Yes you're right, it's a C16 classic. And again: yes we understand it should be considered perfect as it has ever been. But everything can be improved, you know...
Kichy of Assassins crew just liked this Kingsoft's famous arcade/adventure game, but he dislikes how some assigned colours have been set along the screens. Hence, it's a change for a rerelease, with better colours and, why not, PAL/NTSC compatibility as addon! Et voilŕ, release achieved! Ghost Town [PAL/NTSC]. Download it and enjoy the old classic in a brand new guise in palette!
BSZ/NST (the guru behind NST's Audio Extension - AKA the SIDCard - that has been making news for the past few years) has just made the latest version of NST's Monitor Extension public. In a nutshell, it's a utility designed to go into an EPROM, and it replaces the built in TEDMON. Even a quick glance into the documentation will show you that it's what the TEDMON should have been. The description and documentation is available in both Hungarian and English, so head on over to the homepage to read more and for the download.
In view of a forthcoming version 2 of it, we've decided to hold the announcement about this program, which have just been commented in a known thread in the forum. And now, V2 of Xlife has come!
Xlife is by far the best implementation of the Game of life on every 8bit machine. Based on the experience achieved with the previous Life V1.01, Vladimir "Litwr" Lidovski has coded one that there's no other like it. It offers an impressive list of features, considering so many variables in order to satisfy even the most demanding user. The basic rules of the game can be modified completely. You can set your initial pattern in a comfortable way, let it evolve (even with a 'blind' faster mode), stop it, change it on fly, reprise it, do it step by step. There's a random pattern option with adjustable ratio. The pseudocolor mode is a real joy for the eyes, and perfectly highlights the population's behaviour. A zoom option allows to spy even the minimal cells'communities locally evolving.
Patterns can be loaded and saved in any moment, even merging'em with the population currently on screen. Aside of the available source codes, from the official XLife 8bit version page you can download a gigantic pack of 2396 preset patterns, which should really satisfy any presumable need. The V2 improves the first version, and adds a fully explicative instructions file, and a SEQ files reader in order to immediately check any single record.
Referring to the über-big C64 scene, if 2012 has been the year of hires graphics, we can easily say that 2013 will be remembered as the year the PETSCII style is reborn into a new life of its own. After some weak signs about PETSCII art, In the end of the year the Plain PETSCII Graphics Competition consecrates this graphic format with a huge number of users taking part of the compo. Aside of this trend, several powerful PETSCII editors has popped out, but no offence for anyone if we dare to recommend PETSCII as the best of the bunch, thanks to its coder Marq.
Even parties, hot on the heels of that compo, have set competition PETSCII-based, just like Zoo 2013, where the same Marq has literally ruled the scene, placing here and there graphic and demo entries all based on PETSCII. But PETSCII is a common language for 8bit Commodore machines. And Fit, the ancient group founded by Marq, is known for the heterogeneous choice of different machines involved. Easy to realize, then: let's port the C64 PETSCII demos to Plus/4!
First comes Beisikki Demo, code by Marq and music by Yzi, a little gem written in BASIC, and the porting on Plus/4 of a compo winner in BASIC demos. Pretty nice! But then the big gem comes! Straight from its first place at the demo competition, The First Ball is the best advert for the fresh new PETSCII animation feature just included into PETSCII! Code by Marq, additional code and the stunning graphics by Dr. TerrorZ, and a perfectly fitting SID tune composed by Yzi. Marq opted for the SIDcard usage, in order to leave unchanged the cool tune, and that's why there are two files in the spreaded D64: in order to be compatible even with the much obscure SIDcards, you can choose between SID music at $FD40 or $FE80.
Hence, welcome Fit, we all wish to see more and more productions from you, hoping for a dedicated Plus/4 release, in the next future.
Time passes for all of us, are you getting older and older, uh? ;) Are you worried for your synapses sparkling any day lesser than yesterday? No-oh-oo! You don't have to worry for that, because your old buddy, the Plus/4, comes to you in order to train your memory with a classic match-the-couples game!
Of course, it's November 2013, and nowadays the best scene's dudes know how to push a real classic like that to the apex of cuteness! It's Memento, a memory game just born under the Assassins label! Whom we're talking about? Oh well, here comes a great comeback in the scene: the most appreciated Skoro, author of famous demos and games in the past and stronghold of the real oldschool way of coding! The awesome visuals are all from the well known Kichy, ubiquitous in these times (and of course the audience has reasons to be happy of that!). Listen to the sweet TED original tune, you should recognize him because at this point you should have heard his music in several other productions...yes he's Csabo of LOD, gotcha!
