I guess I'm one of the few who actually liked to play Tombstone City? I never had the cartridge back in the day (I do now though, and it is one of the games I use for testing the F18A), but TI provided the complete source code for T.C. with the Editor/Assembler package so you would have an example of how to make something as complex as a game. I guess TI didn't think much of T.C. either... ? I used that source code many times for examples while I was learning.
As for game play, maybe I was also one of the few who read the manual?
It is pretty easy: destroy all pairs of cacti. These are the details:
* A "pair of cacti" are any two cacti that are directly adjacent or diagonal to each other. These are all the pairs:
TT T T T
T T T
* A "mob" (bad guy) will spawn from between any pair of cacti. One of the cacti will "highlight" just before a mob spawns. A mob turns into a cacti when you shoot it.
* To destroy a pair of cacti, you have to shoot a mob when it is ADJACENT to a pair of cacti:
@@ @ @ @
@TT@ @T@ @T@ @T@
@@ @T@ @T@ @T@
@ @ @
* Shooting a mob when it is DIAGONAL to an existing pair of cacti will only make things worse, since you will be creating more pairs of cacti:
@ @ @ @ @ @ @ @
TT T T @ @ T
@ @ T @ T T @
@ @ @ @ @ @
* The mob A.I. is pretty simple, the mob will move towards you and never go backwards to get around an obstacle.
* The middle part is a safe area, but you CAN get yourself trapped and have to restart the game if you shoot mobs (turning them into a cactus) in front of all the openings.
* The "day" is over when all pairs of cacti are destroyed and you advance to the next day.
Hope this helps. It is a very simple game mechanic and can get repetitive, but it is fun for a little while anyway. :-)