"Unfortunately, I recently opened a new boating lake, and some of the rental pedalos are staying out beyond their allotted fakking hire period. So, I'm going to have to try and sort that out while giving you a brief overview of The Bitmaps' history.
"Of course, the company's immediately identifiably, chunky, visual style - basically, no hard fakking edges - was matched by the quality of their fakking games. Rarely did the company dabble in the same genre more than once - beyond a sequel or two - and they were one of the few reasons fakking console owners looked enviously at the fakking Amiga.
"Alas, the Bitmaps - led by MD Mike Montgomery - haven't developed a brand new game since 2003 (though ports of some of its most iconic titles have appeared on smartphones). That's a fakking shame, in this era of homogenised triple-A releases.
"Here's a brief celebration of their finest fakking achievements. Come in number 9, your time is fakking up! Fakking liberty. Fakk's sake."
There was an ill-recalled further sequel, Speedball 2100, released for the PlayStation, but it lacked the fast pace and glorious graphics of its predecessor. To wit: nobody cared.
Nicely, each area within the game endowed the boy with a different magical ability, and the slick visuals stand as testament to the fact that not every old game was an overt pixel-fest. Pay attention, indie game developers.
The sequel - unlike its predecessor, released only for the Amiga and (ha ha) CD32 - ditched the co-op mode, and was more a split-screen deathmatch, against either another player or the computer. It also ditched the original's earth colour palette for more garish hues.
Though relatively well-received, shortly after its release The Bitmaps fragmented into embarrassing bits. The company website remains, but hasn't been updated since before the release of Frontline Command, where they state that they intended to work on a new version of Speedball. A sorry epitaph to one of the Amiga's finest.