Submitted by Dan Dooré on Tuesday, May 22, 2018 - 14:13.
|James R Curry
|Speccy Discs, Show Report, Oh No! More Lemmings Codes
|Fred Views, Problems Solved, 3 Reviews
|The Best Mines Game On Any Computer
|Highly Addictive Games Master Game
|Convert your The Sound Machine tunes to E-Tracker
|Music Written On E-Tracker Silkworm, One Step, China Dudeludium, Just Another Day
|Converted Amiga Modules
|James R Curry
|Save The Planet (Again)
|Ha Ha Ha Ha (Ouch) Ha Ha
|Beautifully Animated Hang Man Game
|Terry Ekins Steven Ekins
|Tells You What The Problem Is
|M/C Screen Clearer
CA Hi What an amazing Easter holiday I'm having. It's been blistering sunshine almost every day so far, I've spent hours playing 'Stunt Car Racer 2000' for my Archimedes, I've driven over 400 miles (OK, maybe that's not really enjoyable) through Welsh country roads (Yes, you're right, not enjoyable) and I've wound Colin Macdonald up. Ah, joy. Want to know more about my little wind up, eh? Well, it wasn't so much a wind up, more of an early morning phone call - the day after CM's 21st birthday. Ho ho. He was a little (!) tired. Normally, he answers the phone and will say, "Hello. FRED Publishing", but this time he said, "ferrrrd", much to my amusement. Quite generously though, I let him go back to bed. Not only is this Easter going really well, but I'm still looking forward to the SAM and Speccy show in about 10 days. The show should finish before this does, so a report should follow. Did I forget to mention the masses of chocolate??? CA CA CA CA CA CA CA CA CA CA CA CA CA CA CA CA CA CA CA CA CA As you can probably tell from the title (if you can call it that), I'm quite pleased this month. Those of you who thought, "Oh no, here comes page 2. Time for Colin to have his monthly moan." will be surprised to hear that I'm not going to moan. Instead, I'm going to pay a compliment (ooh). So, a massive, yes, a MASSIVE thank you goes out to everyone who has sent/given me programs in the last month. FRED is supposed to be starting its regular lack-of-contributions time of the year, but instead, I've got lots of excellent programs. In fact, this month, I had to decide what to put on the menu and what to leave for a month (or two - imagine that!). That's why there's a mix of games/utilities on this issue and also why there'll definitely be a beautiful issue as well next month. I've held back a brilliant game, look out for it on June 16th. Anyway, please keep them coming. As well as main menu masterpieces, I'm in need of some e-tunes and lots of bits and bobs items. Oh, and some articles. Cheers. CA News Well, the big news this issue is that the show was a big success, but you'll find that out in a few pages. SAM C sold well and we've already been having dozens of compliments about it. FRED has also almost sold out of SAM gold ASICs. There are 2 left for sale, and if you are interested, get in touch with Colin and make him an offer. There's lots of information on them in issue 50, but I will say that I saw one at the show, and they look very impressive. If anyone's buying/bought a new house, it's the ideal thing to have on the wall above the fireplace. I'd get one for my new home, except no-one will propose to me (sob). Onto slightly sadder news, Commodore have been bought out by S- com (a German company) for £12 million, so we should expect to see more Amigas and things back on the shelves in the near future. How happy I am (sarcasm, sarcasm). CA News Been a while since FRED released a game, hasn't it? Yes, we admit it. However, there are a couple more in the making, but to pass the time by, FRED are now releasing four fabulous discs of Spectrum classics. Converted to work on the SAM Coupe, each disc has fourteen (14) Spectrum games, a superb menu system and every game is supplied with thorough instructions. The titles of the four discs are: Disc 1) THOSE PESKY KIDS Disc 2) SAVING THE WORLD...AGAIN Disc 3) JUST DOING MY JOB Disc 4) SUPER HEROS Each title says what the disc contains. For example, 'THOSE PESKY KIDS' contains games such as "Skool Daze", "Jack the Nipper", etc.. Royalties are being paid for some of the games, so each disc will be priced at £5.00. They are all excellent value for money, and more should follow... CA News Incase no-one knew, ZAT (pronounced Z-80) has closed down because the editor, Darren Blackburn felt he couldn't compete with my red hot pace. No, not really. He's actually had to cut down on his SAM work due to a full-time job, which meant stopping ZAT. Currently, David Ledbury is in negotiations with Matt Beale (has anyone heard of any of these, by the way?) for a Z2 (Z squared). If this goes ahead, it should be about 3 months. Z squared, it has been decided, will follow the Spectrum only. Anyone with a subscription, or enquiry about ZAT should get in touch with Darren Blackburn, but enquiries about Z2 to Dave Ledbury. The two sound systems, Quasar and SAMDac have been finished and orders are now being taken for them both. For more details see the show report, but Quasar is £61-99 with the Quasar studio software being £15-99 and they are available from Colin Piggot - see last issue (item H). CA News SAMDac is a built and cased EDDAC and is priced at £25. This includes postage, packaging, software and a 2 month guarantee. They should be made and delivered in 2 weeks. Send only cash to the following address: INNER [redacted] And finally, an old lady in Shropshire has a cat who can sing the National Anthem. Goodnight. CJA