Unfinished Text Adventures

discuss classic text/graphic adventures for the bbc micro & electron
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lurkio
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Re: Unfinished Text Adventures

Post by lurkio »

Commodore wrote:
Tue Nov 24, 2020 10:30 pm
Yes, I get that. It only works reliably because somebody (you) worked it out 35 years later.
No. Again, if you read the last page of the updated GAC manual, this will all be explained. I wasn't the first person to work it out. Far from it.

Commodore wrote:
Tue Nov 24, 2020 10:30 pm
That can't really be considered reliable, even if it does work when you type something that is the opposite of what the manual says.
The original manual didn't reflect the implementation of that particular piece of syntax. Mistakes can happen.

On this forum, a number of us got together, figured out what was going on, and produced an updated GAC manual, which sets out the syntax that is actually implemented in GAC. That syntax works with 100% reliability.

Commodore wrote:
Tue Nov 24, 2020 10:30 pm
I think I mentioned reliability once.
The tenor of your comments (see below) is that GAC is buggy and unusable. It's not.

:idea:

Commodore wrote:
Sat Nov 21, 2020 6:59 pm
Interesting to read that GAC could get to 35 years old and have undetected errors in it!
Commodore wrote:
Tue Nov 24, 2020 10:25 am
So, we now know that GAC is buggy, AC is buggy. Is the Quill any better? Are there any other options? BASIC doesn't count!
Commodore wrote:
Tue Nov 24, 2020 11:27 am
Well if they don't work as per the manual, then it's a bug as far as I'm concerned. The question remains, is Quill any more reliable?
Commodore wrote:
Tue Nov 24, 2020 10:17 pm
In my book this is both a typo and a bug.
Commodore wrote:
Tue Nov 24, 2020 10:30 pm
That can't really be considered reliable
Last edited by lurkio on Sat Nov 28, 2020 12:05 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: Unfinished Text Adventures

Post by Commodore »

Well at least it was worked out in the end.
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Re: Unfinished Text Adventures

Post by fuzzel »

fuzzel wrote:
Wed Mar 28, 2018 5:30 pm
Newsflash - in August 87's Electron User Pendragon column Robico announced that due to unprecedented demand for the re-released version of Magus' Village of Lost Souls, Blazing Star will not now be released until the Autumn. Stick with me on this one, I'll hopefully find further clues later on as to the fate of this mysterious adventure. Btw does anyone know if any members of the Robico team have ever appeared on STH ?
In A&B's December 1988 issue there's a two page adventure special with an update on Blazing Star:
"Robico's long-awaited Western spoof, 'Blazing Star', should be out for Christmas in BBC and Electron versions. Ian Muriss (author of The Hunt) has taken over the programming now."
I don't suppose anyone knows if Ian Muriss is contactable so we can find out what happened to Blazing Star?
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8bitAG
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Re: Unfinished Text Adventures

Post by 8bitAG »

fuzzel wrote:
Mon Aug 23, 2021 3:43 pm
I don't suppose anyone knows if Ian Muriss is contactable so we can find out what happened to Blazing Star?
He seems to be on Facebook; he'll be the Ian Muriss that is based in Camberley, given his CV that is on an archived version of his website http://www.muriss.com/ I don't know if the email on that website would work as it is only partially live and hasn't been updated in about fifteen years. No tweets ever made on his Twitter account but he has interactive with his Facebook in the last year. There is a postal address for what I think is him on the Companies House website.
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Unfinished Text Adventures

Post by fuzzel »

I've gotten around to playing Alpine Software's Cops again and this time I'm determined to finish it. It's a disc-based game and looks pretty big but I think there are a few reasons why people would be put off playing the game. There are a number of interactive characters who play a big part in the game and I'm finding that I know what I want them to do but I can't find the exact input for it to happen. Therefore, you try something, fail and then move on to something else when in actual fact it's the parser which is struggling to understand you. Also the game has a clock running as you play and certain events take place at certain times. If you're in the wrong place at the wrong time (actually the wrong place at the right time) then something can happen which you miss which would help you solve the game. I'm going to persevere though and this time I'll consult the hint sheet if I'm completely stuck. Apart from the hint sheet is there any documentation such as disc or cassette inlay I could have a look at?
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Re: Unfinished Text Adventures

