Last update :- February 19th, 2012
Click on any images below for a larger picture.
Amstrad introduced their CPC (Colour Personal Computer) range in 1985 with the CPC464, to be followed by the CPC664, CPC6128, CPC464+ and CPC6128+. They were all based upon the following specifications:
The competition at the time was stiff from the Sinclair Spectrum, Commodore C64 and BBC Micro to name a few. It stood up well against the first two as a games machine and was on a par with the BBC for small business purposes and expansion capability.
|Amstrad CPC6128 Keyboard||Amstrad CPC6128+|
PC emulators breathed new life into computers like this because of the ability to load and save games quickly from a PC's hard drive. Originally you had to load and save from cassette tape (slow and unreliable) or floppy disc (quicker but with limited storage space). In a lot of cases you didn't have the option to save a game in progress.
The vast majority of original games programmers and publishers have given their permission for the software to be released into the public domain, including Amstrad who released the system ROMs. Of the hundreds of games available, the Top 10 (according to GameFAQs from GameSpot) are:
Some of my favourite games (of which there aren't PC equivalents except via emulators) are:
The emulator I use for the Amstrad CPC is WinAPE by Richard Wilson (who was famous in the CPC world for writing the ParaDOS CPC disk operation system).:
The pictures below show the CPC Loader front-end, CPC boot screen (via WinAPE) and two games running - one disk based and the other cartridge (note that these WinAPE screenshots were taken with an earlier version of the emulator):
|CPC Loader||CPC128+ boot||Switchblade (disk)||Batman (cart)|
If you go the the CP Loader link above it includes a tutorial.
Initially, if you were stuck in a game or level, the only way of cheating in a CPC game was to write a small loader program (or copy one from a magazine) to load the game and POKE values into specific locations - not much fun given the both the loading times from tape and unreliability. Obviously this was easier with a disk drive but the product that made a real difference was the Multiface II from Romantic Robot - probably the 3rd most popular add-ons for the Amstrad CPC range - after a 3.5" disk dirve and ROMbox.
It plugged into the expansion port of the CPC and once a button was pressed sat silently, invisibly waiting in the background until you pressed the red button before springing into action.
|Romantic Robot's Multiface II||RED "STOP" button pressed (F11)|
If you want to use it with an emulator (and most now support it) you'll need the ROM (original from NVG) and it'll be helpful to read the user guide (in PDF format). You'll also find a list of codes to use with it here. The following assumes you're using the CPCGamesCD (see below) and have configured it to use WinAPE as the emulator:
Quite a lot of the games on the CPCGamesCD have already been modified to incorporate a cheat routine of some kind.
All you really need to play Amstrad CPC games on a PC is a gamepad or joystick with 2 buttons - or the keyboard.
You can get all the games currently available for the Amstrad CPC, along with the CPC Loader front-end and the snap-pack (containing 3500+ images) by MiguelSky on a single CD image which is only ~250MB - namely, the CPCGamesCD. You can then either burn it to a real CD or mount it in a virtual CD/DVD ROM drive.
Don't ask me for any games as I won't reply!
For a comprehensive (but not complete) list of the thousands of Amstrad CPC games with their developers and release dates see the Wikipedia List of Amstrad CPC Games.
Screenshots from some of my favourites, categorized as I see them are shown below. Click on the thumbnails to see a larger version and the name for an external review. These screenshots are taken from the Snap-Pack included with CPC Loader and are included with kind permission from the creator - MiguelSky. These consist of the game loading screen and in game screenshot combined in a single image.
|Fluff||Fres Fighter II - Turbo||Phantomas Saga - Infinity||Prehistorik 2||Super Cauldron - Cauldron 3||Zap'T'Balls -
|Axys - The Last Battle||Bombuz 3D||Call Bd10'n'oeuf||Cubulux II||Cyber Power||Groops|
|Arkanoid||Bomb Jack||Bubble Bobble||Commando||Defend Or Die||Donkey Kong|
|Dragon's Lair||Frogger||Gauntlet||Ghosts 'N' Goblins||Moon Cresta||Out Run|
|Pac-Land||Rainbow Islands||R-Type||Salamander||Tank Busters||Xevious|
|Alien 8||Amaurote||Batman||Head Over Heels||Knight Lore||Meltdown|
|Advanced Pinball Simulator||After The War||Alien Highway||Astro Marine Corps||Ball Bearing||Beach Head|
|Bob Morane -
|Boulder Dash 1||Buffalo Bill's
Wild West Show
|Bumpy's Arcade Fantasy||Codename Mat 1||Crazy Ball|
|The Duct||Elite||Game Over||Garfield - Big Fat
|I, Ball||Incredible Shrinking Sphere|
|Cyrus II Chess||Micro Scrabble Deluxe||Monopoly||Nemesis IV||Trivial Pursuit -
|Who Said That?|
|Bubble Dizzy||Crystal Kingdom Dizzy||Dizzy||Dizzy - Prince
of the Yolkfolk
|Dizzy Down the Rapids||Fantasy World Dizzy|
|Fast Food||Kwik Snax||Magicland Dizzy||Panic Dizzy||Spellbound Dizzy||Treasure Island Dizzy|
|Batman: The Movie||Ghostbusters II||Indiana Jones &
The Temple of Doom
|Licence To Kill||Star Wars||The Living Daylights|
|4 Amtix! Accolades||6-Pak||6-Pak Volume 2||All Star Hits 2||Best of Elite Volume 1||Game, Set & Match|
|Imagine's Arcade Giants||Konami Coin-Op Hits||Konami's Arcade Collection||Les Collectors||The Top 10||The Sold A Million|
|The Addams Family||The Sacred Armour
|Beyond The Ice Palace||The Blues Brothers||Builderland||Cavemania|
|Flimbo's Quest||Ghost Hunters||Jet Set Willy||Potsworth & Co||Rick Dangerous||Rodland|
|Space Froggy||Starquake||Stormlord||Switchblade||Titus the Fox||Turbo the Tortoise|
|Chip's Challenge||Confuzion||Deflektor||Lemmings||Puzznic||Solomon's Key|
|3D Starfighter||Action Force||Cybernoid||Dandy||Dark Fusion||Dragon Spirit|
|Exolon||Flying Shark||Into The Eagle's Nest||Light Force||Mag Max||Megaphoenix|
|Mission Genocide||Mr Heli||Nemesis||Q10 Tank Buster||Robozone||SDI|
|Silkworm||Slap Fight||Tomcat||Ultima Ratio||Xenon||Zynaps|
|Basket Master||Grand Prix Master||Hyper Sports||Match Day||Microprose Soccer||Nigel Mansell's
|Super Cars||Super Monaco
|Track & Field||The Way Of The Exploding Fist||WEC Le Mans||Yie Ar Kung-Fu|
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