbage, give it to the old lady and she’ll reward you with a bonus.

Then! Race against the dude, dodging pot holes, cats, dustbins and cars to become the top Skateboard Kid.

Playing The Game:

You may redefine the keys or use a Sinclair or Kempston joystick.

(C) ANDREW ROGERS
Silverbird Software, Oxford Street, London
Silverbird and the Silverbird logo are registered trademarks of British
Telecommunications plc.

(Transcribed by Robin Stuart)

What does game play look like? Here’s a couple of action packed screen captures. It’s not super engaging.

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Alternate cover art scan from World of Spectrum

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Alternate cover art scan from Spanish Spectrum Archive.

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Large cover art scan from Moby Games

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Alternate cassette and case photo from Rockrabilia

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2 Comments

  1. PIGCITY on January 26, 2015 - Reply

    Never had that one but on the spectrum but I did have these two. Both were piss poor the Skateboard Simulator seems to have a rendering of UK Pro Deathbox Rider Pete Dosset riding a strange Gonz deck.

    http://i57.tinypic.com/11udd0w.jpg

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