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Page 1


Expanding the 1050 disk drive‘s strength is what ICD's US Doubler is all about. A true performer in the area of hardware modifications, this chip set quickly transforms your Atari into a powerhouse, radiating with innovative features never before possessed by a 1050. Features like true double density for greater storage, single and dual density support, an accelerated l/O rate designed to triple your speed when combined with SpartaDOS and full compatibility with existing Atari software.

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Doubler

£29.95

US Doubler two chip set and fitting instructions

This Disk Operating System has been widely acclaimed as the best DOS for the 8 bit Atari range. SpartaDOS from lCD supports everything from 810 disk drives through RAM disks to hard disks. A special menu allows rapid transfer, erasure and locking or unlocking of files using only the Space Bar, Option, Start and Select keys. The utility package supplied also features a 32 character keyboard butter, intelligent switching between disk densities, a binary file game menu, subdirectories and time/date file stamping. SpartaDOS complete with 175 page manual THE PERFECT COMBINATION SPARTADOS AND US DOUBLER —-

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£29.95 ONLY £49.95

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Construction Set

£69.95

Supra's MicroPrint is a parallel printer interface for the Atari 8 bit series of computers which plugs into the computer's serial peripheral port and then directly into the printer. ltworks with most parallel printers and 8 bit software and includes a built-in printer cable. MicroPrint £29.95 w

5

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Microm

The SupraDrive AT 20Mb hard disk for the Atari XL and XE series connects directly to the computer‘s parallel bus, allowing high speed datatransfer rates of 8-1 0,000 bytes per second (approximately 10-15 times faster than the normal Atari drives). The Supra Drive AT stores more than the equivalent of 200 single density Atari disks and can access any information within milliseconds. All this adds up to an extremely efficient system forthe serious Atari 8 bit owner. The SupraDrive AT is supplied with hard disk interface, builtin power supply, manual and SpartaDOS. SupraDrive AT ready to plug in and use

£749.95

Rambo XL transforms your 800XL into a mighty 256K computer and makes it memory compatible with the 130XE. Now your XL can support Basic XE extended mode or the standard RAM disk supplied with Atari DOS 2.5. With the RD. COM handler supplied with SpartaDOS you get a 192K RAM disk enough to duplicate a full double density disk in one pass! You must supply eight 256K DRAMS and the DOS of your choice.

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Rambo XL with fitting instructions

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PzR: Connection and manual

Pszconnection

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Now you're no longer limited to Atari compatible printers and modems. The PzR: Connection plugs directly into the serial disk drive port of any 8 bit Atari computer and provides the user with a standard Centronics printer interface and two RS-232 serial ports. it also draws its power from your computer which means one less cord fighting for a power point while its compact size leaves your work space virtually clutter free. The P:R: Connection’s serial ports use a fully compatible R: handler and resemble those of the 850 interface with the same signals and functions.

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£29.95

.

0 tware gorgtler

ALL PRICES INCLUDE VAT AND DELIVERY PO. Box

113,

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RAMBO XL

Harrogate, North Yorkshire, HG2 OBE, England. Telephone: 0423 67140

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use: 2

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News

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No.11 March 1988

3

Derek Meakin

Software

Solutions

GROUP EDITOR:

PRODUCT/ON ED'TOR’

Peter Glover

EDITOR/AL ASS/STANT:

Ne“ Fawcett NEWS EDITOR:

COORDWATOR;

Pam Turnbull EDITOR:

André Willey GER:

n ADViR0Tll‘SElléENT now ”(13ch 0" ADVERTISING SALES:

Nora Lawton Tel: 0625 878888 (AH depts) 0625 879940 (Subscriptions) Telex: 26571 MONREF G Quoting Ref. 72:MAGOOl Telecom Gold: 721MAG001 Prestel Mailbox: 614568383 Fax: 0625 879966 Published by: Database Publications Ltd, Europa House, Adlington Park, Adlington, Macdes?eld' SK104NP 33,573 January~June, 1986

Subscription rates for 12 issues, post free:

£15‘UK £33

15

.

Europe (incl. Eire) Overseas (Airmail) ISSN 0266-545X

“Atari User” wewomes program "stings and articles for publication. Material should be typed or computer-printed, and preferably double-spaced. Program listings should be accompanied by cassette tape or disc. Please enclose stamped, self— addressed envelope, otherwise the return of material cannot be guaranteed. Contri— butions accepted for publication by Database Publications Ltd will be on an all-rights

.

fast action game?

in our

3D Platter

23

3D wire frame

easy with this

graphics made

superb routine

-

Profile

25

Meet Zeppelin, a new software house supporting the

8

bit Atari.

News

27

More about Britain’s nationwide online

for micros.

database

R Oll I O Mo r e

a mc azmg

29

.

OI t 3 WI'th .

exp

l

Map

our reSl "d ent A tan

.

a d venturer.

32

Plot your route with our

guide to Mercenary: The Second city.

_

Rewews

35

Our evaluation team takes _

a

look at the latest software releases.

_

H'"ts and Tips

4

3 pe [lb oun d The full solution to Mastertronic's devious graphical fantasy.

42

1

Get more fun out of the top games with help from our readers.

.

_

Five Liners

44

More prize Winning ~

-

-

_

Three 'Ca_rd

Pull up

a

-

mini

-

-

programs sent

Brag

by our clever readers.

in

47

chair pardner and take part

_

Western card game.

in our

Easy Programming

More help with Atari .

52

Basic: We look at Control characters.

.

Mailbag

57

The chance to get your news, Views and name .

.

.

in

print.

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81

ggll?

73.1..

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Add TEN new commands to Atar’ Basrc With th'3 latest package from Atari User. -

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© 1988 Database Publications Ltd. No material may be reproduced in whole or in part without written permission. While every care is taken, the publishers cannot be held legally responsible for any errors in articles, listings, or advertisements. ”Atari User" is an independent publication and Atari Corp (UK) Ltd are not responsible forany of the articles they contain or forany of the opinions expressed. News trade distribution: Europress Sales and Distribution Limited, Unit 1, Burgess Road, Ivyhouse Lane, Hastings, East Sussex TN35 ANR. Tel: 0424 430422.

18

Floodswlle from disaster

MicroLmk

Mike Cowley

£18

our p ro 9 rammin 9 p roblems.

Dam TrOUble

EATUHSS EDéTOR: eter avi son

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handy utility to keep track of all your discs’ contents.

Can you save

13

Our reSldent ex p ert hel p s to solve A

Alan McLachlan

TECHNICAL

10

An in-depth look at how your Atari’s built-in language works.

Disc Database

MANAGING EDITOR:

REWEWS

9 computer algorithms.

Basrc Revealed

0 "

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bit.

8

Programmers’ Challenge

A new series to test your skill at creating

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All the latest from the ever-changing world of the Atari

SEE PAGE 22

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March 7988 Atari User 3


The phenomena] growth in demand for Atari computers means a much bigger home f or t h e BIG 5 b ow ‘

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And that means you can enjoy unique hands-on experience of programs everyone will soon be talking about. You'll find some of the best prices around for blank discs, disc boxes and other accessories, learn about the many

opportunities to expand your computer system, get helpful advice from some of Britain’s leading experts, and so much

more!

ticket

order

Please supply.

[Order four adult t/ckets, get the ?fth FREE/l ,

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1988

Post to: Atari User Show Tickets,

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AP". 22-2"

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D Under~lés UCkEIS atEl (saveEI).......t £ {Older four under-16; tickets, get the fifth FREE!)

The West Hall Alexandra Palace, Alexandra Park

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we." station and “my, every 10 mlnutes. If you're travelling road the show is only 15 by

c... the queue. and save £1 per head with this avaneee ticket order

Your advance

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The spectacular Alexandra Palace represents a new showcase for the fastest-growing range of computers on the market. From the exciting games console to the ever-popular 8-bit Atari and the sensational Mega ST, they’ll all be there at the Atari User Show! Some of the very latest software will be on show for the first time.

get to the show — by car, rall, underground or bus.

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AWAE’QU

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NEWS

uses

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Esca p e death row

More 8 bit games

tilt “i a&

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BUDGET price multi-Ievel shoot-'em-up — Zybex has been announced by Zep-

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pelin Games (091 281 4401). Zybex, a two-player onscreen sets game, you on an almost surcudal missmn to escape death row. To earn a stay of execution you must

penetrate the heart of many strange W0f|d$ and COHGCt teleport crystals: Each crystal gives access

another level even more difficultthan the last. Your goal at 5

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to reach the ultimate level and face the find challenge— Zybex. The last crystal is all powerfu| and will ensure the removal of the death ring around your neck. ., have to shoot your way through several bizarre and colourful waves of aliens, and find exotic weapons with differing powers. Zybex boasts fast scrolling and superb sound is

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Company policy '3 at a software budget 993W effefém-

hence the tag Of “135 £2.99 on cassette from Zeppelin Games.

price

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maquIto THElatestfightersimulation

game for the Atari 8 bit Ace of Aces — has been released by US Gold (027 —

356 3388) The program captures the spirit and puts you in the

no

going back. Price £9.99 on cassette

and £74.99 on disc.

to the

Atari is still to supporting

committed the 8 bit games market. Certainly the company is back in the software producing field itself after a layoff of more than a year. That’s confirmed by the recent appearance on tape of Twilight World, the forthcoming release of Thunderfox, and the prospact of popular titles being re-released on cartridge. But some software develare less than opers impressed with the level of

support Atari is prepared to provide, and note that the company seems to be directing most of its attention to

the 16-bit market. And that inturn could meanless Atari

software. Red Rat,

which

has

just

launched two twin-packs — Planet Attack/Mad Jax and

~

| e me Space is

Wars/Dreadnaught

keeping

a

-

watchful eye on

sales.

”Ifthese two die the death that’ll be it”, said Red Rat's Harry Nadler, “though if a really good 8 bit game came through we’d try again”. The problem if there is one seems to lie with distributors rather than with the software houses or the buying public. And with a diminishing number of companies prepared to import software, Atari users are missing out on a wealth of titles available in the States. Recent releases include Top Gunner from Micro—

Prose at $19.99 and Chess-

master 2000 from Electronic Arts at $29.99. Given the current strength of the dollar, at those prices it's worth thinking about buying direct.

— I

B|

er

needed for next Ata rl Show

venue

EACH successive Atari User Show has left organisers Database Exhibitions with a how to ha'ppy problem find a bigger, better venue for the next one. An ever-growing army of exhibitors and visitors means the event has constantly had be on the move to —

larger premises.

a.

5

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contrary,

of the Mosquito RAF fighter bomber of World War I/. Your task is to down Nazi bombers, sink U~boats, outrun V7.rockets and stop enemy trains. Fuel and weapons have to be chosen wise/y, as once you're on a mission there is

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Another big increase in demand for Space has diotated that the impressive West Hall of Alexandra Palace, London, will stage the next show in the series from April 22 to 24. Other premises that had coped well enough on previous occasions could

-

not

meet

the

additional they had run out of space for expansion. It wasn’t easy finding a new location that was both large enough to cope with huge numbers of visitors, yet prestigious enough to

requirements quite literally

event. HapPalace fits the bill in both cases. Set in 296 acres of rolling

complementthe pily, Alexandra

countryside,

Alexandra

Palace has been

completely renovated after the devas-

tating fire

in 1980. one of the most flexible display areas in the UK, with more than 2,500 sq metres of exhibition space. will be no So there shortage of room for the hundreds of hardware and It is

software special offers exhibitors have promised to bring along for Atari users. The Atari Show runs from Friday, April 22 to Sunday, April 24. A money saving advance ticket order form is on Page 61.

— March 7988 Atari User 5 /

.


“m”

PAGE 6 has been supporting Atari computers for 5 years — coverage now includes both 8-bit and ST. Get the latest copy from your local newsagent or by

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6 Arari User March 7988

J

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‘Desire' is like an intimate conversation on your pc screen! Just phone in and iOin in for hours Of enioyment. There's no enrolment fee — lust one phone call via puts you through to a new war 0 andy services and fun things to You‘dm?em do. Take a look at the menu . . .

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Books for beginners to experts

'DESII(’E' LETS ME CONTACT HMNDREDSor New FRIENDS .,.I NEVER THOMGHT 77-lAT COMPHTERS comp BE 5MCH mm

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CQIATTERBox The interactivemessage board. Say what you want to say stir up a hornets' nest, start up a friendship! See the immediate response! MAILBOX A handy way to leave messages with friends. ossm: cusslruzos The De rfect p lace to sell your ‘0 d computers, or ?nd —

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227222

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-

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Epson-compatible

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offers also decimal, and- binary hexadecimal conversion from Basic. It also provides full Engexten-

22272222272222272,

a"

‘9.

the Atari control characters

printer,

11115

180

single

A

Listing command provides a full printout of

view each name in memory

IN search

5E

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The

commands control over

,

v"

newnv'suouss

listings.

on

7/

Mastertronic

command will turn the keyboard click on or off, and a useful built-in checksum program sits in memory all the time. Editing is easier too, with commands to delete any number of lines, renumber Basic program lines in any and to auto— increment matically strip all REM statements from your program

provide

I ll” 2 a: 0

And immediate access to drive directories from Basic

by Mick Randle, remedies these deficiencies and Basic’s enhances Atari capabilities as well. Designed to work on the XL/XE machines and the new XE Games Console, the Toolkit only takes up 128 bytes of user ram. This is achieved by placing the main program into the area of ram below the Basic rom chip and bank switching when requwed. When a Basic program is run the Toolkit will switch off and to re-enable it you simply press System Reset. A help file explaining the Toolkit can be found on the disc or tape. And once it’s installed in the computer you will have Basic 10 new direct-mode commands at your fingertipS-

E

appears on.

Delete. The Toolkit utility, writter

?aTgAe?e53§|EFET§W§AER§E

| 00 I kl 't b 005 t for old Basu: AT last the gap between the old Atari Basic and the new up-to-date Basic XL/XE cartridges has been reduced — by a new low-cost software package from Atari User. A major criticism of Atari computers over the years has been its Iess-thanpowerful Basic programming language, which lacks such rudimentary commands as Renumber and

(M

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candidates.

S

Microprose

t ape d

2222222222822

.

1227

machines isn't scheduled for release until September, but the concept is already drawn up. —

.

down The cassette lays the 1°b Specmcatlons _as you’d expect— but the vouce over has to contend mm a battery Of sound effects gleaned from Hewson’s _

now ls

PA".Hethsonneeds our earn. roiec They re looking for a 3 leader, “4° coders, a freeand graphic altlSt

a

lance musnman.

m

ON CUE Mastertromc

previous best-selling titles.

