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Mezrabad

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Everything posted by Mezrabad

  1. Interesting about how good old fashioned dissolves may be phased out by the addition of the third dimension. Maybe they'll start using Morphs. Like a dissolve the scene incrementally changes from elements of the old scene to elements of the new scene, but each element distinctly changes. It would also be a way of changing the depth of field without losing the 3-d effect. I wonder if this has been used effectively or not yet in anything. I'm one of the people who hasn't been drawn back to the theaters by 3-D. Every time I hit a movie theater, I'm reminded of how much I hate movie theaters. They shoot ads at you in the form of "infotainment" prior to the actual lights dimming, and then they feed you the trailers. There was this awful Cartoon Network commercial that renewed my "staying away" impulse when I went to see HP6. The only movies I know of on the horizon are the last Harry Potters (assuming 7 is in two parts like I always thought it should be. One devoted to the horcrux search and the second simply called "the battle for Hogwarts"). Anything else I'm more than happy to wait for the DVD. Thanks for the review, we'll probably rent it when it hits DVD, my kids enjoyed the last two ice ages.
  2. !!! I never knew about that one! Yay, a new nugget of knowledge!
  3. Sounds like the makings of a pretty good game! That'd be awesome! An insane bunny with opposable thumbs and weapons! Hey, I just thought of something, wouldn't unopposable thumbs be stronger than opposable thumbs? I mean, theoretically, opposable thumbs can be opposed, but unopposable thumbs could never be challenged!
  4. Space Invaders (Atari VCS, 1980) According to Phoenix: The Fall and Rise of Videogames by Leonard Herman (a book every classic gamer should own, soon to come out in its fourth edition!), Space Invaders came out in January of 1980 and is considered to be the first "Killer App" for a home videogame console. In addition, it was the first time a videogame company licensed another videogame company's arcade game for port to a home system. Okay, history portion over, I'll leave it to real historians to discuss such things (i.e. go get that Phoenix book); let's talk about this cart. We've seen versions of Space Invaders before on the Bally Pro Arcade (Space Invaders, later known as Astro Invaders) and on the APF MP1000 (Space Destroyers). Of the versions we've looked at so far, Space Destroyers wins for looking closest to the Arcade version of Space Invaders. Atari's version isn't much to see at first glance. The Invaders are yellow and blocky looking. There's only 36 of them. There's three protective bunkers instead of four. The cannon looks different from the cannon in the arcade. The scores are different looking, etc... One could go on about how it looks, but like so many will tell you: it hasn't always been about the looks. Good videogames can have a "groove" that you can get into while you're playing, a sort of zone that is enjoyable and addictive. This home port has that groove. I enjoy playing it as much now as I did during Xmas vacation of 1980. Of course, back then, I only had two standard Atari Joysticks. Today, I've got multiple joysticks with which to defend the planet, including a Wico bat, a fit-to-hand-form clicky Epyx joystick and my favorite to use now: a three button Genesis controller. I don't know how I used to play this game for such long periods with the standard joystick -- these days, my left thumb starts to hurt after only five minutes! Anyway, I should describe the actual game, though I doubt there's a single one of you out there that's never played Space Invaders. A 6x6 grid of space aliens stomp from left to right, right to left, getting a little lower each time they hit a side edge of the playfield. You control a cannon that can move right or left that fires up from the bottom of the screen. You can fire one missile at a time, and you cannot fire again until the previous missile either destroys an invader or disappears into space. The idea is to kill them all before they reach the bottom of the screen, i.e. "Earth". While firing at them, they are firing at you and you must dodge and utilize the cover of the three protective shields when needed. The shields are destructible, so if you or the invaders shoot the shields, they are eaten away, pixel by pixel. At some point the invaders will get close enough so that the shields disappear altogether which means it's only a couple of times left and right before they are literally "on" you. Periodically, a Command Alien Ship, will traverse the top of the screen. You should also try to destroy this ship, not only because it, too, is the enemy, but because it yields bonus points and helps your score. What's the point in saving the world if nobody is keeping score? The most notable sound effects are of the invaders marching side to side. It's a steady, tension building "tromp, tromp, tromp" which speeds up as the number of invaders becomes fewer and fewer. If