Merman: What was your favourite hardware to develop on?
Probably the Amiga because it had a lot of flexibility, it had all those custom chips and it was accessible. It wasn’t like the Playstation 2 or saturn where you had all these processors to worry about. It was smooth sailing programming-wise and you could get some really good results.
northway: What development system did you use for making your coin-op stuff?
The guy I was working with on the coin-op stuff didn’t really know what to get. We got started off with an Amstrad 6128 with an EPROM programmer attached before moving up to a Pc with either an EPROM or Z80 emulator, I seem to remember.
Merman: Do you have a favourite Bullfrog anecdote or crazy anecdote from working in the office?
FEAST! You had to pound your hand on your desk while you chanted it and it meant we were all going off to the hawaiian barbecue. It was a place in the hazelmere area and occasionally we would all go there… FEAST was the signal!
Fgasking: Have you still got the source code for any of your unreleased games?
Yes, I have all the code for Quadron. Of all the games I worked on, it’s the one I most wish had been released. It was a labour of love and something that was a very personal project for me.
TT: Are there any other arcade games you would have liked to convert to the ZX Spectrum?
I wouldn’t have minded having a go at R-type or Nemesis or one of those scrolling shooters. That would have been interesting as scrolling on the spectrum was quite complicated and a challenge to do well. It involved using some programming tricks so I would have liked that.
Merman: Do you play fruit machines yourself?
Occasionally but I know the odds of winning so I don’t go on them too much! I do have a strong memory of when I was first programming a fruit machine and getting it to stop all three reels, ‘clunk, clunk, clunk’, in the exact configuration I’d programmed in ten seconds before. That made a real impact – it seemed like magic back then!