Modern programming competitions on classic systems often throw up some really interesting results… particularly when there are some creative restrictions put in place.
F*ck Man is the product of a competition where programmers of various 8-bit computers were allowed just 10 lines of the BASIC dialect of their choice to put something together. It was actually the work of the competition’s organiser, and came in fourth place.
As for the game itself… well, it’s understandably simplistic, but it’s actually a surprising amount of fun, and a creative twist on a classic formula. Also it has an entertaining name.
Back in the ’70s and ’80s, players of home consoles weren’t looking for “arcade perfect” — mostly because the home systems of the time weren’t up to it.
Rather, they were looking for a roughly equivalent or perhaps complementary experience to that which could be had in the arcades. This meant that sometimes games underwent a few changes in the transition from the arcade to the home.
A good example of this is Crystal Castles for the Atari 2600, which provides a surprisingly authentic-feeling approximation of the arcade classic, while working within the constraints of its host hardware.
We all make mistakes. And when you do, it’s best to own them, learn from them and try to see the best of the situation.
Like today, when I completely forgot where the place Firion and company needed to go next was, and thus spent nearly an hour doing entirely the wrong thing. I acknowledge that I did a stupid thing, but I can also draw a positive from it. I now know where the mirror is, and I had the opportunity to level Ultima a bit.
Although given my subsequent discovery that Ultima is a white magic spell and I gave it to my black mage… well, that’s a story for another day, I guess.
While it’s primarily the 8-bit home microcomputer era that is associated with the “bedroom programmer”, thanks to the fact that most systems came with the programming language BASIC built into ROM, some of this still went on in the 16-bit era.
A popular platform for independent game development on Atari ST was STOS (short for ST Operating System). This was a BASIC-like language with a lot of features specifically geared towards game development: things like sprite handling, scrolling, music and sound generation, all that sort of thing.
STOS’ publisher Mandarin Software collected a bunch of impressive efforts from talented developers and bundled them together in a commercially available showcase compilation called Games Galore. One of those games was Yomo, which is the subject of today’s video!
Today, among other things, I ponder the future and what’s next, and I’ve reached a conclusion for now.
At the end of this current playthrough of Warriors All-Stars, the series will be retiring for now. I haven’t yet decided if I will bring it back yet, but I need a bit of time back in my week, especially now I’m taking on some paid freelance assignments as well as everything that’s already happening here and on YouTube. Sorry to those of you that have keenly tuned in each week to see my hack-and-slash adventures! I’ll make an effort to write more about some Warriors games here on MoeGamer to make up for it.
We’ve still got a few episodes left in us yet, though, so let’s enjoy them! Today we see how despite having multiple starting points, Warriors All-Stars’ various narrative paths tend to intertwine with one another, as we once again encounter the demonic (and devilishly handsome) Darius…
These days, we tend to expect multi-format releases to have if not complete parity, then certainly as close an experience as possible to one another.
That wasn’t always the case, though, and I can think of few better examples of this that Adventure International’s The Eliminator, which somehow became an entirely different game between its original TRS-80 incarnation and its Atari 8-bit “port” by Steve Coleman.
It’s a fun little blast ’em up, though, so I’m not mad or anything; I just thought it was interesting!
Today’s title from Atari Flashback Classics is one of the few genuine exclusives for the Atari 5200: it’s Countermeasure!
Countermeasure is an interesting strategic shooter in which you navigate a “supertank” through a perilous environment in an attempt to destroy a selection of missile silos. Yes, it’s another “Cold War paranoia” sort of game, but this one has some interesting twists.
Unfortunately, it’s also a pretty strong example of how the emulation of the Atari 5200’s POKEY chip is a bit dodgy in Atari Flashback Classics, which is a bit of a shame — especially considering the fact the emulation of the arcade titles that use it is spot on! Ah well.