Discussion:
Help - Looking for Name of a Game
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Ikrananka
2010-11-12 18:25:04 UTC
Permalink
I really hope that someone can help identify a game that I used to
love playing on the Apple ][. I remember playing it on a green
display and I believe the graphics were almost vector type. It was
essentially a shooter (horizontal if I remember correctly) with a
number of stages. I recall in one of the later stages there being a
mothership that you had to dock with with the word "MOTHER" on it. I
also recall that the last stage had you trying to land your spaceship
dropping vertically down a very narrow vertical shaft with the landing
pad at the very bottom.

Fuel was involved in the game but I can't remember if one refueled via
the mothership docking or via fuel power ups.

I used to play the game around 1979/1980/1981.

I know my description is vague but hoping someone can help.

Thanks
Jean-François Walter
2010-11-12 22:19:43 UTC
Permalink
Buck Rogers: Planet of Zoom

JF
Post by Ikrananka
I really hope that someone can help identify a game that I used to
love playing on the Apple ][. I remember playing it on a green
display and I believe the graphics were almost vector type. It was
essentially a shooter (horizontal if I remember correctly) with a
number of stages. I recall in one of the later stages there being a
mothership that you had to dock with with the word "MOTHER" on it. I
also recall that the last stage had you trying to land your spaceship
dropping vertically down a very narrow vertical shaft with the landing
pad at the very bottom.
Fuel was involved in the game but I can't remember if one refueled via
the mothership docking or via fuel power ups.
I used to play the game around 1979/1980/1981.
I know my description is vague but hoping someone can help.
Thanks
Ikrananka
2010-11-13 00:12:28 UTC
Permalink
Buck Rogers: Planet of http://youtu.be/SKO0mFbDAuA
JF
Post by Ikrananka
I really hope that someone can help identify a game that I used to
love playing on the Apple ][.  I remember playing it on a green
display and I believe the graphics were almost vector type.  It was
essentially a shooter (horizontal if I remember correctly) with a
number of stages.  I recall in one of the later stages there being a
mothership that you had to dock with with the word "MOTHER" on it.  I
also recall that the last stage had you trying to land your spaceship
dropping vertically down a very narrow vertical shaft with the landing
pad at the very bottom.
Fuel was involved in the game but I can't remember if one refueled via
the mothership docking or via fuel power ups.
I used to play the game around 1979/1980/1981.
I know my description is vague but hoping someone can help.
Thanks- Hide quoted text -
- Show quoted text -
Nope - not even close. It was a 2D game and I'm pretty sure it was a
multi-stage horizontal scroller.
me
2010-11-13 12:30:20 UTC
Permalink
Post by Ikrananka
I really hope that someone can help identify a game that I used to
love playing on the Apple ][.  I remember playing it on a green
display and I believe the graphics were almost vector type.  It was
essentially a shooter (horizontal if I remember correctly) with a
number of stages.  I recall in one of the later stages there being a
mothership that you had to dock with with the word "MOTHER" on it.  I
also recall that the last stage had you trying to land your spaceship
dropping vertically down a very narrow vertical shaft with the landing
pad at the very bottom.
Fuel was involved in the game but I can't remember if one refueled via
the mothership docking or via fuel power ups.
I used to play the game around 1979/1980/1981.
I know my description is vague but hoping someone can help.
Thanks
Threshold?
Although that was a vertical shooter (Space Invaders type).
KP
2010-11-13 15:12:40 UTC
Permalink
Post by me
Post by Ikrananka
I really hope that someone can help identify a game that I used to
love playing on the Apple ][.  I remember playing it on a green
display and I believe the graphics were almost vector type.  It was
essentially a shooter (horizontal if I remember correctly) with a
number of stages.  I recall in one of the later stages there being a
mothership that you had to dock with with the word "MOTHER" on it.  I
also recall that the last stage had you trying to land your spaceship
dropping vertically down a very narrow vertical shaft with the landing
pad at the very bottom.
Fuel was involved in the game but I can't remember if one refueled via
the mothership docking or via fuel power ups.
I used to play the game around 1979/1980/1981.
I know my description is vague but hoping someone can help.
Thanks
Threshold?
Although that was a vertical shooter (Space Invaders type).
I have an obscure shareware game called Star Pilot that basically fits
the description. Could that be it?
Ikrananka
2010-11-18 21:04:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by KP
Post by me
Post by Ikrananka
I really hope that someone can help identify a game that I used to
love playing on the Apple ][.  I remember playing it on a green
display and I believe the graphics were almost vector type.  It was
essentially a shooter (horizontal if I remember correctly) with a
number of stages.  I recall in one of the later stages there being a
mothership that you had to dock with with the word "MOTHER" on it.  I
also recall that the last stage had you trying to land your spaceship
dropping vertically down a very narrow vertical shaft with the landing
pad at the very bottom.
Fuel was involved in the game but I can't remember if one refueled via
the mothership docking or via fuel power ups.
I used to play the game around 1979/1980/1981.
I know my description is vague but hoping someone can help.
Thanks
Threshold?
Although that was a vertical shooter (Space Invaders type).
I have an obscure shareware game called Star Pilot that basically fits
the description.  Could that be it?- Hide quoted text -
- Show quoted text -
That must be one obscure game - can't find any info online about it at
all. Would love to know if this is the game - do you know where there
is any info online - particularly screenshots?

