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Your first software! What was it?

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Back in the 70's and 80's everything computing and gaming was new. That included both hardware and software. Most of us like to discuss our first computer (or game console) from a hardware perspective - like talking about the user experience, or things we did with the computer, or how cool it was compared to a buddy's setup.

 

But what about the software? What were some of the first games or application programs you got for your first computer? What software was most useful? Most memorable? Most impressive?

 

I'll start with some Apple II stuff. I had even gotten some of the software on cassette (and type-in listings) BEFORE I had the actual computer. I remember things like MicroChess, A2-FS1, Star Dance, Space Raiders, "official" Apple software tapes, cassettes from Hayden Software, Muse Software like Three Mile Island, Bill Budge's Space Album and Trilogy of Games, and more. And just as memorable were the few things on the official DOS 3.3 System Master diskette!

 

The hits just kept coming. One after the other. Got stuff from the kids in school, grandparents, the computer stores, magazine and book type-ins, and user's groups and clubs, and of course BBSes. And soon I had a whole bookshelf full of those 3-ring Apple Software Bank binders. It was both glorious & gluttonous! I would never in my lifetime complete all those games, or utilize all those business applications and technical programming tools to their full extent. Soon enough those got to be too extravagant I had to start transitioning into those 10-per-box floppy cases and Flip'n'Files.

 

Staying home from school was fun and almost a necessity to keep up with the amount of software. There weren't enough gloomy fall days, snow days, or springtime soakers to get it all done.

 

But of all my years active with the Apple II the first ones were the best - lasting up to about mid-1987. And a gradual decline thereafter. Partly because of growing up and all that.

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The first computer I remember using was the Commodore 64 my family briefly had around 1989-90 (before I accidentally killed it somehow), when I was just four or five years old. We had a small number of games with it: Blue Max, Ms. Pac-Man (Thunder Mountain disk), Stealth, and Beach Head II. I hadn't played any of those since I was five, and it was amazing how the memories rushed back when I started researching and rediscovering them in the '00s. I also remember a disk labeled "Jet" but I don't recall my dad ever being able to get that one to work. I had to ask him any time I wanted to play; A) my parents didn't want me sitting around playing games all day, and B) I couldn't get the hang of the load command!

 

Around the same time, the neighbor kid had an Apple //c at his house, and we played a lot of what I now know was Sabotage.

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My first software... we had a C-64 and I only ever had ONE actual disk that was bought from a store. EVERYTHING else was pirates from a C-64 club my uncle was in where people would meet up and duplicate each others disks. So I eventually had 2 disks FULL of decent games.

 

But back to my first, well I think it was still a pirate, I've learned in time!

It was disk with 4 games on it. All by Anirog. Kong, Scramble, Cosmic Commando, and Zodiac.

Kong I enjoyed because, come on it was 1986 and all I had otherwise was the 2600 version! Incredibly difficult, but it just looked so clean and colorful and better sounds!

Scramble was GREAT fun. Come on.. it's Scramble!!!

Zodiac was fun for a while, but it just goes and goes...

Cosmic Commando, now THERE was a weird one. Damn near impossible. A shooting gallery game where you pretty much had to hit EVERY target EVERY round, if you missed once, you might still make it, if you missed twice, fuck it, give up.

 

In recent years, I've been trying to learn more about these games. Turns out Cosmic Commando was playable with a light gun?? Never knew the C64 had a light gun!!!

 

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I guess it'd have to be a pirated copy of some apple 2 games. It was probably Aztec or Castle Wolfenstein. And I didn't even have an Apple 2 :lol: I had to go to my computer classes/lab to play them.

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My first software (of my own) was on Vic-20. I had played games on my friends' ZX81s ( I loved 3D Monster Maze and 3D Ant Attack!)but I finally had my own computer. With the Datasette came a cassette with several programs on it such as Biorhythms, some statistical stuff and this... my very first game, Blue Meanies from outer space! Lost hours to this for several weeks. Then I bought Blitz and then so much more. But Blue Meanies from Outer Space was my gateway gaming drug.

 

 

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Posted (edited)

PCjr version of Kings Quest 1. (with Tandy graphics and 3 voice sound)

 

 

 

Edited by wierd_w
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My very first computing experience was with a TRS-80 Model III at school in about 1982. I don't recall there being any commercial software for it. It was mainly used to teach BASIC programming to the older kids*. One of my classmates -- who later did a Computer Science degree -- wrote or adapted some simple games for it.  

 

In 1983, I purchased a Coco, mainly because the only computer that I had ever used was from Radio Shack. I had one cartridge game (Wildcatting; more of a simulation, really), and I learned to code on it. A few months later, I received a book of type-in games, and then I discovered magazines with even more game program listings. I eventually got into contact with some other Coco users (both locally and elsewhere), and I managed to get some of the better games. I never had a disk drive; I used cassettes until I migrated to a PC in 1988.

 

*I eventually enrolled in the computer class in about 1984 or 1985, but I was told that typing class (using actual typewriters!) was a co-requisite, so I was forced to drop it.  

