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Page 1: Jackal - Jail Break
Page 2: Jammin' - Jimmy's Soccer Manager
Page 3: Jim Power - Jonny Quest
Page 4: El Juego de la Oca - Justin
Screenshot of Jim Power

Jim Power

(Loriciel, 1992)

President Halley's daughter Samantha has been kidnapped by Vulkhor, who wants to know the location of a secret weapon that will allow him to take over the universe. Oh my goodness! This is a job for Jim Power, the chief of President Halley's protection squad, who goes to Mutant Planet to rescue Samantha. The game is a fairly run-of-the-mill mixture of platform and shoot-'em-up action; jump across platforms, shoot enemies, and collect the bonuses they leave behind. The graphics look good, but the scrolling is very jerky indeed, and this also makes the gameplay frustrating, as Jim often won't jump when you want him to. The sound effects and music are also really bad.

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Screenshot of Jinks

Jinks

(Rainbow Arts, 1989)

It is not often that one encounters games that make you want to throw your keyboard at the monitor in frustration, but this is one example. The concept is fairly novel – take a bog-standard platform game, but instead of controlling a person, you control a bat, and you must guide the bouncing ball to the end of the level and making sure it avoids the traps. There are also bricks to destroy, Breakout-style. The ball is incredibly hard to control, the game is too fast, and positioning your bat accurately is impossible. What's just as bad is that you only have one life – that's really helpful!

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Screenshot of Jinxter

Jinxter

(Rainbird, 1988)

Many years ago, the Bracelet of Turani was created to protect the land of Aquitania from the influence of the Green Witches. However, a witch called Jannedor has managed to break up the bracelet and its five charms, which are the real source of its magical powers. Now Aquitania is under a spell of bad luck, and you must recover the charms in order to restore the bracelet's powers. This text adventure has a very quirky sense of humour indeed, especially when you examine the many objects that you can get! The difficulty level is set perfectly, and interestingly, you can't die – although if you solve some puzzles incorrectly, you will lose some luck and be unable to complete the game later on! This is another brilliant adventure from Magnetic Scrolls, although the graphics aren't quite of the same standard as their previous games.

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Screenshot of Jocky Wilson's Darts Challenge

Jocky Wilson's Darts Challenge

(Zeppelin Games, 1989)

Jocky Wilson was a Scottish darts player who won the Embassy World Darts Championship twice, in 1982 and 1989. This set of darts games lets you and up to three friends play darts (although you don't have to smoke and drink as much as Jocky). As well as playing in a tournament, you can try a 'round the clock' game in which you must hit the numbers 1 to 20 on the dartboard in order. To aim the dart, you move it about the dartboard, but it constantly rotates so that aiming the dart precisely is quite difficult. For this reason, it's not as good as some other darts games I've played as it takes a considerable amount of patience and practice to get used to playing the game.

See also: Jocky Wilson's Darts Compendium.

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Screenshot of Jocky Wilson's Darts Compendium

Jocky Wilson's Darts Compendium

(Zeppelin Games, 1991)

Reviewed by Richard Lamond

Jocky Wilson has six variations on the game of darts for us this time in his second Zeppelin game. Football sees you trying to hit a bullseye followed by ten doubles. Dart Bowls starts with you throwing a 'jack' to which you and your opponent must score closest to win points. Scram involves trying to outscore your opponent while they eliminate sectors of the board. Ten Dart Century is a race to get closest to 100 with ten consecutive darts. Shanghai forces you to select a single sector and play within that to score points. Regular 501 darts rounds off proceedings. A game for one or two players, this is not worth the effort. It's a very poor Spectrum port where the computer is far too good even on the lowest difficulty level. The controls are imprecise and the number of bounce out darts you throw is unrealistic.

See also: Jocky Wilson's Darts Challenge.

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Screenshot of Joe Blade

Joe Blade

(Players, 1987)

Reviewed by Chris Lennard

Someone has to take on the terrorists and there's only one man for the job – Joe Blade. Guide our hero in this quirky platformer around the enemy base freeing the hostages, solving the puzzles to arm the bombs whilst collecting any keys along the way. However, all this has to be completed before the explosives go off, so it's also a battle against time. It's unfortunate that the monochrome graphics and poor sound really let down what is actually quite a good challenge.

See also: Joe Blade 2, Joe Blade 3.

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Screenshot of Joe Blade 2

Joe Blade 2

(Players, 1988)

The second instalment in the Joe Blade series is set in 1995, in a crime-ridden city, where muggers rule the streets. Only Joe Blade can clean up the city! This game is much like the original; you wander around the maze-like streets to track down sixteen citizens – men in raincoats (oo-er!) who will give you one of four puzzles. These must be solved in 60 seconds, or the game's over. The gameplay is really limited; all the screens look the same, and it's easy to lose track of where you are. The graphics and sound are both poor as well.

See also: Joe Blade, Joe Blade 3.

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Screenshot of Joe Blade 3

Joe Blade 3

(Players, 1989)

Reviewed by Chris Lennard

Joe Blade is back – again! After his previously more musclebound antics, this represents more of a return to the first in the trilogy. Once again you are rescuing hostages, collecting objects and setting off bombs. This time, the environment is a large office tower comprised of several levels navigated by a lift, all filled with various nefarious terrorists, thugs, mines, and somewhat lethal robots. As with its predecessors, this is quite a challenging game, but you can't help but think that by the third instalment they would have come up with something better, as there seems to be very little advancement in terms of sound, graphics and playability.

See also: Joe Blade, Joe Blade 2.

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Screenshot of John Elway's Quarterback

John Elway's Quarterback

(Virgin Games, 1990)

Reviewed by Robert Small

It's a case of what might have been with this American football game. The graphics are colourful if a bit blocky. On the other hand the game scrolls very slowly. Despite being endorsed by John Elway the game does not feature the full names of actual NFL teams. Experimenting with different plays is fun, though, and despite the slow speed it plays reasonably well. It isn't the most accurate of American football interpretations either, but it does have a two player mode. An average sports game.

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Screenshot of Jonny Quest

Jonny Quest

(Hi-Tec Software, 1991)

Reviewed by John Beckett

Another excellent game by Hi-Tec Software based on a popular Hanna-Barbera cartoon character, Jonny Quest has you in the role of the schoolboy supersleuth as you roam the fortress of the evil Dr. Zin, rescuing your kidnapped comrades – your mystic Indian friend Hadji, your dog Bandit, your bodyguard, and finally, your inventor father. The game itself – a nice blend of platform action and Dizzy-style puzzles – is fairly big, but also quite linear, so you never get lost, and little surprises are thrown in along the way, like the enjoyable scuba-diving section, so you never get bored. The graphics are good and well animated, while the sound effects are sparse but serviceable. Also, the difficulty level is perfect; it's a challenging game, but not impossible. Overall, one of my favourite games!

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