Not rocket science – part 4

Debunking Oh that would be very difficult – part 4

So, here’s the continuation of this amazing series showing how it’s relatively easy to program a simple game on other 8 bit computers using their built in BASIC, apart from the crappy Commodore 64 with its Commodore BASIC V2.

This is merely hyperbole dear reader and doesn’t show anything of the kind; for a start the author hasn’t even finished writing a game at this point and the program merely shows that a system released after the C64 has a BASIC capable of running a game. The biggest irony is that the author’s program relies on hardware sprites and, although it doesn’t have dedicated BASIC commands for them, the C64 does have that feature whilst many of the other machines that the author has previously declared to be “superior” don’t and have nothing in BASIC as an alternative.

I used a large Philips CRT style TV instead of an LCD, LED, or even Plasma TV to make the video and take the pics, because CRT TV is the type of TV these classic computers were designed for!

A large CRT wasn’t commonplace in the 1980s, the average user either had a 14” colour portable television or, if they or more likely their parents were better off financially, a 14” CRT-based monitor. Your correspondent has tested all of the C64CD releases on displays of that size but prefers to use emulated screen grabs for the blog itself because the quality of the picture tends to be far more clear.

The version number 2.0 is nothing to do with Commodore BASIC V2, but refers to version numbers within MSX BASIC, where even V1.0 is Microsoft BASIC V4.5, which is roughly SIX YEARS ahead of the BASIC that evil miser Jack Tramiel bought with a perpetual licence from Microsoft in 1977! Bill Gates of Microsoft had no idea in his worst nightmares that Jack Tramiel was going to reuse it six years later.

This is a false assumption because Bill Gates isn’t exactly an idiot; he presumably understood at the time what a “perpetual” license would entail, so the idea that he’d be surprised by what Commodore did with said license is a truly ridiculous one.

Bill Gates has been criticised, but IMHO he’s a saint compared to Jack Tramiel.

This is just irrelevant opinion, tainted by personal bias.

The whole point of this is mainly self explanatory to get people to look and learn, rather than just explain how people would have learnt to program it, while you just sit back in your chair or sofa reading it. No Github repository needed here, either. Read the program thoroughly and type it in!

And yet the program as source code in a repository would have been far easier to read thoroughly whilst sat on the sofa. Your correspondent is guessing here dear reader, but assumes that the author hasn’t provided his program in a downloadable form or offered a repository because he simply isn’t technically adept enough to transfer his program for those purposes.

Can we also pause to realise that, during the time the author spent producing one BASIC program he’s still not completed, your correspondent has written and published five in assembly language.

Unfortunately, this program has a bug, which would be a good exercise for you to try and spot, then work out how to rewrite it.

So the program that the author expects people to learn from contains errors! And this provides what kind of service to the reader exactly…?

So, there you go! Who needs “Shoot ‘Em Up Construction Kit”, Gary Kitchen’s “Gamemaker”, “Turbo BASIC”, “Simons’ BASIC” or anything like that trying to fix the mess that Jack Tramiel made?

Presumably the author erroneously feels that he’s emphasising a point here, but nobody actually needed these tools on the C64 either and there are significant numbers of programs including games and indeed demos written with BASIC V2. We’ve discussed the author’s woeful lack of research on several occasions dear reader, this is just another example.

And, since his program is both incomplete and buggy, we have to wonder if he perhaps would have been better off using one of those programs himself?

This blog has no means of funding, I’m actually quite skint or broke, and my life is in danger from eviction by a property speculator, probably taking place in January 2016. If you’d like to make a donation, please send me an email on [email deleted] , then I’ll tell you how to do that.

Because badly written, poorly researched and bile-laden rants about a thirty-something year old home computer’s BASIC really deserve your hard-earnt money, don’t they dear reader? Your correspondent puts in significantly more time and effort for this blog and indeed the programs released alongside it but wouldn’t dare to ask for donations in such a ridiculously brazen fashion… although with that said, if anyone wants a bespoke crack intro or similar written at very reasonable rates, please get in touch to discuss terms![1]

Your correspondent has removed the author’s email address from the quoted paragraph above merely because he knows that WordPress blogs are regularly “crawled” by spambots searching for fresh addresses to deluge with adverts for assorted highly dubious products; the author may be happy to expose himself to said detrius, but your correspondent prefers not to increase the chances of that happening.

[1] This is only a joke in the sense that your correspondent wouldn’t actually expect any money… small intros are enjoyable to write, so most excuses to do so are quite welcome.

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