Thursday 20 November 1986

…At the moment it is throwing it down with rain outside,
it is 9.45pm and I am eating some cherry cake.
This afternoon we almost blew the school computer up.
Considering yesterday we almost smashed the computer
to bits trying to get it to start, today we properly blew all
its fuses because we were teaching some others how to
play a programme called Flowers of Crystal…

I had to look this up.

I’d forgotten all about this BBC Micro “game”, which, by virtue of us “playing” it during lesson time, naturally had an educational bent.

I may be wrong, but I believe it involved a character called Mr Grubble (think the CEO of an international bank) bringing the planet Crystal to near-oblivion thanks to rampant commercialisation. The hero (think someone camped outside St Paul’s Cathedral), aka the 10-year-old us playing it at school, had to save the planet before it was destroyed, or became unprofitable, or both.

There were spells and monsters and a choose-your-own-adventure format, all within the confines of a BBC Acorn microcomputer.

The 1980s were arriving at last!

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