Thorn EMI Computer Software

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The four distinct eras/issues of Creative Sparks games can be seen with River Rescue, which appeared on all four labels at various stages. Creative sparks all four.png
The four distinct eras/issues of Creative Sparks games can be seen with River Rescue, which appeared on all four labels at various stages.

Thorn EMI Computer Software was a British video games software house set up in the early 1980s as part of the now-defunct British conglomerate Thorn EMI. They released a number of games in the early 1980s, mainly for the Atari 8-bit family and later ported to other platforms. The division was caught up in the general disorganization of the parent firm and became dysfunctional by 1984.[ citation needed ]

United Kingdom Country in Europe

The United Kingdom, officially the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland but more commonly known as the UK or Britain, is a sovereign country lying off the north-western coast of the European mainland. The United Kingdom includes the island of Great Britain, the north-eastern part of the island of Ireland and many smaller islands. Northern Ireland is the only part of the United Kingdom that shares a land border with another sovereign state‍—‌the Republic of Ireland. Apart from this land border, the United Kingdom is surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean, with the North Sea to the east, the English Channel to the south and the Celtic Sea to the south-west, giving it the 12th-longest coastline in the world. The Irish Sea lies between Great Britain and Ireland. With an area of 242,500 square kilometres (93,600 sq mi), the United Kingdom is the 78th-largest sovereign state in the world. It is also the 22nd-most populous country, with an estimated 66.0 million inhabitants in 2017.

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A video game is an electronic game that involves interaction with a user interface to generate visual feedback on a two- or three-dimensional video display device such as a TV screen, virtual reality headset or computer monitor. Since the 1980s, video games have become an increasingly important part of the entertainment industry, and whether they are also a form of art is a matter of dispute.

A software house is a company whose primary products are various forms of software, software technology, distribution, and software product development. Software houses are companies in the software industry.

The division was sold off[ citation needed ] and reorganized as Creative Sparks, [1] continuing to sell the original Thorn games as well as adding new titles of their own. Newer releases moved away from the Atari platforms, and appeared mostly on the Amstrad CPC, ZX Spectrum and Commodore 64. Creative Sparks also used the Sparklers label for budget-priced reissues of their old software. Sparklers was best known for the "199" brand of £1.99 games.

Amstrad CPC series of home computers produced by Amstrad

The Amstrad CPC is a series of 8-bit home computers produced by Amstrad between 1984 and 1990. It was designed to compete in the mid-1980s home computer market dominated by the Commodore 64 and the Sinclair ZX Spectrum, where it successfully established itself primarily in the United Kingdom, France, Spain, and the German-speaking parts of Europe.

ZX Spectrum series of personal home computers

The ZX Spectrum is an 8-bit personal home computer released in the United Kingdom in 1982 by Sinclair Research.

Later, the low-cost software label Alternative Software acquired the distribution rights to several Creative Sparks titles. [2]

Alternative Software British software developer and publisher founded in 1985

Alternative Software is a British software developer and publisher founded in 1985.

As a result, many games were issued on more than one label, sometimes appearing on all four at various stages. An example of this is River Rescue; this first appeared on the Thorn EMI label, [2] then later reappeared in Creative Sparks [2] packaging. It was next reissued on the budget Sparklers label, [3] before finally being distributed in new packaging (also at a budget price) by Alternative. [2]

<i>River Rescue</i> 1982 video game

River Rescue is a 1982 game for the Commodore VIC-20, Commodore 64, ZX Spectrum, and Atari 8-bit family. It is one of a number of game titles produced by Thorn EMI Computer Software during 1982 and 1983. A TI-99/4A version was announced but never released.

Video games released

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  1. Creative Sparks, Gamebase 64 forum. Article retrieved 2007-04-22.
  2. 1 2 3 4 River Rescue, Atarimania. Article retrieved 2007-04-22.
  3. River Rescue, Article retrieved 2007-04-22.