Lemmings Codes Please put your hands together, ladies and gentlemen, for installment two of Lemmings codes. And presenting first, Mr Wild. WILD ====== Level Name Code 01 PoP YoR ToP!!! XDWLINJG 02 Lemming Hotel WEUMHNKF 03 Lemming Rhythms ZEVMHNMF 04 Meeting Adjourned YEWMHNKF 05 Lemming Head TEXLHNUF 06 Just A Quicky SEZLHNRG 07 You Take the High Road VDSLINLM 08 It's a tight fit! UHTPENJC 09 Ice Station Lemming PHONFMJG 10 Higgledy Piggledy OHRMFMVC CA Lemmings Codes 11 Mutiny On The Bounty RHXMFMSL 12 SNOW JOKE QHAMFMOJ 13 ONWARD AND UPWARD LEMMGMHA 14 ICE SPY KEOLGMUD 15 THE SILENCE OF THE LEMMINGS NEQLGMVG 16 Take care, Sweetie MEULGMQL 17 The Chain with no name XFPLHMQJ 18 Dr Lemminggood WFRLHMNK 19 Lemmingdelica ZFSLHMPI 20 Got anything....Lemmingy??? YETMGMNG WICKED ======== Level Name Code 01 LeMing ToMato KetchUp fAcilitY TCAJIMRG 02 Introducing SUPERLEMMING SESMGMIP 03 This Corrosion VCUKIMJC CA Lemmings Codes 04 Oh No! It's the 4TH DIMENSION! UCVKIMHA 05 Chill out! PBRIEHWD 06 PoP TiL YoU DrOp! OFYUIHOJ 07 Last Lemming To Lemmingcentral RCNWHHMF 08 A TOWERING PROBLEM QBSIEHWB 09 How on Earth? LBWIEHNK 10 Temple of Love KFTUIHPI 11 ROCKY ROAD NDNXGHIB 12 Suicidal Tendencies MDZWGHLM 13 Almost Nearly Virtual Reality XCMWHHTM 14 The Lemming Learning Curve WCOWHHQP 15 SPAM,SPAM,SPAM,EGG AND LEMMING ZFLVIHWP 16 Five Alive YFNVIHTM 17 Down the tube TELUJHQJ 18 LoTs moRe wHeRe TheY caMe fRom SFXUIHTE 19 Up, Down or Round and Round VFMVIHRK 20 The Lemming Funhouse UCAVHHSF Want to know the codes for Havoc? Then buy FRED 58 - June 16. CA Cheats! As we're all in the cheating at games spirit, here's a cheat for Sphera courtesy of A Francis. 1) Load game 2) Remove the disk from the drive 3) Start the game 4) When the error screen appears, hold down ESC,7,8,9 and 0 (The screen should turn blue) 5) Insert the disk again and press RETURN You will now be completely invincible from everything but the level bosses, and you can't shoot anything either unfortunately. I AN AP? D E Y O H G ON E G H O. 'T S AP. HO CA IT'S THE SAM AND SPECCY SHOW!!! You know that feeling when you book a bed and breakfast for a night, get all your stuff sorted out ready for a computer show, then your lift says he can't make it? Irritating, isn't it? Naturally, this happened to me. So, on Saturday morning, the radio came on at 5:30 am and after all the swearing, a quick wash and a piece of toast, Peter and I set off on a 6 mile walk to the nearest bus stop. The only thing that could raise my morale was the thought that Colin Macdonald had already been up for 3 hours. Eventually we boarded the 3rd bus (from Gloucester to Quedgeley) and Stefan Drissen and his friends got on. Although I seemed to recognise Robert Van Der Veeke, I didn't have the courage to ask, so sat in silence. You have to remember that the last time Colin Macdonald and I met, I was a little known, shy 16 year old and although we spoke, I don't think he knew who I was. As I walked in, I CA SAM AND SPECCY SHOW!!! recognised him on the door and walked straight past while Colin had the "Christ, who's that? I know him." look on his face. I walked past, we smiled, and I went and stood behind the FRED stand with my knitted FRED jumper. About FIVE MINUTES later, Colin noticed me and guessed who I was. Half an hour later, Bob Brenchley, the organiser from Format, told all the visitors to form a queue outside. Just before the opening, Colin M walked off to a quiet room and re-entered.... ...wearing a kilt! To a huge round of applause, and the start of many a joke, Colin strolled to the FRED stand as the first bunch of SAM and Spectrum owners came in. A day at a show goes really quickly. It was perfect for my inflated ego, as people were coming to meet me. Indeed there was only about 30 minutes free for me to have a wander round. So, who was there? What was on offer? CA SAM AND SPECCY SHOW!!! Being completely biased, I'll start with FRED. SAM C at last reared its head as promised and seemed to go down very well. When asked difficult questions about C, I cleverly waffled away while passing them over to Colin Macdonald for the actual answer. Also on show was the usual FRED software collection and although none of them excelled in sales, a few of each were bought. Thanks to the people who gave me a FRED menu. Unfortunately, I got 3 issue 58 menus and an issue 56 menu. Hmm. Don't worry, I'll use them all, I just don't know when. I'm sure I can cleverly change a number. Moving round in an anticlockwise manner, the Format stand was next. There were some eyecatching things at this stand, I can tell you. The most popular game seemed to be TnT, but there was a huge and varied collection of everything Format and Revelation sell, along with some 6.5FdX 479i leads (or something similar). And of course, a few brand new SAMs. CA SAM AND SPECCY SHOW!!! Next along was Nev's new, wait for it, hard drive!!! It's still in production at the moment, but looks very promising. There are some simple read and write commands written for it, so he was able to give us all a few demonstrations (loading screens, etc..). It has the capacity to store 6 gigabytes of data, but I don't think he'll be making it quite that big! So, the SAM should be seeing a hard drive in a few months. We'll have some proper information when it gets closer to being released. However, another hard drive is also being worked on by a Mr Simon Cooke, the guy who wrote this text reader many many years ago. He is promising to