My C64 Story
I will not bother you with that self-proud promoting, studying or education stuff here. I think this is not the right place for that boring things... Ok. back 2 business... Music you hear here is "Jet Set Willy"
Commodore 64 (CCS64-Emulator) The legend will never die !
This is a story of my view from the great C64 era. In the mid 80īs I was a young (and innocent) fellow full of interest in Computer and Computergames. The only payable and multimedia computer at this time was the commodore 64. I paid 499 German Marks for a Computer. What a lot of money at that time for me as a poor pupil. Connecting a Cassette Drive (datasette) I load my first game on the Computer. It was Winter Games (from Epyx-American Action) and at that moment I knew that this will be your passion.... Since today Winter-Games is one of my favourite Games. Today I play that game on my PC with the CCS64 Emulator.
International Karate + The best and fastest fighting game ever written on C64 by Archer Maclean (Click piccy for game)
That time between 1985 and 1991 was one of the most interesting and important part in my life. Working with a C64 computer (8bit with 0,97 Mhz) was a great help for me understanding the basic, limitations and possibilities of Computers. Lot of you will laugh about thiz homecomputer with just 64KB Ram, 16 Colours, 3 voice SID Chip, 5,1/4 Floppy disk drive and TV-connection. Lot of other IBM-PC users laugh at thiz computer or say itīs just a gameconsole for kids.
So why they wonder that their machines canīt do multicolor graphics on their EGA - machines, donīt hear cool muzak and play even cooler games on theier machine. Instead the IBM-PC users are satisfied with their databanks, programing in Fotran or C and the PC Speaker. Strange feelings eh, no. Cause the people think, computers must be expensive to be a real and seroius computer. Gamemachines should stay cheap, but not business-pro machines....
By the way, can you remember the people who looks like real PC-freaks? They wear big glasse and always had some pens and calculators with them.....
The adventures of Usagi Yojimbo Cool comic adaption with great atmosphere, lot of karma and wonderful muzak (hear at Friends-Page) Click Piccy for the C64-Beam-Software Collection !
Are computers for business only?
These Managers couldnīt imagine that this was the beginning of a multimedial-world. In that time it wasnīt seroius if a IBM-PC do coloured graphics and animations. Due the Atari and Coleco game-consoles, people think all what has more than 3 colour on a IBM-PC is just a game (aka toy!). But at this time the C64 has better abilitys, the price was low and the machine was easier to reach for the crowd. Just think today 1999... Intel will never say that their Pentiums speeds up games or their CPUs are perfectly for games. No, they just say their CPUīs are good for multimedia, internet and business (really cool?) applications. They canīt afford that people say: Look - Intel just produce CPUīs for a better gaming. Their image is: We built powerful CPUs for powerful (of course not-playing-and-hard-working) Users and Internet. I really canīt believe that internet only depends on CPU-Power! Do I really need a Pentium 3 for internet?
But most of them are wrong: The most people who use computer are private persons and their second (or first) favourite things doing with a Computer is playing... maybe the Intel-managers should think about it... To stay seroius is ok, but too much serious is not good to the business and the the real business are private users , not firms,corporations or businessmans/womans. The only programms that could use practical all power of the Pentiums 3 are GAMES... and not Internet applications !!! Today the Industry makes more money with games than normal programs.....
Apple inc. thought the same: We built the best computers and only rich people can afford the best / professional Computers just for professional users only and for a professional price of course......Ok the first 10 years it went well and now they crashed with this theory. Cause everyone who buy a computer will not pay horrible prices for that machine.... At last everyone bought a IBM Comp. PC. Another reason for the Apple-crash: Worldwide PC software is: 85 Percent. Apple Mac Software ist 15%. At least through windows. So to avoid the software problem the customers of course buy a PC. AMD seems to be on the right way...The K6-2 3D was just designed for the ultimate PC-Player ! Almost today Apple continue the disaster with the I-Mac ! Of course itīs a beauty and fashioned computer for the kids. What kind of computer is thiz without a FLOPPY-DRIVE !!!! Steve Jobbs: Floppy is a antique stuff and the user of tomorrow will store their stuff in Internet !! If you plan to buy a disc burner you have to buy a external case.....and so on. Can you afford thiz? .... So what will you do if ye wanna exchange some Text-files with ye friends??? Yep..go out an buy a USB-ZIPdrive..... totally bullshit !!!
The sacred armour of Antiriad Great atmospheric endtime-story, great effects/sprites and sound. Another great Palace-Software Production.
Multimedia & C64
This computer was a pioneer in the computer era and what we all know about MULTIMEDIA was realized about 1984-85 and not with the beginning of the P486-era... And it was a ime where normal people like you and me got the possibility to programm real good games. Basic and Assembler was that dominating language on he C64 and it was the first time were every normal people can afford to learn painting with 16 (sixteen!) colours on a computer. Can u remember those various kind of sprite-colourbar-raster-vector-parallax.. multiple-scrollings in every size and speeds at the same time. Or the Multicolored Fonts. That was one of the big strenght on the C64... And just see todays scrollings on PCīs.... ..boring shit...
