Doctor Who – “Dalek Attack” computer game   Leave a comment

Please note : I cannot attest to whether these versions will work or not but here are some download links for the game – or simply Google something like “Dalek Attack” + “download”. Remember this is an old game some you may need to run it in compatibility mode, dos, or use an emulator (depending upon your computer and the version of the game).

Download Dalek Attack

Download (1995kB)
Manual (14kB)

Back in 1992 the state of the art in home video gaming featuring the Daleks was “Dalek Attack”

In Dalek Attack the player plays the Doctor and fights the Daleks. In most versions of the game, the player can choose between playing as the Fourth, Fifth or Seventh Doctor; in the MS-DOS version, the player can play as the Second, Fourth or Seventh Doctor, and in the ZX Spectrum version only the Seventh Doctor was available.  A second player may play as the Doctor’s companion (Ace or a UNIT soldier (only Ace in the Spectrum version). K-9 also makes appearances later in the game as does Davros, creator of the Daleks in the TV series, as the final end of level boss.

The game was released on all major formats of the time except for the Amstrad CPC, which was announced but never released. It was designed and storyboarded by 221B Software Development. On the PC and Amiga versions, there was a secret room behind some blocks. The room gave some of the programming credits for each game, in particular the graphics and music. The credits were hidden in this way due to the BBC not wanting individual credits for the game development team to be included in the game. Perhaps surprisingly, the PC version, which had the most sophisticated graphics, and the ZX Spectrum version, the most basic version, were both coded by the same person. This was due to the similarities between Z80 and 8086 assembly language.

Alternative Software released the ZX Spectrum version only due to popular demand, since by 1992 the Spectrum was no longer a commercially viable platform. Dalek Attack was released for the Spectrum in 1993, and was the last licensed Spectrum game. It differed from all the others in its first level; in all the other releases the first level involved the Doctor on a hoverboard going along the sewer. The Spectrum version had the Doctor on foot running around collecting hostages and avoiding globes. The Spectrum version also lost out on other features such as different enemies; only the Robomen, Ogrons and standard Daleks featured. The end-level guardians were also different.

Other versions of the game featured special Daleks such as hovering Daleks from the TV Century 21 comics strips of the 1960s. 1960s “movie” Daleks also made an appearance, as did the special weapons Dalek from Remembrance of the Daleks. Another special Dalek also featured, based on a sketch in an article from the Doctor Who Magazine 10th anniversary special showing how a Dalek might look when the television series came back.

The game was later re-released, first in a three pack compilation set called the Sci-Fi Collection with two other titles (Galactic Warrior Rats, Suburban Commando) for the PC. The front cover was in a “Y” shape with Dalek Attack in the bottom right and the instruction booklet was photocopied. This was followed in 1994/95 by another re-release, which was the same as the original except for a purple and black border added to the front and back covers.

An attempt was made to fit the events of the game into regular Doctor Who continuity in the Virgin New Adventures novel Head Games. This suggests that Dalek Attack takes place in an alternate universe created by the Doctor while he is affected by energy from the Land of Fiction. Like all Doctor Who spin-off media, its relationship to the ongoing story of the television series is open to interpretation.

Although the game was released on the Admiral Software label (a cunning ploy to hide the fact that it was produced by Alternative Software, a budget software label), it was recalled due to legal action by a software house which was already called Admiral Software. The boxes had stickers placed over the Admiral logos, and the in game graphics featuring billboards with “Admiral Software” on were replaced, requiring the disks to be reduplicated.

The game engine was re-used as the basis of the Suburban Commando game developed by 221B Software for Alternative.

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