Sinclair User8th October 1988
Published in Sinclair User #82
Computer Maniac's 1989 Diary
The Filofax. Probably the greatest invention ever. Inside it you can cram all sorts of items of information. Names and telephone numbers, a day-to-day planner, a calendar, lots of little facts and figures, street and world maps, even all your business cards. The only problem with a Filofax, aside from when you lose it, is what do you write in it?
Fear no more. CMD IS HERE! CMD is a computerised diary, telephone directory, games compendium and amusing facts book, and it's all completely, 100 percent, utterly and totally useless. It's not portable. It's not instant access and it's pooh.
The diary allows you to enter details for each day that you want to remember so desperately that you're prepared to load up a program on your Spectrum just to remember them. It also comes with historical details about each day. A completely useless concept because the whole point of a diary is that you can take it with you and jot down important information in it as you go about your daily life, such as 'must buy that £350,000,000 TV I saw in Harrods today out of my small change'.
The facts section is probably the best thing in the game. It contains a telephone index of all the computer mags (including us), software manufacturers, hardware manufacturers, freelancers home numbers and a list of the best Chinese massage parlours in London!
You also get lots of other exciting elements like a horoscope generator (completely random, is this how Patrick Walker does it?), a weather forecast (gives you the average lowest and highest temperatures for the time of year, depending on the date), an egg timer (tell it what size egg and how you like it, and it tells you to boil it for seven minutes 40 seconds), a reaction timer (press fire when the red light turns to green to make the cars advance up the track) and a games menu.
The game menu is a bit of a disappointment. You get a wild and wacky choice of three games. Hangman, pretty easy, Wordsquare, press any keys to reveal all the answers, and a trivia quiz with three questions.
As far as visual design goes the screen is very nicely laid out, with half size proportional lettering and some very attractive window layouts. What spoils it all is the bit of spasy vector animation going on in the corner. The shapes don't rotate smoothly, as you'd automatically think they would on a Spectrum, they flap about uselessly. Honestly, LED.
I can see no way that this can receive any merit as a full price game. Maybe as a free bonus with another game, yeah, but standing alone it's just too short lived.
A nice idea but not interesting enough to hold your attention for long.