Thanks
KP
2010-11-19 14:13:42 UTC
Permalink
Post by Ikrananka
Post by KP
Post by me
Post by Ikrananka
I really hope that someone can help identify a game that I used to
love playing on the Apple ][.  I remember playing it on a green
display and I believe the graphics were almost vector type.  It was
essentially a shooter (horizontal if I remember correctly) with a
number of stages.  I recall in one of the later stages there being a
mothership that you had to dock with with the word "MOTHER" on it.  I
also recall that the last stage had you trying to land your spaceship
dropping vertically down a very narrow vertical shaft with the landing
pad at the very bottom.
Fuel was involved in the game but I can't remember if one refueled via
the mothership docking or via fuel power ups.
I used to play the game around 1979/1980/1981.
I know my description is vague but hoping someone can help.
Thanks
Threshold?
Although that was a vertical shooter (Space Invaders type).
I have an obscure shareware game called Star Pilot that basically fits
the description.  Could that be it?- Hide quoted text -
- Show quoted text -
That must be one obscure game - can't find any info online about it at
all.  Would love to know if this is the game - do you know where there
is any info online - particularly screenshots?
Thanks
Just sent you the disk image. Let me know what you think. Other than
on the disk that I sent you (and which I made via ADTPro from the
original floppy), I have never seen a copy of this game on any other
floppy disk or disk image. And back in the days before I had ADTPro
set up, you can believe that I spent a lot of time searching--in
futility--for it!
KP
2020-11-15 04:28:14 UTC
Permalink
Ten years ago this month, I asked whether anyone had ever heard of a game called Star Pilot. I have a copy of it but I know nothing about who wrote it or when they wrote it. After a splash title screen, a text prompt appears on the screen: "KEYBOARD OR JOYSTICK (K-J)". After the player selects either K or J (and, if the player selects K, after the controls are listed as A for up, Z for down, and Space to fire), the game screen appears. The game screen for the first level consists of the title "SPACEWAY 1" in big letters, then a thin line divider, then the action area with the player's ship (what looks like the triangular tip of a pencil) on the left side, then another thin line divider, and finally a status area with "SHIPS:>>", "SCORE:00000", and "FUEL: 100" listed from left to right. During play, enemy ships will fly, one at a time, from right to left toward the player's ship, and the player must move the player's ship up and down to avoid enemy fire while simultaneously trying to shoot down the incoming enemy ship.

The game has always stood out in my mind for having the best, smoothest, most seamless high-res scrolling that I have ever seen on an Apple II+ or Apple //e. The graphics move flawlessly, without any blockiness at all. All graphics are white against a black background. There are no multiple colors. Stars in the background twinkle.

It is an incredible demonstration of scrolling on the 8-bit Apple II. I would like to know who wrote it or where it came from, but I have no leads.

Has anyone else ever heard of this game?
Post by Ikrananka
Post by KP
Post by me
Post by Ikrananka
I really hope that someone can help identify a game that I used to
love playing on the Apple ][. I remember playing it on a green
display and I believe the graphics were almost vector type. It was
essentially a shooter (horizontal if I remember correctly) with a
number of stages. I recall in one of the later stages there being a
mothership that you had to dock with with the word "MOTHER" on it. I
also recall that the last stage had you trying to land your spaceship
dropping vertically down a very narrow vertical shaft with the landing
pad at the very bottom.
Fuel was involved in the game but I can't remember if one refueled via
the mothership docking or via fuel power ups.
I used to play the game around 1979/1980/1981.
I know my description is vague but hoping someone can help.
Thanks
Threshold?
Although that was a vertical shooter (Space Invaders type).
I have an obscure shareware game called Star Pilot that basically fits
the description. Could that be it?- Hide quoted text -
- Show quoted text -
That must be one obscure game - can't find any info online about it at
all. Would love to know if this is the game - do you know where there
is any info online - particularly screenshots?
Thanks
Just sent you the disk image. Let me know what you think. Other than
on the disk that I sent you (and which I made via ADTPro from the
original floppy), I have never seen a copy of this game on any other
floppy disk or disk image. And back in the days before I had ADTPro
set up, you can believe that I spent a lot of time searching--in
futility--for it!
fadden
2020-11-15 06:17:32 UTC
Permalink
Never heard of Star Pilot.