write a couple of new things for FRED, but he's got umpteen things on the go. Anyway, his drive is slightly further behind in production than Nev's at the moment, but looks to have the same sort of capacity and quality. The race is well and truly on to finish first! Excited? My next stop was the cafeteria bit where a cup of coffee and a CA SAM AND SPECCY SHOW!!! very short hello to Bob's wife (sorry, I don't know your name - I'm not being sexist) was all I managed. A very nice cuppa though, highly recommended. Next, I did my bit of exercise and walked up some steps onto the stage. Up here, Jupiter grabbed me and after a few hellos and 'God-you-look-wierd-compared-to-what-I-thought's, I was shown some of their software. Amalthea, a shoot-em-up type of game looks the most impressive, even without Quasar support. I look forward to a review copy (hint, hint). After pulling myself off the computers I got round to the Quasar demonstrations. Colin Piggot was there looking incredibly smart in a suit and impressing everyone who came near him with the quality of Quasar sound. I even got to hear last months MOD played in its full glory. Aaah. Next stop was a brief hello to Michael Stocks and his dad, but I didn't get to chat to him much because he was too busy and Wayne CA SAM AND SPECCY SHOW Coles was trying to show me his hundreds of projects that he's doing - I look forward to seeing the Bomberman and Zelda games. Keep me up to date. After leaping off the stage, it was a quiet browse through the Spectrum stuff before being hugely impressed (again) with SC_Word Pro from Steve's Software. He had 24 pin printouts as examples of what it can do, and I think even the least impressable SAM owners were impressed (I can't think of another word). There should be a review from me next month. Further along, I had a friendly chat with the lady who was flogging disks for 20p each. They came with a guarantee, so I bought 25. Excellent value for money, and no problems yet! Through the back was Derek 'broken his leg' Morgan. My taking the mick didn't cheer him up, but never mind. He seems to have a really big collection of PD, including a screens disc entitled 'Almost Blue'. I wonder if he'll send me a review copy one day CA SAM AND SPECCY SHOW!!! as a joke to see if I review it. That wasn't a hint Derek, honestly! I know, I'm sad. Finally, for the millionth time, Stefan Drissen came up to me and tried selling me a copy of his new MOD player or a SAMdac. I'm getting the MOD player, so I'll review that one day. Quite a loyal SAM owner, is our Stefan. Those of you who thought that it was too far to come from London should know that Stefan came from the Netherlands just for one day! He did make me walk round looking for a tape recorder for an interview (which should be done for next month). Then it was back to the FRED stand to chat to more people who I should have known. Tim Paveley hung about and we had a good old natter. Lee Willis turned up later and depressed me with his sense of humour and Whigfield e-tunes. Only joking, Lee, you've got a great sense of humour. The e-tunes were a bit sad though. I met hundreds of other people, and here are some of the hellos. CA The hellos... Colin Macdonald - It's a lovely kilt Colin. Gav (CM's mate) - What was that whisky called again? Lee Willis - When Colin gets that last photo developed... Tim Paveley - I've worked out what ...@/ means now! Graham Goring - I wasn't avoiding you, really. David Brant - Good name for a house. Stefan Drissen - I'll get that tape to you as soon as possible Michael Stocks - Say hi to your Dad, too. Stewart Skardon - I'd have chatted for longer, but I couldn't. Bob Brenchley - Tidy that office NOW. Simon Cooke - I want everything you're making. Hurry up! Dave Ledbury - How are you today? (snigger) Colin Piggot - Lovely suit. Steven Pick - Did I chat to you? I've forgotten. James Curry - Not bad, not bad. Matt Round - Talented b*****d!!! Where was Retros? Craig Turberfield- The man himself! (swoon) Jenny thingumy - I'll pass on the compliments to my Gran Christina - (phew) CA H E L L O Wayne Coles - Joystick Power should have an 18 certificate! Mark Sturdy - Don't use that photo of me picking my ear. Andrew Collier - Looking forward to that demo... David Zambonini - Ditto. Derek Morgan - Chicken! Ekins (X2) - Yes, I admit, I'm impressed. Peter Moore - Have you calmed down now? Diggory Gray - Where did you get to? Matthew Beaman - I'll use your menu, I just don't know when. Luke Falla - I've already forgotten who you were, sorry. RJV - I thought I recognised you on the bus. Nev Young - That drive is looking good. Dave Handley - Umm. Hello. Sorry if I've missed someone out - I met so many people that day that I've been having problems remembering even the ones I talked to for hours. Hi to everyone else at the show and thanks for taking the time to introduce yourself and have a chat. CA SAM SHOW At 5:30, the hall began to empty, and a quick photo session later, everyone packed up, counting their money. About 10 or 12 of us went to the pub afterwards for a farewell drink. Stefan talked non-stop about Sophistry and his other programs, and quite a few people took the piss, but in a nice friendly sort of a way (we all love each other). By the way, Colin Macdonald did wear his kilt to the pub. Everyone headed off and Colin, Gav and I headed to Gloucester to the bed and breakfast. I won't tell you about that night in Gloucester, because it'll bore you. You don't want