I was bought a Dragon 32 computer by my parents for
christmas 1982/3. To me at the time it was the best computer ever with it`s
games either on cartridge or tape. I remember games like hi-lo, rommels
revenge, chuckie egg, UXB, frogger and the mine game that used to make the
screen look like it was exploding when you hit one.
About a year after we bought the Dragon 32 games became very hard to get
hold of apart from in second hand shops, that ones one, i`m afraid to say of
many bad points. The 80`s home computer was notorious for is painstaking
games loading times ranging from 10 to 30 minutes, there was no exception
with the Dragon 32, in fact it didn`t come with it`s own tape drive, you
have to buy a flatbed tapedeck from Tandy`s and if the volume was too high
or too low the game didn`t load or got to the end and displayed SN ERROR.To
solve this i used a blob of tippex on the volume switch to mark the correct
volume,i was not alone with this idea i`m sure.
There were also good points with the Dragon 32, the instruction manuel, a
spiral bound bible gave you every bit of information you needed to know,
including some basic programmes you could type in. I`ll never forget taking
an hour to type in some commands in order for my name to flash on the screen
in different colours making a droning sound hehe.
Conclusion: The Dragon 32 played a great part in my childhood and despite
it`s faults I really enjoyed owning it. It is around at my mums somewhere
but does need a new powerpack,i doubt if i`ll ever see it working again.
Finlux version by Taneli Lukka :
Dragon 32 was distributed here in Finland by a
Finnish television manufacturer Finlux. The machine was just rebadged as
Finlux Dragon 32, otherwise the machines were just like all the others,
they didn't even add the scandinavian letters (ń, ÷ and ň) to the
keyboard. These machines can now be considered ultra rare, because Dragon
was also sold by other companies than just Finlux so the rebadged machines
are a minority even here in Finland. It seems that Dragon 64 was not
distributed by Finlux. The company still makes TV's by the way, altough it
has financial problems, but Dragon remains their first and last effort in
the field of computers.
Graham Johns reports :
I ran the main dealership for Dragon 32 in Wales in
1982. We sold 200 of them (at ú199) in the month before Xmas. Supplies were
very limited because of processor availability and quality problems. I had
at least half of them returned within a month-January 1983 was a nightmare!
John H. Clark reports :
The Dragon 32 was my first home computer, in 1983. One
odd feature was that it couldn't display lower case letters on screen
properly - it used inverted video capital letters instead! This prevented
its use as a wordprocessor, unless (like me) you bought a third-party
cartridge which emulated a 80 x 40 screen.
Dave Gamble adds:
The machine was produced in the South Wales Steel town
of Port Talbot. Dragon Data was hailed as a "High Tech" success
when the machines started selling, although they were substantially funded
from local government and were the subject of many local media station
stories. Unfortunately, they went bust in the mid-eigties and the Japanese
videotape manufacture Orion took over the factory unit and who still reside