Jump to content
IntelliMission

Exclusive games for 8 bit computers

Recommended Posts

Let's talk about exclusive games for "8 bit computers". Systems such as...

 

Commodore 64

Apple II

ZX Spectrum

MSX

Amstrad CPC

Atari 8 bit family

TRS80 "CoCo" Color Computer

BBC Micro

 

...and a few others. Maybe we can include early PCs too (even if some had 16 bit processors).

 

If you know an exclusive game for any of these 80s computers, mention it. It can save time to others while discovering the library of a retro system.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I suppose the mentioned games should have some form of playability. There certainly are lots of exclusive games mostly because they're so bad/dull that it never occurred to anyone to port them.

 

Of course Wikipedia has some content to start with, here are 85 exclusive C64 games though one would need to look up if all of these truly are exclusive. While you're at it, you can follow the link to the category of pages for single-platform video games.

 

Some of my personal favorites are Butamaru Pants (MSX) which I believe is exclusive. Unfortunately Bird Strike doesn't qualify because it was launched both on the Acorn Electron and BBC Micro. Same goes for Hypa-Ball which exists on both C64 and ZX Spectrum, Jammin' (C64 and Amstrad CPC) and the multi-platform Frak (Electron, BBC, C64, all slightly different).

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
53 minutes ago, carlsson said:

Some of my personal favorites are Butamaru Pants (MSX) which I believe is exclusive. Unfortunately Bird Strike doesn't qualify because it was launched both on the Acorn Electron and BBC Micro. Same goes for Hypa-Ball which exists on both C64 and ZX Spectrum, Jammin' (C64 and Amstrad CPC) and the multi-platform Frak (Electron, BBC, C64, all slightly different).

For some reason I thought the idea was to list games exclusive to home computers, as opposed to consoles. Guess I was wrong though.

 

In that case it's tricky, because there were so many ports. Few notable "pure" exclusives off top of my head:

 

ZX Spectrum: Back to School, Chaos, Rebelstar, Stonkers, PSSST, Mugsy

C64: Project Firestart

CPC: Sorcery+

 

 

 

 

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We can be inclusive to begin with, and slim down the suggestions as required. If the idea was to post good computer-only games, that list would quickly become quite long. Of course if one is not really familiar with computer gaming, it might seem like a narrow field to discuss games not present on video game consoles.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yeah, as I mentioned in the other thread, it's a great exercise, but there will likely be surprisingly few platform exclusive games for classic computers as most were port to/from some other platform, especially if we limit it to major release games (as I argue we should).

 

I will throw a few in that come to mind:

 

Apple II: Theseus and the Minotaur, Dawn Patrol, Dungeon!

Atari 8-bit: Eastern Front (1941)

C-64: Ultimate Wizard

PC DOS: Zyll

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

While I didn't find it on Wikipedia, the original Paradroid (C64) should also be an exclusive. Graftgold made a remake in Paradroid 90 a few years later, but I'm not sure if remakes even if those are developed by the same studio, should disqualify the exclusive status.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 minutes ago, carlsson said:

While I didn't find it on Wikipedia, the original Paradroid (C64) should also be an exclusive. Graftgold made a remake in Paradroid 90 a few years later, but I'm not sure if remakes even if those are developed by the same studio, should disqualify the exclusive status.

I think that's probably fair. It was updated in some ways and given a different name (or an addendum).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Apple II

Horizon V, Zenith, Laser Silk, Eggs-It, PentaPus, Fire & Ice, Phantoms Five, Epoch, Hadron, Retro-Ball, Space Adventure, Rings of Saturn, Saturn Navigator, Space Vikings, Pegasus ][, and so many more!

 

The games' titles may be exclusive to Apple II, as are other titles to their respective machines. But gameplay isn't always unique. A lot of these are offshoots of a concept spread wide across many machines.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I mentioned this in the other thread.

Donkey Kong Remixed, only on the Tandy Coco 3.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 9/26/2020 at 12:47 AM, Keatah said:

Apple II

Horizon V, Zenith, Laser Silk, Eggs-It, PentaPus, Fire & Ice, Phantoms Five, Epoch, Hadron, Retro-Ball, Space Adventure, Rings of Saturn, Saturn Navigator, Space Vikings, Pegasus ][, and so many more!

 

The games' titles may be exclusive to Apple II, as are other titles to their respective machines. But gameplay isn't always unique. A lot of these are offshoots of a concept spread wide across many machines.