Kickstart 2 2D Motorcycle cult-game by Shaun Southern. Great intro Muzak and cool easy-2-use-construction set ! (Click me to get the Game)
Graphics on C64
Drawing with Joystick wasnīt much fun, but later everyone use a mouse (what a luxury !). The only screen-size was 160x200 (16 colours) and 320x200 (only 3 colours allowed); refreshment rate was both 50HZ. We got the limititaions of 16 colour (inlcude 4 grey tones), but with simple tricks we made the picture looks have 32 colours (by using the rastereffect). The other crazy think was when you put 3 different color pixels side by side you got an another color - that effect was uncontrollable. So u canīt put lot of colours in the same area... Just imagine when you do a multimedia project. You have to drawn the pictures (pixel by pixel), Sprites, the complete fontset, compose the Muzak and write the whole shit assembler code? (donīt think about scanners, they were exotics, not precise and 1 Bit B/W). Of course there where some kind of libraries, but everyone wanna do an individual product. And for special grafix manipulation, the GFX couldnīt have more than 3 Colors (like animated Logos). So Grafix libraries as we know today was an unacceptable products. As the most users use a Television the picture quality wasnīt as good as it should be. Pixels took advance of this little washed TV-Picture. If you watch C64 Grafix on your Monitor you see every pixel and wonder.. So the C64 grafix looks on a TV better than on a Monitor. Today itīs so easy, itīs like in paradise.. 32bit desktopsystem, windowmenues, unlimited colours and size, eyefriendly refreshment rates, a good MS Defender Mouse, comfortabel Paint and Photomanipulationprogramms and fast computers. Today the C64 can made up to 640-400 through overlapping-screen techniques. So the user can use more colors and other screensizes.. I wish I had these tools in 1986 !!! The only way to work precise with computer graphics is to learn drawing a picture pixel by pixel....Every should do thiz experience on a computer to understand the world of pixel and colours on a real practical way.
ELITE The best game on the C64 by Ian Bell and David Braben 1985 based on 3D polygonal-vectorgrafix with NO texture mapping !! And the first game with a 3D-Radar-System (easy and effective!). (Click me to get the Game)
The real Computer-Muzak
Computer Muzak can only be accepted when it is accessable for the mass.. and so it was the greatest hour of the C64. The C64 got the right to be the first computer who did real dammed good music in the computer-era !!! Complete 3 (plus samples) voice super-soundtracks written on a computer (in machine code/later using tools) was first done on the C64. 1986 was the time were the C64 great 3 voice muzak was added with samples.. like Arkanoid, Outrun-Europe or BMX Racers (go,go).. Extended later on AMIGA. Remember the only input device was the computer keyboard and numbers..... no synthesizerkeyboard or else..
Impossible Mission Great Action Adventure by Dennis Caswell - First game with a realistic sprite animation and crystal-clear electronic speech samples. (Click me for the game)
The worldbest Computergamez
The most important role of the life of the C64. The only real Computergame Machine in 1984-1991 (the end of the C64 came with the Commodore Amiga!) was the C64. Nintendo and Sega was good to, but it wasnīt flexible enough to be such as popular as the C64. That was the most innovative time in the computer-games era. So itīs not hard say that the best gameconcepts was done at that time. Written in 1985 by I. Bell and D. Braben, Elite was one of the best games on the C64. That mix of space strategy, shooting and simulation was the key to success.. Cool and fast games with 0,97 Mhz, that was only possible with coding/programming in real comprimized assemblercode. By using C++, more speed is only possible with with fast computers. If todayīs programmers use assembler only, we donīt need any Pentium. So only real programmers use Machinecode.
Ghost and Goblins Superb adaption from Chris Butler
Memory - 64 KBytes free....
I know at thiz time (1984) memory was horrible expensive and when you got more than half Megabyte you was happy for the rest of your life. The C64 just had 64 Kilobytes and just that little space was enough to write history (for years) on the whole game-sector. And today?... What a shame.....
Armalyte - Delta II The best sidescroll shooter ever written - fantastic gfx-effects and great Hubbard-muzak.. Just 16 Colours.. unbelieveable!!
I think the best programmer was Archer Mclean followed by Chris Butler. Arch was a One-Man-Programmer-Team. He did all graphics, animations, Sound fx and coding. He was a master putting so much comprimized Assembler code in so less space.Look at International Karate Plus....
The second great c64 programmer was Chris Butler. Well known for adapting the Sega games on the C64. His games (Powerdrift, Thunderchopper or Spaceharrier) were very fast and he also was a master in fast sprite scrolling&zooming. I never thought that so fast grafix could be possible on the C64. Andrew Braybrook was the specialist for great GFX-effects and most of his cultgames on C64 and Amiga were the greatest on ever programmed.
My favourite Programmer was Shaun Southern, maybe he programmed some of my favourite C64 games like Hero of the Golden Talisman 1+2 and Kikstart 1+2. Shaun is a very nice guy and he represence the normal programmer (in their early years) who has has his favourite food and and do his homeworks after school. Today Shaun works at
. Archer Maclean leads his own software company called
PSI 5 Trading Company from Accolade One of the first games who use 16 colors in the 320x200 mode...fantastic gfx/animation and sound!
You made it to the end....the last words !!!
There was a time when c64 game programmers werenīt dictatet by marketingfreaks or businesspeoples. Lot of things werenīt as complicate as today.... Programmers at that time has freedoms and mostly the directors and programmers sit in one room and work together.. Maybe that was one reason how great game-concepts began. Bugīs were unkown things..... ...But those were the days...
Remcap Computer Graphics One of the final piccy on the C64...
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