‘The one you’ve been screaming for…’
Friday the 13th – also known as Friday the 13th: The Computer Game – was released by Domark in for the Commodore 64 (1985), ZX Spectrum (1986) and Amstrad CPC (1986) based on the popular slasher film series of the same name.
You have two tasks in the game. You have to find a safe sanctuary (you pick up the Sanctuary Cross and place it in a location to make it a sanctuary) where Jason Vorhees cannot go and then persuade your friends to gather there. If they get bored or Jason enters they will leave. The problem is that Jason is a normal player moving around the game until he attacks or is attacked. Before Jason attacks, the player is warned so they can take action. You play as different characters that all have different levels of strength, panic and sanity. Jason always attacks the character with the highest panic rating. Scattered around the playing area are ten weapons you can pick up and use.
I’m not sure I’ve ever been let down quite as badly with the potential of a film as I was with this game when, at 11 years old, I fully expected never to leave the house ever again as the world’s greatest game was unleashed. The problems were two-fold: the incredibly boring time when Jason wasn’t around and the other time where Jason was on-screen which usually meant death within five seconds. A harsher critic might suggest the films also followed this on/off pattern.
Pictured above is the entire playing area from the Spectrum 48k version of the game. The ten minutes it took to load the cassette considerably outweighed the moments playing it. The graphics, sound and playability were a disgrace to their respective words, the only redeeming feature, funnily enough, was the cover. The computer magazines at the time savaged the game and it quietly disappeared until I just reminded you it even existed. Below, someone plays the Spectrum version, reminding us all of the accidental horror.
Daz Lawrence, Horrorpedia.com
Related: Crystal Lake Memories: The Complete History of Friday the 13th | Friday the 13th (1980) | Friday the 13th (2015) | Friday the 13th (1985 computer game) | Friday the 13th: No Man’s Land | Friday the 13th Part 2 | Friday the 13th Part III | Friday the 13th: The Final Chapter | Friday the 13th: A New Beginning | Jason Goes to Hell: The Final Friday | Jason Lives: Friday the 13th Part VI | Freddy vs. Jason