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Lehman Bros. v0.01

Posted by TROGDOR, 29 September 2008 · 1,715 views

Lehman Bros.
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Attached File  LEHMANBROS01.BIN (8KB)
downloads: 350
In this game, you control the CEO of a distressed investment firm. The game takes place at the firm's headquarters. Your objective is to collect as much cash as possible for your severance package before the company collapses. As you are collecting money, a variety of opponents will hinder your efforts.

The Federal Regulator (turtle) - Slow and easily avoided. But be careful. If a Federal Regulator catches you, your CEO's severance package is capped and he must be replaced by new federally-appointed CEO.

The SEC Investigator (crab) - Quick and tenatious. The SEC Investigator will become enraged if you obstruct his investigation. If he catches you, your CEO must step down, embroiled in an ongoing criminal investigation.

The Angry Investor (fly) - He's hopping mad! If an Angry Investor catches you, your CEO is subjected to a multibillion dollar class-action lawsuit, and must resign.

The Investigative Reporter (ice block) - A general nuisance. If the Investigative Reporter catches you, your CEO will find himself on the front page of the New York Times, busted for cooking the books.

The Board of Directors will compensate you for thwarting these enemies.

While you are conducting day-to-day business, flaming subprime mortgage-backed securities will fly across the screen. You may find yourself tempted to grab one, with their promise of asset-backed low risk and attractive long-term yields. But don't be fooled. If your CEO touches one of these, he'll get burned.

If you manage to survive a few fiscal quarters, you will be rewarded with a bonus round. During this round you meet with the Board of Directors to reevaluate your compensation package. It's basically a money grab. Take as much cash as you can before the timer runs out. This can significantly increase the size of your package.

When you lose a CEO, he will be replaced with an interim CEO. The new CEO will come flying in from the top of the screen, strapped to a golden parachute.

The game ends when you run out of viable replacement CEOs. The company files for bankruptcy, the Fed and the SEC return to Washington, all the investors jump from tall buildings, the reporters move on to other troubled firms, and you are forced into a cushy retirement with the severance package you managed to secure.

Score is displayed in thousands of US dollars. A respectable score is 50 million dollars (50,000 x 1k). Anything less than that and you'd be embarrassed to show your face at the yacht club.

2 player mode - In this mode, player 1 controls the CEO and player 2 controls the CFO. You can either work together or competitively to secure the company's assets for your severance packages.

The Bush Administration gets credit for providing the concept for this game.

Development Notes
This is my first hack. Normally I'm not a big fan of hacks, but when I heard that Lehman Brothers went bankrupt, thoughts of Mario Brothers were floating around in the back of my mind. On Friday I decided this needs to be a game.

The first step was getting a good hex editor. It was no surprise that vim has built-in hex editing support, so that's what I've been using so far. I've also gotten my first experience of bricking a hacked ROM. At some point during my edits I changed the wrong byte somewhere and everything stopped working. I've been more careful about maintaining revisions since that happened.

The only modification I've made so far is to the title screen. Other modifications will include transforming Mario into a bald-headed gray suit with a tie, changing each of the enemies into their respective new forms, and adding the golden parachute if possible. Otherwise, the gameplay will remain the same.

The ROM is tightly packed. There isn't much room for new code. As such, I'd like to get a disassembly for this cart, so I can move the data around and tweak the code. Trying to do this in the raw binary is proving to be painful. If anyone knows where I can find a disassembly of this game, please let me know.

There's a disassembly of Mario Bros. in this thread.
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