Bleugh! Illness and…Freescape

Well, in case you hadn’t noticed, there’s been next to no activity around here recently. Boo, There has been a good reason for that though: My wife and I have been horrendously ill for the last few weeks. Seriously. It feels like, between us, we’ve had pretty much every illness present in the South London area. Even after a good chunk of easter chocolate, I definitely do not recommend the gastroenteritis diet.

Moving onto brighter things, here’s something that cheered me up last week: unsolicited mail!

Now, admittedly, most of the mail i receive from here is generic spam crap (No, I do not want to boost my search engine rankings, thank you) but last week i received something fun. In this Youtube video, a chap called Roger Jowett has got the Speccy version of the Freescape 3D engine to run at a stonking 6mhz:

The Freescape engine, used to create the likes of Castle Master and Driller, was an incredibly advanced bit of kit for its time (Developer incentive software apparently had trouble recruiting programmers because no one was sure whether the intended 3D engine could actually be made,) so It’s nice to see it running at such a stonking pace on an 8-bit.

Needless to say, there are qualifications here: The machine in question is actually a Sam Coupe rather than a Spectrum (the Coupe was an enhanced Speccy ‘clone’ built around a 6mhz Z80b processor,) and also features a 1mb ram expansion that the Sinclair could never have utilised.

Still, at its core it was fundamentally an 8-bit machine – and it’s always nice to see an 8-bit machine chucking around the kind of geometry you would expect to fall out of its’ comfort zone.

Thank you Roger!

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