to know what Colin got up to in the middle of a pub which made him the centre of attention. Besides, this is a family magazine. See you all in six months... SAM PD UPDATE : APRIL 95 ------------------------ SOLAR FLARE. by Stefan Drissen, £1.50 SOLAR FLARE ICE DEMO. DITHERER, Digitise screen enhancer program. RENDEZVOUS, LYRA II, SILLY DEMO and LIVING S**T DEMOS (spectrum 128K converts with excellent music). E-TRACKER, player and tunes. LARRY and WINDOWS DEMOS. Original MOD player with tunes. EASYDISC, Version 4.9, by Darren Wileman. £1.50 Easydisc is a menu driven disk organiser program, with printer option. The program also displays disk information and is very user friendly. Easydisc is Driver compatible. The disk also contains a Driver compatable screen slideshow. Easydisk requires Masterdos to work. Darren Wileman is an up and coming young programmer and he has released his first program 'Easydisc' as public domain. A few words from Darren about his program. Over the last three years since I got a +D disc system, I have tried writing several file handling programs. Until now, I wasn't happy with the ones I had written, and the commercially available ones were way out of my price range. To be completely honest, I've started programs and never finished them. I lost interest with them and gave up. This is why this program is so special to me. It is probably the first thing I've ever finished and, it is a program that I now find myself using again and again, and I hope you use it as much as I do. Darren has also been working hard on his second disk. DRIVER ICONS. by Darren Wileman. £1.50 If you are a DRIVER user, then this disk is for you. This disk contains 38 ready made DRIVER icons. Everything from a Video to a Doggy, and not forgetting the kitchen Kettle. By kind permission of REVELATION SOFTWARE the disk also contains the twenty seven original icons from the DRIVER disk, so that all your DRIVER icons can be found on one disk. DRIVER and the twenty seven original DRIVER icons are copyright of REVELATION SOFTWARE. SAM RAG MAG. by John Conner, £1.50 (ADULTS ONLY) Laugh along with the Sam Rag mag. This disk is full of jokes and story's (net files) of a some what dubious nature. A Screen slideshow of jokes is also included. Just what you would expect from a rag. KASPA PD, £1.50 A very nice collection of games and programs, from the five issues of the Kaspa club disk magazine. The disk also contains some screens of SAMCOM 94, the Kaspa club and an insight to some of its members. This disk contains english text. PAW CONVERTER by Martijn Groen. £1.50 The Professional Adventure Writing system can now be converted to full SAMDOS compatibilty. The original PAW, version A17C, on disk or tape is needed. DJ0HF AMATEUR RADIO SUITE, by Ian Spencer. This is a program for the SAM designed to work in various digital communication modes such as RTTY,CW,SSTV and FAX. The program has been updated to control an external TNC. To use the 'Multimode' program it is necessary to have a SAM running MASTERDOS with a minimum of 256KB, 1 disk drive and the SAMBUS. Sambus is necessary to provide the timing signals needed by the decoding software. No other external hardware is needed to decode the signal from your amateur radio receiver. A shareware version is available from us at £1.50 or £5.00 for the registered version. MOD PLAYER & PC MODS. £1.50, by S.DRISSEN & M. O'CONNELL Stefan Drissen's excellent MOD Player with twelve converted PC MOD's, Every breath you take, Enola Gay, Enola Gay2, 007 theme, Take my breath away, Fairlight, Music2, Music4, Imaginary Woman, Starwars remix and Nightclub theme. MORE MODS. £1.00, by Martin O'Connell. Another fifteen converted PC MOD's, Tarzan, Cartoon, Madonna, T2, Benny Hill, Country, Kindergarden, Only in my Deames, Airwolf, Teaspoon Woman, Airwolf2, Dallas, Lambada, Axelf and Canbodia (Go for it). This disk needs the MOD player. NATURE SCENES, by Jack bailey. £1.50 This excellent disk of nature scenes has now been updated and the disk now contains 40 scenes, which look like they have been painted with water colours. MIDI, by P.J.Williamson. £1.50 This programs has also been updated, with improvements to entering notes and the Piano programs memory has been doubled to make 32K available for note pitch data. MOUSE DRIVER. by Steve Taylor. £1.50 This utility program has now been improved with some new commands. All information is included on the disk. Return your old disk and a SAE for an update. NEW SOFTWARE - F9 SOFTWARE (SAM PD) APRIL 1995 ---------------------------------------------- SAFARI SAM. METROPLIS SOFTWARE, £5.50 A excellent new game from Martin Fitzpatrick. Fight you way though three levels of multiple jungle screens, in an effort to esape from the jungle. The program contains Help pages, Story and sound track. Option menu, where you can control difficulty, sound ect. BOGGLE BUBBLE. £5.50 This mind blowing game has amazing graphix - move the pink bubble thru more then 25 levels and collect all bombs, which have been put on your planet by disgasting and violent creatures. BOGGLE BUBBLE is the first of many games and utilities from the CZECH REPUBLIC. The controls are in English and Keys are definable, but the story is in CZECH. COMMING SOON. Listed below is are more programs from CZECH programmers that will become available after the instructions have been translated. ANCIENT FIGHTERS; the dungeon game converted from Spectrum. You move three warriors - Titus, Marcus and Aulus