The Oliver Twins

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1987 Continued

The game was inspired by Tail Gunner, a vector graphics game, around the same time as Battle Zone using the same type of hardware. Enemy space ships swept out from deep space attacking in waves. It was your job to pick them off like that famous scene in Star Wars. It was a good blast and took around a week to write! And it made it out in time for Christmas. The game was initially called C.H.A.O.S. but on the day of mastering it was discovered that another title had just been launched with this name so it was changed to 3D StarFighter.

By this time we were riding high in the charts and at one stage were responsible for as many as 5 games out of the top 10!

Things were going really well now but it was time to take a small holiday. After we returned from skiing in Austria we decided it was an excellent subject to use for a game...

Marble Madness was in the arcades at the time and we were impressed by its 3D terrain. We used this theory to create the ski slopes for Professional Ski Simulator, drawing trees and log cabins on the snowy mountainside. We also realised that controlling a left/right character coming towards you down the screen was a little illogical. It sold well anyway and looked very cool.

We were contracted by a Commodore 64 developer, Stefan Ufnowski of 'Foursfield', who signed a deal with Activision under the label 'Electric Dreams' to write a Marble Madness style game. He was writing the lead version and asked us to convert it to the Amstrad and Spectrum. Being fans of MM and wanting to do a full price game we jumped at the opportunity. We only worked freelance for Codemasters, but they had often talked about us signing an exclusive deal.

We decided to write this game, Incredible Shrinking Sphere, under a pseudonym of 'Ivan Link', our friend who had often talked about trying to get into the industry.

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