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Pixel8Games presents a retrospective of
a 1984 videogame by Mikro-Gen


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Commodore 64
Sinclair Spectrum
Amstrad CPC

Within his wildest sleeping nightmare, Wally Week forces himself to have an out-of-body experience to ensure his alarm clock has been set for the morning.

In his sleep, Wally has somehow realised that he didn't set the alarm clock, whereby he'll be late for work and will get the sack. He manages to extricate himself from his bed, in dream form, however, setting the alarm clock isn't quite so straightforward. Adding to the dilemma, the key to wind up the clock is somewhere in the house and Wally has to search for it by solving various puzzles in the vicinity.

In a time of computer gaming in which a game didn't need a dream mechanism to have cooked chickens chase after you, Pyjamarama certainly didn't hold back. The creatures of the night that are out to get you also include flying axes, big hands protruding up from the ground, flying darts, ghosts, man-eating plants, etc. You'll get to battle some space invaders in the form of household objects as well.

Your energy comes in the form of a glass of milk and, as long as BA Barracus isn't around, you should be able to keep this full if you're careful enough. Contact with enemies reduces the milk but there are opportunities to get a top-up. Should you lose your energy and all of your lives, you'll be given the most British of severe admonishments, so it's best not to fail.

Pyjamarama isn't a graphics-heavy game and, indeed, the CPC and Spectrum go mad on simple primary colours, whereas the Commodore looks like it OD'd on Parma Violets.

The fun is in the puzzling though, and working out what goes where can take a while, especially as you can only hold two items at any one time. I spent hours on this game when it was released only to crack and write a letter to Mikro-Gen asking for help. Help with the game, that is. I got a nicely typed cheat sheet through the post about two weeks later (ah, simpler times!) that enabled me to complete it... at last!

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