thru a dungeon of Roma. Their task is to meet in the maze, kill the satan's creatures and together defeat the empire of bad. Price: £2,50 TETRIS III; a game converted from Spectrum also. It's like a clasic Tetris, except some differents - playing screen is a lot wider and you don't move a brick, but a fly. It catches a brick, rotates it and throw it down. In some levels you become a fish and bricks goes up thru a water. When you play two players game the both flies/fish appear in the same playing window. Price: £2,50 KAPSA EMULATOR; the Speccy emulator with a lot of possibilities. You can use Snap or convert it by the ussualy way. The Snap is probably more comfortable - but it takes you more of space at disc or memory. K.E.'s rom uses each key of Sam's keyboard and help screen of Speccy's keyboard. In K.E. are three builded-in monitors (Z80-list, Vast and Wlezley - good for wieving of graphics) with a possibility to use a tracing of MC. If you buy it, you will gain Ancient Fighters and Tetris III free of charge. Price: £8,50 EDI-PRO; the real excelent and probably the best text editor for Sam - full WYSIWYG system, proporcional print, possibility to use more fonts at one line and 15 fonts from palette of 42 in one text, pull down menu system, integrated font editor, import from Tasword and D-text, prints with Epson and compatible, uses block operation and Samco mouse (not needed), searching and substituing of text chains, uses redefinable screensaver (with music), works also on 256kB Sam with Samdos 2.0, works with two texts at one moment, uses a ruler, switches insert or overwrite, defining of macros, 32 of math and other symbols, redefinable autosave, use of styles and other. A must for each Sam user. The upgrades versions will be sended to every legal owner. Price: £l3,50 ARCHIEVING PROGRAMMS; the disk with the usefull archieving programms - each of them is having some other use. Here follows they - Screen compressor, MC Data compressor and Disc compressor - the excelent Archieving programm - archieves selected files to 50%. Decrunching runs automatically and fast after the load. Price: £8,50 CA Disc Contents As I explained earlier, I had the strange task this month of making important decisions. Anyway, I've left a couple of good things back until next month as well as sticking some real crackers on this month. Firstly, we welcome back Andrew Collier. It was a few months ago that we last saw him, but since then he's been hard at work on this program - and what a program it is! "I'm sick of mines games" you'll be thinking, but take a good look at this - I can honestly say it's the best version I've seen. There are options that I've never seen before including a decreasing number of bombs as time goes on and a quick option where you can click on a number and if every square around it should be bombs or blanks, it will reveal them all. Add to this some quality sampled speech (or music if you desire), different sized boards and blocks, a very smooth and professional windows system and a comprehensive help page, and you've got a stunning game. 10 out of 10 Andrew. CA Disc Contents In slot E we have another excellent game - this one by Tim Paveley. To show off his all round talent, this one is written using Gamesmaster and everyone who played it at the show agreed it was really playable and addictive. Indeed, we couldn't get to the SAM for 15 minutes. The idea is to move your ball up and down, rebounding off any walls, and banging into the, er, I don't know what they are. They're colourful though! Avoid the skull things and you'll be fine. Hit them and it's Game Over. There's a test route for you to get used to the map layout. Thanks Tim. Slot F is a utility from musician Peter Moore. For anyone who still has their old Sound Machine masterpieces lying around, they can now convert them across to E-tracker and touch them up to make them even better, then send them to FRED! It takes a couple of minutes to convert, but there's a handy percentage indicator. Be sure to include the .MSC thingumy at the end of the name of the tune you're converting. CA Disc Contents SIL5+ is a demo from SAM C programmer, Marian Krivos. It's a simple little line thing, but almost every key on the SAM allows you to alter it's path. It has some 128K music playing, and is a nice demo for those of you who were beginning to miss this sort of thing. Anonimity has at last returned to us for a month at least. Continue the sagas in these humorous sci-fi stories. Cheers, anon. Our last little game this month comes from James Curry. It's a shoot-em-up (we couldn't go without one!) set on a planet surface. It's a very fast and smooth game, and no doubt you'll have endless fun dieing. In bits and bobs, we have a piece of beautiful animation from no other than Graham 'Anonimation' Goring. It's tied up in a simple hangman game, but is beautiful to look at and I love it. CA Disc Contents Next is a useful utility from Jupiter Software. In SCADs, when an error occurs, you're only told the number and it's back to the manual to look it up. This way you are told what the error is. Very useful, thanks Jupiter. Lastly is a nice little screen clearer routine written by Andrew Chandler. I don't think it's been used before, but it's his first m/c routine, so let's humour him! Thanks Andrew. And finally, you may have noticed that this months menu was written in SAM C!!! Just ONE day after he bought SAM C, James Curry whipped up this simple routine, and here it is, on FRED. Shows you how simple C is to learn, yet how impressive the results can be, even after one day! CA You're all just too good to us... Editor : COLIN 'Should be revising' ANDERTON Manager : COLIN 'Kilt' MACDONALD Thanks go out to : Andrew Collier Peter Moore Andrew Hodgekinson Tim Paveley Marian Krivos Jupiter (Ekins) Derek Morgan Anonimity Smith Andrew Chandler Dave Marriot Stefan Drissen Phil Glover Frank Harrop James Curry Graham Goring FRED magazine is available from : [redacted] Only £2 - but a sub is better!
