Definitive list of games incompatible with +2A/+3 and of compatible versions (if any)

edited March 2015 in Games
I am trying to compile the definitive list of games which are incompatible with the +2A and the +3 and of their compatible versions, if they are present of course. With "compatible versions" I only mean official releases, therefore excluding any fixes and/or hacks, such as Cristian Secara's excellent fixed version of Platoon.
Starting sources were the WoS forum and Velesoft's "fixed" games collection. I have conducted the research using Fuse for Windows 1.0.0.1, ZX Spin 0.7 and two actual, unmodified +2A machines.

1. Completely incompatible games (together with effect):
  • Advanced Soccer Simulator - Freezes after selecting player team.
  • Austerlitz 1805 128K - "C Nonsense in BASIC, 1500:3" error upon loading first data block.
  • Cyclone - Upon loading, emits a beep and then the system resets.
  • Fairlight 128K - System crash after initial screen.
  • Fairlight II 128K - Freezes upon loading.
  • Frank Bruno's Boxing - Freezes upon loading.
  • Fourth Protocol, The - System crash after initial screen.
  • Geoff Capes Strong Man - Reset after game start.
  • Impact - Reset after game start.
  • Kliatba Noci - System crash after game start.
  • Kung Fu - Reset after game start.
  • Pole Position (all versions) - Reset after game start.
  • Road Runner (US Gold) - Reset upon loading.
  • Starglider 128K - Game starts with missing text and graphics.
  • Starstrike II - Reset upon loading.
  • Tau Ceti 128K - System crash upon loading.
  • Thanatos 128K - Reset upon loading.
  • Their Finest Hour - Reset upon loading.
  • Three Weeks In Paradise 128K - Reset upon loading (this one in particular will only load on a first generation 128K machine).

2. Compatible versions of otherwise incompatible games:
  • Bomb Jack (MCM)
  • Cobra (Hit Squad)
  • Hysteria (A Year After Mix)
  • Mikie (Hit Squad)
  • Paperboy (MCM)
  • Rambo (Hit Squad)
  • Short Circuit 128K (Hit Squad)
  • Skyfox (Dro Soft; Spanish language)
  • Tomahawk (Byte Back; removes Lenslok protection as well)
  • Top Gun (Hit Squad; no music, sound effects only)

3. Other cases:
  • Shao Lin's Road - Load only under 128K mode.


Anyone willing to help? Thanks in advance :)
Post edited by Alessandro Grussu on
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Comments

  • fogfog
    edited May 2011
    with regard to fairlight 1 / 2 they later appeared on "the micro selection" as for if they are the same versions.. dunno

    do the ultimate games have the same issues without a little fix as they do with the divide .i.e. "usr 0" or 1? in 128 mode

    starstrike 1 or 2 (I forget ) will work from frozen snap version.. again a firebird one of both might fix that.
  • edited May 2011
    fog wrote: »
    starstrike 1 or 2 (I forget ) will work from frozen snap version.. again a firebird one of both might fix that.

    I created this version from a snapshot: Starstrike II.
  • edited May 2011
    Thanks folks but as I stated before I only want to list officially released working versions; unofficial fixes and/or hacks should be listed in another thread. Anyway, all Ultimate games I tested work without problems under 48K BASIC. The Micro Selection versions of both Fairlights are unfortunately 48K only, no 128K enhanced versions. I did not find any Firebird re-release of Starstrike II instead.
  • edited May 2011
    Thanks folks but as I stated before I only want to list officially released working versions; unofficial fixes and/or hacks should be listed in another thread.

