I’m about to fire up Gauntlet, Arrowhead Game Studios’ 2014 version of the classic fantasy hack and slash of the same name!



I played Gauntlet on the ZX Spectrum, soon after its release in 1987.  I played it whenever I was given a chance.. in those days I had to share both the console and TV time with family.  Sometimes we even tried to play the game together.. probably one of the few times my brother and I were able to get along with each other!

Gauntlet (1987) Character Selector

I would usually choose Valkyrie as I was young enough to think I should play as a girl, but Warrior was a solid second choice.  We considered the Wizard and Elf to be weaker in combat and quicker to die.. of course we were far too young to realise that they had useful strengths or how to make use of them.  No, we went all out.. rush for the treasure or food, bash the enemies, and run, run, run for the exit!

We discovered that if you bound the controls for Player 1 and Player 2 to the same keys, one player could have two characters running around.  We also realised that you could have a character rejoin play so long as the other was still alive.. and then we then realised that if you allowed one of the characters to take most of the damage to start with, you could stagger their deaths to avoid them both dying at the same time and ending the game!

This was definitely cheating to counter a lack of skills, but meh, I was only a kid.. I desperately wanted to see what happened at level 100, but the closest I ever got in weeks of play was somewhere in the high 80s before being pulled away to visit family.  It had taken a few hours of play to get that far too, and I never had the same interest after that.

So.. nostalgia awakened, and I’m excited but a little nervous to see what the new version of Gauntlet is like! 🙂


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