you manage to survive by dodging the unceasing "laser bombs", you can see and hear the "tromp, tromp, tromp" get progressively faster. Finally, you have a lone invader zipping across the screen like some insane bunny. If you are able to kill the last one, the next attack wave will begin again shortly, and this time they'll start even closer. After a few attack waves, the invaders start so close to the bottom of the screen that they just have to go across the screen once before it is "game over". This is one of those games that can only end in your on-screen death. There's no way around it. You may get good enough so that you can keep playing without dying, but eventually you'll need to eat, sleep or go to the bathroom. Your biological imperatives are what will lead to the inevitable invasion and, we assume, the tragic destruction of your planet -- containing everyone you've ever known and loved. This isn't to imply a special effect laden ending, but you should die knowing that your failure has doomed the Earth. What is amazing about the home port of this game for the Atari VCS, is not only the fact that they've managed to capture the spirit and addictive qualities of the arcade game (to me at least) but they've included 112 variations of the game. It's four variations of playfield behavior (moving shields, fast laser bombs, zig zig laser bombs and invisible invaders) spread out in every iteration over 16 games. Then those sixteen different combinations of those four effects are distributed over seven different player variations: Single player, alternating turns for two-players, simultaneous competing two-player, simultaneous competing two-player with alternating shots, one cannon with two controllers - one moves left the other moves right, alternating fire & control between controllers and, finally, one player moves the cannon the other player fires it. 112 games in all. How the hell did they fit that on one cart? The two-player games can be fun but it's interesting to note that the "one cannon-two players variant where one moves left the other right" idea was first used in the Channel F game: Video Pinball -- which is version of Breakout. Space Invaders is sort of a re-skinned version of Breakout, but instead of deflecting a ball at bricks which disappear, you fire a missile at aliens which disappear. Breakout is kind of a single player version of Pong. So really Space Invaders is a logical evolution from Pong, but I digress... The simultaneous competing two-player is my favorite two player variation. You're playing your own game, but you need to make every shot count. If a shot misses, then that's points your opponent can take from you as you wait for your missile to disappear off the top of the screen. I also like the scramble when the alien control ship comes out. Only one can hit it! It's a chance to get ahead of your co-planet saver. Seriously, if the world is going to end regardless, the only thing you have left to enjoy is to try to score higher than your equally doomed friend! As you lay, barely conscious, watching your alien captors continue to destroy all you ever knew, wouldn't you rather be thinking "Well, at least I scored higher then my also-dying buddy!" instead of "Crap, the world is ending, AND I just lost to my friend, this day sucks!" I didn't play through every variation of every game for this. I did play through all 16 single player games and more than one of each of the two player variations with a carefully chosen co-player (who was a little annoyed that there were no power-ups and no way to beat the invaders). While it was fun to play the two player games, I still think I prefer the single player, "vanilla" variation the most. I must admit that I think there's a nostalgic factor at play here. Of all the games I've looked at so far, I confess nostalgia for playing Atari Space Invaders. Back in 1980, this cart represented an actual arcade game in my home. I only had to play it something like 200 times (four times for every dollar spent in the purchase of the $50 cart) and every game after that is gravy... like going to the arcade and playing for free!! Nostalgia isn't why I do this, but I can't escape the nostalgia for the next entry either: Adventure aka My favorite Atari game of all time. 34613
  5. Wow, Lightgun support would be awesome!
  6. Thanks! I was spurred to comment on the emulationability (yes, improving the english language, one made-up word at at time!) of the title by a recent post in the forums about the cost of collecting for real vs. emulation. While I have no problem with emulation as a tool to investigate or even play old games that are hard to find (or pay for), I think anyone who wants to really get a feel for a game owes it to themselves to check it out on the original hardware. Especially games like this one. With the Atari Paddles? That would totally work!
  7. Aw, but it's a nice Playstation collection! Good luck with the channel, if I ever get organized I may contribute. Are you just looking for people to show off their Plastation related collections or would my RCA Studio II stuff fit right in?