FWIW, Threshold is a game where you dock with "MOTHER"
but the rest of the description doesn't really match.
Nick Westgate
2020-12-11 21:27:39 UTC
Permalink
Post by fadden
Never heard of Star Pilot.
FWIW, Threshold is a game where you dock with "MOTHER" http://youtu.be/rC7Kz-AQySw but the rest of the description doesn't really match.
Yeah, the MOTHER stuck out so much that I suggested the same ... 10 years ago. ; - )

I wish he'd replied!

Cheers,
Nick.
KP
2020-12-13 15:46:33 UTC
Permalink
I believe that the (very first) original poster, lkrananka, had been asking about the game where you dock with "MOTHER." I had been asking about Starpilot.
Post by Nick Westgate
Post by fadden
Never heard of Star Pilot.
FWIW, Threshold is a game where you dock with "MOTHER" http://youtu.be/rC7Kz-AQySw but the rest of the description doesn't really match.
Yeah, the MOTHER stuck out so much that I suggested the same ... 10 years ago. ; - )
I wish he'd replied!
Cheers,
Nick.
fadden
2020-11-16 16:35:27 UTC
Permalink
The game has always stood out in my mind for having the best, smoothest, most seamless high-res scrolling that I have ever seen on an Apple II+ or Apple //e. The graphics move flawlessly, without any blockiness at all. All graphics are white against a black background. There are no multiple colors. Stars in the background twinkle.
FWIW, games with simple backgrounds and non-overlapping objects can be animated smoothly with a simple technique: include some of the background color around the shape being drawn. Instead of erasing then drawing, you just draw the shape at its new position, and the black border around the shape erases the previous contents. This eliminates the flickering effect common to games that don't page-flip.

The best example I've seen of this is Phantoms Five (scroll down to "How Stuff Works"): https://6502disassembly.com/a2-phantoms-five/

I don't know if that's what Star Pilot is doing. Some disassembly required. :-)
KP
2020-11-16 17:55:25 UTC
Permalink
Wow, is Phantoms Five by the same Nasir who wrote the three 8-bit Final Fantasy games for the Famicom?
The game has always stood out in my mind for having the best, smoothest, most seamless high-res scrolling that I have ever seen on an Apple II+ or Apple //e. The graphics move flawlessly, without any blockiness at all. All graphics are white against a black background. There are no multiple colors. Stars in the background twinkle.
FWIW, games with simple backgrounds and non-overlapping objects can be animated smoothly with a simple technique: include some of the background color around the shape being drawn. Instead of erasing then drawing, you just draw the shape at its new position, and the black border around the shape erases the previous contents. This eliminates the flickering effect common to games that don't page-flip.
The best example I've seen of this is Phantoms Five (scroll down to "How Stuff Works"): https://6502disassembly.com/a2-phantoms-five/
I don't know if that's what Star Pilot is doing. Some disassembly required. :-)
qkumba
2020-11-16 18:21:12 UTC
Permalink
Yes, same guy. He was writing one new game per month for the Apple II for some time.
See Total Replay for a collection of them (among other things, of course).
Steve Nickolas
2020-11-16 18:43:07 UTC
Permalink
Post by KP
Wow, is Phantoms Five by the same Nasir who wrote the three 8-bit Final
Fantasy games for the Famicom?
The Nasir from Final Fantasy is none other than the Nasir who wrote tons
of games for the Apple ][.

-uso.
KP
2020-11-16 19:33:04 UTC
Permalink
That is so cool. So when will someone do a conversion of Final Fantasy to Apple II? Even if just as a text adventure? :-)
Post by Steve Nickolas
Post by KP
Wow, is Phantoms Five by the same Nasir who wrote the three 8-bit Final
Fantasy games for the Famicom?
The Nasir from Final Fantasy is none other than the Nasir who wrote tons
of games for the Apple ][.
-uso.
Steve Nickolas
2020-11-16 23:51:54 UTC
Permalink
Post by KP
That is so cool. So when will someone do a conversion of Final Fantasy
to Apple II? Even if just as a text adventure? :-)
I've said that I'd like to see it on the GS where I think it would do
quite well.

