At the beginning of April 2016 Peter Verdi's Magnetic Scrolls Chronicles website went offline. So far all my attempts to contact Peter failed. His site carried some invaluable interviews with former Magnetic Scrolls people. To preserve the work I temporarily uploaded a dump of his site taken in summer of 2015. All you can see below is 100% Peter's work! Hopefully his site will reappear soon! Peter, if you read this, can you contact me?

Remember how it's like to ride on a cloud? How it feels to be squashed by a bus, or how to get that damned gold disc from Micky? Well, here's your chance to relive all these situations.

Have a chat with the devil in THE PAWN, ransack an entire island in THE GUILD OF THIEVES, restore luck itself to a whole country in JINXTER, uncover a conspiracy in CORRUPTION, become an inter-dimensional secret agent in FISH!, an ancient god in MYTH, walk in the footsteps of Alice in WONDERLAND and inherit a haunted mansion in THE LEGACY.
Become a part of the fantasy of Magnetic Scrolls - you certainly won't regret it . . .


   News Archive
   The Games
    - The Pawn
    - The Guild Of Thieves
    - Jinxter
    - Corruption
    - Fish!
    - Myth
    - Wonderland
    - The Magnetic Scrolls
       Collection Vol. One
    - The Legacy - Realm
       Of Terror
   Magnetic Interpreter
   The Message Board
   About The Website
A brief history of Magnetic Scrolls and Acorn - Page Three
Article written by Andrew Weston
based on the article that appeared in Issue 284 of Qercus Magazine (© Acorn Publisher) - used with kind permission


the novels of Lewis Carroll, the game was impressive with 100 illustrations including animations, pop-up information, menu-driven movements, interactive maps and information panels for each object.

The Collection Vol. 1 (Magnetic Windows versions of Corruption, Fish and Guild of Thieves):
This was the final release by the Magnetic Scrolls team (although some staff moved on together subsequently - see later) and was a re-working of earlier titles under the Magnetic Windows environment. The package necessarily included the essentials of the constituent games such as the cassette tape for Corruption and of course, the fish identification chart.

Wonderland's map and enigmatic smoking slug


The Magnetic Windows system in Wonderland: note the Hearts instead of window slider arrows


Several sites of varying depth have been set up over the years in tribute to the unique works of the company. In particular, there is extensive information including interviews with the key persons in Magnetic Scrolls, reviews from the time, packaging, hints, solutions documentation and other included items such as images of posters and novels on the Magnetic Scrolls Memorial for each game. There is further information on Adventureland and both websites are in fact maintained by Stefan Meier.

The games were often more humorous or surreal than Level 9 titles although some shared the latter company's love of English fantasy, storytelling and the countryside. The developing complexity of interactive fiction games could be seen in both company's games with character interaction capabilities for example. Indeed, the 1988 release, Corruption, relied on interaction with other characters for the game to progress in contrast to the series of often manual actions and tasks in many other adventures.

The titles span a period of 6 years from 1985 to 1991 and releases were for most popular 8-bit computers, 16-bit computers and of course the Archimedes (the company having folded before the Archimedes was superseded by the A5000, A3010 etc.). Most games right up until Wonderland were released for the 8-bit machines in particular the Commodore 64 and Spectrum with earlier 8 bit computers being catered for earlier on. All that is, except for the BBC Micro which is notable by its absence and given the quality of the Level 9 games released at the time of, say, The Pawn, it raises the question of why at the peak of the BBC Micro's games market it didn't receive a conversion or two. Perhaps, given that the Spectrum versions required the 128K machine and the more select ownership of the BBC Master (or expanded/enhanced BBC Micros) it is understandable that the later games were not released for 8-bit Acorns but fortunately a couple of years later the 32-bit Archimedes burst onto the microcomputer scene.

In fact the connections with Acorn don't end there as Anita Sinclair once listed BBC Elite as a must-have "desert island" item and the disc copy-protection for Atari ST versions of Magnetic Scrolls game was done with a BBC Micro to modify disc sectors that the Atari could not.

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