BASIL THE GREAT DETECTIVE

.

.

Gremlin Graphics

Em

Compiled by Gallup/Microscope NlNE new entries in this month’s chart with the spectacular Ace of Aces going straight to the number two slot. Alternative, Gremlin and Firebird have each got two new titles in the Top 20. Atari is bringing out new titles in addition to the charting look out for Thunderfox coming soon. Pole Position —

March 7988 Atari User

7


Link

Atari

your

Electronic mail — The cheapest and fastest form of communication possib'e~ 't com the same to send a message to one mailbox as to 500! -

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Total price: £736.10. have an interface: Miracle wszooo v21, v23 modem + Datatari interface + cable + Datatari software. price: £749.95. W't e'the comb“ ation ou can alslo log or: to othlgr databases and bulletin boards all round the

Ifyou don't

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News — Use the powerful search commands to pinpoint vital business information from the world’s leading news services, Radiopaging _ If you also have pocket radiopager you'll be alerted each time an urgent

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YOU are down on our luck, standin looking at the routhte wheel, when 2 shady character tugs at your sleeve. After exchanging a few pleasantries he persuades you to slip outside where he will tell you something to your advantage. So after cashing your remaining chips you fouow him out to the alley behind the casino. He whispers in your ear: ”For just a pony, Guv, can tell you my foolproof plan to win”, Maybe it's the drink that softens your heart, or maybe it’s the six-inch stiletto knife you feel poking through his coat into yours, but you decide to give him his money and listen to his advice. he says, pus_”|t's 6” very simple", hing the money into his overcoat pocket without even bothering to count it. “Just bet on the red". Feeling cheated, you ask what happens if you lose. “Even simpler", he replies, “bet on the red again, but this time double your stake. If you lose ou again, double again, eventuall will win because red is an even nzoriey chance”, He continues: “When you count your Winnings you will find that you are up by your original stake. Drop your bet down again and do it all over again. You can’t lose". With that he slips into the night and you wander home to think about what he has said. Any bet on the red, or the black for that matter, pays even — what you bet plus your stake gwozey ac ._ So If you bet a pound and lose, then bet two pounds and win, you get four pounds but have only paid out three — I

readers

'

two for the

Sgsofscrl and theAsflrstthltiet

In comprises black andrgeJdertttetyvheel ouneas to equal amounts a red is [hm come up sooner’or lat er. l’ts true, you can’t Iosel However ou th the green — num/ber 22:10retr'nembler y cane place on the wheel buts (in comes upthe house wins aliAbeen "It’hat at $nudges the odds of the red up Sowing ut t at IS slightly away from e only one Chance in 37ven, H y Yes it sounds like. a _good scheme so you 0 to bed trjea reaming Of what you will spgend ou r In the mornin onge managincleared as you ge in x30utrh.es wonder vvhy if it isgthat eas 7: a dz? man not done it and m a d eyh'lmse ”ata

fortune?'.

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Wlt Etc; trelijtrotdijtf'ty |rs tAt'ahl mglinfe?gdgéze pretend money by writin to simulate a roulette whgee8I program an teSt

this strategy

'

-

ng$ $22; 12 gxshhls{pt

bUt

one? Iuke. You need to know hroewlWits nob ets It will take to recover y o ur Imatny‘ Ia outlay of £25 to the man What is the best size of b 0 Th e larger the bet the faster you W'?li make money but also th you will need when [dostzpore r'rltoneymuch stake money will ou lhng. ave tovy1 o ave m reserve? Is it p racilic a.p '

-

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So it's over to

ou.

.

the necessary programga; 535 7:26: PfOb/ems, next month ’s hints will help. March 1988 Atari User 9


6

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'0(' es

s‘“

HAVE you ever been sitting at your keyboard at three o'clock in the morning, staring bleary-eyed at a somewhat fuzzy looking television? 10 PRUNT ”DONE" you type through

half-closed eyes... The result is error PRUNT indeed! And as you re-type the offending line, your faithful friend Basic continues to monitor your progress, letting you know whenever your fingers slip off the keys until finally sleep overtakes you and you slump over the keyboard. The other effect that post-midnight programming has on the cerebral

r

.

BaSIc be t t er No time

gifftsra'igzgzs?o?rgm;i223?

and so it was one cold night about five years ago when suddenly thought ”How does it do it?”.

r|ght

I

speCifically,

how_does Bacs)irc 22,2: ge to check your typing so

quickly and, come to that, what does it do with the line you’ve typed anyway? _

_

After some research had established the fact that a process known as tokenisation was work. It seemed at that when you type. I

1G

PRINT

the computer actually stores the numbers 10, 0, 6: 5, 32 and 22 in memory. Hang 0“ a minute, hear YOU cry,that’s only six bytes of data stored and our program line is eight characters long. N0 WOHdef those programs only seem to work properly six out of eight times. Well, what Basic is doing is making up a much shorter, coded, version of your line. In fact, the word PRINT itself is representedbyjusta single number 32 _ known as a token. The first two bytes represent the ”he numbe, and are followed by two length indicator both are six in this case bytes because the coded line is a total of six bytes long. The line ends with a terminator byte _ the ?na| 22_ But why bother? What’s the matter with storing the whole line of text. Well, there are a number of advantages to tokenising. In fact you’ve already seen a couple of them. To start with the stored version of the line is shorter than the original text often by a considerable amount. Consider a |

_

_

-

_

line such as:

As

a

POSITION

piece

XDISTANCE,YDISTANCE

of text this line

70 Atari User March 7988

is 35

I

now

.

.

Speed advantage

operators

such as CHR$, INT, LEN, on — and variables. so

VAL and

SOR, We ll

be

operators

.

looking at statements,

and

functions

greater

in

detail next time, but for now let's see how Atari Basic deals with variables.

an example, consider this simple program.

As

,

LET NUMBER-120 10 PRINT NUMiiER

5

,

.

We” examine

bUt smce

.

.

line

5

a.

”.1

moment,

10 Is so Similar to line the example we ve already looked at let S see What d'ffe'ence Fhe va”?b'e NUMBER makes to the final tokenised

line.

“me

.

10 ”°W

as

10' 9' 7' 7' mf‘en'ses If ve been 32’ so f°”‘?‘“.".”9 128322“ you far you ll remember the initial 10 that and 0 represent the line number, and the next tvyo numbers tell {is hoyv long

the tokenised statement is — in this case seven bytes. As before, the 32 means PRINT and the final 22 is an end-of-line marker 3° somehow 128 must representthe variable NUMBER. In fact, any token with a value over 127 represents some form Of variable — which may be a normal numeric type, an array or a string. Each time you refer to a new variable when typing in a program — such as NUMBER in our example a unique number is reserved for it. If you enter another line which contains a new variable name then it would be as129 in signed the next free number this case. Since a single byte can only store a value of up to 255 we find that Atari Basic can thus only cope with 128 variables in any given program. —

There is also an execution speed advantageto tokenised programs. The theory 9093 that the machine code routine to look up a single byte from a token table is very much faster than the codethat would have to be used to search an entire Ascii text line. However, this speed advantage is unfortunately lost when you consider Atari Basic’s maths routines, which could hardly be described as particularly efficient. As with everything else in life—you win some, you lose some.

tokenisation

l

l

We the present start with ANDRE WILLEY

characters long, including the carriage return at the end. Tokemsed it becomes iust nine bytes of data and so uses just one quarter of the memory space which would otherwise have been required. On average, a tokenised line is about one-half to two-thirds the size of the original text version — depending on such factors as the length of variable names and how long the command words are. Also, when thetokenisation process takes place any incorrect statements will immediately be flagged as ERROR lines, thus giving you an instant indication of both the factthat you madea mistake and also the position within the line where the tokeniser couldn’t find the syntax it was expecting. Many computers will let you enter anything at all as a program line even if it’s complete rubbish as is often the case at 3 o'clock in the morning _ and you won’t find out until you run the program

Basic's 14m

n

process

goes

much further than just coding PRINT, POSITION and the other major commands. It also tokenises functions and


.

Variable

table

name

The variable names are stored at the beginning of the program in a table known, rather originally, as the variable name table. Each time you use a variable name when typing in a program Basic scans through each entry in the table looking to see whether you’ve used that one before. If you have it works out the number of the entry and uses it in the tokenised line. If it comes to the end of the table before finding a match it assumes that you have used a brand new variable name and this will then be added to the end of the list and its number recorded for future reference. This does mean that a lot of mistyped lines can create an awful lot of useless extra entries in the variable name table, sometimes causing problems with more complex programs. The quick answer is to LIST your program to tape or disc, then type NEW and re-ENTER it into memory. This will force Basic to create a new table containing only the currently required variable names. While a program is actually running Basic never needs to look at the text in the name table—since every reference to a variable is now coded as a number between 128 and 255. In our example, each time the token 128 is found it knows that we are referring to the variable which we know as NUMBER. Let's now go back to that first line of our program: Wh'Ch

NUMBER=12I

LET

5

.

.

.

wifen'ses

mm

the

.

f°”°W'”9

sequence.

5, 0, 15, 15, 6, 128, 45, 14, 65, 18, 0, 0, O, 0, 22

Looking at the bits

already know

we

-

about, the 5 and the 0 at the start must be the line number. The two 155 tell us that the coded line is 15 bytes long and the 22 at the end signals the finish of the tokenised line. Since we know that the 128 refers to the variable NUMBER you will probably have realised that the 6 preceeding it must

therefore mean LET. As it follows straight after the vari-

able name we can safely assume that the token 45 is the code forthe equals sign, which just leaves us with the strange sequence 14, 65, 18, 0, 0, 0, 0 to somehow represent the rather innocuous looking number 120.

numbers in a scientific form very like the exponential form you might have used for large numbers in your own programs. If you saw 1.5E4 in a listing you would know that it meant 1.5 x 104, or 1.5 times 10,000. The digit 14 in our tokenised line simply tells the computer that a floating point number follows, and this is composed of six bytes. The first of these gives sign information plus or minus — and the power of — exponent of the number. The other five bytes give the fractional part of the number using a system known as Binary Coded Decimal. This is not as tricky as it sounds and all it really means is that each byte holds two separate numbers one in the first four bits and the other in the second four. In our example, the first ofthese five BCD numbers is 18 which gives us the binary pattern 0001 0010. The first 0001 is a one in decimal while the second part, 0010, means two. 50 our fractional part is actually 0.12 — see, it really isn't as difficult as it looked. We finally have to subtract 64 from the exponent byte before we use it giving us 65 minus 64 — a grand total of one! Rather than using powers of 10 this system uses powers of 100 to make the work simpler so our final floating point number is 0.12 times 100 to the power of one. This is the same as 0.12 times 100 — or a value of 120, which is what we were hoping for. Perhaps you now see why floating —

where the Atari maths system’s compleXltles come into their own. Whereas mOSt micrOS allow US to store numbers in a couple Of different ways. Atari Basic allows only the most complex Of these methods. Some languages WOUld allow US to This is

place the number 120 into two bytes integer variable. All this means means the number iS stored in ls_that memory in much the same way as we access memory addresses like the diSplay iiSt- To get the final value we take the contents Of the first byte and then add on the second byte times 256- You might have seen lines such as: as an

DL=PEEK(560)+PEEK(561)*256

which use this very method. This integer system has the advantages of much greater speed and of usin less memory, but it can't handle num%ers Iargerthan 65335 or decimal fractions such as 1.5 or 0.37. The alternative system, the only one available in Atari Basic, is known as

floating point arithmetic which

Mapplng your

stores

mlcros

point maths takes so long With simple integers.

compared

.

this

mon?hA/W Coming/”9 oration 0 tanP5asrc Wlt a more expAI/eXt detailed look at the token/sing process, plus a fU/l breakdown Of all the available tokens and what they represent. lmight even manage to get some sleep in the meantime.

memory Now that you have a rough idea of take a look at where can be found ”7 YOU’ everything micro 3 memory. All the information we require is held in a table of nine two-byte addresses held in zero-page memory as shown in Figure I. Each these '5 referred to as gfecause you must use t7,epom/mi va ue Turn to Page 12 b up, let’s

128/129 130/131 132/133 134/135 136/137 138/139 140/141 142/143 144/145

Figure

I:

LOMEM VNTP VNTD VVTP

STMTAB STMCUR STARP RUNSTK MEMTOP

user-accessible memory address Variable Name Table pointer (start address) Variable Name Table dummy (end address) Variable Value Table pointer (variable contents) Statement Table (first address of tokenised program) Lowest

direct con en 5 a gurrerxxstatemen:(L(astt trln rra 0ln er s rln arracommetandtling)d ress

-

)

auntigine stale? (internal cgsue/yronnexr addresses) End of current Basic program space

-

Basic’s Zero Page Pointer Table March 1988 Atari User

71


__“ 4 From Page

l

of the start of the Variable Value Table. it is here that the actual contents of your variables are stored. Each entry in this table is eightbytes long and maycontain

number M32,768. Try PEEKing the address given at 138/139 to find

address

1 1

contained within it to point you to another memory location. As i mentioned before, the second byte mUSt be multiplied by 255 before being added to the ?r St~ The resulting figure is then the address you actually require. Locations 723/729 point to the lowest address in memory that Basic is allowed to access ii-OME/W- This normally WOUid be either $700 for a cassette system or

$1CFC if Dos 2-5 is loaded. if you use another type Of Dos you Wiii find this location points to the fifSt free location beyond Dos’s memory. The next 256 bytes are reserved as a temporary work area

for the tokenising routines. Locations 730/737 point to the address Of the Variable Name Table, 255 bytes on from i-OME‘M- it is here that your table Of var ”bio

will be stored, in the same order that you first referred to them. It is worth noting here that string variableshave a $ sign stored after the name and array names are

names

out.

Locations 140/141 point to the first byte after the current statement tokens, and it is here that your arrays and strings are stored. The

either a floating point number in the case of normal variables or a further pointer to the actual address of strings or arrays. See Figure II for more information. —

-

Locations

136/137

Variable Value Table, in fact, contains offsets into this area in order to access the various elements of arrays and strings. Locations 142/143 point to Basic’s runtime stack which will hold the return line numbers for all the GOSUB statements and NEXT loops. FOR Finally, locations 144/145 point to the very last byte required for use by the program — which is also the end of the runtime stack. Figure I” brings all of this infor-

point to the

of the tokenised program itself. If you type in the two line program we have been considering then you can PEEK from this address onwards if you want to see the token structure for yourself. Locations 138/139 point to the first byte AFTER the tokenised program. It is here that Basic stores your direct command lines while it works out what to do with them. In fact, the last direct command line used will always be available here complete with an imaginary line address

.