I've thought of trying to convert their former competitor's Dragon
Warrior to the //e but I don't know enough about the NES to so much as
arrange the code so that I can feed it to IDA to disassemble. (I'm very
convinced that a //e should have no problem whatsoever pulling it off.)

-uso.
KP
2020-11-17 02:49:53 UTC
Permalink
Square released an official port of Final Fantasy to the MSX. I would love to see that port converted to either the IIgs or the Coleco Adam. (I got into Apple II computing after starting with Coleco SmartBASIC, which was a knockoff of Applesoft BASIC.)

The 8-bit Japanese FF2j and FF3j are also outstanding games. I would love to see them on the IIgs, but I have no idea how that would even be done.
Post by Steve Nickolas
That is so cool. So when will someone do a conversion of Final Fantasy
to Apple II? Even if just as a text adventure? :-)
I've said that I'd like to see it on the GS where I think it would do
quite well.
I've thought of trying to convert their former competitor's Dragon
Warrior to the //e but I don't know enough about the NES to so much as
arrange the code so that I can feed it to IDA to disassemble. (I'm very
convinced that a //e should have no problem whatsoever pulling it off.)
-uso.
Steve Nickolas
2020-11-17 06:43:19 UTC
Permalink
Post by KP
Square released an official port of Final Fantasy to the MSX. I would
love to see that port converted to either the IIgs or the Coleco Adam.
(I got into Apple II computing after starting with Coleco SmartBASIC,
which was a knockoff of Applesoft BASIC.)
The 8-bit Japanese FF2j and FF3j are also outstanding games. I would
love to see them on the IIgs, but I have no idea how that would even be
done.
I'd prolly start with the NES code, because 6502. (MSX is Z80. In fact
it's pretty close to the Adam hardwarewise.)

-uso.
Antoine Vignau
2020-11-17 08:54:14 UTC
Permalink
A working disassembly of Star Pilot @ http://www.brutaldeluxe.fr/public/starpilot.s

Antoine
KP
2020-11-17 14:38:53 UTC
Permalink
Antoine, thank you very much. Now I need to learn 65C02 assembly programming! Greatly appreciated.
Post by Antoine Vignau
Antoine
Glaeken Trismegestus
2020-11-15 22:02:00 UTC
Permalink
Post by KP
Ten years ago this month, I asked whether anyone had ever heard of a
game called Star Pilot. I have a copy of it but I know nothing about
who wrote it or when they wrote it
Is it possible for you to make a disk image of the game and upload it to
archive.org?
KP
2020-11-15 22:18:16 UTC
Permalink
Certainly. Here it is: https://archive.org/details/florida-pc-library-disk-3188

Run the Applesoft program "STARPILOT START" and you will see the splash screen graphic before the game proper runs.
Post by Glaeken Trismegestus
Post by KP
Ten years ago this month, I asked whether anyone had ever heard of a
game called Star Pilot. I have a copy of it but I know nothing about
who wrote it or when they wrote it
Is it possible for you to make a disk image of the game and upload it to
archive.org?
Glaeken Trismegestus
2020-11-15 23:04:22 UTC
Permalink
Weird "game" , only plays for a second, keeps saying I lost my ship after
just a moment even though I did not collide with anything.
KP
2020-11-16 01:49:15 UTC
Permalink
Ah, I should have mentioned that you need to avoid hitting the upper divider bar or the lower divider bar. So stay between the two bars, shoot down the approaching enemy ships, and avoid fire from the approaching enemy ships. Does that work?

But does this look familiar at all? I have never found anyone who knows where it came from, who wrote it, etc.
Post by Glaeken Trismegestus
Weird "game" , only plays for a second, keeps saying I lost my ship after
just a moment even though I did not collide with anything.
fadden
2020-11-16 03:31:45 UTC
Permalink
But does this look familiar at all? I have never found anyone who knows where it came from, who wrote it, etc.
I found it a little easier with AZ/space than the joystick.

As for who wrote it, the title screen says "Peter Pebler". Google turned up a linkedin profile from somebody of that name who's about the right age.
KP
2020-11-16 03:44:53 UTC
Permalink
I feel like a right moron for missing that on the splash screen. Wow. Thank you!
Post by fadden
But does this look familiar at all? I have never found anyone who knows where it came from, who wrote it, etc.
I found it a little easier with AZ/space than the joystick.
As for who wrote it, the title screen says "Peter Pebler". Google turned up a linkedin profile from somebody of that name who's about the right age.
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