Post by lurkio »

fuzzel wrote:
Sun Aug 29, 2021 7:18 pm
Apart from the hint sheet is there any documentation such as disc or cassette inlay I could have a look at?
The Mad Hatter wrote (emphasis mine):
The pictures aren't quite up to the standards set by the Magnetic Scrolls adventures, but they are more than adequate and provide material clues to solving the adventure at times as well as enhancing the atmosphere.
Here's the Archie version, which has pictures:

https://forums.jaspp.org.uk/forum/viewtopic.php?t=378

:idea:
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Re: Unfinished Text Adventures

Post by fuzzel »

Thanks lurkio, I've now made my first arrest but encountered what I believe are a couple of bugs on the BBC version. I'd like to play the Archimedes version which I'm assuming is the original bug free version so have fired up Arculator v0.99 (I know it's not the latest one) but am struggling to mount the .jdf file which my version of Arculator doesn't recognise. I wonder if anyone can help? Looking around forums.jaspp.org.uk I see that I probably need to access the ADFFS filer icon menu but I've no idea what that is or where that is; is it a separate emulator, is it an add-on for Arculator or is it something completely different? As you've probably noticed my knowledge of the Archimedes is extremely limited although I have no trouble running .adf disc format games.
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Re: Unfinished Text Adventures

Post by lurkio »

fuzzel wrote:
Mon Aug 30, 2021 1:47 pm
Thanks lurkio, I've now made my first arrest but encountered what I believe are a couple of bugs on the BBC version.
Can you say what the bugs are? ROT13 if you want to avoid spoilers.

fuzzel wrote:
Mon Aug 30, 2021 1:47 pm
I'd like to play the Archimedes version which I'm assuming is the original bug free version so have fired up Arculator v0.99 (I know it's not the latest one) but am struggling to mount the .jdf file which my version of Arculator doesn't recognise. I wonder if anyone can help? Looking around forums.jaspp.org.uk I see that I probably need to access the ADFFS filer icon menu but I've no idea what that is or where that is; is it a separate emulator, is it an add-on for Arculator or is it something completely different?
Archie/RPC emulation has always been a bit of a black art to me. Still, I've just managed to get the Archie version of COPS running in RPCEmu on a Mac. I'd already installed !SparkPlug in RPCEmu. (!SparkPlug seems to be the recommended decompression program for Archie/RPC.) I used !SparkPlug to expand the latest version of the ADFFS zip archive file, which is attached here:

https://forums.jaspp.org.uk/forum/viewt ... 4182#p4182

Then I launched !ADFFS. The ADFFS icon appears in the taskbar.

I then used the standard RISC OS GUI to change the filetype of the COPS .jfd disc-image to "Floppy". Then I was able to double-click the COPS .jfd disc-image file, and a new window popped up and displayed the contents of the disc-image: !COPS and ReadMe.

I dragged the !COPS icon onto the HostFS emulated hard disk, and a copy of !COPS then appeared on the HostFS filesystem. I was able to double-click it to launch the game. (Or you can just double-click the original !COPS file in the popup ADFS window -- no need to copy to HostFS.)

Screenshot 2021-08-30 at 14.52.35.png
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Re: Unfinished Text Adventures

Post by fuzzel »

Thanks for the reply lurkio, regarding me getting the Archimedes version working I think I'll pass for the moment on trying to get an Archimedes version working, it sounds extremely complicated to me. If someone is able to copy the files onto a .adf disc image and save me a lot of trouble then that would be brilliant.
Regarding the possible bugs in the game I'll post the messages (ROT13) later on.
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Re: Unfinished Text Adventures

Post by lurkio »

fuzzel wrote:
Mon Aug 30, 2021 3:19 pm
If someone is able to copy the files onto a .adf disc image and save me a lot of trouble then that would be brilliant.
Try this:

COPS.adf.zip
(147.31 KiB) Downloaded 9 times

:?:
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Re: Unfinished Text Adventures

Post by fuzzel »

Brilliant, thanks lurkio, that worked a treat! Shy bairns get nowt eh?
I'm looking at the two potential bugs shortly (BBC version)
Btw, here's reference to COPS in A&B issue January 1990 (I'd only previously found mentions in Acorn User and The Micro User).
AandB p38 Jan90 Scapeghost COPS.png
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Re: Unfinished Text Adventures

Post by fuzzel »

Hmmm, I've been unable to recreate the first bug, when I restored my position and replayed a few moves using my walkthrough notes it worked this time. I remember something similar happening when I played What's Eeyore's? I'll now use this saved position and continue my walkthrough to where I'm currently up to and see if the second bug happens again.
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Re: Unfinished Text Adventures

