Mr. Numpty and the Alien Invaders was released in 1992, and available as a full, un-crippled product from various PD (Public Domain) libraries. It was originally sent by the author, 'Gudger', to 17Bit Software, but soon found its way to other public domain libraries.

Mr Numpty Amiga Power Review
The game was reviewed in the May 1992 issue (issue 13) of Amiga Power, and can be found on page 104. It was this review, and being a big fan of JetSet Willy style games, that encouraged me to track the game down.

In 1994, and with a PD library opening up in a local computer shop, and them having the game in their collection, I paid my pennies and was soon enjoying the delights of this charming platform adventure.

Having enjoyed the game I sent off my £5 registration fee to the author. In return I received a map/solution to the game, and a sampler disk containing Numpty and a number of programs the author had sent off to a selection of games companies in the hope of gaining employment.

Along with the disk, map and solution I received a nice letter, and while some of it was only relevant to me, to the right are the bits from it that you may find interesting.

The Letter

Having registered Mr. Numpty with the author he was kind enough to send me a map and solution for the game, along with a disk of other programs he'd created. A letter was also enclosed, and below are the more interesting bits from it.

"I would like to get into a games job, so am going to write something flash and spend a lot of time on the graphics.

The disk I'm sending you has a few small projects I did just to prove I could do it. They actually got me 2 job interviews last year (1993) but I didn't get them. The problem is I'm self taught and they really want graduates. They asked me classic computing questions which I didn't know because I didn't have a 'classic' teaching in computing.

Oh well. I hope I can get there through sheer persistence.

I learned BASIC on the Spectrum by typing in listings from magazines and some books I can't remember. (I had a program published in Your Sinclair years ago called 'George and the Deadly Meteor', if you ever saw that). I toyed around with assembly on the Speccy, but didn't get far.

When I got an Amiga I went straight for assembly. I've never even looked at Amiga BASIC. I got the DEVPAC assembler and these books:

1) Amiga Machine Language ISBN 1-55755-025-5
2) Amiga System Programmers' Guide ISBN 1-55755-034-4

These are published by Abacus and written by Dittrich. Book 1 tells you the basics you need to know for assembly. If you have no programming knowledge at all it may seem hard. Book 2 is absolutely essential if you want to get the most out of the Amiga, but it's useless without book 1.

These books are around £20 - £30, and an assembler about £50, so some money is needed.

It takes a lot of patience and time to learn it by yourself. Not many people can stick to it. There's plenty of times I've almost given up, but it's worth it in the end. You just need strong self discipline.

P.J Gargin (Gudger)"