Monday, 7 June 2021

Pac-Rat: 10-Liner Game for Game Jam 2021

I have another game for the ASCII Basic 10Liner programming Jam. It's also inspired by the APF Imagination Machine. Since that early 8-bit computer/game system it shares the same video chip as the MC-10 (and the Coco and Dragon), it is a good place to look for inspiration for game ideas.  The original was a two player game, with each player using their paddles to steer their "rat" through a maze to get to the cheese first.  I thought it might be possible to get a very concise AI to play against.  But the 72 character line limit was just a wee bit too confining to get that in along with the maze and human player with movement.  In the end I settled for a simple game of collecting cheeses as quickly as possible.  They only stay in place a brief time, so you have to plan the quickest and most efficient routes to get to them before they disappear.  You get 30 cheeses, so that's your highest possible score.

The following is a video of the APF game.  It's a little slower in its movement.  It didn't take as much back in the 70s to impress.  The playing board is just made up of solid color characters from the character set above 128.

The game can be played from my website.  Just select the "PACRAT" from the cassette menu.  Then type RUN and hit <Enter>

The source can be viewed here:

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