Never heard of most of those.
There is a CoCo game similar to Phantoms Five called F-16 Assault, but I don't think it has the head on screen.


This is one of the best places for info on CoCo games.
There are entries for 651 games, but the maintainer said he has over 400 games he hasn't added yet.
http://www.lcurtisboyle.com/nitros9/coco_game_list.html

*edit* Not sure why the link didn't show up.

Edited by JamesD
added link

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
6 hours ago, mr_me said:

I mentioned this in the other thread.

Donkey Kong Remixed, only on the Tandy Coco 3.

Not an exclusive game really, is it? It's an arcade port.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
38 minutes ago, Bill Loguidice said:

Not an exclusive game really, is it? It's an arcade port.

Not sure I'd call it an arcade port since there isn't an arcade game with the same levels, but it is definitely derived from Donkey Kong.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
7 minutes ago, JamesD said:

Not sure I'd call it an arcade port since there isn't an arcade game with the same levels, but it is definitely derived from Donkey Kong.

 

Yeah, but it uses the original arcade code, remixed or not, and it's a modern homebrew. I just don't see how it fits the definition of a significant exclusive if it's the original Donkey Kong with remixed levels. Including a game like that just makes finding (and defining) true exclusives even messier. It is super impressive, of course, but this is not about most impressive games (original or homebrew) by system.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
36 minutes ago, Bill Loguidice said:

Yeah, but it uses the original arcade code, remixed or not, and it's a modern homebrew. I just don't see how it fits the definition of a significant exclusive if it's the original Donkey Kong with remixed levels. Including a game like that just makes finding (and defining) true exclusives even messier. It is super impressive, of course, but this is not about most impressive games (original or homebrew) by system.

Are you suggesting any remixes or games built on an existing game engine be excluded from exclusives?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
24 minutes ago, JamesD said:

Are you suggesting any remixes or games built on an existing game engine be excluded from exclusives?

Yes and that modern homebrews shouldn't count either since that in some cases can add hundreds more originals. The fact is, Donkey Kong Remix is not an original game. It's the original arcade code with modifications. It's a lovely and supremely impressive hack.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Set it to remix B, it's a completely different game. Donkey Kong Remix is more like a sequel.  How much original code is used doesn't matter.  Atarisoft donkey kong is all original code; but it's not an original game. 

 

Are there other noteworthy homebrews with original gameplay?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Most of the noteworthy homebrews tend to get ported in one way or another. People using other systems simply can't stand the envy of not having access to a new, original game. For instance I don't know exactly how groundbreaking Yoomp! (Atari 8-bit) was, but enough for the C64 community to seek solutions for many years on how to implement that game, despite the hardware differences and the fact the game takes advantage of A8 specific features.

 

Likewise, on the grand scheme of things a game like Sam's Journey (C64) might not be that much different from all other scrolling platform games, but there is a port underway for the NES (which already has a ton of scrolling platform games!!) plus that people in the A8 community and other look at it with great envy. Again it is a game built upon hardware features in the VIC-II chip, so porting gets very difficult if you want to maintain similar results.

 

Actually that was a thing already in the 1980's. I previously mentioned Paradroid for the C64. When Graftgold considered porting it to the ZX Spectrum, they realized its hardware would not be capable of doing that game, so instead they developed an exclusive isometric view sequel called Quazatron, followed by Magnetron. Nowadays many fans would not be satisfied with that approach, requesting a port as close as possible to the original instead of building a new game in the same setting.

 

It also brings the question: if there is an older, exclusive computer game that most likely a fan makes a port of, perhaps even obtaining the rights from the original copyright holder, does it make the game non-exclusive all of a sudden?

Edited by carlsson

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Another one that comes to my mind is Fourth Encounter (VIC-20, Thorn EMI) which itself is just yet another shoot 'em up, but from what I know is exclusive to the system despite Thorn EMI tended to port all their other games across Atari 8-bit, VIC-20, C64, Apple II, ZX Spectrum etc.

Edited by carlsson

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I wouldn't say "most" of the homebrews get ported. Some, more like. I also don't see a reason why good ones should be excluded, if they are exclusive.

