Marc Dawson gives us some more inside information on Matthews character...
Well hello there, I have just been reading your page and thought I might add a few lines.
Stoo, Mathew and Myself were indeed coding MM3 or JSW3 dependant on which way you look at it, but Stoo way mistaken over the title. My working title was 'The Mega Tree" and did indeed have trees running around in Pseudo 3D along with Willy.'Will meets the Tax Man" was an in-joke at the time. So many people have vanished since those good old days. I Still see Stoo and Colin Grunes and Chris from time to time but most of them are scattered around the world, and most importantly they have all left the industry (slackers). Steve is doing well over at Westwood.. What ever happened to the following.. Derek Rowson - JSW2 CPC Alan from Duplication (Francis Rossi look alike).
Anyway so long and farewell I have games to look after...
Now I've read this, it's sparked off a memory... I was listening to Talk Radio about a year ago, at some ungodly hour of the morning, and Matthew Smith rang up. Honest. He said who he was and that he had written Jet Set Willy a few years ago, and did the presenter (Ian Collins) know who he was. The presenter didn't have a clue, and I think perhaps it hurt Mat's feelings a bit. His accent sounded like he was from Birmingham, but it could have been Liverpool.
Danny O'Brien, who sent me this story quote from Stuart Houghton.
A friend of mine was listening to Ceaser 'The Geezer' - Talk Radio's controversial, amusingly imprisoned for fraud, 'shock-jock' last year. 'The Geezer' had decided that the theme for the evening was fame, and put out a plea for callers who believed that they were famous, or had once tasted fame for more than their alloted 15 mins.
One of the callers was a Mr Matthew Smith, once an 8-bit gaming megastar - now the MD of some sort of consultancy. Predictably, 'The Geezer' was clueless, and new nothing of the career of the man who created the most poked game in history. The conversation degenerated into an increasingly shrill-voiced Matthew Smith repeating 'But I *AM* famous! I wrote the best selling computer game *OF ALL TIME*!' in the manner of Kevin Eldon's Rod Hull impression off of 'Fist of Fun'.
The only other remotely famous person who rang in was the woman who played Ethel Meeker off of 'Rentaghost'. True story.
Gary Hesketh knows a bit of history..
I used to work in tandy in wallasey (shame shame) before mat had a spekky his dad had bought a zx80 and mat spent all his spare time in tandy messing around with model 2's etc eventualy buying one of paul zabludo (the manager) and blowing it to bits about three weeks later! anyways he used to be realy close to a guy called tim (called watcher of the skies for a rather long & boaring reason) according to tim mat is still routinley to be found at his parents old house in liscard (just round the corner from tandy) i used to see matty a lot back then but now i rareley even see tim to charictorise him he was a lot like niel from the young ones and he grew mushrooms in coffee cups all over his bedroom anyhow thats my contribution i will chase tim up to find more when i can i didnt realise people still cared about him or the speccy nice to see they still do!! cheers and all the best! garry !!!!!!
Colin Rodgers gives us a few tips with...
Hiya,David Phelan gives us his 1p...
I currently work for software creations - (I'm one of Marc's Monkeys!), and I've been playing games since I was 5 (1978). I remember Matthew Smiths games well, they were truely some of the top games ever. I was just wondering, though - can't someone try to find his parents, or his little brother (Anthony?) to try to reveal his whereabouts??
I heard rumours when I worked at Iguana in the North-East that Matthew had attempted to start his own company after leaving Software Projects, but it had failed, and he was now on the dole - This came from an Ex-CRASH writer called Andy Roberts, so dunno how true it is....
"The people started to rumour that he didn't actually exist, and that Matthew Smith was merely a clever code name for a Tandy computer, on which Miner Willy was born. Although proven false, the story still lingers on as a romantic legend."
Okay, so he did exist. Matthew was in the year above me at Mosslands School, Wallasey. A physics teacher, Mr Simcoe, had put together a small computer science lab at the back of his physics room (a RM380Z and 3-4 TRS-80s). Matthew was pretty keen then, coding Space Invaders in BASIC. This'd be about 1981-82. I seem to think he walked from school at the age of 16, which is a pity, since us (the year below) got the chance to do O-level Electronics, and then an A-Level in electronics too (which at that time was the only way to do some computer science, such an O or A level not having existed back then, at least, not in our backwoods). We got a networked bunch of BBCs too. The other guys doing that A-Level were Ian Robinson, and Adrian Sherwin. Adrian wrote 'The Birds & the Bees' for Bugbyte on the Spectrum.
Last I heard was the standard rumour that Matthew Smith was smoking too much dope and using stacks of Spectrums to hold open doors and prop up tables. I guess that would've been about 1983-84.
Hope that is interesting.
Steve Leyland seals the the argument with...
Well I can report that the elusive Syd Barrett of=20 the computer world is alive and well and back in Wallasey.
I first met Matt when he was rich and famous and he sure knew how to throw a good party! I recall a free bar under the stairs and Magic mushroom tea for all.The rest of the evening is lost in a blur,hehe.
Matt only ever used pot and hallucinogens I disapprove of the Class A statement,he is no smackhead.
Of course in those days everyone was his=20 friend,wonder where they all are now he is poor?
At the present time Matt has a 486 and is working on his own.I am trying to talk him into doing another game,but he now seems to detest games and insists on writing application software instead.
Of course in these days of voodoo and P3's Matt needs a better computer than a 486 to stand a chance,but he is on the dole.All the money is gone,spent on wine,women and song,at least it wasn't wasted LOL
So come on all you developers,this talent is going to waste! Give the guy a JOB!!
Matthew's website is..=20 http://www.the-good-stuff.freeserve.co.uk or if you have CU-See me try the toybox ref 126.96.36.199 sometimes he calls here and is live on webcam.