The quality is very high, the game is nicely entertaining and you have 20 levels of increasing difficulty and different graphics to play with. Sometimes, there's no need of revolutionary ideas to release a highly enjoyable game. Mementohomo, quia Plussier es et in Plussierem reverteris! :D
Plus/4 World has been here for a long time (and hopefully will continue to exist for a long time as well). We consider ourselves to be the center of everything Plus/4 and C16 related. Though occasionally we miss some stuff... www.angel-soft.de is one such case. Jens Engel AKA angelsoft is the author of such classic games as Diabolo and Pilot X. He recently contacted us (after some encouragement from Rüdiger), and our database is now four games richer!
First up is Coltfire. The story behind this one was that he was contacted by Kingsoft in the '80s to write a western game, but it was never released. Last year he released the C64 version and now the C16 version is out as well. Kristall-Labyrinth is a BASIC game, in which (true to its name) you collect crystals in a labyrinth. Finally there's a very professional Frogger clone called The Frog, which includes a level editor and it's accompanied by a C16 version of the game as well (The Frog (Basic)). The recommended emulator for all of these is Minus4.
So check those games out... Like them? Not so much? Be sure to give your feedback on the forums!
Everything can be improved, and time does not count! This time, SVS/FIRE will use his own words to present here his new effort!
"When the Plus/4 was launched in the '80s, it was intended to be a business machine. The original plan was to sell the machine with programs built into its internal ROM, ready to use. The user could choose which embedded program to have. They were ready but the fact is that just a month before the launch date, Commodore decided to include only a single ROM program, the same for everyone. David W. Johnson - a developer at Tri Micro - gathered 4 applications and built the so called 3+1 (a Word Processor, a Spreadsheet, a Database and Graphics). In order to fit all of the programs into 32K, and to integrate between them, he had to reduce their code by cutting some features. The most penalised was the Graphics program, reduced to a single command which generated a text histogram (GR).
Years later, some of these ghost programs were discovered by Plus/4 users, for example Plus/Extra – the original Word Processor – with the original features. This year (2013), Gary "gc841" Cooper found a copy of Plus Graph, the graphic program excluded from 3+1. When it was available here I confess to having felt the original feeling of the Plus/4's golden era. Would the fate of our machine have been any different if they had been released? What features should there be in a 2.0 version of these programs? Well, Plus Graph 2.0 is my answer: by modifying and improving the original Plus Graph code from Tri Micro".
Exactly three years ago, we've learned how a 48K long game can be squeezed in less than 16K with no loss overall, either in graphics'n'sound or in terms of gameplay. Its name was Uwol, and the guys behind that conversion did a really great job. Could they do better than that?
Eheh they could indeed, we say, while watching the stunning results of their effort! The man that moved the strings of graphics and code is Kichy/ASN again, the artist behind the fabuolus TED original soundtrack is Csabo/LOD again, and once again the original ZX Spectrum game is another success coming from those cool guys under the well-known name The Mojon Twins! And this time there's no 16K memory limit to stay in, so why don't put down an enhanced version of the original one, with better multicolor graphics instead of spectrumesque hires stuff? So they thought, so they did! Now we have a fantastic enhanced version of Sgt. Helmet Zero running on Plus/4, with additional joystick support and several adjustments and addons here and there.
Sgt. Helmet Zero is a fast jump'n'shoot action game along 4 levels, in which you have to set free the girls which have been taken hostage by evil forces. Free all of them and you'll be allowed to exit and go to the next level. Enemies and turrets shoot at you with no mercy while jumping around avoiding bullets and deep pits, so you have to show to be the tough dude you look to really be.
Finally, an educational program by one of the Hungarian scene's great elders, TPPC called Kémia (Chemistry).
He also found a light pen of unknown origins, complete with some programs. Since we don't know the official name (or indeed if it IS an official release), this has been added with the generic name Fényceruza (Lightpen). Check it out and big thanks for these!
The 31 October 2013 is the deadline for a pretty nice graphics compo previously launched at CSDb: the Plain PETSCII Graphics Competition consecrates the art of PETSCII drawing in its plain shape, color matrix and screen once background and border have been set, no special effects, no fireworks, no borders opening, just PETSCII. Right now, several fantastic works have just been inlcuded in the competition, which appears to be quite a harsh battle.
Big competitions need better berforming weapons to fight with, you know. That's the reason why Markku Reunanen (aka Marq/DKD) has developed PETSCII, a powerful crossplatform graphic tool with tons of innovative features, including smart PETSCII mirroring and rotating, copy/paste, straight conversion, multiple exporting options and so on. It works under Windows, Mac or Linux. Ok, quite nice. But where's the intopic part? Well, just from today, PETSCII started to support Plus/4 format too, besides PET, C64 and VIC20! And further improvements are on the way!
Don't miss the experience to try this cool one, let's PETSCIIing right now!
Update! After few hours, the author added a fantastic C64 -> Plus/4 feature!