Phones

Your iPhone 4 and iPad were made for playing Spectrum classic Jet Set Willy

Developer Elite Systems has released an iOS version of one of the all-time 8-bit gaming classics, Jet Set Willy. It's been launched as a standalone app for the iPhone and iPad.

Infinity Blade? Nah. Rage HD? Tsk. Real Racing 2? Schmeal Racing 2! Not everyone expects cutting-edge graphical overload from their iPhone or iPad games. For those with a more retro frame of mind, we have good news: Jet Set Willy is live on the App Store.

Yes, that Jet Set Willy. Originally released in 1982 for the ZX Spectrum, the game went on to sell more than 5 million copies, and led directly to the pulling out of more than 56 million hairs as players tried to get through the game's harder sections.

The new version is available for the iPhone and iPod touch, or as an HD version for the iPad. Both versions cost £1.19 in the App Store. Yes, we know it makes no sense to port a Spectrum game to the iPad and then slap 'HD' on it.

New to Jet Set Willy? You play Miner Willy -- previously the star of Manic Miner -- who has to tidy up his house after a party, before his housekeeper will let him sleep. The problem is that the house appears to be stuffed with monsters.

The new versions are the work of UK developer Elite Systems, which is also responsible for iOS Speccy emulator ZX Spectrum: Elite Collection, which also runs on all of Apple's portable devices. Jet Set Willy will be available within the emulator as an in-app purchase too.

How's the game? Well, it's a faithful port, which is to say it looks the same as the original, and still has buttock-clenchingly difficult moments spread throughout the levels. Thankfully for modern players, there's now an 'infinite lives' mode if you're struggling.

You even have to wait for Jet Set Willy to load, just like in the good old days. The game occupies the top half of the screen, with ZX-style keys at the bottom used to control it.

Jet Set Willy is a genuine slice of 8-bit gaming history, and a pleasing reminder of the days when a game hero could be called Willy without causing mass smirking. Pffffffffffft.