.

mation together and shows how these pointers combine to keep track of our exampleprogram once

Byte number:

.

it has been tokenised.

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

va”able ,

type

-?_ —----n

23”25”:;Z£V01Lifh"‘n2”n‘ifzélfy"7£

converted to inverse video in order m ?nishes

and another begins. Locations 732/733 POint to the ?rst byte after the Variable Name Tab/e which is normally a dummy

_

”umber

5m"?! (D'Med)

STARP

129

p'“5

Offset from

Entry number

.

Current length

STARP

-

,,

.

taining a new variable name it will be stored here and this value moved upwards to the end of the

—n— String lunolMed)

734/735

point to the

1

DIMed length

“umber Entry number

128

new name.

Locations

pius

1

n

0 t

U

S

e d

Figure ll: Types of entry in the Variable Value Tab/e

-“—“ VNTP

Variable Name Table

78 85 77 66 69 210

Ascii for NUMBER

VNTD

Variable Name Table dummy

0

Zero byte at end of Variable Name Table

VVTP

Variable Value Table

0 0 65 18 0 0 0 0

BCD contents of variable

STMTAB

Tokenised program

5

STMCUR

Immediate Mode statement

01515 6128 4514 6518 100773212822

LET NUMBER=120

10 PRlNT NUMBER Last direct command used

85 77 66 69 82 46 66 65 83 22

Try working

String/Array contents

(None)

RUNSTK

Runtime stack

(None

MEMTOP

End of reserved

no program running)

(One byte beyond end of STMCUR)

Figure lll: Areas of memory after a program has been tokenised 72 Atari User March 1988

5

0 128 21 21 25 15 13 68 51 58 78

STARP

program area

0 0 0 0 22

0

it

out!

(NUMBER)

=

120


Utility ’

I; ..ii\\\\\\\\\\\

IF, like me, you have numerous discs full of software ranging from utilities to arcade shoot-'em-ups you will find that keeping an ongoing list a bit of a toil. But with easy-to-use Alphabet.ABC that tedious chore is made simpler. You can easily create a mini database of the programs on in your discs and print them alphabetical order. When you first run the program you are presented with a menu of six categories — shown in Table I. When you have selected the appropriate one — to 6 — you are asked if using keys you want to use the international character set built-in to the XL/XE computers. You are then asked whether you want to load saved data or continue on to the edit mode. if you choose to load data type Y and all files on disc with the appropriate filename for that category will be loaded. For example, if the Utilities section is chosen, the computer will load all files with the name UT at the beginning. If you choose to go straight to the edit mode type N followed by Return and the edit screen will appear. The number of names that you have entered is shown at the top of the screen —this will be one when you first begin editing. Underneath is the filename the data will be saved under. You can now enter any information about the first file, but remember that you are restricted to 35 characters at a time. The edit line allows you to enter the program name followed by which disc it is on, the side of the disc and whether it is loaded from a menu or by _

Utilities

UT.

Adventures Arcades Strategy

AD. AR.

Simulations Music & Demos

ST. Sl.

MD.

Tab/el: File categories and filenames

1

I'm

QW

ALAN MCLERNON Offers the Ideal “tlllty to keep traCk of all your SOftware -

-

.

-

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boot load. When you have entered six names the computer saves them to disc. If, for example, you chose to enter names under the utilities category, the first six would be saved a

under the filename UT1.SAV, the six under UT2.SAV and so

following on. If

at any time you want to finish

editing and have the data sorted in alphabetical order, type D: followed by Return.

The computer will load all files on the disc previously saved under this category and ask you if you want to merge them with the data in memory — just type Y or N. The data is then sorted alphabetically and you are if you want to edit any before asked movmg on to the next function. After this you have the option to print out the data. You are then asked how many columns you want _— 80 gives a very even and paper-saying printout. When the file has been printed YOU are

offered the option to save the newlyamended data file to disc. If you choose to do so you are prompted to format a blank disc before saving the data —just reply Y or N.Remembersaving the newdata will erase any files on the disc with the same filenames. If at any time during the creation of the data file you notice an error, it is possible to edit the data. Re-run the the program and select to load data from disc. Then select Y to edit it and enter the number of the file to edit. Make the new changes and re‘save it. The program is set up to work on an Atari 1029 printer, but if line 1340 is changed to: 1m PRINT .

it

.

I

vvrl

LPRINT CHR$(27);CHR$(14);NAME$;:L =LPRINT

wor

k on

any

E pson

compati 'b| e

printer. Tum to Page 14 b

March 7988 Atari User 73


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BREAKDOWN the cha— PROGRAM to show message ram. a into Prints 1 being moved and steps racter set memory the top of 2 Finds pages, set lvjto back eight rom character happening Puts the 3 can be seen ram. Thle is firstrun. the program when the start Of the elght-bvte mark and 4 ?nds exclamation the pound data for the the data for

was started writingaprogram and this lRECENTLY accounting, — my Atari for home arose sign on when my problems a pound ‘h have write a to doesn't pokes 800XL 80 l decided a characSlghfor the pound the keyboard.would redefine statements l chose that 5 often. Data routine don’t use very as this will not 5‘9“ter that l mark, “MPH? "an the exclamationmy accounts program. :? “PLEaE-E z"? is that MN”? "T with E?RSuiS) 1 interfere remember MY ERGLAMTIDN or must mode ILE I CNQIGE What you 516!“ mugt change of graphics ?56,RM?OP 3 it PM“ Reset YOU after each the System 2 R?mQPZPEE?UBM-EPOKE nnmopizssmms press because if you rm to tempura back to 3 FOR re-run the program a have gone i found 5 will Eusnu?t) mm 3:9 to 7mm pound signexclamation mark. was to an this 3 A Lu??nmp?SMmmn being answer to “were mun-tenement that the easiest as a subroutine l and a.-zs.54.as,tu.5a,1u.a 5 ma use the program (ll) it — accounts program, SCS i need my within (N) it every time Return after 2 3“ to a simply go to place but remember 3“ A92 (t?) to be used (u) it. 5 “9 can also any into mark The program exclamation by simply convert the you require other character data statements. altering the 4.

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March 7988 Atari User 77


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ONCE again mankind—or village kind is cfying out for your help, Apparently some time ago an obscure individual by the name of Mustapha Drink — or Mr.D — decided

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to gain control of the Federation for the Control of Water Supplies. However, the Federation refused his cash offer to buy them out, which |ef~t a non too pleased Mr.D in a stinking mood. This was when he decided that if you can't join them, beat them. So he decided to destroy all the Federation reservoirs and cause chaos throughout the land. Minions of people will be very upset when they get up in the morning, grab their tooth brush, turn on their taps and nothing comes out. Now spare a thought for the vil-

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gallons. But as luck would

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have it and doesn’t it always—youstumble across a £16 million helicopter gunship. -

Using this you may be able to destroy the missiles that are heading towards the Floodsville dam and prevent the

impending disaster.

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position

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Check for a new high score

Helicopter explosion, decrement lives

78 Atari User March 1988

500 1050

and

Be

espemally careful when entering lines 1000 to 2403 as these contain a large amount of machine code.

Three difficulty levels are incorpor-

ated, and you make your choice using the Select key. The game ends if the incoming enemy missiles manage to blow a hole through the dam or if all your three helicopters have been des-

troyed.

Each wave is progressively harder than the last the enemy missiles get faster and your helicopter is pos~ itioned further away from the dam, giving you less time to react. Remem— ber, Floodsville relies on you. —

Clear all sound channels a safe area of ram for the missile graphics and initialise it

Allocate

player

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-

Successful end of wave and bonus routine Collapsing dam sequence and sound.

check for end of game

1000

6

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lagers of Floodsville. They face the dubious honour of living in the only place in the country with a surplus of water sited next to a huge dam holding back around 500 million

Move helicopter missile Randomly select a new shape for the next enemy missile

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Turn to Page 20 > March 7988 Atari User 79


_

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ATARI ROMS Defender...............................9.95 Donkey Kong Jnr Final Legacy 1295

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MACCLESFIELD CHESHIRE SK10 3PF Telephone (0625) 25228 ATARI CASSETTES

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Alternate Reality II..............16.95 10.95 Autoduel 16.95 Basil: Mouse Detective ......12.75 Beach Head H 1275 Druid 1275

Arkanoid

Aztec850 Basil: Mouse Detective ........8.50 Colossus Chess IV...............8.50 Druid 695 Football Fortunes ...............12.75 Four Star Games ................695 Gauntlet (64K) 850 Deeper Dungeons 495

Gnome Ranger.....................8.50 International Karate..............5.95 Jewels of Darkness 64K ....12.75 Kennedy Approach ...............850

Eagle ...............12.75 Flight Stmulator II ...............39.95 Football Fortunes ...............15.95 Gauntlet 64k.......................12.75 Deeper Dungeons................6.95 Gnome Ranger.....................8.95 Guild Thieves 64k 16.95 Jewels Darkness 64k......... 12.75 Kennedy Approach ............12.75

Leaderboard Leaderboard

Leaderboard1275

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(0) (0) (1) (1) (5) (1) (A)

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Nightmares 695 Phantom 095 Platform Perl. 64k ................8.50 Shoot em Ups 850 Silent Service 850 Silicon Dreams 64k............12.75 Spy Vs Spy II850 Tomahawk 64k.....................8.50 Trivial Pursuit 1275 Winter Olympics 695

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Tournament....6.95

Leaderboard Living Daylights..................12.75 895 Mtrax Force Mini Of?ce 1695 10.95 Ogre Pawn 64k1695 Pirate Barbary 895 Silent Service 1275 Spy Vs Spy 11......................12.75 Tomahawk 64k...................12.75 Trivial Pursuit 1695 Wargame Construction Set 16.95 Winter Olympics 895 11

Please add 50p handling to all orders under £5. Cheques/PO'Spayable to: SUNARO SOFTWARE (AU) Girobank Transcash to account: 664 6638

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market it is always pleasing to see a new product arrive in the office and Speed Ace certainly had us all

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motorcycle simulation which uses a split screen display similar to the old Pitstop ll game. After playing it for a while was intrigued to find out why a full price product of this calibre is priced at only £2.99. 50 packed my bag and headed for Newcastle-onTyne to talk to the author Brian JobIing,who is also one ofthe founders of the company. When you meet Brian the first thing that strikes you is his age. At 19 he has already chalked up an impressive list of games on various computer formats. His successes on the Atari

came about while he was working for Tynesoft—WinterOlympics, Phantom, Who Dares Wins II and Mousetrap. summise that it was the success of these especially Winter Olympics which sold over 4,000 copiesin its first month that allowed him to buy his I

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Porsche at the tender age of 18. When i asked Brian why the game was so cheap his answer was very

simple: Zeppelin want to show that high quality software can be produced and sold at a budget price. It has certainly done that with Speed Ace. Unlike most budget companies who bring out up to 10 titles a month of an average quality, Zeppelin will only produce around two or three games a month. But because more time is spent on each, the quality will be very high.

Zeppelin was formed on 30 September last year by Derek Brewster, Martin O'Donnell and Brian Jobling.

3 Esf?

They have their own in-house programmers and various free-lance writers and, as well as supporting the Atari they produce budget games for

other micros. Derek is the man who got Brian interested in the world of programming. He was converting games for the Amstrad CPC, but since then Brian has moved on to better things. Derek used to be an editor on a computer magazine. With all this experience the company has the potential to succeed, but what really sells the products is their Tum to Page 26 ’ March 7988 Atari User 25


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4 From Page 35, quality. The} packaging has been produced in a very professional way. Original artvirork and eye-catching style makes the product jump of the shetf at you. So, best pf iuck Zeppelin and keep those quality products coining in-

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huge success. When loaded you are presented with the main menu from which to select your race options. If you choose a one player game you will race against 19 other computer—controlled riders on a full screen. The scrolling is very fast and simulated speeds of up to 192 kph are possible. ln two player mode you can race

,

against a friend using a joystick plugged into port two. The screen is split into two each half giving an independent view, with the two of you being the only riders. This technique slows the game down a little, but racing against someone

5

other than the computer is great fun. You can choose between nine different race tracks with from one to nine laps on each. The circuits include Brands Hatch, Silverstone, Jarama, Paul Ricard and Daytona.

COM'NG SOON Zybex will be the next release by Zeppelin for the Atari 8 bit and although the version I saw wasn't finished, what i did see was superb; It promises to astound Atari games players with its quality and addictiveness. The game involves two rebels — Rinser and Cassalana — who have been sent on an almost suicidal mission to escape the nightmare of Death Row. To escape execution they must go to various strange worlds in the Czoken system and fight weird and deadly aliens. From each of these

planets you must collect a teleport crystal. Each crystal gives you access to another world until you reach the restricted levels and face the ultimate challenge — the Zybex itself. lf you obtain this it will ensure 25 Atari User March 7988

touching the kerb also slows you down dramatically, so take the bends at a comfortable speed and it will pay off in the long run. lfound that under 140 road or

kph was a safe speed for bends. After a race you are presented with the score table which shows

the best time for that particular track and the time you have just achieved. It also shows what position you finished the race and the best position you achieved. The graphics are superb and the scrolling exceptionally well executed. Sound effects could be better — a catchy little tune on the main menu would have been nice.

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corner are adequate.

The feature I really liked was the way the bike leans to one side as it this is goes round corners; smoothly done and adds the finishing touch to a super motorcycle —the first of its type that l game have seen for the 8 bit Atari’s. At £2.99 this game is a bargain and must be a winner for Zeppelin and Atari computers alike. I will be very surprised if it doesn’t turn out to be one of the best sellers in 1988.

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that your captors remove death rings from your necks. To help you with the mission you are given the Orbit weapon with power level one, This can be the game goes on by picking up weapons of the same type. There are others that you can get and these include the Rail Gun, the Wall, the 8-Way and the Pulse. The game is described as having a simultaneous two player option —two players on screen at the same time. Very nice to watch. The graphics are stunning and the music was some of the best ever on a game for the Atari, and believe me I’ve heard a lot. The graphics for the backdrops are some of most original have seen. A lot of thought has been put into designing the aliens you fight and the weapons that you use. All in all this game is a credit to Zeppelin.

