Dustin (1986)

by Nish
4 minutes read


Dustin (1986): A No-Frills Escape from Alcatraz


Dustin is a 1986 action-adventure game developed and published by Mirrorsoft for the Sinclair Spectrum. The player controls Dustin, a convict who must escape from Alcatraz prison. Dustin is notable for its realistic graphics and challenging gameplay, which involves collecting items, solving puzzles, and avoiding guards.


The player controls Dustin from a top-down perspective. The game world is divided into a series of screens, each of which represents a different part of the prison. Dustin must explore these screens, collecting items and solving puzzles in order to progress.

One of the most challenging aspects of Dustin is its inventory system. Dustin can only carry a limited number of items at a time, so the player must carefully choose which items to keep and which to discard. The player must also be aware of the guards, who will chase Dustin if they see him. Dustin can avoid the guards by hiding in shadows or by using items to distract them.

Graphics and Sound

Dustin’s graphics are simple but effective. The game world is rendered in a stark black and white, which creates a sense of atmosphere and tension. The character sprites are small but well-animated, and the game’s use of sound effects is effective.


Dustin was a critical and commercial success upon its release. Critics praised the game’s realistic graphics, challenging gameplay, and immersive atmosphere. The game was also a commercial success, selling over 100,000 copies.


Dustin is considered to be one of the best games for the Sinclair Spectrum. The game’s challenging gameplay and immersive atmosphere have made it a favorite among retro gamers. Dustin has also been cited as an influence on later prison break games, such as The Great Escape and Prison Architect.

Tips for Playing Dustin

Here are a few tips for playing Dustin:

  • Be careful about the items you collect. You can only carry a limited number of items at a time, so choose wisely.
  • Be aware of the guards. They will chase Dustin if they see him, so avoid them if possible.
  • Use the shadows to your advantage. Dustin can hide in shadows to avoid the guards.
  • Be patient. Dustin is a challenging game, so don’t get discouraged if you get stuck.


Dustin is a classic prison break game that is still enjoyable today. The game’s challenging gameplay, immersive atmosphere, and simple but effective graphics make it a must-play for fans of retro games.

Additional Information

  • Dustin was developed by a team of two people, Mike Singleton and David Lawson.
  • The game was originally released in the United Kingdom, but it was later released in other countries, including the United States and Japan.
  • Dustin has been ported to a number of other platforms, including the Commodore 64, the Amstrad CPC, and the PC.
  • The game has been praised by critics for its realism, challenge, and atmosphere.
  • Dustin is considered to be one of the best games for the Sinclair Spectrum.

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