Astronut

The loading screen to Astronut on the ZX Spectrum, published by Software Projects. An astronaut is trapped within the jaws of a flying green alien, in space. It's all quite cartoony and silly! The alien has big fangs, dragon wings and a little pointy devil tail.
pic from Spectrum Computing’s archive

Astronut was a wonderful little puzzle platform game for the Speccy that I never really got to play as often as I’d have liked on release.

Oh, it wasn’t like I didn’t try! The infernal thing refused to load most of the time and when it did finally load, I’d have to squint at the tiny codesheet and hope I hadn’t managed to get the colours mixed up again so I could actually play it.

The copy protection for Astronut. It's a mulch of colours on a grid. Magenta and red are ridiculously difficult to tell apart and if you're colour blind, the whole sheet is a disaster.

Copy protection is ever infuriating in how it’s more likely to punish legit players – a truth in 1984 as much as today.