Gaming on AmigaOS 4.1: Jones in the Fast Lane (ScummVM) – Review

Character selection screen
Screenshot by Old School Game Blog

Hello there and many thanks for visiting my blog. Hope you are having a great Christmas. 🙂

Today we are going to have a look at a game that I have fond memories of playing at school in the 90’s. Most PC’s at school had games installed that people had taken with them from home. When break came, some of us sat and played games. Good fun.🙂

The game is called Jones in the Fast Lane and was developed by Sierra, a company famous for games like the Kings Quest, Larry and Police Quest. It came out in 1990 for PC’s with MS-DOS.

There is no native version for AmigaOS 4, but we can easily run it through the wonderful tool ScummVM. If you want to know more about ScummVM and how to get it working on Amiga, please check out my post about The Flight of the Amazon Queen.

Jones in the Fast Lane

Ok, let’s get down to business with this classic.

First of all, where do you get hold of it? You can either buy a second-hand copy on sites like eBay or you can download it. The game is available on many Abandonware websites and it seems it is legal to download:

http://www.myabandonware.com/game/jones-in-the-fast-lane-1xb

Once it has finished downloading, unpack it to a directory of your choice (right-click icon, choose “extract to”), preferably your ScummVM one.

Now you need to add the game to ScummVM. To add, click on “Add Game” and select the directory where it resides and follow the prompts. Should be quite straight-forward.

Now we are ready to join Jones and enter a world of both business and leisure.

You can play the game in a window on your Workbench desktop or you can play full screen. I tried full screen first, but switched to window mode later. Taste differs.

Gameplay

Jones in the Fast Lane is a life simulator. In this game the goal is to climb the ladder in society by working, getting education (to get better paid jobs) or to just have luck and win the lottery. I’ve taken a bunch of screenshots while playing, so let’s go!

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Ok, let’s start!
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Let’s select the 1-player mode.
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Here is the character selection screen. I went for the guy with sunglasses.
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Goals? Let’s keep it average for this round.
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Do I want to challenge Jones? Oh yes!
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Here you can see the world of Jones. There’s a bank, an employment office, a school and so forth.
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Went to check out the deals on burgers at Monolith Burgers. Prices are for a whole weeks worth of food.
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It’s time to get a job. Will I enter the world of finance and big money? Perhaps become a fashionista or en electrician at Socket City?
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Landed a job at Monolith Burgers as a cook! Nice!

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Time to start working!
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A tough week. Time to relax at home. Not much left of the week.
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It’s Jones turn and it turns out he’s pretty good!
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An exciting weekend.🙂 Jones will now work hard to get money for an AmigaOne X5000, oh wait, that’s in real life.😉
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This came up because I forgot to eat at Monolith Burgers or to shop groceries (which is a better alternative I guess). You’ll get a time penalty, which means less time for work and education.
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Decided to try getting some education to land a better job. Once you’ve finished a class, you’ll get more options.
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Time to pay the rent!
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Got a new job at the Z-Mart, but my clothes weren’t good enough. Guess I’ll have to visit Q.T Clothing!
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Oh man, I can’t afford clothes for the new job! This means that I’ve got to get another job. A dilemma!

As you can see from the screenshots and the descriptions, the game is kind of like real life.  It’s very fun, but more challenging than it looks. You’ve got only so much time you can spend on different tasks, so you must do the right priorities. I found myself broke in the end with no solution in sight, while Jones was rising to become the top banana in the local community.

It’s also worth mentioning that you can play this game with other people. It’s turn-based and works pretty well.

Conclusion

This is a fun game, very fun indeed. There is a lot to discover, there are strategies to learn, there is humour and pretty graphics to boot. I really like it and I love the fact that it is now playable on AmigaOS 4 through ScummVM. Back in the 90’s I was so envious at those who had PC’s, since they could play this game at home. Now us Amiga owners can too!

I highly recommend giving Jones a go. A super game!

Thanks for reading and hope this sparked your interest in trying this game on AmigaOS 4.

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