Author Topic: Looking for info on "book club" PC Lemmings  (Read 1191 times)

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Offline takmaze

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Looking for info on "book club" PC Lemmings
« on: November 24, 2023, 11:36:29 PM »
Hello,

Apologies if posting in the wrong place!

I am currently decluttering and putting a lot of old stuff onto eBay. One thing I am struggling with listing is a copy of Lemmings I found with "Book Club" on the disks.

I can find info about the Amiga and Atari versions, but the one I have is the IBM version. Specifically on the disks it says "IBM & 100% COMPATIBLES AMSTRAD PCS TANDY PCS". I can't find much about this one and can't see any previous sales on eBay for it.

There are three big floppies and a small one (with a manual and product registration card and a contest entry form from Home Computer Club). It's all boxed with the sleeve.

Looking for info both to help determine a price and out of curiosity if anyone's familiar with the history of these things.

Thanks!

Offline zanzindorf

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Re: Looking for info on "book club" PC Lemmings
« Reply #1 on: November 26, 2023, 02:26:36 AM »
Neat! Here's a little more info here on this post from 10 years ago: https://www.lemmingsforums.net/index.php?topic=1521.0

Some of the links here are dead, but the neatest thing about this version seems to be it has a couple of exclusive levels. I have played these levels, but I didn't realize they were from this version, so that's kinda cool.

In terms of price, I'm really not sure. It is a limited time version of Lemmings, but I'm not sure how much that boosts the price. Someone is selling a lone floppy of the Atari ST Book Club version on Ebay for $90 USD, but that seems kinda insane to me without the box or manual or anything. A standard boxed copy of IBM lemmings is in the ballpark of $35 I think. So maybe, a complete boxed copy of Book Club IBM Lemmings is something like $50-65? That would be my guess.

Offline namida

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Re: Looking for info on "book club" PC Lemmings
« Reply #2 on: November 26, 2023, 06:22:11 PM »
I know the Amiga bookclub version has a unique Tricky 21 and Taxing 20, as well as having different (but not completely unique as a few other different editions have them too) Fun 22, Tricky 14, Taxing 15 and Mayhem 22. I don't know if the PC version is the same though, wasn't even aware of a PC bookclub version before this topic. Most of the unique/different levels are much more interesting than the ones they replace, aside from the Tricky 21 replacement (far worse) and Mayhem 22 (about the same, maybe a little bit better).
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Offline zanzindorf

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Re: Looking for info on "book club" PC Lemmings
« Reply #3 on: November 26, 2023, 08:23:38 PM »
Interesting. I found a forum post on bordersdown.net that references The Home Computer Club, which I think is a UK based, PC game subscription magazine. A forum member said they got their copy of lemmings from this company, and their disc had "book club" just like yours. However, this is for Atari ST, not IBM/Tandy. Everything I find related to The Home Computer Club is specifically NOT IBM/Tandy.

Video from The Laird's Lair describing this club: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5jeWeGAy1nI

bordersdown.net discussion: https://bordersdown.net/threads/105616-Best-version-of-Lemmings/page2 (See attached png for exact comment)

Is there any way you can play the discs to find out if they have the specific changes Namida mentioned? If they do, it could make this copy pretty special. If it doesn't, I'm guessing this company just redistributed a normal copy of Lemmings with their own label.

Offline takmaze

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Re: Looking for info on "book club" PC Lemmings
« Reply #4 on: December 06, 2023, 09:17:50 PM »
Hello!

Apologies for the delay, I've been trying to access the disks but USB floppy reader doesn't seem to work very well, it would show the files and some could be copied, but many it complained about track errors or something.

I've since acquired a relic PC with MS DOS and the game runs fine on that from the 3.5" disk! I can't test the others since it unfortunately doesn't have a drive that they will fit into.

I'm not very familiar with the game itself, so I used level select codes to check the two unique ones mentioned.

I think these are the same as Amiga book club levels?

Unfortunately I have to give the PC back so I don't have the time to go through and check everything else but I'm going to assume if it came from the same place then it's probably the same levels, just for PC.

Offline zanzindorf

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Re: Looking for info on "book club" PC Lemmings
« Reply #5 on: December 10, 2023, 03:43:44 PM »
That's really cool :)

I don't know how rare this is, but it definitely seems like few if any mentions of this specific version exist on the web, which I feel would boost it's price.

Maybe Justin Castle would know something about it? Justin wrote a book about the ports of Lemmings: https://www.amazon.com/Lemmings-Ports-Justin-Castle/dp/1503271331

If info exists about this version, maybe it's in that book. I had a pdf of it. I think the author shared it on these forums at some point (link is now dead). Unfortunately, that hard drive with my pdf failed, so I can't check for you.


Offline namida

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Re: Looking for info on "book club" PC Lemmings
« Reply #6 on: December 10, 2023, 08:35:07 PM »
Yep, those look like the same levels to me. What about the special graphics levels? (Fun 22, Tricky 14, Taxing 15, Mayhem 22)? On the Amiga Bookclub version these levels are replaced just like Budget Amiga, but that may have been a "fit them on one disk" thing, and on DOS they were able to be included while still fitting on a single disk.

I do wonder why Taxing 20 was replaced on these versions. I get Tricky 21 and the special graphics levels (the latter more for technical or possibly copyright reasons) but I don't get why Taxing 20 was singled out to remove. If they were in general replacing tedious, mostly uninteresting levels there's a few others that I would've thought would go first (eg. Taxing 14), and the new Tricky 21 wouldn't exactly be ideal replacement material.
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Offline takmaze

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Re: Looking for info on "book club" PC Lemmings
« Reply #7 on: January 12, 2024, 12:47:58 PM »
Yep, those look like the same levels to me. What about the special graphics levels? (Fun 22, Tricky 14, Taxing 15, Mayhem 22)? On the Amiga Bookclub version these levels are replaced just like Budget Amiga, but that may have been a "fit them on one disk" thing, and on DOS they were able to be included while still fitting on a single disk.

I do wonder why Taxing 20 was replaced on these versions. I get Tricky 21 and the special graphics levels (the latter more for technical or possibly copyright reasons) but I don't get why Taxing 20 was singled out to remove. If they were in general replacing tedious, mostly uninteresting levels there's a few others that I would've thought would go first (eg. Taxing 14), and the new Tricky 21 wouldn't exactly be ideal replacement material.

I've had to test some old graphics cards recently so I have had a DOS PC again and tried it out to check those levels you mentioned.

All of them seem to be the special graphics levels (I think).

I've attached photos, please excuse the EGA colors! For some reason, I can't get any levels to load when in VGA mode. Might be compatibility with the PC, as it's quite a bit newer than the game.