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MicroLink. The British Psychological Society has nearly 72,000 members and is involved with government, the health and education services, academic institutions and other organisations here and abroad, LaST year its charter was changed to allow it to maintain a register of chartered psychologists which the general public will soon be able to consult. This gives the country a

of

cialists whose education and professional conduct the BPS The society is no to the

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which include publications will and software, be enhanced by MicroLink Ema/l and te/ex facilities.

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MICROLINK has joined forces With the University College of Swansea to providea unique electronic bulletin board for

Sional expertise comes with no strings attached, no axe to grind and no commercial bias. The wide range of business

businesses.

Subscribers can QGt advice sectors covered includes free of charge from expertsin legal matters, exporting, various fields, and discuss industrial relations, managebusiness problems with ment, market research, perothers Who may have experi- sonnel and training, statistical enced similar difficulties. and systems analysis. As well as being instantand Expertise is also supplied in free, this access to profes- the areas of computing and

expert

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what is probably the world's fastest translation service on MicroLink. Subscribers who send foreign language documents to her mailbox can get thetransIated material back the same a vast improvement day over the post, particularly for businesses. “Initially can offertranslation faci|ities in Italian, Spanish and French but if the demand is there, other _

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Users of the Business Bulletin Board can browse through the messages and repliesforitems ofinterest. All messages are read by the system operators who pass them on to the relevant

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computer systems, electrical and electronic engineering, expert systems and artificial intelligence, and mechanical engineering.

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Salmons. Subscribers can use either the standard service, where the translated document is returned via MicroLink the next day, or the super—fast same day service. Dr Salmons, a lecturer in Italian, said: “Europe has always been an important area for organisations to develop into. However, barriers are often erected solely because of linguistic

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efficient service like this shou|d make it easier for more firms to enter Europe”.

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loaded vehicles, enabling journeys to become more efficient and profitable. lt also enables firms to give their customers better service by accepting small loads that were prevrously uneconomic.


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larger memory machines, together with the development of more sophisticated programming techniques, means» that we are no longer faced with wrestling with an adventure's vocabulary severely limited by simplistic two-word command structures or bored to distraction by barren descriptions. For those that like them, many adventures now have superb graphics

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we adventurers remain hungry for new quests and challenges, l believe that there will always be software houses willing to satisfy that demand. The most cheering aspect is that the quality of the adventures being written today is, in most cases, better than ever. The advent of more powerful and

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way it has always been. Only a handful of companies have ever gone in for adventures in a big way. We must be grateful for small mercies—as long as

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was saying to my great-greatgreat~grandfatherjust the other day— we small folk are noted for our longevity you know, despite the fact that we dice with danger and dragons virtually every day of our Iives—notalot new seems to be happening at the

There’s usually a post-Christmas lull on the games front and that goes for adventures, too. Still, this year it seems even quieter than ever, but then probably say the same sort of thing every year. When you think about it though, not all that many are companles producmg adventures these days, even when the market is at its liveliest. Apart from Rainbird, Magnetic Scrolls, lnfocom and Level 9, adventure producers seem remarkably thin on the ground. There's Robico, of course, and even US Gold releases the occasional the Ultima and Electronic import Novel series spring to mind but you’d be hard put to think of any others that are still around. And yet, when you really start to look back over the years, that's the

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exciting developments such as CD ram, the future of adventures looks assured.

Now, turning to your letters, what happened to your response to my invitation for you to send in your per— sonal lists of favourite adventures? Notadicky-bird havelheardICan it be that none of you have played enough adventuresto be able to supply sucha list?

lcan’t believe it—surely most of you have experiencedthe joys of at leasta dozen quests? If so, write in and let me know your favourites in order of pref— erence. just love comparing my own pet likes and dislikes with those of fellow adventurers, don’t you? Steve Wilson of Tamworth is des— perate. "Please, please, please," he writes, “for goodness sake tell me who's the King of the Jungle in Mordon’s Quest”. Tarzan has spifflicated Steve a hundred times and Steve has wandered around in misery for months trying to discover the answer. He’s going bald with worry and I

someone tells him soon, he’s unless gomg back to Space Invaders — that

shows you just how bad the situation is. I don’t know the answer, but for the sake of Steve's health, can someone please supply what he and Tarzan

want?

Brian Standing of Port Talbot takes me to task for forgetting what i am'

supposed to already know about Ultima lV. Similarly, Ron Rainbird from near Crewe asks for my help with the same adventure, noting that claimed to be an expert on the game. 1

Well, I'm afraid I have a small confession tomake: Like Dr. Who, who regularly undergoes a transition to an" entirely new personality, I, too, have undergone a change in recent months. lam not who I was, if you catch my drift, and l have to admit that my" knowledge of Ultima could be written on the head ofa match. Now if it’sinfo on lnfocom games you’re after...

However, Brian has supplied some more help with Ultima lV which I now pass on for the benefit of interested parties. The mandrake can be found either on an island to the east of the Fens of the Dead which are south of Turn to Page 30 b , ,

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or load data from the spreadsheet, produce pie charts, display bar charts side by side or stacked, overlay line graphs and more! —

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on the Atari machine. . Now on to the game itself.

game Rebound. The title screen IS very well done, There’s no amazing picture, but varying text fonts and colours are used to good effect. The music is a superb per-

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imagine that you take

.

soft, Addison Industrial Estate, B/aydon, Tyne and

WearNEz14TE

Price: £3.99 {cassette}

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£5.99

(disc)

Tel: 097474 4677

bottom. You then have a bat at each end moving left and right andaballand build the sides of the court up so the ball can rebound off them. There you have it sounds very simple doesn’t it? There are three levels of play: One is just right for the novice, but don't try level three unless you have the speed and reactions of Boris

cussion piece that really gets your foot tapping. It goes on for quite a while and changes all the time

ONE of the main problems the software market suffers

-

from

is a lack of originality. At times it appears that pro-

not the usual monotonous

dirge that some games give. As you play, the music can be heard in the background—a feature thatl

grammers simply change the design of the aliens and sell shoot-’em—ups under another name. Maybe it’s time we went backto another old idea and jazz it up a bit and this is exactly what MicroValue

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like.

quality of games

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to be getting

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statusline that separates the two halves of the court. When a game is won a whistle blows and you are returned to the title screen. An amusing feature is the

animated audience seatedl on each side of the court. They are the strangest bunch of aliens have ever I

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features needed to be a winner smooth scrolling and superb graphics give an overall addictiveness, the animated audience is fun to look at and the music is'

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down and generally squirm around in glee.

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challenge a friend. The object is to score seven points, or goals, which is done by making your opponent miss the ball

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seen since the cantina scene in Star Wars.

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tennis court, cut it in half along the net, then place one half at the top of the screen and the other at the

face the computer, but the fun really starts when you move to two-player mode

Rebound will be released Microvalue’s Four Great Games—Volume Three. The pack will be worth buying for this game alone. Well done Microvalue a superb product. Neil Fawcett at Easter on

Graphics.............................. 7

8 Playability........................... Value formoney................. 7 8 Overall.................................

March 1988 Atari User 35


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Product: Swift Spreadsheet Supplier: Audiogenic, WinChester House, Canning Road, Wee/dsrone, Harrow HA3 7SJ. Price: £24.95 (disc) Te/107-867 7766

since the pocket calculator was invented, complicated mathematics has receded. The development of spreadsheet computing or, as some would call it, financial plan— ning, has brought business EVER

calculations well within the

grasp of everybody’s abilities and pocket. A spreadsheet acts like a blank sheet of paper on which both text and numbers are placed. Numbers

form the basis of calcu-

Micro Swift. The disc conand XE versions and the correct one for your computer is loaded autor—matically when you boot the It

comes

with

a

50-page

covering basic information and gives plenty of examples and two tutorial lessons. Unfortunately all the commanual

mands are laid out for the C64, but there is a separate quick reference card for the Atari indicating which keys to use. Swift has all the usual features found in spreadsheets

together with user-defined

results.

manipulation. The size of the spreadsheet allowed by this program depends on the size of the computer’s ram, For the XL version there are 6600 cells 26 columns and 254 rows and the XE version has 64 columns and 254

SpreadSheets can be used — not only financial, but the majority of applications are usually for standard items,

such as ance

profit and loss, balsheets, costing/ estimating and analysis of expenditure. The main benefit, apart from time saved in accurate calculations, is the possibility of what if predictions. Just changing a few pieces

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screen colours and pop—up menus to aid data input and

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rows— 16,256 cells.

To take advantage of the package’s many features, the unique pop-up menu system allows you to select commands without having

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logical sequence to further aid data input. The menus are small windows which overlay about a quarter of the sheet but do not interfere with the data behind.

Some commands have additional menus linked to them, so there is often no need to type in specific instructions just select the right one and press Start. Using these menus can make the complicated calculating process structure seem easy to operate —

see Figure I. To move

round the spreadsheet, the Control+cursor keys are used for single cell jumps while for bigger moves the Goto key allows you to go directly

to any cell. Entering and editing data is simple — just place your cursor on a cell and type the data in.

Features

include

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standard preparation of cells for width, numbers,

currency sugns and de0|mal places. You can also format a disc from within the program, or see the data in a

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lations and if these change, it often causes automatic recalculation of all the

for any calculation

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modelling. Swift originates from the Commodore 64 version of

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the

basic graphical form. One ofthe mostimportant parts of any spreadsheet is the ability to be able to relate cell values to others. You do this using formulae. For example, you can say that the value of D10 is the result of DB *.DG. You can transfer or copy that formula to other cells. The printer section has some good facilities. You can select the output width and insert printer commands to customise it. All data can be saved to disc.

Swift operates effectively, but the programmers have tried too hard to be innovative. Although the little pop—up menus are impressive, they are difficult to use, but overall using the program is still quite easy. The tree-like structure of the pop-up menus save you having to memorise complicated commands.

Spreadsheets for 8 bit micros are few and far between, and while Swift may not have the depth of other popular business programs, it has very good capabilities, is adaptable and well suited for beginners to both computing and financial modelling. Alan Goldsbro

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Plot Figure 36 Atari User March 7988

I: The tree

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Commercial tapes CAN be transferred to disk!*

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READ ON! Are you tired of waiting for cassette games to load? Would you like to transfer them to disk for faster, more reliable and convenient loading? You may have heard or read that this is not possible. Well, not only is it possible, but there is a program, Transdisk IV, that will do it all automatically, you require no knowledge of cassette protection techniques! To putit simply, Transdisk IV will read ANY Atari cassette, (single, multistage, non-standard format, 64K — no problem l), remove the protection, then place iton to disk foryou. Plus,to load and runthe new disk version of a cassette program requires just one keypress from a convenient,

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The cost ofthis, the most powerful tape to disk utility torthe Atari is just, £24.95 inclusive of first class delivery. Also comes complete with comprehensive instructions which were specially written with the cassette upgrader and first time disk user in mind.

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Requires: Atari 800XL or 130XE Computer with disk drive and cassette recorder,

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Remember, that not only will you save money on upgrades to dlsk games are only ave/[able on cassette anyway so Transdisk IV has to be a worthwhile investment!

,.\;,t

(if they are available) but many

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Send an SAE or phone for more details of this utility

Make Cheque or PO. payable to DIGICOMM and send your orderto:-

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170 Bradwell Common Boulevard, Milton Keynes, BUCKS MK13 BBG. Tel: (0908) 663708. Demonstrations arranged for callers by appointment 'For your convenience from the original cassette only.

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Dodgy dlagonal trouble.

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you have rescued, how many ships you have left and a radar panel.

Product: Panther Supplier: Mastertronic, 8—10 Paul Street, London ECZA UJH_ Price; [199 (53953119; Telephone: 01-3778417

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PANTHER, the new budget title from Mastertronic, is a good old-fashioned shoot’em-up. You are inside a flying saucerand should get hours of entertainment as you disintegrate aliens in a hail of laser fire. You are the lone sounds remaining pilot

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as with a little bit of work the entire screen could have been

programming, used.

The view of your flying

saucer is from above and to the right -— hence the scrolling techniques used. Using the joystick, you can move

a

survive

narrow channel running from corner to corner. To me this isasign of lazy

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at the sea, complete with waves, and very realistic they are too. Look out for oil platforms as you cross the screen as

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The latter shows the position of the bad guys relative to you and is very useful because they can go off the screen and shoot you from behind, whereas you can only shoot them if they are directly in front of you and at the same altitude. A novel approach liked wasthatthey callyour death and rising from the ashes the Phoenix manoeuvre you have five of these before the game is over. A failing is that there is is no real height indicator you have to guess the height by your shadow and compare it with the alien —

good, but it unfortunately prevents half the screen from being used your

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.

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ships. At least in Blue Max the enemy changes colour when you’re at the same

altitude. Another well-implemented feature is the superb background music, although it can get on your nerves

after an hour or so. Most of Mastertronic’s recent games have been released with some very classy music, let's hope they keep it up. was disappointed with some of the graphics.Your ship resembles a strawberry that you have just trodden l

on —fl a t d h orri 'bl “an e: The alien craft are just as boring, but a saving grace is that the little people are well animated as they run out of the bunker to your ship. Despite these minor faults

enjoyed playing Panther. Excellent scrolling and I

sound effects make it pleasing to look at and hear. For £1.99 you must buy this game for your collection, it's

well worth

it.

Ruth James Sound7 Graphics.............................. 6

Playability...........................8 Value formoney.................8 Overall 7


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h---—----—————————-? 40 Atari User March 7988

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rewarded

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it and not get the

If you manage to shoot ition make a quick note

a

Palyar pos-

coordiAnti-Time bomb nates, then get the whnchwrll rebunld it and you can shoot 't 393!” A final warning: Don’t enter the prison in the colony craft laboratory For further because therels no'escape.

you are having problems with this fast action shoot-’em-up don’t worry— help is at hand. The author, Chris Murray, has built in a cheat mode. His middle name is peter and by typing his initials CPM at the title screen you will turn off the collision detection for your craft. You can still shoot the alien craft and destroy the super structure of the mother ship, but they can’t get you. have used this cheat to get all the way through the game and, believe me, some of the later screens are superb. _ Muchelle Nixon, London. IF

iof_its

.

help W'th th'S add'Ct'Ve game take a look at the map 0“ Page 32- - S-

Stevens, Andover, Hants.