  8. Dogpatch (Bally Pro Arcade, 1980) I could only find one game as having come out in 1980 for the Bally Professional Arcade - Dogpatch. In playing this game I was reminded of just how far video games have come over the last three decades. So, I created a video that serves to illustrate the vast gulf of differences between a game like this from 1980 and a game like the one to which I've chosen to compare it from a current generation console. Hmm, my YouTube link broke with the forum upgrade. Bummer. Until I figure that out here's a direct link: Dogpatch session with Daughter See how far we've come? Before, in 1980, we were pretending to be rednecks sitting out in the backyard shooting at cans with our shotguns, now we're using sophisticated Wii Remote Controllers to shoot at cans which we now know should be recycled. Also different, is that the cans in the Wii version crumple slightly with each shooting, subtly implying that being shot at multiple times may cause things to be blown apart. That realism just wasn't apparent in the 1980 version. Dogpatch is actually a hoot and a holler. It's fast paced, it's challenging - and when you and your co-player get a volley going - it promotes giggling. If I remember my MAME correctly, this is another title that began life in the arcades. The home version is easily as fun. The Bally controller is well suited to the game, as the gun-handle-with-trigger styled controller suits the flavor of the game perfectly. The paddle portion of the Bally controller is also good for controlling the angle of your redneck's shotgun. My daughter and I played two games of "99 Cans" each for the video - and neither of us complained. My son was disappointed to have missed it after seeing the video and has insisted on playing Dogpatch with me later. Sadly, rare is the old game that my children will request playing more than once. Dogpatch is one of those exceptions. By the way, try playing Dogpatch in an emulater... it just isn't the same! You don't have the feel of the controller grip, the trigger action or the smoothness of the paddle rotation. While I'm all for emulating the games which I can't find or afford, Dogpatch is a perfect example of a home version of a game best experienced on the original console's hardware and controllers. Emulators just cannot do it justice. I hope the video will suffice to act as a few thousand words cause I'm done for now. I loved being able to put that video effect in with iMovie, not to mention edit the shots down to just the highlights of the gameplay. Before I got the new computer, I had no way to edit the movies and had to do everything in one shot. I'm so glad I don't have to do it that way any more! Next entry we start working through 1980 on the Atari VCS namely: Space Invaders! 34,413
  9. Congratulations! Dang, I'm as behind on your blog as I am on Cybergoth's, but I intend to get caught up. I always enjoy what you have to say, how you say it and learning about what it is you're saying it about. Those blog tips are good too.
  10. I'm guessing that Baskeball is either: Some obscure Intellivision game combining Baseball and Basketball, or How Popeye pronounces "baseball" Hmm, you can aim the pass towards another player, but, unlike, say Baseball, you don't choose the player. You aim the ball to a spot on the field that you hope the player is going to be near when the ball gets there. If the player is close enough to the ball, he gets it, and then becomes controllable. Otherwise, it goes out of bounds and has to be thrown in. I already have the two games (Dogpatch and the "mystery" game) but I have no means of editing together two Quicktime movies taken on my digital camera. When I get my iMac (via FedEx), I will have the power! Maybe I'll even start using Safari, which, I understand, has a spell checker or something... , y'know, I actually did read this one over before publishing it, but I missed Baskeball! Of course it should have been "Bosqueball", which is the sport played within the thin strip of green vegetation that follows the course of waterways in arid and semi-arid regions. My mistake!
  11. NASL Soccer (Intellivision, 1980) The last Intellivision game for 1980! How long has it taken me to get here? Short answer? Too damn long! This is the first Soccer I've played in Chronogaming. The first soccer for a home vidoegame console was actually released in the European edition of Odyssey by Magnavox. They called it Football over there, which makes sense to me. Okay, Soccer, like Baskeball and Hockey before it, takes the approach of having a reduced number of players on the screen at any given time, but innovates with those players in a way which we will discuss later. Intellivision Soccer shows about a third of the field at a time, and as your players travel left or right down the field, the camera view pans. This idea of panning camera over a playfield that "exists" off the edges of the screen has been used before in