Towards the end of their reign as The Universe's Best-Selling Spectrum Mag, the magnificent Your Sinclair began cover mounting full games with the casual abandon of a philanthropic extrovert. One such treat was Rebelstar; written, designed, produced and tenderly loved by the ingenious Julian Gollop. This game initiated the genre we now snappily recognise as Tactical-Squad-Based-RPG-Combat-Type-Thing.
For the sequel to Sabre Wulf, Ultimate ploughed boldly onward with their unconventional approach to spelling. They also doled out their greatest cover image - the menacing silhouette of Lucifer himself, arms aloft atop a desolate peak. This artwork was matched by some of their most evocative inlay writing, previewing Sabreman's travels through a dark palace and descent into the black void; a rich, gothic text saturating the adventure with dark ambience.
The thing everybody remembers about Lords of Midnight is the scale it managed to evoke. Placing the fate of an entire realm in the hands of the player, Mike Singleton's gigantic roleplaying-strategy-wargame-adventure hybrid unfolded across 4,000 locations and featured scores of characters - all controlled through keyboard shortcuts. Beginning with four absurdly named champions (Luxor the Moonprince, Morkin the Moonsprog, Rorthron the Wise and Corleth the Fey), further Lords had to be swiftly united under your banner lest the hordes of bad-geezer Doomdark engulf the world.
Despite being the third release in Ultimate's near-legendary Sabreman series, it's since beenconfirmed that Knight Lore was completed before Sabre Wulf. A revelation which, if anything, makes the isometric 3D engine even more impressive.
Every so often an idea pops up which is both ingenious and dazzlingly simple. The concept of a romper-suited agent being pursued along a train by knife-throwing baddies with only a bizarrely shaped bird for protection might not seem all that straightforward, but after a couple of minutes it all slides amusingly into place.