I

Fidget need to be in possession

of the Antigrav which allows you to fly higher. It can be found at location 00-00,

m

Altitude

WHEN you are ?ying through the second Space Fortress you need to get the heights exactly right for going through the space between the force ?e|ds and the wall. Your height is indicated on the left of the screen as full and half blocks, so here are the hei hts to fl at: 1.5, 2.5, 0, 1,5, 25, 0 aid 15, _y F. Bowey, Hockley, Essex.

lfyou are having problems playing the game and are losing lives fast, type in FANDA and the program will give you extra lives. — Owen Paget, Ross-OnWye, Herefordshire.

Mercenary: HERE are tips 0” hOW to escape the planet With 9000000 credits. Steal the Dominion Dart. Sell the large box to the mechanoids. Sell everything else you can lay — your hands on to the Palyars

including the Mechanoid. 0 Shoot all Mechanoid occupied

pos-

itions. You will also need to be in possession of the: These make up

Grenede

the skeleton key.

Prest|n|um

__

.

To get the

Neutron fuel you will

ON level 10 you will come across Flin— del the spider. To pass her you have to stand at the bottom of the ramp and wait for her web to disappear. Go up the ramp and then go on to the ledge thatjuts out on the left. Wait for her Web to pass you and carry on up to the top, then touch Flindel who will shrink and allow you to pass. — F. Bowley, Hockley, Essex.

-

Alternate

Reallty: The Dungeon

ON level one go to see the Oracle who, if you give him five gold pieces will give you information about quests to undertake. The ones that he speaks of are:

QUEST ONE Seek the the palace and prison under free the pl’lSOhef W'th the SllVef kevTo get it you must kill a master thief YOU encounter at a random location in the dungeon. After YOU get the key YOU must 90t0 the palace dungeon 0” is through The d OOF In 9130" t e sewer system.

The second elty

0

.

level one. '

. .

88013.

You need the metal detector to Identify Mechanoid positions ‘ lt turns the message bar blue when you are over one. You also need the pass, because if you don’t have it you will be

.

secret

”(Be nce

YOU

have freed the prisoner you may learn a spell and you receive a staff piece. You will then be teleported in to a

goblin king then fight the troll tyrant to .

.

.

recover two halves of an evil ring. Then take the two halves to the dwarven smithy on level two. He will reforge the ring for a gem or jewel. You then take the ring back to the Oracle.

QUEST THREE Take the Marganna’s tiara from level one to the war horse on level two. The tiara is found in the room with three wraiths in it. The war horse is found within the hall of mirrors on level two. Wear the tiara and you will have the chance to exchan e it for a mirrored shield which you (g:anuse later.

maze. To solve this you must walkthrough the door immediately in front of you after you have been teleported. Then

QUEST FOUR You are told to cross the river Stong at midnight. Unfortunately, have been unable to do this, has any reader finished this quest?

QUEST TWO All you have to do

GENERAL TIPS Fight only weak monsters at the beginning of the game—bats, rats and so on until you advance to higher levels. Many weapons can be found scattered around the dungeon — some of them magical. Use magic to discover where secret doors are. T0 gain a very powerful weapon use the sword ofthe adept in the Of tWOafiept 00d levgl an you wtjliihgh 6 uset hi?“ e amet yst ro teleported to a secret corridor on level one where you will find the weapon. — C.V. Howarth, Bowdon, Altrincham.

take the middle door, left door, left door,middle doorandthen the middle door again. This will take you to the tomb of Acrinimiral the wizard. After visiting there you are forced to go to death’s door. You are given the option of walking through it or using an item. |f you try to walk through it a bug in the program seems to make it impossible to find any item to use with any effect. The only solution is to walk through a sewer door. is

fight

and kill the

I

March 1988 Atari User 41


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You will need to be in the room with Gimbal after he is freed in order to cast this spell. Once the spell is cast, summon the characters in the order: Elrand, Samsun, Thor, Rosmar, Banshee, Florin, Orik and Gimbal. Make sure the characters are at full strength before you summon them.

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March 7988 Atari User 43

'


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LET’s start off this month's column with a letter I received recently from Brian Mclndoe from Bishops Cleevein Cheltenham. He has a few useful comments to make about the 1050 disc drive. /

3 »

read with interest the letter in

Software Solutions ‘fromOctober’s A.W. Crawford who wanted to

know whether or not it was possible to find out the density ofa disc in a 7050 drive by interrogating the drive control/er. Recent/y / wanted to do this in a machine lan ua e program / was writing. lfounétyi that it does seem to be possible with an unmodi?ed 7050 to find the current disc density by issuing a Status command. First you should either read or write a sector on the disc — for example, sector one. Then issue a Status command. Bit 7 oflocation $2EA will be set to one ifthe drive has/ust read/written in dual density otherwise it will be set to zero. According to Mapping the Atari this bit indicates whetherornota device is intelligent, and it is always set to one. My program, however, can successful/y determine the density of a disc using this method. Readers accessing the 7050 drive without using Dos may also be inter6-5de in knowing hOW to format a disc in dual density as this is not documented in either Mapping the Atari or De Re Atari. You should use the command $22 instead of $21 for single density. The resident disc hand— ler does not seem to recognise this command at least, not in Revision A —which means you have to access 510 directly rather than by using DSKINV. The data direction byte $303 should be set to receive $40. You should also set the buffer address to a spare point in memory because the list ofany bad sectors — terminated by two $FF bytes will be returned there. A timeout value of $3F would seem to be adequate. Mapping the Atari or De Re Atari will give people more information on using 5/0. —

'

Your prog rammll‘g prOblems salved by ANDRE WILLEY dual density? This has the advantage of also working with other drive types —

even an old 810.

to formatting in dual density, you quite right in stating that the 5/0 command $22 will accomplish this As

are

If you are using an XL or XE then you will find that the newer 08 contained in your micro will enable you to use the DSKINV command, as $22 is

taSk.

now

supported. -

Colour cedmg Next a problem from from Dalton-in—Furness

J_M" TQY'OT in Cumbria:

be fine for you but would mean that the program wouldn’t work on an old 400 or 800 — of which there are still a good number about. There is also one other much more serious problemThe standard character set is not designed for multicoloured characters in GRAPHICS 12, so you won’t be able to read the text easily. Luckily all these problems can be overcome with a little work. Let’s tackle the first two before oin on to the character set. Since thegscregen you want is 40 columns wide and 24 lines .

,

~

6

1,9

toring the stock market, forecasting poo/s results and the usual round of general household uses. l have no interest in games, so my Atari is used for text programs only, usually in default graphics mode and colours. It would be useful if/ could have different coloured text on a 40 column screen at the same time, but / can’t figure out how to do it. Could you please tell me how to get one line of text in default white and another in a different colour?

,

The answer to your question is to select ANTIC mode $04 graphics otherwise known as GRAPHICS 12 on but this isn’t quite as an 800XL

command. The other thing to bear in mind is that, to be sure of the result, you recommend a sector read or write before issuing the status command. If you’re going to have to read a sector anyway, why not just read sector 1000 and if you don’t get an error 139 then you know for certain that you’re working in

simple To start with, GRAPHICS 12wi|l only allow access to the screen by means of PRINT #6 commands, and you also can’t get ordinary text on the screen at the same time, except for the default bottom four lines. Also GRAPHICS 12 is only available on XL and XE machines, which would

as it sounds.

~

20 GRAPHICS 6 35 DLISTzPEEKGé?)+PEEK(561)*256

own an Atari 800XL with a 7050 disc drive which / use for moni/

Thanks for the information, Brian. must warn readers that modified 1050 drives seem to respond differently to the density check portion of the Status I

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program /_ Multicoloured text deep, the display list will be almost identical to the standard GRAPHICS 0 version. The display list, for those who haven’t been keeping up with their Atari User, is a set of instructions Wh'Ch the graphics Ch'p Antic on t e generate the display you see usesgo screerrt. Eac I'me 0 f

entry

.

in

h'

text or grap ice h as an the display list which.te|ls ‘0 “sre'the

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Tum to Page 46 > March 7988 Atari User 45


o

Programmin

-

ter

< From Page 45

memory location 712 otherused for the border colour). A value of01 selects SETCOLOR register 0 (location 708) and 10 will select SETCOLOR as used (location 709 4, or

wise

GRAPHICS 8 display would need 192

numbers. Program on the previous page will find out where this display list is located in memory line 30, then POKE into memory the 24 new numbers contained in the data statement on line 100. For each screen line you want to be in GRAPHICS 0 you should I

1

for the brightness of normal Mode

0

text). A

data

tion.

binary value of 11 in the character performs a slightly different func-

If the character is in the Ascii 127 (normal text) it selects range 0 as used SETCOLOR, 2 (location 710 —

11

11

11

a

9

9

11

1

11

11

5

for the blue background area). If, however, the character is in inverse video (Ascii 128—255) the colour used is taken from SETCOLQR 3 (location five 711). This in effect gives you colours to work With including the

11

9 5 5

1

111 1 1 1 1 1 g 11

1

1

B

G

1

1

11

11

1

1

1

1

1

1

1

g

1

1

g

g

1

1

g

11

0

g

9

G

a

a a

Figure /:

Figure

shows the way that

I

a

a

letter

CharacterA in Graphics 0

two in the data ”St’ and each GRAN-”CS 12 line ShOUId have a four. The example program as printed Just alternates between the two modes. This routine can be incorporated into your own programs, of course, and should be run after each use of the GRAPHICS 0 command. All the normal screen 8(1111119 and 13111111119 functions will continue as though nothing had happened. Now on to the second problem —the character set. Because of the way the i

ii

ii

5

3

1

0

1

I1

1

0

1

E

ii 11

i

B

0 9 0 1 1

CI

11

5 5

ii 11

l!

B

B

0

3 1

g 11 g 1

3

B

1

B

B

1

1

11

1

1

1

B

11

1

11

11

B

E

ll

1g

I!

1g

B

1

1

9

11

1

11

1

1

g

11

o

B

1g

1

11

0

0

B

11

11

1

G

G

11

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1

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1

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g

a

a

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1

graphics chip works, colour characters are made up on a 4 x 8 grid of dots, rather than the usual 8 x 8 characters you are used to. This means that a special character set must be devised to take account of the changes. Inthe normal set,a byte of character data is used to represent eight dots across the screen each bit con— trolling one pixel, on or off. However, in the case of coloured text each pixel must have colour information in addition to on and off, so two bits are used per pixel giving four possibilities: 00, 01, 10 and 11. Thus the limitation of four dots across each character each byte can now hold' the data for only four pixels. A binary value of 00 selects the background colour (SETCOLOR regis-

72,

is normally represented as bit data, and Figures 11, and IV show the same letter in three different colours for GRAPHICS 12. Note how I've left one pixel (two bitslof space at the side of the letter in each case, plus a space above and below the letter. This is to stop adjacent letters from butting into each other which would make them 111

GRAPHICS 0 text on the same screen

as multi-coloured textyou should alter your SETCOLOR registers so that the background and the border are both the same colour. For example, to

Ii

1

46 Atari User March 1988

1

11

B

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It

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ref con?guration. The manual informs me of the answers to three ofthe four questions, but/can’tanswer the third: What code do you send to set up your printer to receive one line—$3C0 or9601decrma/ bytes 7 Of double dens'fy 13" fmage

graphics?

Could you possrb/y inform me ifthis program is compatible with the 702.9, ,

_

_

and'if 50114731 print/e; an ecrma. settings ”7 hex ared?ije

,

bytes giving the bit-patterns to print. Each byte sent represents eight dots on the printed page. for reasons However, the 1029

only to Atari’s —

uses

a 7

marketing

bit system

12,

change them to black you would use SETCOLOR 2,0,0 and SETCOLOR 4,0,0.

Also don’t forget that the brightness of GRAPHICS 0 text is governed by the

in

which the last bit of data is ignored by the printer. From this information it is fairly straightforward to deduce a number of pertinent facts regarding Atari’s marketing department none of which will go into here! Your best bet would be to convert the GAD pictures to an alternative form possibly a 62 sector bit image file — which can be handled by a screen dump program. You will find programs to do both of these tasks in the January 1988 issue of Atari User. —

Figure IV: CharacterA in Graphics SETCOLOR 243-599 text

,

Well, Phil, I’m sorry to say that GAD and the 1029 are ”01 compat'b'e' JUS‘ GAD uses an ’”_d_L’Stry standard mthO‘? for domg b't image graphics— which is to send a long block of data

department

B

11

dump

gg g

don’t

so

On asking for a printout, GAD throws up four choices three

known

11

E

1

type ofprinterand OTHERS. Choosing OTHERS lets you enter you own prin-

011 '"1?°f,f;2le;fere;fgnn1ng using

72,

SETCOLOR

I

6

B

Figure Ill.‘ CharacterA in Graphics SETCOLORi

10

too dark or the writing will disappear. As you are limited to 128 different characters at any one time you must decide which ones are not likely to be used and convert them into coloured letters using a character set editor such as that given in our ACE series in the April, May and June 1987 issues of Atari User. would suggest that the Control keys Ctrl-A to Ctrl-Z are converted to coloured versions of A to Z, and the lower case letters converted eithertoa second colour alphabet or numbers and punctuation marks, whichever prove to be the most useful in your program. make

Let’s finish this month with a quickie Phil Bonell who is having probIems with his 1029 printer:

?

1

11

the colour of text

as

bit-pattern of

from

gg

"

Figure //.- CharacterA in Graphics SETCOLORO

a

GAD screen

a

place

it is

border/background although bit of a fudged method.

number

same

with

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-

each

trvins to win your, and

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and leave the table with all the cash. But it this ain't no game fer ain’t easy could be playing all You greenhorns. be knocked out of could or you night, the game early. If this happens the session will continue without you until It's endAt the start of each hand, $5 is deducted from each player and placed in the pot. When it is your turn to play YOUI’ aim is to

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the computer will prompt you you will have three choices: Bet, See or Stack. If you think your hand is good enough to Win and your opponents are bluffing, or perhaps wish to bluff yourself, press keys 1—9 to indicate your bet in dollars. This must be equal to or greater than the minumum bet indicated on the screen. If you decide to stack—that is to take press 8. If no further part in this hand the have stacked, other the all players last remaining player scoops the pot. If at any time only you and one other player are left in the game you can press C to see his hand. This will bring the hand to an end with the player with the best cards winning. But remember, it costs at least double the current bet to see an opponent. In the event of the two hands being equal, it is the player who is Seen who wins the pot. Tablel lists all the possible hands in their order of strength. In the event of the major part of the hands being equal, the secondary elements are included. So, two Aces with a Queen will beat two Aces with a Jack. Similarly, a hand composed of Ace, King and Jack will beat a hand of Ace, King and three. —

'

for_hls _STEV_E KN'_G|-!T gO-es snmulatlon m

addlctlve

the

T'lIt

of hand Prile of e

compositio " E ach

Of

the thr ee Cards ha 5 a face U8_of three. This hand beats Otherm any

threes

val

-

Brag_

Any han

Run on

bonnce

_

_

the Semi Cfns'snng Of three cards of ace Vaer. The highes! beiOWthree s is three Aces. A m" see below Wh ere a“ the cards the same suit A: are 3° known as. a rUnmng flush,

the

_

'

The thr ee SGQUenCe

a (3de form by consecutive one. Ace two, three'is t(greasing e fONOwed b; Ace, King ' 0“ een highest, ciOWn to four, three tWQ.

