To celebrate August being C64 Month, we’re writing about a different Commodore 64 game every day! Start from the beginning here!

OK I will admit it was a tough call choosing between this and Laser Squad, but Little Computer People wins out because it was there for me when I needed it.

A lot of people think being a game reviewer is a cool job. I know I certainly did when I was 13 and devouring every page of Zzap! 64 every month, reading the madcap adventures of Julian Rignall and his crew. And look, let’s be real here – having a job where you get lots of free games handed to you and you don’t have to be outside digging ditches or in a dead end job flipping burgers or whatever is an incredible opportunity and I did my level best to do it right because I knew how fortunate I was to do it.

But.

What people don’t see are the hours spent hunched over a keyboard, re-writing the same review a million times because it’s not quite right (Game Review System hadn’t been invented yet). The hunger that goes with not being paid for weeks on end because someone stuffed up the freelance cheque again and buying food that week just isn’t an option (Ah, GameSpot sending my cheque to Austria once, good times). The nagging feeling that, while people are out there saving lives or making a difference in the world, a life spent reviewing video games just doesn’t matter that much.

More than anything though, it was the isolation that comes with living in a one room apartment and keeping odd hours and never seeing my friends because I was always either too broke or too busy to spend time with them.

Enter Little Computer People.

David Crane’s fantastic artificial life simulation came years before digital pets became a thing, and the idea that this was a game you could play with no clear objective besides companionship was a novel one. I just absolutely adored my little computer person. I would leave my machine on running LCP while I wrote game reviews on my PC, and it was just nice to have someone else in my apartment doing their own thing. I would dutifully fill his water cooler and send him new records to enjoy every morning. We’d watch TV together and I would look forward to him writing his letters in the evening. When I got too hungry to write I would play a few rounds of Poker with my LCP and it was nice.

Yes, it was silly and simple and these days probably won’t hold your attention for long at all, but he was my friend and he got me through some crappy times. For that reason I’ll always love Little Computer People.

If you like posts like this, and want to help me make more, please consider supporting me on Patreon! Only $1 a month gets you comics, posts and behind the scenes goodies!