Rock Star Ate My Hamster (Commodore 64)

by PaulEMoz in , ,

I always fancied this back in the day! It always seemed as though it would be a right laugh, and who doesn't want to take a band all the way to the top? So the promise of music, celebrity, scandal and uproar was too good an opportunity to miss this time around.

Rock Star Ate My Hamster is a very basic management game, which pitches you into the cut and thrust world of the pop charts as you pick your perfect blend of stars for a supergroup... or maybe a manky bunch of knackered has-beens would be your ideal lineup?

A pop strumpet, a permanently pissed grizzled metaller and a mad genius. Surely the perfect blend?

It's really quite funny at first, with humourous caracatures of well-known stars to pick from, subtly renamed for the job at hand. Dick Knackered, a ringer for the singer with the Rolling Stones, particularly tickled my fancy. He was a bit expensive for my budget, though, and I went with Lumme, Frank Zipper and Bimbo Baggins, who was the double of a famous Australian pop strumpet. And with them thrown together, the charts were surely ready for Christ On A Bike.

Or not.

Cracking the charts is actually pretty difficult. For starters, you haven't got anything to crack them with. You need product, and to be able to record, you've got to have a deal. You've got to hit the gig circuit and make a name for yourself. At this point, you have to decide on the scale of the venues you'll play, and the prices you'll charge. Too big a venue or too high a ticket price, and you'll risk making a loss.

Christ On A Bike. Quality, through and through.

Get the balance right, though, and you'll start accumulating cash, and a reputation. Sponsors will flood in. Well, you might get one or two, but it's better than nowt. And eventually, you'll attract the attention of a record company and score a deal. And then it'll be time to hit the studio.

Christ On A Bike's debut album, "A Smorgasbord of Shite", endured a tricky gestation, with the band's manager accidentally wiping one of the best tracks. Eventually, though, we had ten tracks laid down, and we had to decide upon a single for release. The manager, in his infinite wisdom, chose the less-than-immediate "Arse-tronaut", which the band felt worked better as an album track.

To be fair, you could quite see that happening, with that gob.

And so it proved, with "Arse-tronaut" not making a dent in the top 10. Second single, "Lord of the Rings is Shit" suffered from having an inappropriate video, and again failed to chart. And "A Smorgasbord of Shite" was similarly absent from the album charts. But the band was playing to sold out arenas, albeit with cheap tickets proving a draw. And the publicity machine was cranked to full effect.

And then came the break we needed. Bimbo Baggins was killed in a terrorist attack. And whether it was due to the groundwork we had put in with our gigging or merely proof that death sells, our epic instrumental "Bimbo's Tits" hit number three in the charts! Christ On A Bike had arrived!

Success at last! What more glorious tribute to Bimbo's death than a chart hit named after her norks?

Truth be told, Rock Star Ate My Hamster isn't a great game, it's far too limited for that. But there's something ridiculously addictive about trying to pimp your band into a chart position. I must have played for about two hours non-stop to make it in the biz, so make of that what you will!