 

A few I was really impressed by recently are:

ZX Spectrum: Bonnie & Clyde, Wudang (the fact it's written in Basic is mindboggling), Patrick Paddle

C64: Zeta Strike - new-, incredibly playable shoot'em up, Millie & Molly - fantastic puzzle game

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, youxia said:

C64: Zeta Strike - new-, incredibly playable shoot'em up, Millie & Molly - fantastic puzzle game

Millie & Molly was ported to the 7800. :) 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Even if most homebrews don't get ported (which I agree with), it seems unnecessary to include them, even if they're unique. That seems like a different classification. Modern major homebrew exclusives. Again, you make the bucket too big and suddenly coming up with a list doesn't mean much because it's hundreds or thousands of games long.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Okay, but now we have a week old thread and just a handful of games mentioned so far. For somebody new to this subject it might create a false impression that they simply do not exist or that there were no worthwhile games on 8-bit micros in general (which is already an oft-encountered view amongst some who grew up with consoles only).

 

So I'd say the rules need loosening a bit. There is no need to list every single exclusive, old or modern, just the notable ones.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I didn't write that most homebrews get ported. I wrote that most noteworthy homebrews get or are requested to be ported. :) Plenty of playable games that aren't quite that groundbreaking to attract interest in the other communities, are released all the time.

 

I believe there are more games described on Wikipedia than there are links to in the categories I linked to above, e.g. several of the C64 games named here are not listed as exclusive in the category listing on Wikipedia but clearly are.

 

Sure @IntelliMission didn't ask for the exclusive games to be particularly well known or strikingly playable, only that they should exist and be exclusive to one of the 8-bit computers. That would quickly fill the list with decent and mediocre games, many being clones of existing games with small enough twists that make them not direct rip-offs.

 

If the intent is to compile a list from a collector's perspective, obviously the entries should be such that are reasonably possible to obtain other than an abandonware download. To name another VIC-20 game that fortunately is exclusive, rare and collectable, we need to bring Ultima: Escape from Mt Drash to the table. This game was for a long while thought to not exist (in particular Lord British didn't want to see it), and up to $250 (by then an astronomous amount) was offered for a copy. Yes, once it was found it sold for many times more and all images of the box art need to be watermarked to prevent forgery. Of course in this case collectors' interest come both from the small community of VIC-20 collectors and the ditto community of anything Ultima collectors, though not all of them think it belongs in the canon. Far from the worst game ever made for the VIC-20, but also far from the best.

Edited by carlsson

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The title doesn't specify when the exclusive games were created.
When it comes to home brews, you can find games from every decade since the 80s.
Exactly where do you cut it off date wise?
I think excluding titles is a bit arbitrary no matter how or when you do it.

The problem with exclusives is that so many games have similarities or borrowed elements from other games.
Even the CoCo which wasn't known as a gaming stronghold has over 1000 titles we have dumps of, and that doesn't include more obscure titles.
Who wants to go through a 1000+ titles to find exclusives only to have someone inform you half the list you come up with came from somewhere else?

CoCo exclusive titles including games starting with #s through Ci****. 
I make no claims as to how good these are since I haven't played most of them, some are text adventures, several are just D&D games, and several are in BASIC.
Yes, they are going to range in quality from total suckage, to excellent, and everywhere in between.  Half or more probably fit into the suckage category but they are exclusives.
FWIW, the inevitable BS replies saying this or that don't count are probably why you don't have people posting long lists of exclusives for every computer.
3D Space Wars
666 The Haunted House
A Warlocks Revenge
Across the Rubicon
Adventure In Mythology
Adventure in Wonderland
Adventure Trilogy
Aldaron
A Mazing World of Malcom Mortar
Androne
Apples
Arena of Skill
Atom
Barbarossa

Basic Dungeons and Dragons

Battle for Tunis
Battle Hymn - The Battle of Gettysburg

Battle of the Bulge

Beyond the Cimeeon Moon
Blackbeard's Island

Bomber Command

Bomb Threat
Boris the Bold
Bumpers

Buried Buxx
Caladuril: Flame of Light
Catacomb
Cave Hunter
Cave Walker
Caves of the Unwashed Heathen
Champion
Chambers
Chatwin Manor

CINCPAC - Battle of Midway

City War
Civil War
 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
58 minutes ago, carlsson said:

Sure @IntelliMission didn't ask for the exclusive games to be particularly well known or strikingly playable, only that they should exist and be exclusive to one of the 8-bit computers. That would quickly fill the list with decent and mediocre games, many being clones of existing games with small enough twists that make them not direct rip-offs.

All the OP wrote was "let's talk about exclusive games for 8-bit computers". He did not set any ground rules and for that reason I will continue mentioning any notable exclusives which pop into my head, old or new, derivative or not, rare or common.

 

Yes, listing every single exclusive is pointless, there are dedicated lists and websites for that, but so is spending most of the thread bickering about what we should talk about.


 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...