[ubuntu-uk] Retro stuff was Where Ubuntu falls short

Rob Beard rob at esdelle.co.uk
Sat Jul 18 13:10:26 BST 2009

Sean Miller wrote:
> On Sat, Jul 18, 2009 at 12:02 PM, LeeGroups<mailgroups at varga.co.uk> wrote:
>> Yes, I can remember playing chess (against the computer!) on a 1K  ZX81...
>> ...well I say 1K, think the video used some memory, so the program was
>> less then 700 bytes and it still played a good game of chess...
> They managed to create a half-decent platform game for it.  Came out
> when the '81 was in its dotage, but it was pretty impressive
> considering how little memory they had to play with.
> Do you remember when one company released a game for the Spectrum with
> a dongle that added additional memory?  It was an adventure game of
> sorts... the name will come to be at some stage, I'm sure... but it's
> missing at the moment - have a vision of the box in my head, but no
> more... something of something or other I think... :-)
Do you mean the ROM/RAM cartridge by Mikro-Gen?


There is an article in the latest Retro Gamer (issue 66) about Mikro-Gen 
and it mentions the Mikro-Gen addon which supposedly didn't do so well.
> Those were heady days.  Remember the TV documentary on Imagine, the
> software company, that started out as "how a modern software
> development company works" and ended up documenting their demise.
> Imagine had a similar plan to do a piece of software with a dongle
> ("Bandersnatch", I think it was called) but after they folded it never
> saw the light of day.
Yeah that's a good documentary, I have a copy of it somewhere.  I gather 
they spent a lot of their money on Ferrari's and stuff and eventually 
folded.  Didn't the BBC production team nearly loose some of their 
equipment when the receivers went in?

Maybe it was a case of the company doing so well they got a bit too over 

On the other hand, Codemasters who started on budget titles seem to be 
doing pretty well and released a couple of interesting hardware devices.
> How easy it must be these days for programmers, with so much memory
> available.  Don't even have to consider that aspect.   Just make it as
> big as you like and then tell the users they have to upgrade to play
> it.
Yep, all these games that need the latest and greatest graphics cards, 
or maybe even multiple graphics cards.  Nowadays I tend to keep gaming 
to the consoles (or retro stuff via emulators).  I wouldn't spend over 
£50 on a graphics card and I certainly wouldn't spend £300 on one 
(instead I bought an XBOX 360 Elite which gives me a HD gaming fix, and 
the Wii and DS I already have give me the Nintendo fix).
> Never used to happen on a 32k BBC Micro or a 48k Spectrum.  The
> programmers MADE it possible.
Yep, that was the time when gameplay was more important than graphics.  
I dunno kids these days don't know they're born.


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