Football and Auto Racing on the Intellivision. Soccer takes the idea a little further. While the camera pans over the field, the players "wrap around". For instance, if the camera is panning to the right, a player that scrolls off screen to the left will scroll back on screen from the right. This allows you to pass accurately to a player that's "off screen" knowing that they're not there yet, but they will be. This isn't the first videogame to do let you aim "off screen", Asteroids, in the arcades, allows you to practice this virtual type of aiming. If I'm not mistaken, Soccer is the first home videogame to try it. This is a very clever way to make up for the reduced number of players on a large playing field in a game where passing is the key to playing the game well. Something we enjoyed about this feature, was that the wrap-around effect for a controlled defensive player worked like a teleporter. Rather than chase down a player with the ball, one could run in the opposite direction, teleport (wrap-around) and show up on the other side of the screen, cutting the player with the ball off! A feature we had to get used to is that you can only shoot or pass the ball if the player with the ball is moving, and then, you can only kick it in the same direction the player is moving. My soccer-playing son had a hard time with this. He correctly pointed out that in soccer, one often must stop the ball, and then kick it, to pass effectively. He's right, of course, but I'm sure the developers knew what they were doing with what they had to work with. Another odd thing is the inability to switch control to other players on the field. If you pass the ball, the computer controlled recipient will run to meet the ball but only if the computer determines that computer controlled player can receive the pass. If the receiving team member cannot get to the passed ball, it goes out of bounds. After a failed pass, one can't help but feel that they'd have gotten the guy there faster, if only they'd had control of him! When defending, your computer controlled players don't always effectively pursue the offensive player in posession of the ball. This could, um--hypothetically speaking--lead to a person yelling at the slightly anthropomorpic pixels on the TV screen. Not that I did that, no, sir! One last innovation that I've never seen before: while you are defending and your goal is visible on screen, you not only control your defensive player with the controller disc, but you can move your goalie up and down with the action buttons to attempt to block the a kick on goal! This effectively allows you to control the movement of two distinct objects in different locations on the screen simultaneously and in real time. (Is that redundant? Am I making sense or did I overserve myself Red Bull again?) That wrap-arounds it up (Ha! I slay me!) for Soccer and the Intellivision games released in 1980. Next entry, we take a slight time-warp by looking at Dogpatch on the Bally Pro Arcade and a very similar "mystery" game from more recent times. (Hopefully, I'll make a keen video of it on my expected iMac. Hurry FedEx! ) 34016
  12. I'm well aware that your point is not to display a comprehensive or exact list (or you'd have displayed your numbers and not left off things like Magnavox Odyssey ) but to rather bring up the question of costs in collecting vs. emulation. You're absolutely right on a single point: emulation is cheaper. This leads to the corrollary: you get what you pay for. When you emulate, you're seeing the games through the lens of the emulator and without the proper controllers. This is a great way to get an idea of the gameplay mechanics, the way the graphics were put together, and the sound effects - (if emulated}. However, it's a little like watching a network broadcast of Star Wars on a 13" black and white TV with commercials and iffy reception. You'll know the plot, you'll hear the dialog and see everything that happens, but is that experience anything close to seeing it in a movie theater? PS: Look up the word "dearth" it doesn't mean what you think it means.
  13. Mezrabad

    Playdex 4.1

    Dang, I have a lot of "Playing" reading to catch up on! Nice work!
  14. I love the smell of checkers in the morning! Smells like victory!! Thank you! And I dread not the crash but the glut of crappy games that lead to it. Oh, how I shudder thinking about them! Mad? I thought you enjoyed this game. Ack! That's what I get for typing an entry on my lunch hour, and now, since you've quoted it, I am too ashamed to go back and fix it! I will have to give it some form of twisted context which some day I will rationalize, so that it will seem like I was making an obscure reference rather than failing to proof my scribblings. I'll use the quote to introduce a chapter of my book: Chronogaming: A Time Traveler's Guide To Exploring 20th Century Videogames, by the time I'm done editing it, I will most certainly be mad.
