Allow me to embed my childhood

Friday, 19 October, Year 4 d.Tr. | Author: Mircea Popescu

Let's first load a program :

That beee-beeep beeee-gkdfjhgskjheuhuighe thing ? That, for a good chunk of my prepubescent years was the sound of happiness (because you see, I was one of the intelektuariat).

Loud, you say ? Obnoxious, you say ? You peasant you. It kicked all conceivable ass. You'd get a new tape from some friend (back then the only viruses that could be on it were his sister's cooties). You plopped into the casette player (teh deck!). You went LOAD "" and it showed you that stupid L, that was the cursor "state" (about 3 or 4 iirc, K and C and S too ?). It'd start loading the first thing on the tape.

With a little luck it'd show some intro art (and if you were really lucky it'd even color it!). Then you stared at the screen. There's something there, prolly you, and maybe something moving. Which then ate you. Quick, quick, what are the keys ? You pushed each button in sequence see what happens. There were games which included an obscure function (maybe a jump ?) that we discovered (playing those days was almost always a social activity, multiple kids bonking on the computor) months in. Suddenly "inaccessible" places opened up.

That's what playing a game meant, back then. Trying to "figure out" what the other person wanted to do. How is this game played ? What's with this room ? O, wait, is that a diamond over there, something you can pick up ? Or is it just part of the scenery ? A huge part of the appeal and most of the barrier to entry came from the particular mindset required and implied of people : they had to be hm. They didn't have to be anything. They had to not be mentally retarded, disco goers.

That is Saboteur. Ahhh, Saboteur...

PS. CodeMasters kicked butt. They survive.

Category: Trolloludens
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6 Responses

  1. also the first cracking steps - stop the tape moments before the end to get access to all the code and tweak to your desire.

  2. Mircea Popescu`s avatar
    Mircea Popescu 
    Friday, 19 October 2012

    Indeed. Except it only worked with tame code (not the RANDOMIZE USR-using later stuff).

  3. I used to have these on BASF reel to reel tapes and was using a russian (or was it polish?) player to load them. At some point the massive usage rendered the tapes (almost) dead.

    Also, the fun part about the first youtube video is that it seems to have the actual game embedded. :D

  4. Mircea Popescu`s avatar
    Mircea Popescu 
    Sunday, 21 October 2012

    The volume is good enough that you probably could load it if you had a z80 somewhere.

  5. "Calculatoa..." The YouTube account associated with this video has been terminated due to multiple third-party notifications of copyright infringement.

  6. Mircea Popescu`s avatar
    Mircea Popescu 
    Monday, 8 July 2013

    Youtube sux.

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