The Let's Play Archive

Compute!'s Gazette

by Chokes McGee

Thanks! We like it too.Why not check out some similar LPs from our recommendations?
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Original Thread: LP Construction Set: Let's "Play" COMPUTE!'s Gazette!

If you liked this LP, you might also like Shin Megami Tensei II by Luisfe, Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Summoner by PeaceDiner and The Banner Saga by ProfessorProf

Introduction

Let's All Type Shit In from COMPUTE!'S GAZETTE



Hi, everybody! We're going to do something a little different this time. This'll be an experimental thread that will either be hilariously successful or a colossal failure. Either way, ITT we're going to type video games from a magazine directly into a C64 (emulator) and do a one-post Let's Play about them.


FAQ

Q: What is a COMPUTE!'S GAZETTE and why is this thread here?

A: Look upon this tome, for many a programmer was born from its dark secrets:





Compute!'s Gazette was the magazine if you were a computer nerd in the 80s. It was a C64 hobbyist rag and, IMHO, the greatest single magazine ever published in the United States. Besides the hilarious ads and neckbeard letters to the editor, there's some surprisingly deep cuts on various bits and bytes of the Commodore 64 and friends. Besides that, it included full source code of various programs! Looking back 30 years later, I didn't realize as a kid how big of a deal some of these actually were. There's an entire assembly language shim in one of these. That is as far as C64 programming goes, because most of the complicated stuff involved putting data A into address B and gods help you if you didn't have a manual to tell you where those were. Using assembly sped the process up tremendously. Plus, it made you feel like a badass.

But we don't care about any of that. We're here for the video games.


Q: Wait, it had video games?

A: Yes! You could get them straight out of a print magazine and into your computer! They took hours to type in! You needed special tools to make sure you didn't fat-finger something! They were often terribly disappointing! The games, not the fingers.


Q: Why would we do this to ourselves, why

A: The C64 has always held a special place in my heart. It was a hodgepodge of chips, code, features, and limitations that behaved like it was put together by a RNG. Some of the most creative, insane, and just plain weird games were made for this thing by actual big-name software houses—and one day, we'll visit some of them. That day is not today, however. What we have in our future are oil-stealing aliens, a bagboy who is totally not a bartender stop asking, a guy in a zoot suit collecting apples, and lots and lots and lots of hex.

It's incredibly interesting (to me) to see some of the BASIC programs behind the scenes---although most of the good stuff is in machine language. Plus, you never know what the fuck you're going to find in there. And not just in the source code, either! Some of the ads between articles were not only strange to start with but are also drop dead hilarious in modern context.


Q: Sure, why not. How do I get started?

A: Click here for a crash course to get you up and running. The C64 isn't exactly a friendly environment to come into cold, but you shouldn't need to know more than a handful of commands to play along.

Beyond that, you'll need two different programs provided by Compute!'s: the Automatic Proofreader (for BASIC programs) and MLX (for machine language programs). Fortunately for you, I'm providing a D64 disk image with these programs in the next section. I mean, if you really want to, you can type them in yourselves. I won't stop you. They're in just about every issue.


Q: Soooo. What do we do after they're typed in?

A: Run them, play them a bit, and then question this and every other life decision you've made.

After that, write up a one-post Let's Play on the software and post it to this thread. The following format is suggested:




It's okay if we have multiple people reviewing the same games! I mean you may feel kind of dumb typing in something someone else already did, but besides that, it isn't first come first serve. Also, don't be weird and post multiple times with long spergy paragraphs about a dumb little 5 minute game. That's weird. Don't be weird.

I'll collect the LPs I think are particularly good (my own are included by default ) and link them back to them here. If all goes well, I'll ask Baldurk to archive the thread after we have a good collection and/or interest finally dies down. If it doesn't work, this will become thread wherein we all laugh at Chokes' failure. actually that's every thread


Read up on the next section, and then get to it!




(Grab the latest GOON!'s Gazette disk image from here here to check out the games reviewed ITT)

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