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Tuesday, 12 November 2013

Who needs friends when you have Two Way TV on Challenge?

I'm not sure how many people will remember this, but gamehow obsessed Sky channel Challenge used to have a red button option. Pressing the red button took you to Two Way TV, home to a bunch of games. I'm not sure how many games there were, because I only remember two, but there were definitely two.
These games were brilliant, and I loved them to the point of wanting to marry them. Sadly, there isn't much info on the old Two Way TV service so I'm mostly writing this from my flea bitten memory. I also have a horrible feeling that you might have had to pay for these games, so I might have cost my parents billions of pounds as a child. Whoops.

Tactiles -

This was a pairs matching game with a twist. A bunch of aliens formed an impossibly cute little grid, like the one you see above. You made the aliens disappear by sorting them into pairs, but you were only allowed to match pairs that had a clear path between them. A clear path was defined as one that went round no more than two corners. So this was allowed -

but this wasn't -

You were given 20 minutes to complete the game, and as I usually did it in 5 or 6, I felt like a goddamn genius most of the time. That's probably what kept me playing for hours on end. Being good at something was such a rare occurrence for me that I had to grab it with both hands whenever it came along.

String 'em in -

Here we have a more challenging version of Boggle. You have 20 minutes to clear the grid of letters by making words. The catch was that you could only go straight up or down or straight across – none of this diagonal nonsense. You also got points for each word; if I remember correctly the scoring system was similar to Scrabble. Normally you'd be left with two or three annoying letters at the end, and no matter how hard you tried, you could never make X J W into a word.

String 'em in is now on Facebook, or at least it was, because I've played it on there. But poor Tactiles is nowhere to be seen, save for the odd mysterious screenshot on Google. Those of you who never played it, I feel for you. Those who did, consider yourselves honoured.

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