Letters & Reviews
Letter From Dave Marriot Dear Fred; Feedback on your questions in FRED 56 Editorial. Yes, a new text reader would be nice, although the current one isn't too bad. As well as all the colour options, I'd like to see an option to load one's own choice of font. I was going to make the inspired suggestion that the joystick could be used to turn pages, so that lazy pigs like me don't have to exert themselves by leaning forward to press a key; then I found that the current version already supports this! The Editorials, subject matter, humour, etc. are good, very much in the same vein as Brian McConnell, which I think would be what most readers wanted; this sort of style has served Fred well, and strikes the right chord (or some such metaphor). Even the grammar and spelling are up to scratch! [Naturally! - CA] As for Disc Contents, how about a one-page summary for reference, giving the name, type (demo, game, etc), and a brief Letter From Dave Marriot description or any vital info on control keys or requirements (MasterBasic, Mouse, etc)? The contents of the disc (as opposed to "Disc Contents" above), I generally like, although I'm not keen on having too many demos in one issue; individually they look great, but too many of them and they detract from each other and reduce their effectiveness. The on-body printing is very welcome; you can go through back issues and see at a glance what's on each disc, without having to load it up; and the price is okay, I'm not too bothered about how or indeed whether contributions are paid for; obviously, with beer at over £1.60 a pint any cash is welcome, but I think for many of us the satisfaction of writing something deemed worthy of publication is reward enough. On to Darren Martin's query in Fred 56 about protecting data in RAM from being encroached upon by the Basic; I presume the code is being stored at a fixed address. The best thing to do is to Letter From Dave Marriot set a variable at the start of the program (but after any CLEAR) to RAMTOP + 1, and store and access the data relative to this variable rather than a hard-coded address. This will ensure that the data is held just out of reach of Basic. This alone is not foolproof, though; the system as a whole doesn't know you're using that area of memory, and if you open enough screens, for instance, your data will get overwritten by screen display buffers. To fully protect an area of RAM, use an OPEN TO command to give you enough memory for the maximum expected size of the Basic area plus data, and a CLEAR command to set the limit of the Basic area - then set your variable to RAMTOP + 1 as above. The area between this and the OPEN TO address will be secure; Basic can't reach it as it's beyond RAMTOP, and the system won't touch it because it thinks Basic has got it. Right - that'll do for now; I'll post this and then carry on sitting by the letterbox waiting for my 'C' Compiler... Dave Marriott CA Reply to Dave Marriot Thanks for the speedy reply to my plea. I probably won't include all the comments I get, but I will tell everyone what the general feeling seems to be incase some people who disagree want to voice a late opinion. I'll also quote any good ideas someone comes up with. Excuse me for not replying to your comments yet, but it's best if I do it all next month. Actually, there's not an awful lot to reply to. You've just been helpful all the way through. No going off the point or anything. Darn. Although I can tell you that I've found that if you're camping by the door, it's helpful to have a flask of hot coffee, a magazine and a coushin to stop your backside from going numb. Also, don't sit too close to the letterbox because paper boys tend to throw papers through the letterbox, which could result in a nasty paper cut. Is that helpful? Letter From Derek Morgan Get lost ANDO, [Hello Derek - CA] In the letter from Malcolm Dopson, he asked for infomation on how to print the '£' sign from a forn in PCG's DTP. The '£' is not defined in the fonts and he will have to set it up by loading the font into the font editor. Bootup DTP. Load "Wordmaster". Load "fontedit2" and Load the font that you want the pound sign in. Get Fontedit2. Get the Font. Skip along with 'R' and 'T' until you get the '£' sign and the little box will show a '#'. Press EDIT to grag the pound sign. skip along again to find the inverted ' sign. This is what you get when you want to print the '£' sign. It's the one next to the under score and the small a and not the one that's next to the anfersand and the first bracket. Press 's' to store the new character and ESC leave the font editor. Letter From Derek Morgan Dont forget to save the new font. NOTE. The screen display will still show the inverted ' (shift seven) but a '£' sign will be printed. Now stop wasting your time reading this silly letter and get on with some work. Yours sincerely, Derek Morgan CA Reply to Derek Morgan I wasn't allowed to