  15. Checkers (Intellivision, 1980) Yup, still on Intellivision, still in 1980, as we have been since, what? 2007? Sorry it's taken so long, we are only one game away from finishing 1980 Intellivision games and the penultimate Intellivision game for the year is: Checkers! I didn't actually dread playing Checkers, especially after my better-than-dreaded experience with Backgammon. I was looking forward to jumping back into the Chronogaming groove. Checkers didn't disappoint me. It was an elegantly simple implementation of the game of checkers. As with Backgammon, the visuals were very clean and easy to understand. In fact, the visuals were very much of the same style as the Backgamon visuals. Red and black board, little round pieces and a dash on them if it is a stack of two. In this case a "king". The controls without the overlays were a little hard to figure out, so much so, in fact, that I did have to dig into my "big box of Intellivision manuals and overlays". Once I had the overlays installed, and had read the manual ("Read this manual if you want to play a winning game of checkers!") it was a breeze: playing Intellivision's Checkers was pretty fun. I was able to win regularly against computer on Lo Skill but am ashamed to say I gave up trying to beat it on Hi Skill. I may try again yet, but I was impatient to win so I could record the video I mad below. Normally, I put board-games-turned-videogames into the class of: "Aren't these more fun played with another person? If you have another person, can't you just use a real board?" I think I've changed my stance on this, taking into account the era these early video board games were introduced: See, "now-a-days", if presented with a Checkers videogame, one is tempted to say, "No thanks, I'd rather play a different videogame." However, one may still enjoy playing Checkers (on a board) with another person. In fact, I know my kids and I like playing checkers... though usually we just play videogames... hmm, may have to change that practice. Back in 1980, however, Checkers (and chess and Othello and backgammon) were sometimes the only form of gaming available when you went other places and gamed with other kids or even grown-ups. I remember going to a summer camp where we had a bunch of checker and chess sets and that's what some of us did every other afternoon or so. Checkers on Intellivision (and Atari, etc) was actually a good way to practice for playing against real people. Yes, playing a game like Adventure (coming up in Atari 1980) was its own reward, but I finally understand the value of being able to play against a computer opponent: it may help you improve your game for when you play against that big kid from the 8th grade, or... anyone, that was just an example... The really notable thing about this version of Checkers is your reward for winning against the computer. Someone correct me if I am wrong, but have we heard this extensive amount of music in a home videogame before this one? I've recorded and posted it as a YouTube video, with which I will leave you. Piece out! (get it?) Next time we do NASL Soccer, which I think is a form of Soccer but, judging by the name, you use your nose to play it. 33216
  16. Hey, Thanks! Words like that make my day and push me forward. My Intellivision adventures began with an Intelly II... I'm still not used to those side buttons! Ack! Fixed! Typo was due to the start screen for Backgammon actually saying 1978. Apprently this was one of the games they coded in 1978 but didn't release until after the platform was released nationwide in 1980. (It's like they coded a bunch of games, picked a few for the CA test marketing in 1979 and then release them in 1980.) Thanks! Sadly, while I'm putting off Chronogamer, I also tend to say away from AtariAge in general. I need to be around more so I can keep up with yours and the other blogs I like to read. Often you and the others make me want to write more! The irony of doing this for fun and yet dreading to do some of them paralyzes me like a deer brightened by headlights. "I must play this game to write about it, because I enjoy writing about games, but...I don't wanna play it!"
  17. Backgammon (Intellivision, 1980) Sadly, I've been dreading having to play this game. Like most games I dread playing (sports, for instance) it's a great hinderance to moving forward with chronogaming. So, tonight, I had a spare hour or so (family goes to bed before I do on most nights) and decided to get over this little hump in my chronology. Boy do I feel stupid for having put it off. This is a well designed version of backgammon. The play field, like the play field for Roulette, is very easy to read. The keypad and disc is used to play. The dice rolls, use the disc to select a piece and choose the number on the keypad available from your on-screen die roll to move. When done, press "enter", and the game continues. Press "clear" to start the turn over. Press "8" to reset, if it just looks hopeless. It's a really simple and clean interface. My only complaint, is that when selecting pieces with the disc, you can only move around the selectable pieces clockwise (unless my disc is just busted). This is slightly annoying if you overshoot the piece you wish to select, otherwise, very easy to figure out what to do, even without an overlay or manual. Seems whenever I have to play a backgammon video game, I have to relearn how to play the game itself. Took me half of the first game to figure out what the hell was going on, and then three more games to get the hang of it again. I finally won the fifth game, and I will say it was a simple, satisfying pleasure to do so -- somewhere between skipping a rock all the way across the surface of a pond and getting a channel tuned in perfectly just before a TV show starts (from back when that sort of thing was an appreciated art). If you like backgammon, you should dig this version of it, which, as far as I know, is the last version of Backgammon to come out for a home videogame console... (someone correct me on this if I'm wrong, please, I'm pulling it out of my head and haven't actually looked that up.) Backgammon is one of those games that has been around a very long time, and Supercat once pointed out something about the game that made me appreciate it more. It's all about being able to see the probability of getting the right dice rolls to position your pieces to lower the chances of your opponent to be able to advance. Okay, he didn't say it that way, he was explaining something about the doubling cube, but it lead me to that insight. I'm still not any good at playing it, but I no longer dismiss it. Jeez, I don't even have my "left to play on Intellivision in 1980" list around... which means the next entry will be a surprise! (32934)
  18. I feel your pain. I've accumulated four 486s (computers, monitors, mice and keyboards), with the hopeful intent of playing good old fashioned Doom someday. I think I finally have four complete "sets". However, I've realized that, unlike setting up an Atari console with four paddles to play Warlords, for instance, setting up and networking four old PCs can be a bit of a chore. The lure of Doom, just isn't enough for all that work (which would only be up for an afternoon or two). Fortunately, I got them all for free. Unfortunately, getting rid of the monitors won't be free, if I understand local environmental laws these days. For me, even if there's a use for some of the stuff I've saved, I'm disinclined to actually do anything with it, although art exhibit sounds like a good idea.
