After making the break for freedom in The Great Escape, leaving the bally Hun looking confused at little piles of dirt all around the exercise yard, we take to loading our next game in the Your Sinclair Top 100. It couldn’t get any more different as No.#22 puts us straight into a high-octane car chase with “Let’s go Mr. Driver!” ringing in our ears we’ve entered the world of Chase H.Q. from Ocean Software.
Chase H.Q. originally appeared as an arcade machine across the globe back in 1988 from Taito Corporation, before it emerged on the ZX Spectrum in 1989 from John O’Brien, Bill Harbison and with Jonathan Dunn once again providing some excellent music for another Spectrum game [listen to that here]. Taking on the role of Tony Gibson, from the “Chase Special Investigation Department.”, it’s your job – along with your partner Raymond Broady – to find numerous perpetrators along the endless highway, then you need to smash them off the road. Under the watchful gaze of Nancy – back at the H.Q. – you’ll be directed to your next perp, but you’ll need to be quick before they make their getaway.
Getting past the fact that the boxart for the conversion of Chase H.Q. is basically Han Solo and Lando Calrissian slightly redrawn, though Lando is suffering from a bad case of Kenny Everett gigantic hands, Chase H.Q. is utterly brilliant! The arcade was also fantastic, both fast and colourful, and here the ZX Spectrum pushes the bar as far as it possibly can, delivering what people witnessed for their cluster of 10 pence pieces. Granted we’ve not got the in game speech, nor sound effects plus the speed isn’t as breakneck as we witnessed, but Chase H.Q. is still brilliant nevertheless.
Nothing has been lost from Chase H.Q. over the past few years, it’s still highly enjoyable and it’s still completely unforgiving. This needs to be played today.