print the whole letter (with his kind (!) comments) because Derek threatened me with physical violence. Thanks for the bit of help anyway, Des. If anyone has any further problems, they can contact Derek at the SAM PD address. Letter From Frank Harrop Dear Colin, Many thanks for Fred issue 56, just arrived, and I think the Post Office takes a delight in attacking envelopes containing disks - my copy of issue 54 was damaged including a bent slide cover. Seems to me the safest way is to ensure that the disk is in the envelope as far away as possible from the stamp area, as I gather that the machine only looks around 2 inches from the stamp edge to print on. Anyway, although I am still browsing through the newsletter, my reason for writing is the two appeals from Malcolm Dopson on page 21 of the letters. Samprint works very well, but occasionally something in the program has a hiccup, and it starts to put a blank line in the print out. [Frank enclosed a print from a card and the first attempt had the line problem, but the second attempt was fine! - CA] I use a somewhat elderly Brother M1109 printer. Letter From Frank Harrop His second query relates to printing out a £ sign within DTP - it does work. Remember way back to the Spectrum when it used an odd ASCII number for its pound sign and most Epson printers would give you a pound sign if you entered a hash sign in Tasword etc. All you need to do is to type out a hash sign instead. [It's true - I'm looking at the print-out as I speak (type). Pound signs everywhere! - CA] Thanks for all your efforts, and hope the Gloucester show is a great success for you all. Sincerely, Frank Harrop CA Short (sorry) Reply to Frank Harrop Well, it seems that everyone has turned into helpful people this week. Could it be because 'Hearts of Gold' has re-started? Letter From Phil Glover Dear Colin, Thanks for the last issue of FRED, which seems to be in good editorial hands, and I always look forward to receiving each issue. I'm certainly coming to the SAM fair on the 29th, barring train disasters, etc. I'm sure it'll be an excellent opportunity to catch up on news and gossip. SAM has been keeping me very busy of late, especially as I've finally managed to get my SAM and Amstrad Notepad (NC 100) computer to swap text files with each other. (Shame about odd PC codes invisibly lurking into the files, although a quick bit of editing removes them.) If you hear of any other SAM user who has a Notepad, and wishes to use them together, send them my name and address and I'll try and help them out with software, wiring the cable, etc. I've spent months trying to get both computers to transfer files, and was told that my COMMS may need 'seeing to'. As I have two COMMS, I had one modified, only to find it Letter From Phil Glover still wouldn't transfer. Luckily, Cliff Jackson (who sent me some transfer programs) typed out the SAM cable wiring, which is different from the recommended NULL MODEM cable that the Notepad uses. A soldering iron and a steady hand soon sorted that out, and even the old-style COMMS will transfer files between the machines as well as the 'improved' one. As I now have a Canon BJ 200 printer, I've started trying out SC/WORD PRO. What a great utility it is! WORD PRO is ideal for getting SAM to output quality print. The one item of SAM software I'm eager to see reach completion is a hard disk, with plenty of memory. It'd be ideal for saving all the WORD_PRO fonts on to, as well as SAM PAINT utility files, SAM PAW databases, etc. If a hard disk isn't available within the next year, expect to hear that I've been killed by an avalanche of 3.5" disks, which are already towering all around me. CA Reply to Phil Glover Congratulations on getting the superior SAM linked up with that Amstrad thing. If anyone wants to do the same, write in and I'll pass you on to Phil. And because nobody this month has provided anything that I can actually reply to, I'll pick up on a point from Andrew Collier. Personal adverts - the ones that go in the adverts section are free. If I get an advert, I'll include it for 2 issues if (a) people will know what is being advertised, (b) it's SAM related and (c) you haven't called me anything nasty recently. Oh, and (d) if I haven't already filled the section up. The Lemmings advert, FRED prices and Format advert are there permanently because Lemmings (and all FRED products) are amazing, and Bob at Format slips me a fiver each month (joke). Also, I'll only stick in one advert for your program/company unless you're Matt Round and you've just written an incredible game. CA TnT - Teddy n Tamara (to use it's full name) Revelation Software : £9.99 : Programmed by Matt Round As most SAM owners will know, TnT is slightly similar to the Speccy game Bombjack, which was loved by hundreds of people, but it has to be said, wound me up on many an occasion. The aim of TnT is to collect all the smiley faces that litter the screens. This can be done by one player, or by two at the same time (a feature that Bombjack didn't possess). There are 17 levels in the game, plus 8 bonus levels. In 2 player mode, the last level can't be reached, presumably because it'd be too easy to complete otherwise. The two main characters (Teddy and Tamara) are like human fleas - they can jump about twenty times their own height. Repeatedly tapping the fire button allows them to hover slowly towards the floor. By collecting bonuses, they can gain extra abilities, which are lost when the level