An interesting title next from Software Projects which I never heard of until Peter Weighill sent in a scan of the game’s advert. Heebie Jeebies is another bunged into the archives for our search… Yet another Software Projects title which seemed to disappear without trace. Although Software Projects continued to around 1987 with Hysteria, this never surfaced… although adverts were published.
Was the game actually released in limited numbers? We managed to get hold of an ex-employee from Software Projects, who remembered a little about the game, and suggested it was developed by an Irish guy who might have been named “Niall”. There seems to be no records in Gamebase of any programmers having this first name, so it could well be a one off programming job that didn’t quite make it.
Well, this proved to be a bit of a red herring, as in 2014 – Robbie Graham confirmed that his brother Andrew Graham was the coder of this game. Andrew later worked on Trojan Warrior and Pro Ski Simulator, before later becoming famous for working on Micro Machines.
Andrew had written the game when he was still at school and a bedroom programmer. He had sent it to a few companies, and actually visited Software Projects in Liverpool. An exciting time for Andrew, where he met Matthew Smith.
The game was actually completed, though Andrew isn’t sure why it never actually got released. He was actually paid for his work, and of course the game was fully advertised in the likes of C+VG.
As for the game itself, Heebie Jeebies was described as follows within the advert:
“You play the roll of a spider in this extremely compelling game and you are faced with escaping from some very perilous situations. You are trapped in a hole from which you must escape, but there are other insects in the hole which make your task more difficult, as contact with any of them will lead to instant death.
However, you are not totally defenseless, you are capable of leaving a web trail which only snails can cross. By collecting the twigs that are littered around and storing them against the left hand side of the hole between the two stones, a bridge will form and you will be able to climb out. But be careful – there are 15 hazardous situations to contend with – each one more difficult than the last.”
Andrew mentioned that the game featured an in-game cover of “Dance of the sugar plum fairy” and the graphic style was inspired by seeing screenshots of Atic Attack (although he had never played it back then).
Overall the game sounded quite good, although its difficult to judge from a game’s advert and the screenshots. It looks like your typical game from the early 80’s. Andrew suggests that people may find the game very slow moving and that the game is nothing special. Regardless, it would be great to see the game properly preserved.
Andrew later went on to work on the likes of Micro Machines and Psycho Pinball, and he offers GTW64 hope that the game could be saved some day soon. He has offered to look through his storage for the game, and hopefully we could well see it surface very soon. Lets hope the tape still plays!
Watch this space!
Contributions: Peter Weighill, Tobias Samuelsson, Robbie Graham, Andrew Graham