.

.

cards game

.

Th

of the same su‘ for High Card but. Pnomy eow. Two cards of th e same face Value, A pair of Aces ‘ Or — is the highest, In the event bullets of a tie, the third card is used to reSO'Ve the issue, All th ree cards . ' are ass es of] the" values. Them;d Pd'V'dUaiface Ace, JaCk With the worst fits/St,s e, t"We, tvii/ng' °' iS

ree. cards as

_

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decrded

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three‘Cafd brag hands

Turn to Page 48 > March 7988 Atari User 47

-


____—______—_—_—______

VARIABLES

CARDS

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Numb players in the hand Numbeerr0Offplayers 1n the game Next player to dealt be com m0"

DEAL ARRAY

.

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OBJ$' NAMEs

4 From Page 47

_

Sults and glows[card

IDENT$ MESS$, M2$

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made at various points of gamgts Mlnlmurn bet Play factor calculated every game com puter player to determme fer how long he 1 m the hand Differenre‘ letay bet and the minlmUm .

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48 Atari User March 7988

11111

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FER

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THaNxs

050

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REM

m

2505 5000H105 15 5ET00100 2,12,2:5ET00

2010

ancxs:"

2540 IF 50H540T,101:0 THEN SUHS(CT,1): 0:SUKS(CT,2):8:GOTO 2550

":0

2550 IF SUHS(CT,1))5

KITTvzxxTTv+ 5:5"HS(CT,1):SUHS(CT,1)-5:SUH5(CT,9):1

2020 01:1 2040 IF 5005101,10):0 2050 50500 2200

THEN

2120

2070 000 01:3 10

:50T0 2590

5TE0

z

141):0000v(00,2) 2090 ac:00+1 2100 NEHT 01 2110 50H5101,21:5000E 2120 01:01+1:10 01<5 THEN

2040

2130 RET00N 2200 0EH * 0111 000005 3 5000E 00N0 * 3

2220 R:INT(RND(1)*SZ)*1

2500 PL?YERS:LEFT:HINBET=1 2520 IF 500540E01,101:0 THEN 2570 2530 010v:0E01:N0HES:10ENT$(0E01*3-2,0 EOL*3):DEOL:DEAL+1:IF 0E01:5 THEN 0E01 :1 2550 HE55$T1.3):N00E$:HE55$(41:" T0 01 05...":5010 2700 2570 0E01:0E01+1:TF 0501:5 THEN 0E01:1 2500 50T0 2520 2700 0ET:0:50:0 2710 FIRSTPZPLAY

2230 IF CHECK5(R,R):"X" THEN 50T0 2220

2320 IF LEFT:1

2740 0ET000 2500 REH ** HIPED

1:0000510,2)

2010 HESS$(1,3):IbElT$(CT*3-Z.CT*3):M£ 55514):" 0111 T005 00 H00E 000T.," 2040 R:1NT(0N0(0)*0):00:0*30+1

2200 F00 01:1 T0

3

2290 500 00:1 To

2

THEN 3300

THEN

THEN

50T0 4000

50500 3700:50

T0 3240 3230 0:50H513,0T):0:50H5(3,0T+1):50500 3000 3240 POSITION 20,13:?

);"

"000 THEN

3330 QZSUHS(4,CT):B:SUHS(4,CT*1):GOSUB 3000

“YOU":POSITION 9, "

3400 NEHT 0T

“$";KITTY;"

3410 0051T10N 19,10:? 3420 0051T10N 3,15:?

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"

" "

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3440 0051T10N 3,15:2 3450 0051710N 3,15:7 3470

HEsss H25

ME555(1):"“:H2$(1):""

3500 0ET00N 3700 0EH 0* 0000 0000 00005 ** 3705 IF 01100:1 THEN 50000 0.0.0.0:500 N0

0

0.1.12

3710 H:H—5:H:0+(0T*2) 3720 500 0:0 T0 044 3730 0051T10N H,N:? "an?! 3740 NExT N 3750 RETURN 3886 REM ** 0000 0000 **

0,0,0,0:500

0,0 1,12 3818 LIN$:NuMSt0*3) 3020 LISS:SUTS(B*3) 3530 H:0—5:N:04(0T*21 00

2045 08J$(1)=IDENT$(CT*3-2,CT*3) 2045 IF 0T:4 THEN 08JS(1):"GRINGD“

3040 POSITION

0,1:7

1105

2300 IF 00003100,1)<:0000¥(00+1,11 THE mm 2340 2310 0010:0000010x+1,11:00000400+1,1):

2050 H2$41Tz501NT5400,00+29):H2$431):0

3050 0051T10N H,v+1:? -" 3550 0051T10N H,Y+2:? 1155

0.1511)

3070 0051T10N

2050 LEFYZLEFT—l

3000 0051T10N

00003100,11:0000V(0H,1T:0010 2320 0010z0000ncx+1,21:0000v(00+1,2): 00000100,2):0000v(00,2):0010

2075 50500 3420:0EH *PRINT MESSAGES*

3900 0ET00N

2000 000 0:1 T0 200:NEHT

4000 0511

2340 NEHT 00

2500 0ET00N

N

3400

x:14:v:10

3005 IF 0110x:1 THEN 50000 00T **

$";SUH5(3,1

"

DUT**

2240 00E00$40,0):"H" 2250 ARROY(CT,1)=CQRDS(R.1):0RRaY(CT,2 2250 NEHT 0T 2270 REH ** 500T 0000? 050EN01N5 **

3200 IF 50H533,10):0 3210 x:27:v:0 3220 IF 50Hsc3,9):1

3430 0051T10N 3,15:2

2590 NENT 0T 0

2000 SUHSIPL,DL):QRRRV(QC,1):SUH5(PL,D

2210 500 0T:1 T0

THEN

2550 50500 2500:0EH 0001050

2050 00:1

"TEH s";500532,11

"

;"

21:2 "s";suHs(4,11;"

4

3700:50

3130 0:50H542,0T):0:50H5(2,0T+1):50500 3000

3340 0051T10N 9,20:?

2520 E00 0T:1 To

55 5000E5

THEN 50500

100 4,3,0:000E 752,1 2510 KITTv:0:0IEE:0

REM

3200

THEN

T0 3140

3310

2000

EH

"010 S";SUH5(1,1)

n

3300 IF 50H544,10):0

2490 0ET000

50500 3708:GO

3050 0:50H511,0T):0:500541,0T+11:50500 3000

3140 0051T10N 17,5:2

E:5000E+1500:0ET000 2450 IF 5000E<>2000 THEN 2400 2450 IF sz THEN 5000E:5000E+1T*100141

3100

THEN

THEN

3100 10 50H512.101:0

1550

01N'T

3040 IF 50H5(1,9):1 T0 3050

3110 0:14:v:1 3120 IF 50H542,9):1

0N0

HE00

1070 5010T511011z"

STEP 2

7

3030 IF 50H541,101:0 3035 H:1:T:0

2400 IF (H+1:v 0N0 v+1:z:

2470 5000E:5000E+(201001+Tv*10)+x:50T0 2490

REENHDRNS,"

m

3:3

R510)+Z:GOT0

0N

REH

;n

00T 00T 05 v

ON

NEH

3010

3050 0051T10N 5,13:?

00

RuN

2430 IF 0:2 00 0:2 THEN 5000E:2000 2440 IF 0:2 000 0:3 0N0 2:14 THEN 5000

IT " 1550 5KINT$t121):" YER 0005E."

BE

THEN

50 000? H00,

"

00 1E00E," 1540 stNT5191T:"THE0E

0:3

5000E:10000:1

THEN

2420 IF 0:0 000 0:0 2425 REM ** 0010 00

0000ER," JEST

2390 IF 0:2 0N0 0:2

00 (0:2 0N0 2:14) THEN 5000E:5000:IF 0:0 0 N0 0:0 THEN 5000E:0000 2410 IF 5000E>2E00 THEN 2440

0H1,"

1520

2330 0:0000711,2):0:0000VT2.2):0:00002 43,21 2305 0EH *0 00115 00

2335 0EH 00

3000

3020 F00 0T:3 To

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(3,1)

5

1570 L05E$(181):"

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2350 5000E:0 2370

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2050 SUHS(CT,18):D

Turn to Page 50 >

March 7988 Atari User 49


1100

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'

t'me 10 f. d .t

It,

' Q

.

l

his LEN GOLDING continues to Basic programming introduction

‘ .

THIS month we start exploring the mysteries of computer games, and show you some of the techniques you will need to write your own text and graphics adventures. We begin by looking at the various methods of printing text and graphics characters

. '

anywhere on

.

. .

.

.

.

print-

the screen full, everything scrolls make room for the next so you lose any inforwas stored at the top.

ing your text at that point.

If

already upwards to line of text mation that When printing is completed, Basic automatically returns the cursor to the left-hand margin on the next line, the screen upwards again if it

is

.

.

screen, and starts

positioned on

scrocllling t_°'5 "9121?

W h'I

f'

,

re

progfa?r

'Sd‘f‘? focrravtzx 2332: tgssksusgult umsgiginirut ture or graphics game you Will need much greater control over precisely what is printed, and where. 'fe lvfou

,

'

_

. .

_

,

THERE

3

_

.

ji

.

several spaces between themarid Line 30: 0” the other hand, prints:

1

.

l

HELLOTHERE

.

at all. The W'th. no gap

00mm

and

obViously acting as extra instructions to modify the PRINT

semicolon comman d

'

.

a ou S a mg and“Lesemticrotlon ° orge commfa Baht”;_a5ic instruc line. A comma moves the a new cursor to the next available tabulator stop before printing anything else

.

.

_

.

on

are

(lead: folur stops ”grmigy at oSid S ine,_sp|ace o er _a_n (Zn/i ' semico on, on t h ecottémnhin the cursor at ”8 current pOSition, ready to be printed. for the next The system still works, even if there are two PRINT statements on different

there

.

“area”

program “hes; ,,

,,

23 {mg $5332,

.

And there can be other Basic instructions between the two PRINT statements, so long as none of these alter position. Here are a

.

cou p |thefcursor’sI e 0 exam p es:

10 DIM Asu?) PRINT “PLEASE TELL INPUT As 30!

ME

2m

A?

PRINT

TO

VPLEASED

YOUR

NAME"

. YOU

MEET

‘;A$

‘ lg

PRINT

Z?

F=5M

39 PRINT

Run the program above and you’ll find that line 10 prints what you would

.

are

or: 1a PRINT "HELLO THERE” 20 PRINT "HELLO",”THERE” PRINT HHELLOUV'THERE” 3G

.

52 Atari User March 7933

1

With the two words on the same line,

statement:

‘ .

HELLO

First let’s look at Basic's desire to start a new line with every PRINT

.

,

'

.

.

expect, but line 20 prints:

screen.

Along the way we’ll encounter several punctuation marks with a personality of their own, the CHR$ funcand the Basic command tion POSITION , There 5 a 835m utility program which automatically converts a screen full of text or graphics characters into PRINT statements for you. Let's start by looking at the PRINT command in detail. Whenever Basic encounters a PRINT statement, it looks to see where the cursor is currently .

i

FUEL

r;

AVAILABLE

=

H,

LITRES"

Notice that if you use

a

semicolon

.


——-—___——_—_——Q .

. .

.

0 between text strings, any spaces want leaving between words mustyou be printed as part of the strings them-

Eigziz

single text line-

While we’re on the subject of punctuation marks, there are two others worth mentioning: The question mark I?) can be used instead of

the word PRINT,

And the colon

in:

as ?

”HELLO”

(z) lets

you put more than one Basic statement on a single line, as in:

. .

. .

10 DIM

A$(40):INPUT

The 00|0h tells

A$=?"HELLO ”;A$ .

Basrc

where

one statement ends 80d the "GXt begins, and you can use it with any Basic command, not just PRINT. This can VGdUCG the number Of program lines, and also helps to Speed Up program execution. .Remember, though, that a program “he cannot OCCUPY more than three screen lines, so there’s a limit to the number of statements you

can squeeze inThe comma and semicolon are .

. ‘ . . .

fine when you’re faced with relatively simple printing tasks, bUt there are occasions when you have to print text

. .

. . .

.

at very precise locations on screen. The simplest way Of d0ih9 this IS to Use the Basic command POSITION. Here’s an example: 10 POSITION

14,ii:PRINT

"CENTRALISED".

The two numbers after POSlTl_ON tell the computer where to start printmg. The first is the number of columns in from the left, whilethe second IS the number of rows down from the top. In this example, the word CENTRAL/SED W'” be printed 14 columns m and H rows

For

example:

2,15 LI-ltggtssixvl’limeth36&818_rya£2320: 2,1?

imenting until you can be sure of printing exactly what you want on a

10

.

to re-print the whole lot whenever the

score changes.

down.

The screen mode we , re usrng at the moment has 40 columns and 24 rows, so you can 0 to US? any 39 for the horizontalnumber.from co-ordlnate, and any number from 0 to 23.f°r the vertlcal one. Remember that If you PRINT anything on the bottom line, Basic will normally scroll the screen upwards to make room for its READY message. Using POSITION YOU can send the cursor to any point within the screen’s boundaries, but it won’t move until the next PRINT statement is executed. The command lets you insert scores into a text line or table, without having .

10 POSITION 20 POSITION FROM

R

3“ INPUT

0

fPRINT

NUMBER

I'YOUR

GIVE

.I’RINT

.

ME

A

IS”

.

NUMBE

999

T0

,

l l

N

At POSITION 59 GOTO 29

l7,lS:PRINT

"

N;"

.