  19. yeah, today's systems aren't very conducive to get someone into coding. I agree, is there even a from of BASIC available with Windows or Mac when you get it, or does one have to get "Visual BASIC"? The closest thing to "programing" available to some kid messing with a computer would be HTML, I think. PHP with a little effort (although getting my computer setup to use Apache and run PHP wasn't exactly something I think a 10 year old could just jump into.) I remember learning and being able to abuse the concept of 10 PRINT "Hello World" 20 GOTO 10 at a fairly early age (Thanks, Radio Shack!), there's not really an opportunity to do that now a days while out shopping for crap with the 'rents.
  20. As EricBall very correctly pointed out, it wasn't long after figuring out that this machine might work, that I realized that it's little better than a door stop without a floppy drive. Fortunately for me, I discovered the CFFA! This is a card that plugs into the innards of an Apple IIGS with a Compact Flash card as a hard drive. You can have as many 32MB hard drive images as you can fit on a compact flash. So, I quickly, and without really reading anything about it, ordered one and then ordered a compact flash card with 256 MB on it. I would have the equivalent of 8 32MB hard drives for my IIGS. Floppy drive-Schmoppy drive! Well, of course, I still needed a floppy drive. The CFFA comes with a 16MB CF card in it with everything needed to boot the computer up in ProDos... and then what? I write programs in Applesoft BASIC? Okay, so more homework was needed. Turns out, there's a program called CiderPress and that let's you create images that you can then put on a compact flash card! The CF card has to be formatted already, though, by software on an Apple II. The CF Card is not hot swappable, meaning if you boot up one card, you can't switch to an unformatted card while the thing is turned on. So... my 256 MB card remained in it's little wrapper until... Last month! I finally got an Apple 5.25" drive. I was able to boot up the IIGS with the CF card that came with the CFFA, format one of the floppies in the drive and copy over some necessary stuff to the floppy. Then I turned the machine off, stuck in my 256MB CF, booted from the floppy and formatted the first two 32MB sections of the 256MB card. Now, I could copy some stuff onto the CF card using Ciderpress and some awesome images some wonderful people had already created and Presto! I'm running the awesome graphical interface of the IIGS 6.0.1... wait, hmm, not enough memory. Okay, we can try 5.4.1... hmm, hey, this doesn't seem to work either.. okay, how about Prodos 4! Hmm, still graphical, wait.. how do I move the cursor? Can't I use the keyboard? Turns out, that without a Mouse, you can't use any of the graphical interfaces! Not that they'd be any fun to use without a mouse, but I was hoping to be able to tab around for a little bit. Also, turns out that the programs I'd flashed onto the other virtual hard drive were all programs to be run in that mouse control interface. So, I've ordered a mouse and am still waiting for it to arrive, but this is a lesson for those who would just dive right in to this sort of thing without doing their homework. To my credit I only posted on a message board once asking for help (I'm back to doing some research while I wait for the mouse.) Back to the drawing board as they used to say. My goal is to somehow boot up some of the older games that were on the Apple II, but they didn't use ProDOS, they just used something called DOS 3.3. So, while I'm waiting for that darn mouse, I'll be looking for some Apple II disks to see if I can get something to run from them.
  21. Sea Battle? I never knew there had been a prototype of that out there! I was blown away by the version on the Intellivision (which also requires two players). Very cool and a hint of what would one day come with realtime strategies...kinda sorta. Nice point about needing the two instructions cards. My copy of the Intelly game came with two photocopies of the ship stats, I can't imagine having to fight over it in the middle of a game. (Or knowing your ships so well that you wouldn't need it. Maybe this was for people who used to memorize this stuff...)
