Cyberzone – Building borgs in a virtual Swindon

For context, let's start with a recently unearthed episode of the Virtual Reality Gameshow Cyberzone. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kLj-xibrpoM Broadsword's foray into virtual reality would be significant in their future as a company outside of television, but despite their reputation as innovators, the virtual reality worlds here (including Cyber Swindon) have a rather more domestic origin. The Virtual … Continue reading Cyberzone – Building borgs in a virtual Swindon

The World of Quantel

This link from TV Forum caught my eye a few days ago. https://tvforum.uk/tvhome/looking-vintage-quantel-paintbox-systems-44335/ While these aren't really gameshow related, it can't be underestimated how the ability to automatically generate images and effects at this scale started to pave the way for more technology to enter the TV Scene as a whole. Of particular interest is … Continue reading The World of Quantel

The search for BBC TV software

No time to do this properly, but for those who didn't catch it, this thread is worth a read: https://twitter.com/tomscott/status/1085596994196987904   https://twitter.com/tomscott/status/1085651896830816256 One thing that did turn up in that thread was a handy VT clock generator, at http://mdfs.net/Software/Video/VTClock/ - which looks like it may still be in use in parts of the BBC. It goes without … Continue reading The search for BBC TV software

In it to win it – Dale’s Non-Musical Chairs

As with a lot of these nowadays, it started with a tweet: https://twitter.com/DavidJBodycombe/status/1082011631402528768 I answered in the conversation, but I thought a more detailed explanation was worth writing here for preservation purposes. Plus I wanted an excuse to write some loose pseudocode on this site, and this is a good example. For reference, here's a … Continue reading In it to win it – Dale’s Non-Musical Chairs

Krypton Factor ‘Super’ Round (scare quotes author’s own)

I think the story is pretty well known, in the last series before the Gordon Burns-helmed Krypton Factor went off air, it was decided to give the show more dynamism by making the final round an apparent test of all of the abilities required, rather than just using the General Knowledge round as before. Courtesy … Continue reading Krypton Factor ‘Super’ Round (scare quotes author’s own)

Press 6 to move right – the world of phone in video games (Part 3, BBC and ITV in house)

For the previous article in this series, click here. In the early 1980's, the BBC made its first foray into the phone in game field, adapting the American TV POWWW syndicated setup as part of their holiday programming strand Get Set For Summer (the US version of this is included below, as featured in Barney's … Continue reading Press 6 to move right – the world of phone in video games (Part 3, BBC and ITV in house)

The Special Projects Division or “Only at the BBC”

The following was originally intended as a footnote in the final part of Press '6' to Move Right. As it's a significant digression from that article, I've spun it out here as a separate entity. The BBC Special Projects division could be described as a significant inspiration to me in so many ways, both here … Continue reading The Special Projects Division or “Only at the BBC”

Press 6 to move right – the world of phone in video games (Part 2, Total Control Media)

Click here for Part 1. The Beatles and The Rolling Stones. Blur and Oasis. Swap Shop and Tiswas. X Factor and Strictly. For every stand out success, there is always a rival up against it, conflicting and complementing. Aside from blatant SEO, the analogy extends to phone in games, with ITE matched against Total Control … Continue reading Press 6 to move right – the world of phone in video games (Part 2, Total Control Media)

One a’maze’ing find

Just doing a random YouTube scout and I saw a video from Neil Robinson showing off what looked like the timer from Futuristic in the original maze. https://youtu.be/-aW3mMEkIXY It is genuine, and you'll see on the video page his efforts to repair it. It just makes me wonder how many of these props and other … Continue reading One a’maze’ing find

Taking the ‘P’ – The Big Blockbusters board

As soon as this blog went live, one of the the first requests made was to look into the traditional Blockbusters game board - a sophisticated setup that implied a massive complex display screen without a traditional monitor in sight. First, let's look at what's being discussed. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N7bOVvaCJeQ So, the game board is a 4x5 matrix … Continue reading Taking the ‘P’ – The Big Blockbusters board