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Sue Townsend created a phenomenon in the mid-1980s, essentially incorporating lots of sharp satire and observational humour into the diary of a confused teenager. It might sound like an odd idea for a computer game, but Level 9 felt that there was an adventure in there.

Most of the major characters from the book appear, including Adrian's warring parents and their respective flings, his sweetheart Pandora, his best mate Nigel, school bully Barry Kent, and curmudgeonly pensioner Bert Baxter. The game didn't use many typed commands. You would read passages of text (many of them from the book) and be given 3 choices as to what to do, which would lead to other events unfolding. You could also use a help option which would display information about characters featured in the diary. Your aim throughout all of this was to make Adrian as popular as possible. The player's score and ranking is displayed at particular times during the game. The percentage achieved relates to the rank, with 26% being 'a spotty creep' and 38% 'a middling thicko' for example.


The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole Aged 13¾ MSX Title screen
The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole Aged 13¾ MSX Pandora has started a sock protest.
The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole Aged 13¾ MSX What should I choose? I need to find a flu medicine for Mum.
The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole Aged 13¾ MSX Great! Mum was singing 'My Way' at the top of the stairs at the top of her voice at two in the morning.

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Tilt Jul, 1986 4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars4 Stars 67


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It is perhaps indicative of the game's cross-over nature of almost but not quite being a traditional adventure that the Spectrum magazine Crash! gave it two distinct reviews in the same issue - one in the Adventure Trail section (awarding it 9/10), and one in the main body of reviews (awarding it 86%)
koffiepad (10535) added The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole Aged 13¾ (MSX) on Oct 18, 2005
Other platforms contributed by Rola (8307), Kabushi (209401) and Martin Smith (66801)