December 2015 - Sinclair ZX Spectrum Vega.
ZX Spectrum Vega does have 128K games on it
too and uses the sound enhancements that 128K
Spectrums possess. That may appear to be an
odd comment to begin a review with but I know
it's something that a lot of people will want
to know that hasn't been answered by other
reviewers. If you play Xenon, Vixen, Auf
Wiedersehen Monty, and many of the other
games they will play as though you were
playing on a 128K Spectrum with quality sound.
Army Moves is also the 128K version of the
game and I'm sure there are lots of others
first received my Sinclair ZX Spectrum Vega
the first thing I noticed was the retro feel
of the packaging itself. It resembles a box
of an original Sinclair Spectrum that came
out way back in 1982, albeit with a cardboard
inner box rather than the original
polystyrene. The Spectrum Vega has similar
design features to an original Spectrum too,
with the coloured lines on the bottom right
hand corner and the rubber feel keys. (I
suppose they are called buttons rather than
keys because it's more of a joypad than a
computer in the way it's used.)
two very long leads coming out of the back.
One is a composite lead to plug into the
television and the other is a USB lead for
power. Ironically my modern Smart TV has
multiple USB sockets but no composite
connector so I had to use a scart lead
adaptor which by luck I already owned.
a huge list of 1000 games on the menu. In
many ways I feel spoilt for choice but I do
have my favourites. The Duct is a brilliant
game that has you drive a car within a pipe.
Another of my faves is Vixen that appears far
more difficult than I remembered. Some
classics such as Jetpac and Sabrewulf
are on it too but there are lots of amazing
games that aren't. Game Over 2 is on there
but not the first Game Over which seems a
thing that surprised me is a game called
Japanese Monster Castle 3. It's copyright
message reads 2009. I wouldn't be surprised
if there are other recent games on it too and
maybe there'll be games specifically created
for the Spectrum Vega in future. There is no
built in BASIC editor, so if you do want to
make a game you will still need a full size
Spectrum or an emulator.
the game controls have been mapped to the
Vega buttons there will still be a main menu
within the game with options such as Kempston
Joystick, Sinclair Joystick, Redefine Keys,
etc. These menus are to be ignored. Just
press Select or Fire to begin the game. Some
games will even have a Stop The Tape message
at the beginning. I've also noticed some
games will display their loading screen art
while others don't.
the option to snapshot a game to a memory
card saving your position to continue playing
it later. I haven't been able to test this
feature yet because it uses the tiny small SD
cards that I don't have. You can also
download new games, via a computer, to save
onto the card then play them on the Vega.
a game may ask for keyboard input. There is a
virtual keyboard via the menu button, which
is okay for a couple of key-presses, but it's
not really suitable for adventure games.
There's an amazing adventure game called
Feline Fancy but I don't think I'll ever
fully complete it before getting fed up with
summary I'd say it's definitely worth owning
a Spectrum Vega as the vast content of games
will have you playing for months if not years.
Also the option of downloading new games is a
big plus. My only quibble is the way the
console connects to the television, USB and
composite connection is a little odd. It is a
little expensive too but as with all new
technology it'll likely come down in price.
The funny design causes a sense of nostalgia.
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