As you know, I’m first with the comment on all the big games of the day. Which is why Eurogamer now carries my ruthless breakdown of LucasArt’s Zak McKracken and the Alien Mindbenders. In case you remember when it first came out, and in case you think gaming is a modern pursuit, let me offer you that slightly sicky feeling in your stomach: this game came out twenty-two years ago. I went to it remembering it as brilliant. I came out realising it was full of brilliant ideas, but not a brilliant game. Clearly others disagree. Let’s fight. But most of all, this was, to my mind, intended to be a piece celebrating my dad’s friend Ted. I hope I managed that.
“I wonder if I’m getting stupider. Zak McKracken and the Alien Mindbenders came out in 1988, when I was 11 years old. It seems impossible to believe that at the age of 32 I can have become worse at games. And yet while my memories of playing Zak Mak when it first came out are extremely hazy, I certainly don’t remember getting stuck quite as often. What I do remember is that I really enjoyed it. I’ve since been told by those who should know that this cannot possibly have been true. So I’ve gone back to find out.”