The Official Father Christmas,  From Alternative Software on ZX Spectrum

It’s that time of year when Santa hitches up his reindeer to his sleigh and sets off to deliver the presents to all of the nice children around the world. This would be enough for any man, but this year there are some added complications for poor old Father Christmas as, just like most of us do at times, he is having a bad day. Your job is to try to help Santa to get the Christmas eve back deliveries back on track.

The Official Father Christmas game is a little difficult to pin down as regards Genre as it changes from level to level. Level 1 has you running round Santa’s house trying to find parts of his sleigh which the mischievious elves have dismantled and hidden. Run into an elf while carrying a sleigh piece and it will be taken and hidden again. At this time of year you should be looking after your elf (old retro joke thrown in for free), but in level 1 you feel like kicking the little err guys. Build the sleigh, and then level 2 has you trying to catch the 6 presents you picked for your list which fall among the other presents at random. I made it to level 3 which has you trying to drop the presents onto the marked houses as you fly over the top, with planes and clouds pushing them off course.

The Official Father Christmas game makes good use of the Spectrum graphically with some big bold sprites and well presented backdrops for you to play on, and obviously you have to allow the colour clash as it’s a Spectrum staple. The sound is pretty bad even for a Spectrum game and it makes you glad there’s not too much to endure. The gameplay is good festive fun with the variety of game types keeping things interesting and luring you on to see what comes next. Overall I give it a 6/10

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