  22. Mezrabad

    Wasteland

    Nope, no, Neuromancer. Included in the Interplay 10 year Anthology for PC are: Mind Shadow, Bard's Tale, Tass Times, Battle Chess, Wasteland, Dragon Wars, Castles, Star Trek 25th Anniversary, Lord of the Rings, Out of this World. I think this came out in 1993! So, looking back at this is like a look back at how we used to look back!
  23. The TV is okay, but as you say, 80 columns of text is hard to read. I won't know if I can tolerate it until I get something running. That is something I had yet to find out in back in January, but I do eventually learn. I saw that and am kicking myself for only having an Amiga Monitor, Model 1080. It works great with my C=64, but, unless I've missed the information somewhere there's no way to just plug in the Apple IIGS to it, not with out getting out a soldering gun. Not ready for that yet, when the TV produces a serviceable picture. Alternatively, I've got SCART input going into my TV's BNC RGB input. I know there's a IIGS to SCART cable out there. It would be easy to pick that cable up and I would expect my Sony PVM would do a good job (like it does with the Saturn, the PS2 and the Dreamcast I've got it working with.) The only "rule" here is that I cannot bring another CRT into my home, without first getting rid of four old VGA's for which I have a project planned, but that's another subject.
  24. Mezrabad

    Wasteland

    Wow! I actually have this somewhere around my house (Interplay's 10th anniversary collection, I think?) I'll definitely have to try it out, I think I was expecting something more along the lines of Apple II's version, but those graphics look great! (relatively speaking). Good luck and keep your rads down!
  25. Okay, back sometimes in the closing days of 2008 an AtariAger was looking for an Emerson Arcadia 2001 and was offering an Apple IIGS in exchange. I've always wanted one of those, so I went for it, traded my extra Arcadia (I had to keep one if my chronogaming ever makes it to 1982) a few boxed commons and maybe one scarce (I was feeling generous, and I really did want to mess around with an Apple IIGS). So, sometime in January, the exchange was made and a happy IIGS began its life in my home. So, why get a GS? Well, for one, it's essentially a beefed up Apple II. I've wanted an Apple II since I knew of its existence. Of course, the desire to have one because it was new and interesting in 1980 has been replaced by the desire to have one because I can now most easily afford it. Also, the 12 year old I was in 1980 still clamors for it. I appease this clamoring by getting the IIGS, in the reasoning that somehow, using the GS, I'll get to play some Apple II games. So, I have it. I scavenge a power cord from some PC-thing and plug it in--this is nothing but the IIGS unit, by the way--I plug it in and turn it on and hear a low pitched >dunk<. It takes power without screaming or smoking, and there's a little light glowing on the front of the box. Oookay, so far. The back of the machine has some connections with tiny little icons. One of the connections looks like an RCA plug, so I'm thinking "RF". Fortunately I have an RF connector on my VCR, so I pilfer an RCA cable from something in the living room, hook it up to the GS, plug it into the Game switch, turn on the VCR, turn on the TV, turn on the GS...>dunk<...no picture. Unplug the RCA from the game switch and plug it into a yellow video input on the front of the VCR, change the input selector and.. hear the >dunk< but this time I get a picture! A black background with an oscillating cursor and a message "Check Startup Device". Okay, this is a good sign. It probably means I need some kind of disk drive with an operating system in it, but it's a start. I figure a couple of obvious things I'll need. A disk drive, a keyboard and maybe a monitor. The TV will work for a while, but someday, I'll need a real Apple monitor. So, I go to Goodwill Computerworks. I haven't been there in a few years, but I remembered that they used to have a lot of Apple II stuff on their shelves, as well as some IIGS stuff. I start looking around... nothing but a monitor cable with an Apple logo on it for $3. It might be useful someday, so I get it. At checkout, I ask the counter person about Apple II stuff and they say... "Well, not for sale, but you could take a look in the Museum..." This Goodwill has a museum dedicated to early computing--a quite nice one actually. It's the first time I've ever gone out shopping for computer parts only to find that what I was looking for was not just no longer available... it was enshrined as a part of a museum exhibit. True story.
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