A Good Book About The Guys Who Made Speedball

My copy of The Bitmap Brothers: Universe, an exhaustive (and gorgeous) history of the British studio behind games like Speedball and The Chaos Engine, arrived last week. And it's awesome.

While serving primarily as an account of the company's life and death - which is fascinating, since they were one of the first studios to produce genuinely "cool" games, many of which have gone on to become cult classics - there's also a load of art in there, from concept sketches of Speedball players to beautifully grainy screenshots of Z.

The book was written by Duncan Harris (of Dead End Thrills fame), and in addition to telling us about games we did get to play, also covers in interviews with (among others) company founder Mike Montgomery and lead artist Dan Malone some of the studio's unreleased projects.

It's £30 ($48) from the publisher's site, and if you know anyone who is into video game history, would make a pretty neat Christmas present. Unless that person is you, in which case it would make a pretty neat conventional online transaction.


    Oh yeah, I remember reading that this was coming out soon!

    As a British Amiga owner, the bitmap brothers, along with sensible software, pretty much were my childhood.

    Last edited 08/11/16 9:38 pm

      Australian Amiga 1000 owner here.
      Bitmap Brothers (Speedball, Xenon 2), Psygnosis (Barbarian), Microprose (Silent Service, Master of Orion, Civilisation, X-Com, Gunship, Pirates!, F-15 strike eagle, Midwinter, Carrier Command, 1942: pacific air war, Elite, Rick Dangerous). DMA Design (Lemmings, Ballistix, Shadow of the Beast).
      That pretty much sums up the mid to late 80s through to Mid 90's for me :)

        The Psygnosis Barbarian was pretty bad, did you mean the Palace Studios game?

        As an Amiga fan, though, I highly recommend Kim Justice's YouTube video on Psygnosis. I forgot just how many amazing games they were responsible for.

    Speedball is definitely due for a remake (apparently the version on Steam/GOG is pretty awful). Great fun. I think they also made Magic Pockets and Gods? Decent platformers for the time.

    Speedball... oh wow... I still remember i had this game on one 3.5 (can't remember if it was 1.44 or 720k) disk. Firing it up on my Amstrad 286 12mhz 40mg computer with VGA graphics. Holy crap... this is taking me back. I seriously forgot about this game until i saw the name of this article. My memories... are overloading with tears of joy.

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