_

_|t'S_|mDOI13ht to type this in and play With it, to see the differences between this screen format and the one produced by conventional PRINT statements. You'll see that the words YOUR NUMBER 18 are printed only once, though the chosen number — _

which

is on

change

as

the

same

_

line

.

=

i

I

I ’

I I

can

many times as you like. And there’s no need for commas or semicolons, because the POSITION statement moves the cursor to precisely where you want it, over-riding Basic’s natural tendencies. Also notice that two spaces are printed after the new value of N — on line 40. This ensures that all digits of the old number are thed out when the new number is printed. Leave out

I

‘ l

.

I

I

I

.

I I '

the spaces, and see what happens when you type random numbers with one, two or three digits.

.

It’s worth taking time to master the POSITION command, as you’ll need it for all types of games, especially the arcade variety. Let's move on now to a more unusual use of PRINT: Producing pictures on screen_ You may have noticed that if you hold down the Control key, pressing most other keys will produce a graphics symbol which is different from the letter, number or symbol printed on the keytop. These are known as control characters, and you can use them to produce pictures, tables .’ graphs or any other kind of

. . .

.

.

_

.

.

twfhi'gezsg‘r’i’gadfrzmcg'?ers were in

shown

month’s issue, with the keystrokes which together produce them. Each has its own number known as its Ascii unique code and these can be used in conjuction with a function called CHR$, as an alternative way of selecting characters to print on screen For examplelast

_

_

. .

'

'

10 PRINT

CHRSW)

will give you the heart character, while: m PRINT CHkstz?)

. .

Tu’" t° Page 54 ’

. March 7988 Atari User 53


Q

symbols directly into

Page 53

4 me

_

will produce a little

.

baII.

Try this:

10 PRINT CHR$(77);CHR$(65);CHR$(71); CHR5(73);CHR$(67)

.

A few of the control characters act we commands. For example, 'f you to PRINT CHR$(125)' tell the computer it Will clear the screen, while PRINT CHR$(253) will produce a short beep from the speaker. Table I shows the Command characters in more detail. Their symbols cannot normally be printed on screen, because any PRINT statement containing them will trigger the command .

.

‘ ‘

function.

There way, however, of temporarily disabling a command symbol, by printing the Esc character Ascii code 27 immediately in front of it. For example: is

.

a

press the Esc key once each character.

.

19 pRINT

The symbols will appear on the program line, but when that string is printed during program execution the will carry out their characters command functions. For example, a bent arrow in a literal string will clear the screen when that string is printed. Try this: 10 PRINT ”[ESC

CONTROL/CLEAR]

CHRSHZS)

will clear the screen, but:

.

.

CHR$(27);CHR$(125)

10 PRINT

will print the clear screen symbol -— without clearing a small bent arrow the screen. The Esc character does not appear " it’s interpreted simply as an instruction to disable the command symbol WhiCh immediately f0||0WSThe system works only once for each character, so if you want to print more than one command symbol, you must put the Esc code in front of each one, like this: —

m

?

cmm);cuks(za);cnas(z7);cnns<2

9);CHRS(27);CHR$(30);CHR$(27);CHR$(31) If

. .

.

27 28 29

Keystrokes

Symbol to print symbol E

f

i

30

<->

31

125 126 127 156 157 158 159 253 254 255

"\ 4 F

[I]

E]

[g

NB: D Denotes

. 54 Atari User March 7988

.

'

i

. .

.

The square brackets indicate that we talking about key presses, not actual words, so you press Esc followed by the ControI+CIear keys simultaneously, then the words SCREEN CLEARED. The result will look like this: 10 PRINT

"

SCREEN

1

I

‘ ’

'

CLEARED" l

If you want a command character's to be not its function symbol is literal when string your generated printed, press the Esc key three times before typing the character.

After the second press, the Esc character .- a sort of double E — will appear, then the third press followed by ControI+Command will give you the command symbol. Now when you run your program, the symbol will be printed,just like an ordinary character. This all sounds a bit complicated, so compare this example with the one

above:

10 PRINT ”[ESC NOT

Table

1:

ESC ESC ESC ESC ESC ESC ESC ESC ESC ESC ESC ESC ESC ESC ESC

CTRL+CTRL+= CTRL++ CTRL+* CTRL+CLEAR BACK S

CTRL+TAB SHIFT+BACK 3 SHIFT+> CTRL+TAB SHIFT+TAB CTRL+2 CTRL+BACK S CTRL+>

Ii

ESC

ESC

. .

. .

CTRL+CLEARJSCRE

CLEARED”

Using control characters you can

you want to type any command

Ascii code

.

.

C

. O

0 .

0

are

EN

.

SCREEN

LEARED"

——

.

literal string, before typing

.

a

Function Disable command function (see text) Move cursor up one row Move cursor down one row Move cursor left one column Move cursor right one column Clear screen Erase character to left of cursor Advance to next tab stop Delete line containing cursor Insert a line above the cursor line Clear tab stop at cursor position Set tab stop at cursor position Generate a short beep Delete character under cursor Insert a blank space at cursor position

.

. .

. '

inverse character

Command characters

.


. .

. . . .

. . . .

build up pictures and tables on the screen. However, it's a tedious job, and involves a great deal of trial and error to get each character positioned °°r'e°?.y '.n “8 PR'NT Statement“ The “Stmg bel°w makes "fe a 9°°d deal easrer. When you run It, you can use all the keyboard's functions to put characters on the screen and move them around until they are exactly where you want them. When you’re happy with the screen’s appearance, press Contro|+2 and follow instructions as they appear. The end result will be a new Basic program which, when it is run, will print the screenful of characters exactly as you designed it. The only characters you can’t use are the command symbols and the double quotes 1"), because these cannot be written directly into literal strings and the program can't type Esc characters for you. The symbols could, however, be inserted by hand when the rest of the screen has been encoded into PRlNT statements. To insert a double-quotes character, split

32500 REM USE CONTROL/2 TO

BASIC PRINT

INTO

32502

.

KEYBOARD CONVERT

DIM

32504

DATA

GRAPHICS GET

REM

CHARACTER

0

BEEP

752,1z?

POKE

INITIATE

NEAR

END

CHRS(

CONVERSI

60808 32664: OF

LINE

EACH

32520 IF A=155 THEN IF PEEK(84)=23 THE N POSITION 0,0z? CHR$C253);:GOTO 32514

.

:REM RETURN ON LAST LINE=CURSOR HOME 32522 IF PEEK(84)=23 THEN IF PEEKT85)= 39 THEN 7 CHR$(30);CHR$(253);:GOTO 325 142REM END OF SCREEN

.

32524 32526 32528 32530

. .

32532 32536 32538 32540

NEXT

COPY

RON=0

POSITION

INTO

AS

0,100,106

N=1zSOUNl> FOR

32514 SCREEN

T0

231FOR COL=2

T0

39

COLAROWGET zé/A

NEXT SOUND REM

COLzNEXT

,

j

1

i

.

I 1

. ‘

.

.

I T

I

I

.

.

:SOUND

0

FOR

N=1

TO

38

.

32562 X=P+N:B$(N,N)=A$(X,X) 32564N5x1 N 32566 IF B$<>BLANK$ THEN FLAG=1:GOTO

3

32542:GRAPHICS STARTING LINE NUMBER:

32568 IF FLAG=0 THEN LASTLINE=LASTLINE -1:GOTO 32586 32570 ? LNUM; ?;GOT0 32580 32572 IF LINE=23 THEN B$(38,38)=CHR$(2 32576 7):B$(39,39)=CHR$(28):GOT0 32574 IF B$(38,38)<> THEN B$(39,39) =CHR$(27):B$(40,40)=CHR$(28) 32576? LNUM; 7 ';CHR$(34);BS:B$=”

.

32578

.

REM

USE

"FORCED

READ"

MODE

T0

C0

LINES INTO PRINT STATEMENTS 32580 7 ;? ;? “CONT" 32582 POSITION 0,0:POKE 842,13:STOP 32582. pom 842,12 NVERT

32586 NEXT LINE 32588 REM PREPARE TO SAVE STATEMENTS 32590? CHR$(125):? ‘Nould you Like to save the temporary:? instruction fT'

to: 7

:?

C=

CASSETTE :?

:?

D=

.

‘ .

DISK

DESIRED LINE

NUMBER

0:7

TRAP

:?

32591, 598

INPU

32596

GOTO

32598

GOSUB

GET

FROM

A=67

OR

A=68

THEN

32

.

32590 32668:GRAPHICS

2,4 32600 IF A:68

;

TURN

=T,A:IF

AND

;

32544 INPUT LSTART 32546 :? INPUT INCREMENT: 32548 INPUT INC:? 32550 REM COPY EACH LINE IN 7.

.

0

,30,10,8

Le

0,0,0,0 GET

I

.

INTO BS, FOR CHECKING AND ENCODING LASTLINE=23:POKE 752,‘| 32554 FOR LINE=23 T0 0 STEP -l:SOUND A$

32552

32592

RON

INCREMENT

T

Q

CHR$(A);:GOTO

REM

32534 A$(N,N)=CHR$(A):N=N+T

32542

.

?

I

.

2572

CONTROL/2 PRESSED IF PEEK(85)=35 THEN

SHORT

,

Before we leave the subject of command symbols, there’s one other technique you may find useful. You can permanently disable all the command functions with a single statement: POKE 766,1. Now the symbols will all behave like normal Ascii characters. This means that the control func— tions aren’t available from the keyboard either—for example, the cursor movement keys won’t work. You can restore the status quo by POKE 766,0, so it’s easy to switch the command functions on and offat different points in your program. 0 Next month we’ll look atsimp/e character animation and create the illusion of movement on screen.

32560

=T,A

32516 IF A=253 THEN 158);:GOTO 32528:REM IF

.

,0,0,0

:1,4,0,K:

SCREEN

32518

;CHR$(34);"

40 SPACES

GRAPHICS 0:POKE 752,T REM FIRST PUT ALL YOUR

32512

A LITERAL STRING” IS A”'CHR$(34)'”LITERAL" ’ ’ STRING"

32558

OPEN

32514

IS

32556 LNUM=LSTART+LINE*INC P=LINE*38:? CHRS(125):?

BLANK$=

32506

ON

10 PRINT "THIS 20 PRINT ”THIS

A$(915),B$(40),C$(12),BLANK$

32508 32510

ON

.

PRESS

SCREEN

(38)

S

.

USUAL.

STATEMENTS-

:REM

.

AS THE

0

the literal string at the desired point, then insert CHR$l34), bracketed by semicolons. For example:

THEN

0:POSITION

32618

.

Tu’" ‘° Page 56’

0 User 55 March 1988 Atari


Q

4 From Page 55

.

32602

REM

32604

IF

SAVE

TO

A=67

THEN

CASSETTE:

"Insert cassette

?

to hold temporary“:? and

RECORD

32608

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32654 POKE 842,12:NEXT LN 32656 ? CHR$(125):? :? press to write another screen 32658 GOSUB 32666 32660 REM SUBROUTINES 32662 ? CHR$(125):POSITION

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221 Cannock Road, ChadsmOOI'i Staffs W811 ZDD. Tel: (05435)

us GOLD

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34);C:;CHR$(34)

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Q

Same

press

”;CHR$(34);“C:‘;CHR$(34); ,;LSTART; , ”;LASTLINE*INC+LSTART 3261l POKE 764,12z? :? :? :? CONT 32612 POSITION 2,2:POKE 842,13:STOP :P OKE 842,12 32614 GOTO 32636 32616 REM SAVE T0 DISC: 32618? cnrsttzsm Enter fiLe name.. .":? 1? 32620 INPUT C$:IF C$=”‘ THEN 32618 32622? :? :? Insert disc to 11016 tern porary“:? file, then press START to

Q

2218

"file,

:?

32606? :? :? then press U8 32666:TRAP 32608:LPRINT

Q

32634 POKE 842,12 32636? CHR$<125):POSITION 2,3:? "File 5 created in this way may be :? "merge d with your existing program” 32638 ? ‘using the command:" 32640 IF A=67 THEN 7 :? ENTER

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massive backing-up session when, suddenly, my trusty 810 disc drive emitted a and a clatter and ban pas/id up completely

fidence, while I had the drive exposed I checked several other adjustments which

may be made to ensure that I get the maximum couldfrom 513,32! r erVr‘i/Iotlf/lefsat’hznccbc—gf the disc. Signal covered what had one So far I have had no fur— There is a ngetal ther problems with this wron bandgwhich translates the drive. I can access all my rotar motion of at ca stan discs, as the head is reato my; linear movemeett of well aligned and I sonab/y the head carria 9 e—this had have learnt a lot about how broken a disc drive works. Fur— All that was needed was a thermore, if it happens — piece ofstain/ess steel shim again I know what to do. one thousandth of an inch M. R. Holland, Lower Penn, but the best that thick South Staffordshire. several Atari repair shops could offer was a replace”mt '

.

.

.

sorry, tape Ollly

gggstan 2235222855123; '

Nothing ventured, nothing gained, so I decided to repair it myself. I was able to get enough shim to last me from a local .

a

lifetime

supplier. broken I removed the old. band and taped it into my Atari notebook. Then_l measured it up and drew its exact shape on to the new shim using the sharp paint to score ofapaih ofsassors .

_

4

a!

_

.

'_

/

trait OSCI a/iiqningjwnh use in

1.

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-

l“ Never

r: Czechsssszzrn N ever L an d moved the head carriage by '

,

to

hand

max1mum one on a disc.

of the painttrack from

signal spare formatted

I tightened the screw and checked the setting using a

.

number of other discs including a few commercial ones; _

Hawng gained some _

ll

con-

HAVE an 800XL and have just finished entering in Snowball from the Decem— bar 1987 edition of Atari I

User.

ltyped

it all out correctly,

as there were no error it messages, .but when I ran

to my

grief three hours

EACH month we will award_£1o prizes for the most Interesting letters sent to us.

meant.

realised that I had before I saved it, although the article said if you run the game and there are any typing errors it may cause the computer to crash I

as the DL/ is used.

.

50

.

more

than ever to confe_aSOn t?bllte to our lively mailbag Pages.

Get vOur pens out, Writing and you could be one of the

w mners.

.

Sighilorringitsizfigg?cg’r?

puter crashing? Also

there’s

now

.

start

Could you tell me what the letters and numbers are

'

'

sadly,

.