    Oh sorry, I read too fast. :razz:

    Additions for the second list:
    • Arkanoid (The Hit Squad)
    • Frightmare 128K (Zafiro)
  • fogfog
    edited May 2011
    I did not find any Firebird re-release of Starstrike II instead.

    http://www.worldofspectrum.org/infoseekid.cgi?id=0013915

    both were on that tape.. as for fixed, not sure.. but maybe Ian Oliver will see it mentioned here :)
  • edited May 2011
    Unfortunately the Firebird compilation features the original Realtime version, which is incompatible.
  • edited May 2011
    I've just tried Fairlight I and II from the Micro Selection and although they are the 48K versions they do both load on the +2A in 128K mode.
  • edited May 2011
    Yes they do. It is the 128K versions that fail, in fact.
  • edited May 2011
    Yes they do. It is the 128K versions that fail, in fact.

    Yep :)
    I find that rather odd. 48K version - no problem on the +2A in 128K mode. Try and load the proper version made for that (type) of machine and it fails!
    Is it just the early 128K games that fail or are there some later ones, too?
  • edited May 2011
    itsallgood wrote: »
    Yep :)
    I find that rather odd. 48K version - no problem on the +2A in 128K mode. Try and load the proper version made for that (type) of machine and it fails!

    I don't find it odd. After all, the 48k versions don't mess with the memory ports.
  • edited May 2011
    True but you would think the 48K version would be less compatible with a 128K Amstrad than the 128K version of the game which is written for the 128K machine.
  • edited May 2011
    I used toplay Cobra on my +2a with no problems in either 48k or 128k modes.
  • edited May 2011
    Countvarg wrote: »
    I used toplay Cobra on my +2a with no problems in either 48k or 128k modes.
    Was it the Hit Squad re-release? To my experience, the original Ocean version freezes at the start of the game.
  • edited May 2011
    Was it the Hit Squad re-release? To my experience, the original Ocean version freezes at the start of the game.


    It was the hit squad version.
  • edited May 2011
    Countvarg wrote: »
    It was the hit squad version.
    That confirms my research then :)

    Any other examples spring to mind, anyone?
  • edited May 2011
    Not sure if this is one or if it's just me, but Rasputin always used to freeze on the control menu. Seems to work on an emulator though so maybe I just had a dodgy copy (mine was on the '20 Chart Busters' compilation).
  • edited May 2011
    Not sure if this is one or if it's just me, but Rasputin always used to freeze on the control menu. Seems to work on an emulator though so maybe I just had a dodgy copy (mine was on the '20 Chart Busters' compilation).

    Rasputin needs an Issue 2 Spectrum model to work.
  • edited May 2011
    On the other hand, Rasputin 128 works on the +2A.
    Meanwhile I have spotted another one for point 2 of my list:
    • Battle of Britain (PSS) - working version: Classic Conflicts re-release.
  • edited May 2011
    Only self experience, but on my +2a there's a screen in rollercoaster that i could not cross.

    Can't remember the name of the ride, but it was the one with the blue solid line across the whole screen. Problem being on the +2a the line isn't quite so solid, you drop through it like it's not there.

    Firing up the same copy on my 48k, no problem, walked straight accross it
  • edited May 2011
    loki88 wrote: »
    Only self experience, but on my +2a there's a screen in rollercoaster that i could not cross.

    Can't remember the name of the ride, but it was the one with the blue solid line across the whole screen. Problem being on the +2a the line isn't quite so solid, you drop through it like it's not there.

    Firing up the same copy on my 48k, no problem, walked straight accross it
    Thanks, I'll try to investigate about this. I took a look at the map - is that "The Plankwalk" ride you mean?
  • edited May 2011
    Thanks to Fog I have spotted two complete incompatibilities more:
    • Knight Tyme 48K: Freezes upon loading
    • Spellbound 48K: Freezes upon loading
  • edited May 2011
    I recall from Speccy Tour 2003 that Daley Thompson's Supertest (128K) snapshot had to be replaced, because loading it in a +2A model caused the timing of the Slalom event to be screwed, so the clock ran faster than it should and made it impossible to classify.

