Professional, Originally Released On Cassette Only
Game Type : Arcade Platform Game
Author : Orlando
Standalone Release(s) : 1984: FRAK!, Aardvark, £9.95
1989: FRAK!, Alternative, £1.99
Compilation Release(s) : 1987: PLAY IT AGAIN SAM 4, Superior/Acornsoft, £9.95
1988: 10 COMPUTER HITS 4, Beau Jolly, £9.95
1988: FIVE STAR GAMES 3, Beau Jolly, £9.95
1989: PRES GAMES DISC 5, PRES, £9.95
Stated compatibility : Electron
Actual compatibility : Electron, BBC B, B+ and Master 128
Supplier : SUPERIOR/ACORNSOFT, 3 Manor Drive, Scawby, Brigg, NORTH
LINCOLNSHIRE DN20 9AX
Disc compatibility : ADFS 1D00, CDFS 1D00, DFS 1D00
The Scrubblies and their friends have put all the special keys in hard-to-get places. Help Trogg collect all the keys, but watch out for the balloons and daggers!
If you run out of time it becomes night-time. You can continue to play in the darkness, but you can't yo-yo balloons or daggers.
There are a few things that Trogg can do that aren't obvious at first sight. If you hold the yo-yo key down, Trogg yo-yos further. If that still doesn't reach where you're trying to yo-yo, move a step or two closer (if you can) and try again. You will need to do this halfway across the first sheet and again later.
Trogg can walk past one rope and catch the next one along or walk off a platform and grab hold of the rope beside it. This is useful at the start of the fourth sheet (hold the "Down" key down and walk right off the log-end). If you're having jumping across gaps, go to the top of the first bit on sheet one and practise up there. You'll have Trogg leaping around in no time at all!
If you're wondering what everything does: bulbs give you more time before it goes dark, gems boost your score, and all the keys must be collected to finish each screen. Remember that Trogg has a big nose that helps get keys - although it often gets in the way! You start with three lives.
The game may be played from the keyboard or using a joystick (only First-Byte joysticks on the Electron). To start the game, press RETURN if using keyboard control or Fire if using a joystick. To use a First-Byte joystick, wait until the game has loaded, then press F until it bleeps.
Z - Left, X - Right, * - Up/Jump, ? - Down, <RETURN> - Yo-yo
S/Q - Sound/Quiet, N/M - Tune On/Off, <COPY>/<DELETE> - Pause On/Off
<ESCAPE> - Quit Game
The three figures shown at the top of the screen are:
- The time remaining until darkness.
- The number of lives remaining.
- Your score.
If you press <ESCAPE> & <RETURN> you can redesign te current screen.
The shapes are thought of in terms of queues. There's a queue for all the platforms, ladders, gems, keys and bulbs, etc. However, each queue has a maximum size, but this is quite large and you normally fill up any of the big queues. If you cycle between queues until you get the platforms' queue, you'll notice that there are different size platforms. This means that to put down lots of little platforms is a waste of time and space. Similarly with ladders.
Z - Moves shapes left, X - Moves shapes right, * - Moves shapes up
? - Moves shapes down, <RETURN> - Places/deletes a shape
Q/W - Cycles between queues of shapes, <SPACE>/A - Cycles within a queue of shapes
I - 'Remember' the current screen
<CTRL>-L - Loads a set of screens, <CTRL>-S - Saves a set of screens
<CTRL>-C - Clear screen, <ESCAPE> - Returns to game
You should 'remember' the current screen you're editing by pressing I, before pressing CTRL & S.
Hints And Tips
You won't be allowed to 'remember' a screen if there isn't at least one key and Trogg on the screen.
Trogg can only be put on or off the screen when you can see the left-hand edge of the playing screen.
Don't put too many platforms too close to the top; it becomes too difficult to play.
Don't worry about designing a screen to the full length of the playfield.
If, when you try to remember the screen, you get a 'No Room' error, either scrap the screen or trim it down to fill the space (trimming is usually a good exercise anyway).
DO NOT ATTEMPT TO SAVE ONTO THE FRAK! CASSETTE. ONLY SAVE ONTO A SEPARATE CASSETTE.
On the Acorn Electron version only, there are some extra features.
On level 5 and above, pressing SPACE saves your current position provided Trogg is on a platform. If you lose a life, you start again from this position.
When on the high-score table screen, pressing CTRL with keys 1-9 selects levels 1-9; pressing CTRL with keys W, E, R, T, Y, U, I or O selects screens 1-9.
When on the high-score table screen, pressing keys 1, 2, 3 or 4 selects either heavy, medium, light or no cross-hatch; pressing keys 5, 6 or 7 selects the screen colours.
Instructions' Source : PLAY IT AGAIN SAM 4 (Superior/Acornsoft) Inner Inlay
Review (Electron User)
At last FRAK! is here and Electron owners need be envious no longer of their BBC Micro-owning friends.
Basically FRAK! by Orlando is a multi-screen ladders and levels game. However the superb graphics make it stand out from the crowd. The main character, which you control, is a large caveman, complete with animal skin clothing, big belly and stubbly chin. The aim is to collect all the objects - diamonds, keys and light
bulbs - scattered about the screen. This involves climbing ropes and ladders and jumping from one platform to another.
The playing area is wider than the screen and when you get near the edge the screen scrolls rapidly sideways. This is a hardware scroll and since the Electron can only scroll a minimum of 64 bytes at a time it's more like a jump than a scroll. However you get used to it after a few games.
If this were all you had to do it would be an easy game. But as you progress there are three types of monster to be disposed of; Scrubblies, Hooters and Poglets. They don't move but nevertheless they get in your way. Fortunately, this caveman is rather adept with a yo-yo. Don't ask me what a caveman is doing with a yo-yo. I haven't a clue. It's useful for bopping nasties, though.
As well as bashing monsters you have to dodge balloons which float up the screen and daggers which fly diagonally down. With a bit of practise these can also be yo-yoed.
As a bonus there's a screen designer which enables you to edit any of the existing screens or completely design your own from scratch. You can add platforms, crystals, monsters, light bulbs and so on. It can be tested at any stage so if it's not quite right you can easily alter it. The finished screens can be saved to tape and loaded back next time.
The original BBC FRAK! is in Mode 1, the Electron version has been converted to Mode 4. Although it's lost a bit of colour the graphics actually seem better. The game is very slightly faster and less flickery.
FRAK! is one of the classics on the BBC Micro and is destined to be one of the classics on the Electron. No games collection will be complete without it, so start saving up now.
Sound ........................... 9
Graphics ....................... 10
Playability .................... 10
Value for money ................ 10
Overall ........................ 10
Roland Waddilove, ELECTRON USER 3. 7