Sharp Wondertopia WN-102

Sharp Wondertopia WN-102

The Wondertopia WN-102 is as close as Sharp came to a shoot-em-up calculator and was a departure from the first two of the Wondertopia series which had more of a mathematical feel.

Firstly, the WN-100 focused mainly on statistical functionality with coin toss and dice throw probability ‘games’ along with a reflex tester, while the WN-101 was a number-switcher game which required a certain amount of thinking.

With the WN-102, though, it was all about fun. Just like the original space invaders, players had keys for left, right and fire.

The aim was to shoot the two (later three then four etc) invaders before they counted up to 9. Once an invader was shot, it reappeared elsewhere on the display and started counting up slightly faster.

To a generation of kids used to similarly-themed arcade games, this was instantly recognisable and easy (but still challenging) to play.

Although the Wondertopia calculators are very rare these days, the WN-102 is the second most ‘common’ after the WN-100. It didn’t have sound, which it would have benefitted greatly from, although this probably made it easier to play in class without getting caught by the teacher.

Like the other Sharp models, the WN-102 is well-made and holds up well 30+ years later. If you find one of these in the wild, expect the bottom row of graphics to be quite worn since most examples are very well-played.

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