Post by fuzzel »

I've just spent a couple of hours playing Cops again from the start, this time doing a detailed walkthrough listing all the inputs.
The first bug which was to do with the computer at the bank hasn't resurfaced but the second assumed bug where I'm in the boat on the lake and can't get to shore is still there. I'll export a saved game file and post it here later with a brief explanation in ROT13 if someone would care to have a look at it. I will also reference the help guide which I've had a look through and I can't see that I'm doing anything wrong. Another thing to do will be to play the Archimedes version to see if it manifests there as well, if it does I'll assume I'm doing something wrong.
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Re: Unfinished Text Adventures

Post by fuzzel »

I've been playing Egyptian Adventure (see topic viewtopic.php?f=32&t=11687&p=334378&hil ... AN#p334378) and I have to say, given it's a disc-based adventure, that I was looking forward to something of the scale of Acheton or Enthar Seven, so I was a little bit disappointed to discover that it's fairly moderate in size. The programmer went to some trouble to disguise the fact that it's written in Basic but I've hacked my way in and had a quick look at the messages to get an idea of the game's size. There are 111 locations which includes two mazes and another 156 messages. I suppose it being written in Basic does limit the size of the game and retrieving messages from disc is an obvious way of making the game a bit bigger and to be fair it doesn't noticeably slow the game down.
If anyone's interested in playing it I'd recommend getting a list of verbs from the J file (they're displayed backwards if you *DUMP the file) and one important bit of advice I'd give is that although the verbs are four characters in length don't assume that four characters for nouns will suffice in all cases because it won't! That mistake cost me a couple of very frustrating days right at the start of the game. Despite this it has grown on me, I suppose I'm about two-thirds of the way through now.
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Re: Unfinished Text Adventures

Post by lurkio »

fuzzel wrote:
Mon Sep 27, 2021 4:47 pm
retrieving messages from disc is an obvious way of making the game a bit bigger and to be fair it doesn't noticeably slow the game down.
I was pleasantly surprised by how playable the game is, even though it streams location-descriptions from a datafile on disc.

But it plays even better if you decrypt that datafile — because it turns out that the original program doesn’t just read in a string and print it on screen, verbatim; instead, it has to decrypt the string, character by character, every time it prints a room-description, which slows gameplay down quite a bit!

So I decrypted the whole datafile and tweaked the program accordingly, and it now feels much snappier. See the attachments to the following post:

viewtopic.php?p=335128#p335128

:idea:
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Re: Unfinished Text Adventures

Post by fuzzel »

lurkio wrote:
Mon Sep 27, 2021 7:26 pm
fuzzel wrote:
Mon Sep 27, 2021 4:47 pm
retrieving messages from disc is an obvious way of making the game a bit bigger and to be fair it doesn't noticeably slow the game down.
I was pleasantly surprised by how playable the game is, even though it streams location-descriptions from a datafile on disc.

But it plays even better if you decrypt that datafile — because it turns out that the original program doesn’t just read in a string and print it on screen, verbatim; instead, it has to decrypt the string, character by character, every time it prints a room-description, which slows gameplay down quite a bit!

So I decrypted the whole datafile and tweaked the program accordingly, and it now feels much snappier. See the attachments to the following post:

viewtopic.php?p=335128#p335128

:idea:
Intriguing, I'm stuck in the pyramid at the moment (with internet connection :D) but once I'm safely back home with my winnings I'll create a text file walkthrough and blast through your snappier version with it to test it out fully.
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Re: Unfinished Text Adventures

Post by fuzzel »

Here's my solution to Egyptian Adventure. Note that there is a middle section separated by hyphens within which there is a random element to the game, a gang of arabs who may or may not appear and attack you and if they do they may or may not kill you. The walkthrough will sometimes work but if you wish to get rid of them you need to use something you're carrying...