,

£38332?

hojlels ‘eV' Essex if. s‘l??rfin‘fi’éif??icfsi . Although the program sags to cut round the outline comes up With the option to of the band which I then p ut save to disc or tape, it will in the disc drive only work with atape deck. The drive a. eared to is unfortunate but, This work but the hpegdneeded a fact.

-

TENNER.’

I tried Get It Right! but / could not understand what the letters and numbers

.

1

the OUT/“7a Icut the three fixmg

WIN A

shapes on it.

there any errors in the list7 Ball, Keynsham,

bought Boulderdash Construction Kit on tape because the shop didn’t have it on disc. designeda level and when! tried to save it to disc it reported “Check your drive". It has done this eversince. Can you tell me why this happens and how can I fix it? _Jamie Beszelzen, Hock-

A FEW weeks ago

typing went down the drain. All that appeared was 3 black screen with two green

Then run it

-

'

Sr

5'.

——

The address:

Editor

a" Mailbag ser Euro

Adidas-3:23

Adlin gt on . When computer pro- MaccleSfield in each gram is typed line is assigned a |nd|v1dual numbers or a

unique set of checksum. The Get it right! program prints this. By referencing these numbers against the list in the magazine you will instantly know whether you have entered the line

SK10 4NP '

wereere 355m;Zéeli'te?é’éi opu haven't made a that mistake For exam le if ou enter AI=8 when 8” shguld have entered A=yB the ro-

gram won’t work butpno i

be

e computer errcgr mall rr‘eported. t e or Irask_|ng ‘”9 system up 9°

;

— _

5.2 zzi.:.“::..;zz:?z.?.'.z.zzetz it to ,

,

heir

tell to..|f you that it

t rou bl es ;

k

BOUGHT an Atari 800Xl A? first a 7070 more“ W It worked OK but after a short time It damaged the /

coglrc‘actly h

_

Tape

do

doesnt

something like or lsn t supposed to do, it will wander offinto Never Never Land. And no matter what you do you can't get it back. This is

alwaysapossibility when typing in data stateform part of a ments that machine code routine.

tapes 50 /.COU/d ”Of play them again. / i00k the recorderbackto Dixons who sent it awa They thYen returned it .

saying their

nothing

was

wrong with it and it must be W... advise me to do? a 7050 disc / also own drive which works well,butl would like to still be able to playbudget tapes -Damien

Gipson ' Bideford

'

North

Devon.

. we get

I0t

a

about thls 50”

0f_

letters

thing

hap, 58 Tum to Page Of

-

March 7988 Atari User 57


I

4 From Page 57

pening to 1010 tape decks The 1010 is usually a reliable recorder if used and looked after correctly, but if cheap

-

.

HAVE just bought an Atari 65XE and I would like to know how you would go about programming a professional game. Is there

Wk“

and

.

'5

errorgs, errors and more errors.0’9 0, Please can You he’l’ ‘?9

overhe7atwghconfugllon ?eV’ nd

“?rst: on eynes, “mg"no ke‘” 5.

'

Iished.

.

would be grateful If you could tell me how you type in the vertical bar'character that appeared In line 370 of Dicer in the January 1988 Issue of Atari User? C.P. Allen, Peterborough. O This is one of those elu.

I

Mailbag Editor Atari User Europa House _

to obtain. US Gold deals with a lot of Broderbund software and may be able to help you. The address IS Broderbund/US Gold, Units 2/3 Holbard Way, Holbard, 7AX. BS Birmingham,

Tel:021-3563388.

’ Zggl’gnaer?gfg/il?hZVzibnsg

get

.

A program called the Arcade Machine was written and released in America by a company called Broder-

bund.The utilitywas written in 1982 so it may be difficult

_

4NP

_

Smearlne

sunk A FORTNIGHTago / bought an Atari 65XEanda copy of Atari User. I have had an Atari 800XL before, so lam

familiar with the keyboard, but sad to say not with pro-

gramming. I

typed in Submarine

Hunter

and checked it carefully especially the —

but when I entered with it RUIV came up error.6 which applies to the data in line 8920. Could you help me out of this problem? Also do programs for the data

old48k work on the 65XE?—

J.G. Gibson, Cornwall.

Penzance,

Q There are no errors in the program as it is printed. Line 8920 contains a READ command that reads the data statements: You will need to check them all very carefully. Not all programs written for the 400/800 machines work on the 65XE. Some differences in the operating systems has cause a slight

incompatibility. However,

most programs publishedin AtariUserworkon aIlAtari8 bit computers.

Sharp for stereo, but not programs RECENTLY I acquired an Atari 400. My knowledge of Basic programming is minimal, but enough to write programs of suf?cient length to warrant the need for some peripheral storage device.

people have

advised me that my Sharp stereo cassette player should be compatible, butl do not have the required multiport ?ve pin DIN connectar. Could you let me know whether my stereo cassette 15 compatible and if so 58 Atari User March 7988.

.

Several

_

for. some "7.0mm; now and

.

Adlington Park Adllngton M acc lesfield smo

Atari 800XL

characters the

I

I ever

.

.

an

enjoyed typing m the programs that you have pub-

-

The pro a pp roach

A”

[HAVE had

WE about your welcome letters from readers experiences usmg the Atari micros, about tips you and abOut what would like to pass on to other users. you would like to see in future issues. The address to write to as:

y°ur area'

gfghfé’sjool’s'

vertical bar

t

tapes are used problems often arise. Your best solution is to get someone who knows what they're doing to check the head alignment and clean it and the pinchwheel. If the recorder still gives problems after this take it to a reliable service engineer in

I

F|nd|ng the

NAQU M a. 1b09 ©§§®

.

where could/purchase the connector or where I can find the necessary information needed to buildsuch

device? In future, when my knowledge of Basic and ?nancial circumstances have improved, I plan to purchase a disc drive. However, until a

such

time/hope you will

be an

able to help me find economical solution to my storageproblem. —TreforW Roberts, Menai Bridge, Gwynedd.

0 Unfortunately your tape

recorder will not plug directly into an Atari. An interface used to be available for converting the signal from a normal tape

ls\ive'control

Tgari)gramnpuitterppénssss trol+V.

you look in the February of Atari User you will find a table showing all the characters and the keystrokes required to get them. If

issue

P rogr

3913

appreCIated THE Picture Processor and in the POSt Printer January issue. of Atari User were two very good programs. They Will come in very useful to a lot Of 7029 owners who, like myself, do not ?nd a lOt Of Programs

the

for dumping pictures

Ipswuch,

Suffolk.

deck to one that your POKEY

Groans’

sound stand.

“0

chip could under-

However, we don’t know

if the

company

is

still

trading and so your only option is to buy an Atari deck. The XC12 is available for'around £30 from various advertisers in this issue. You could also take a look at the classified section of the magazine.

tO

their printer. The ease with which you can convert different file formats is very useful. It shows other 1029 users just what be do... with a little bit of patience and ‘ J-ERice, practice.

grunts

OWN an Atari 800XL and was wondering when someone is going to release I

wrestling game for my computer. lthinka company like US Gold could write one, as it has produced them for other computers. I feel that the Atari has a


—————————-—Moilbog great capabilities for games, buta wrestling game seems to be just what it hasn ’t got

DIP

'

'

fOI' those 9|lISIVe

l“

/

gray/“0,3 iiivireiéfnasg?cisrz to be made future? John Alan Robin-

for

the

US Gold such a

Atari.

use

Mini

farm.

W, p rin the elus1ve f by Simply keying #. Yet no one seems to havebothered to mention this in reviews or the

son

game

that when I

2,726,413?“PH"T6”y

’ Whitle y Ba y. 0 We don’t know if is going to release

FllVD

the manual adwses print code strings to define it. There seems to be no reason why this should not work with other printers —have you anyidea whyit is

comgame called Bop ’n’ Wrestle, but it was only ever released in

In usmg

America.

fact

_

processor. However, the old AtariWriter cartridge will

.

a

with a tape deck. gigifs/V514”); I; hnatd int/7711.7 work The SMM804 printer is a la If," US Ggld’s Ga ntlete dot matrix model designed iear/ three hZurs l for the ST Personal com-

if“;

reached lev)e/I 710andlwas horrified to see the same sheet repeated over and over again after that. At level 730 boredom ?nal/y overcame me and I was forced to turn the com— puter off. Was my copy of the game at fault, was itmy . computer, oris ita fault With the actual game? Also, is us Gold planning to bring out International Karate II on the Atari?—G.J. Hagon, Dagenham, Essex. .

.

.

.

.

withhed?r 'Cso nog}'??eW525 y

.

WP

the

SOOXL HAVE just bought an Atari 800XL and would_like to know iftheAtari 'Writer. Plus .

'

.

I

word processor is available

on tape for it. Also, can Atari SMM804 printers be con-

nected to my computer Without a Graphics AT _.

Charlton own,

Lnterfacei:

Lerzao, on on. E1gnnlng '

O The AtariWriter Plus program is a disc~based word

MiniOffice/lseemssuperior to Atari Writer Plus, and the only complaints can level are that there seems to be 1

built-in underline command so it consumes two of the 70 code strings no

Happy

'

Imp" se IN December I went to Curry’s to buy a Walkman for our nine year old son’s Christmas present. You guessed—[returned with an Atari 65XE computer pack.

quite intergsting.yTheyh avg opened 3 whole new W0’/d of interest for me which is quite amazing to a mere female! Rosemary Campbell, Kirkby Stephen, _

Get

it R.lg ht'

'

I OWN an Atari 800XL and am new to computing and very willing to learn. ltyped

puts a E sign depends on the DlP switch settings inside

the printer. Most printers can be setto do this, but it's not always automatic,

version, so we will just have to hope that another soft—

guage?—J.Chapman Peterlee, Co. Durham.

Replacement

Q The program

SW|tCh

written

is

You will find that you have made some typing error. Check the program very carefully using Get it

Right!

ware company takes up the

challenge.

-

.

whole/77x; a

Starwars on hold ,

know

for the Atari8bit ofthe Veélfg

W2?” awai "79

'

where

I can

re Iaceme t? Sh?PP' Hors’ham

M

_

get

a

K B' “5 5.”-

W?

'

-

includes VAT and postage and packing — for two keys. Silica Shop can be contacted on 01-3091111.

'

series

8,7780023; W 579 0 you

broken six/7720 C

IN THE April 7987 issue of Atari User you said that a conversion 0 fth e Starwars

coin-op

have

0 Replacement keys for the 1010 tape deck can be obtained from Silica Shop. The price is £1.12 which

is

promised

by the end

’57”?l/was e ’9 ease

RaC|ng round .

the Atarl

15

Atari. am 'rath er d'isappomted _

that8 bit users seem to have been left out. Maybe we will be seeing it later in the year. . —J. Elliott, West Sussex. Q Domark Software unforits mind about releasing an 8 bit version of this superb game. It has no plans to bring out a

tunately changed

-

“gig” 0

game and as the end of_ the I noticed year it wasrolled_aroun/d being re eased for other computers but not for

_

Cumbria.

'

Doesanyoneknowhowto overcome these problems? J.E. Robinson, Millom, Cumbria. 0 Whether the # sign out-

in Bounder from the June 1987issue ofAtari User but, try as I may, it won’t run. Could it be the program uses machine code and do/ need an assembler lan-

in correctly.

.

.

not recommended? I would go on to say that, with Epson compatibles

entirely in Basic and works fine on an SOOXL if you key it

.

.

on

on an 800XL

at my impulse buying, and didn’t have a clue about computers at all. As time has gone by my . Uilt fee/in shave raduall feceded bqecausegof help, from friends and reading Atari User. Gradually i have learnt that computers are not borin , the 're reall

'

.

lhada great sense ofguilt

This '5 how gyhas beegi p roe gramme d At th e momen t there appear to be no plans Karate ll, u I'rfiterrtiatlonal i it urns up a reVlew Left W'” appear in Ate” U39f-

,

puters or the IBM PC and compatibles it won't work

.

spaced

double.

”steamers? p

-

handbook.

An

American software pany did bring out a

£ Slgns allowed, and

LETTER

£10

'

-

£23251]; gtigogveefénintga:

games have been released for it. Could you please give me a list of them? _ Derek

Broad, Dorset.

Christchurch,

.

A IN .°f car games have been written for Atari 8 bit computers over the years They include Pole Position, Pitstop, Pitstop ll, Bal'a

Buggies, Rally Speedway,

Destruction Kit and many more.

Racing

March 7988 Atari User 59


___________________________———-—-

5/7777 01 1 ms 01mm MAIL 555575553

AWAERU

0114335

Wm “Amount“!

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the magical of K era vma!

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You’re back in the fantasy world of 987 Kerovnia, in the role of a novice thief who has applied to become a member of the illustrious Guild. To prove your worthiness you must ransack an island of all its treasures. There are 29 beautiful illustrations, a massive vocabulary, and a text parser which is claimed to be more sophisticated than the parser in the lnfocomiadventures.

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cryptic help section. The program took three man years of programming time to produce and it ShOWS. The Pawn is the stuff from which cults are made.

,

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sophisticated parser around: You can type complex sentences and interact with the many characters, a

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an absorbing, funny and tantalrsrng 6 This liral?éggnit adventure and guaranteed to be another "ilh'i?ilég?i? 55 5 .

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mm TO ORDER PLEASE USE THE FORM ON PAGE 61 l2/B7.6


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| ust over | I_J—__C—_— 130“ 7031 UK | £3.95 800XL 7060 £4.95 Eurodeverseas I ——————".—— User B lnder I Atari £4.95 UK; £6.95 Europe; £11.95 OVEI'SBaB Airmail 7029 El I I Send to: Database Publlcalions, FREEPOST, Europa House, I Adllngton Park, Adlington, Macclos?eld, Cheshire SK10 5NP (No starrp needed posted UK) Please allow/28 days fordelivery | Order at any time of the day or night I MicmLhk/Telecom Gold Orders by P/esrel: Fax Orders: I 72:MA6001 MZS 879966 Key ‘89, lhen 614568333 I I

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62 Atari User March 7988

(0432) 50836

ATA RI 400/ 600/ 80 0/ X L/ X E U TI L ITI E S A N D G A M ES

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Profile for Paul Rixon

Atari User Magazine Vol 3 Issue 11  

Atari User Magazine Vol 3 Issue 11 - magazine for Atari home computer users, published by Database Publications.

Atari User Magazine Vol 3 Issue 11  

Atari User Magazine Vol 3 Issue 11 - magazine for Atari home computer users, published by Database Publications.

Profile for prixon
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