"Wind Surfer": the 1986 ZX Spectrum windsurfing game

Wind Surfer: a windsurfing game in 48K mode

The world's first windsurfing video game is celebrating its 30th anniversary. The "Wind Surfer" - later renamed as "Sea Surfer" - was developed and released by K'Soft, in 1986. How many of you played it back in the day?

Let's jump back to 1982. On April 21, British consumer electronics company Sinclair Research Ltd was releasing ZX Spectrum, an 8-bit personal home computer sold for between £125-175.

The ZX Spectrum was the UK equivalent of the US-made Commodore 64. It sold over five million units, with more than 24,000 software titles being released in the last three decades.

In 1986, four years after the launch of the innovative personal computer, a company called K'Soft Ltd decided to market a quite primitive windsurfing game. And it wasn't a naive move.

Windsurfing was becoming an extremely popular sport in Europe.

The Old Continent had fallen in love with sailboarding, especially after watching it performing in the Los Angeles 1984 Olympic Games.

Wind Surfer: launched in 1986 and later released as Sea Surfer

Play It Today

"Sea Surfer" was originally published as "Wind Surfer."

It's not clear if it was a hit, but the game itself was too simplistic and a bit confusing. The gameplay instructions were clear, though.

"Race your sail board around the course avoiding the rocks and adjusting the sail pitch to match the wind conditions. Can you enter the fastest time of the day and walk off with the Championship?" the audio cassette manual reads.

Nowadays, you need time and patience to learn how to play "Sea Surfer."

But if nostalgia hits you hard or if you're a hardcore retro game lover, then give it a go.

You can try it with a simple ZX Spectrum emulator for Windows/iOS or via the "The Recreated Sinclair ZX Spectrum" and "Sinclair ZX Spectrum Vega."

The game controls are the following: 1 (towards the beach), 2 (away from the beach), 0, O, and L (position sail).