Code: Select all

GET ROPE
W
W
GET TORCH
WORSHIP AMMON-RA
U
GET DISC
D
WORSHIP AMMON-RA
E
E
U
N
N
BUY BOOK
S
W
OBTAIN LOAN
E
GET STRING
N
GET BEER
U
GET KEY
D
S
S
PAY RECEP
U
GET MATCHES
D
D
E
GET RACQUETS
W
U
W
N
N
W
TALK TO CURATOR
E
S
E
E
BUY SLIPPERS
WEAR SLIPPERS
PAY AHMED
W
W
S
S
S
U
S
E
LIGHT TORCH
D
ASK AHMED
E
ASK AHMED
N
ASK AHMED
E
ASK AHMED
D
ASK AHMED
E
ASK AHMED
D
WAVE BOOM
WAIT
WAIT
WAIT
S
S
GET SUNGLASSES
N
N
N
W
U
W
W
TIE ROPE
CLIMB ROPE
WEAR SUNGLASSES
N
U
GET COMPASS
D
S
U
GET ROPE
E
E
DROP SUNGLASSES
GET SUNGLASSES
D
E
N
E
D
E
D
S
S
ENTER HELICOPTER
USE KEY
S
BOW
DROP COMP
DROP SLIP
E
D
DROP MONEY
WISH
GET MONEY
GET CROSS
GET VIAL
OPEN VIAL
U
W
W
S
S
W
N
GET BOAT
E
E
S
E
GET COMP
GET SLIP
S
DROP BOAT
ENTER BOAT
S
LEAVE BOAT
TIE RACQUETS
DROP DISC
DROP SLIPPERS
DROP BOOK
DROP MONEY
DROP BOOM
DROP MATCHES
DROP ROPE
DROP COMP
DROP SUNGLASSES
DROP CROSS
W
W
W
DROP TORCH
E
E
E
GET DISC
W
W
W
DROP DISC
E
E
E
GET SLIPPERS
W
W
W
DROP SLIPPERS
E
E
E
GET BOOK
W
W
W
DROP BOOK
E
E
E
GET MONEY
W
W
W
DROP MONEY
E
E
E
GET BOOM
W
W
W
DROP BOOM
E
E
E
GET MATCH
W
W
W
DROP MATCH
E
E
E
GET ROPE
W
W
W
DROP ROPE
E
E
E
GET COMP
W
W
W
DROP COMP
E
E
E
GET SUNG
W
W
W
DROP SUNG
E
E
E
GET CROSS
W
W
W
GET SUNG
GET DISC
GET SLIPPERS
GET BOOK
GET MONEY
GET BOOM
GET MATCH
GET ROPE
GET COMP
D
S
E
E
DROP BOOK
DROP COMP
W
W
N
U
GET TORCH
D
S
E
E
N
GET RIFLE

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

S
S
W
S
THROW BOOM
GET BOOM
W
N
WORSHIP TREE
N
N
DROP MONEY
DROP SLIPPERS
DROP STRING
DROP RACQ
DROP BOOM
DROP SUNG
S
S
S
W
E
W
GET BOOK
GET COMP
W
GET FLUTE
E
S
W
S
EXAM SKEL
GET BEET
GET BONE
W
GET DOG
N
N
N
DROP BEET
S
S
GET POME
N
N

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

SQUEEZE POME
DROP POME
DROP COMPASS
GET SLIPPERS
GET BOOM
LIGHT TORCH
E
GIVE SLIPPERS
E
READ HIERO
SAY AMMON-RA
TIE ROPE
W
W
GET COMP
GET BEET
E
E
CLIMB ROPE
S
DROP COMP
N
GET ROPE
S
DROP ROPE
GET COMP
SHOOT BULGE
E
READ HIERO
WORSHIP ANUBIS
S
W
PULL LEVER
GET URAEUS
WEAR URAEUS
DROP COMP
DROP RIFLE
PULL LEVER
E
E
N
E
GET CARPET
W
S
E
PLACE BEETLE
GET MACE
W
N
W
W
GET ROPE
W
ENTER BOAT
S
LEAVE BOAT
S
GET DOG
W
GIVE BLOOD
USE CARPET
N
W
W
N
W
W
THROW BOOM
DROP CARPET
D
N
PLACE DISC
IMAG
DROP ROPE
PLAY FLUTE
DROP URAEUS
DROP BONE
DROP MATCHES
DROP MACE
INVE
CLIMB ROPE
GET ROPE
E
WAVE CROSS
PULL TREE
S
WAIT
WAIT
WAIT
E
S
S
GET JEWELS
N
N
W
S
W
USE CROSS
GET DOOR
E
N
W
DROP DOOR
W
GET SCROLL
READ SCROLL
SAY SO
E
GET DOOR
E
S
W
S
W
PLAY FLUTE
N
W
W
S
LIGHT MUMMY
PUSH SARC
D
DROP DOOR
JUMP DOOR
TIE ROPE
PUSH OFF
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