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5 hours ago, Arnuphis said:

My first software (of my own) was on Vic-20. I had played games on my friends' ZX81s ( I loved 3D Monster Maze and 3D Ant Attack!)but I finally had my own computer. With the Datasette came a cassette with several programs on it such as Biorhythms, some statistical stuff and this... my very first game, Blue Meanies from outer space! Lost hours to this for several weeks. Then I bought Blitz and then so much more. But Blue Meanies from Outer Space was my gateway gaming drug.

 

I got a copy of Blue Meanies from Outer Space along with my VIC-20 when I got it. It also came with some weird Dodge 'Em clone, Slither(Snake clone) and more. These games didn't age well at all, but they were fun when they were:) These would be my first computer software as well.

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My first was UP 'n DOWN by SEGA on the 800XL.  What a fun game.  I still love playing that one from time to time.

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My first "software" purchases were some games on my Vic-20, but I really thought of those more like console games.  They were carts.  I plugged them in and played.

Not that they weren't technically software purchases...  They were...

 

But there are two pieces of software I remember to this day from early in my computing career...  They stick out in my memory...

-Ultima IV for the C64.  Yes, it was another game, but on disks, with manuals and a map...  It felt like more than just a cart style game (if that makes sense).

-Fleet System II Word Processor for the C64.  This was my first productivity software purchase and I used that word processor for years.

I even taught my mom to use that (after she swore she could never learn how to use a computer).  

 

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The first computer I owned was a TI SR-56 programmable calculator. It came with a book of programs and I wrote some of my own but the first third-party software I got came from my local library. Paul Lutus, of later Apple Writer fame, wrote an article for Popular Electronics and a program called Space Flight. It was a 2-D lunar lander type game which you played with the help of graph paper and pencil. I ported it from HPese to my 56. The porting was more fun than the playing, but there it is.

https://arachnoid.com/programmable_calculators/index.html

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TI-99/4A and Parsec, Munch Man, and TI Invaders.  Technically this was the family computer.

 

My own home computer first would be the Commodore 64, and my first purchased software titles would be Jeopardy! and Wheel of Fortune.  Everything else I had was downloaded from BBSes, mostly random games like Strip Poker and a really good Star Trek game, and a bunch of demos.

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Hunt the Wumpus, TI Invaders, and Car Wars for the TI-99/4A

 

Pirate Cove and Radar Rat Race for the VIC-20

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My first software was a few cassettes of games I got from a tech my Dad worked with to run on my brand new VIC-20 computer paired with an old black & white tv that I actually used in my room (it was my first 'setup' and I had it all to myself instead of competing for time on the big living room console tv when I was playing the Atari 2600 a couple years prior).

I loved it and played those games all weekend long, it was the coolest thing in life then and Skramle was one game in particular that I remember.

Then my parents bought me few programs like Scott Adam's Adventure Island and Pirates Cove and Omega Race and Gorf.

The beginning of home computers was a great time in history.

 

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Mine was a cassette drive for my C64. I remember pushing PLAY to load a game like Snokie the Penguin platformer... and going off to watch MTV Top 10 Countdown with Dokken, KISS and Bon Jovi for almost 30 minutes while the game loaded. 

 

Saved up for a 1541 floppy drive as soon as possible! 

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We never had the "Datasette" in my house.  My first memory of computer software is hearing Moonlight Sonata playing as a demo of one of the c64 music programs.  I believe we loaded it from disc, but I guess that one could also be a cartridge.  I quickly learned that playing around with music software wasn't that fun (when you are around 6 or 7), so we moved on to using SAM to try and synthesize different words.  That was my first night with any computer.  There may have been a game or 2 of Jupiter Lander and Choplifter mixed in there.

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On 8/27/2020 at 1:19 AM, OLD CS1 said:

TI-99/4A and Parsec, Munch Man, and TI Invaders.  Technically this was the family computer.

 

My own home computer first would be the Commodore 64, and my first purchased software titles would be Jeopardy! and Wheel of Fortune.  Everything else I had was downloaded from BBSes, mostly random games like Strip Poker and a really good Star Trek game, and a bunch of demos.

If it was like the old mainframe game where you explore sectors and travel and fire by direction and distance then I played it too.  I think I finally tracked it down, but it isn't one that gets a lot of attention these days or there was too much competition for it to stand out: http://www.gamebase64.com/game.php?id=7341&d=18&h=0

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First software purchase for me was "Downland" for the Color Computer. Later came "Dungeons of Daggoroth". I didn't really use utilities on my CoCo except for whatever I typed in from a magazine or I wrote myself. 

 

My TI already had a game when my parents bought it (Parsec).

 

First software I bought for my first PC Clone was "Lightspeed" by Microprose. It was playable on my 8088, but I wasn't good at it. Then came "Sid Meier's Covert Action". Wal-Mart was selling this stuff for $10 a pop back then.

 

Now that's the first stuff I *bought*. The first software I *acquired* is longer.....

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my first computer was a xerox 820 ii. the games i play on it was a text game Adventure and a game called bouncing barney. 

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