    There's a Hit Squad release, so it might be fixed there, or maybe not (perhaps only crashes were fixed, or this problem wasn't known back then).
  • edited May 2011
    Metalbrain wrote: »
    I recall from Speccy Tour 2003 that Daley Thompson's Supertest (128K) snapshot had to be replaced, because loading it in a +2A model caused the timing of the Slalom event to be screwed, so the clock ran faster than it should and made it impossible to classify.

    There's a Hit Squad release, so it might be fixed there, or maybe not (perhaps only crashes were fixed, or this problem wasn't known back then).
    Argh. That means I should go back consuming my fingers on the PC keyboard after managing to get the top score for ST 2010 in that game :eek:

    Meanwhile, itsallgood helped me find that the Sinclair User Megatape 10 versions of both Spellbound 48K and Knight Tyme 48K work on the +2A and +3.
  • edited May 2011
    I would never ever even think of using +2A or +3 to play Speccy games - the CPU speed is different and multicolor effects wrong or gone... Action Force II goodness only possible on 48k speccy
  • edited May 2011
    maiki wrote: »
    I would never ever even think of using +2A or +3 to play Speccy games
    I for sure won't be playing them on the old rubber keyboard. Great design, but not able to withstand the test of time - no surprise it was the first original feature to be changed from the times of the 48K+.
    maiki wrote: »
    - the CPU speed is different and multicolor effects wrong or gone...
    Could you please give some examples? So far all games with multicolor effects I have tested on the +2A work correctly. Same goes for the CPU speed - if it's still a Z80A, it should always run at 3.54 Mhz, or not?
    maiki wrote: »
    Action Force II goodness only possible on 48k speccy
    I simply don't understand what are you talking about. The multicolor effects of that game are equally present while running it on both the 48K and the +2A.
    EDIT: At least under emulation - again, do not have the time to do a thorough research on the actual machines, but with Fuse for Windows 1.0.0.1 the behavior of the game is identical. Will care to confirm this on the actual machines as soon as possible, but so far there have been no discrepancies between emulation and real hardware.
  • edited May 2011
    maiki wrote: »
    I would never ever even think of using +2A or +3 to play Speccy games - the CPU speed is different and multicolor effects wrong or gone... Action Force II goodness only possible on 48k speccy

    What he means is the 128s are faster than the 48 (which is 3.5Mhz). The t-states are also different so multicolour effects that rely on 48 timings look wrong on 128 hardware. You also have to consider that all the I/O is contended on the 128 and +2 (which makes them a little closer in timings to the original 48 ... maybe that's why they did it), but the +2A/+3 do not have contended I/O and so are the fastest machines of the Sinclair branded ones. Generally that's a good thing though as it means less chance of sprite flicker.
  • edited May 2011
    Could you please give some examples? So far all games with multicolor effects I have tested on the +2A work correctly. Same goes for the CPU speed - if it's still a Z80A, it should always run at 3.54 Mhz, or not?

    The 128k models are slightly faster (70908 states per frame vs 69888 in 48k models), and each line takes 228 states vs 224 in 48k. Pentagon and other russian clones are even faster (and they have no low memory contention).

    This screws up a bit some border effects, such as those in Aquaplane or Paperboy menu, but the effects are mostly harmless, and modern games usually take those differences into consideration when doing multicolour effects.
  • edited May 2011
    All right friends, but to my experience, this makes little or no difference in playing games. I for sure won't lose my sleep over a couple of pixels which may look differently colored on 48K and the +2A in a game featuring multicolor effects - and let's face it, such games are few and far between, nor such an effect has been used for more than title screens, except for a handful of demos and new projects like Joefish's very promising Buzzsaw.

    Anyway, let's get back to topic please - while interesting, this is a different discussion altogether.
  • edited May 2011
    Cyclone? Really? It worked fine on my +2a...games that didn't work on mine that aren't on your list include Chuckie Egg and Armageddon (Ocean). And that was various copies I used.
  • edited May 2011
    Cyclone? Really? It worked fine on my +2a...

    Seems like it must be moved to list 2, because the versions included in both Sinclair User tapes do work.
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