is completed, when the other player bangs into them or when you die. Bonuses include fly, higher jump, faster run, fire missile, points and extra life. CA TnT Review Many of the levels have backdrops, which all contain Matt Round humour. For example, a picture of Captain Kirk has the smileys in his hair with the caption, "It's hair Jim, but not as we know it!" The Roger Rabbit screen is one of the best I've ever seen on the SAM. There's a range of enemies with varying movement patterns. Just as you think ones moving away... whack. There's also a time limit which is easy to beat, but means Game Over (no matter how many lives you have left) if you don't beat it. My opinion I can say in all honesty that TnT is THE most playable game on the SAM. I know it's written in Gamesmaster, but you really can't tell. Rather stupidly, I bought it 2 days before I had to finish FRED 56. Consequently, although it was still early, FRED 56 was a few days later than planned. The graphics (done by Matt himself) are professionally done and the piece of music is CA TnT Review maybe my favourite on the SAM (I think The Witching Hour pips it at the post). As with any game, I do have a couple of quibbles. My first is that there are maybe too many bonus life levels, making it a little too easy to complete. Having said that though, it did take me quite a few goes in the end, and if I'd played a Spectrum game that much, I'd expect to complete that in a week too. Also, the fact that I was playing it again 3 hours after I'd completed it shows it doesn't lose it's playability. The only major complaint is that when you complete it you have the little completion effect and your score is displayed, but at the touch of a key, it resets. Why? Problems with re-calling Gamesmaster, probably. Apart from this, there are no other problems. As I said, it is the most playable game I've come across on the SAM. It's not as stunning a game as Prince of Persia or Lemmings, but for it's CA TnT Review price is definitely a complete bargain. And just to make the game that little bit better, Matt Round put me in the high score table! (Swoon) The Scores Playability : 99% Lastability : 91% Graphics : 84% *************** Sound : 97% * * * Award: * Overall : 93% * GOLD FREDal * * * +2% for me on the high score! : 02% *************** GRAND TOTAL : 95% (Take which score you find most appropriate) CA Review of Mega Blast Jupiter Software : £2.50 : Programmed by Steven Ekins When I saw the advert for Mega Blast, I was, as you can understand, looking forward to playing it. The advert boasts that Mega Blast is the first Bomberman clone on the SAM. Right? Wrong. Sorry, but my idea of Bomberman is where the player drops a bomb and legs it before it explodes, smashing up blocks to reveal extra length and extra bombs bonuses. Mega Blast has the same layout, but unfortunately there's not a bomb to be seen. Instead, you fire missiles into the blocks, which will reveal either a bonus, an exit or an enemy. On boot up, we are shown a screen, with the usual SAMPaint effects, just to make it look that little bit more professional. Unfortunately, when the game finishes loading, we aren't presented with a menu. We are only asked how many players we want, 1-4. A very nice touch though is if you leave the SAM for about 30 seconds. Suddenly, a demo of a game (randomly played, CA Mega Blast Review I assume) comes up. This is something I haven't seen in many games on the SAM. There are essentially two types of game. The one that will be played most is if you select either 2,3 or 4 players where you are presented with the playing area and the idea is to shoot the other players. This is done until one player has won ten games and can be very fun; the more players the better (in general). If 1 player is selected, the aim is simply to shoot the blocks and find the exit (or destroy every block). Some blocks reveal nothing, others reveal pots, exits or enemies. The enemies have random patterns, so it's best to build intricate courses to make sure they don't reach you. You have ten lives, and on my first go I got to level ten. My guess is that level ten is the last one, or it goes up to something ridiculously high (or never ends). The graphics aren't anything to get excited about, although they CA Mega Blast Review are nice and clear. The games strongest point has to be its price - £2.50. At this price, plenty of people could be tempted. However, when it comes to the crunch, I have to say I'm not too keen on this game. I was incredibly disappointed when I found out that it didn't possess the qualities that make Bomberman games so addictive and it doesn't have a professional feel to it. It really is a shame, because some of the stuff I've seen from Jupiter has been really good. The Scores Playability : 41% Lastability : 29% Graphics : 39% Sound : --% Overall : 36% CA Review of Booty Phoenix Software Systems : £5.00 : Programmed by Steven Ekins Booty is an old Spectrum classic (which I got free with my first 48K) and was infact the first game to sell over 500,000 copies. It's essentially a platform, ladders and lifts game set on a pirate ship. You are Jim the cabin boy and you've got to collect (I won't say steal) all the treasure on the boat. This is done by picking up a numbered key and opening the corresponding door in that room. Then it's just a matter of picking up the treasure. Couldn't be simpler. Well, there are a couple of obstacles in your way to make the task harder. Hordes of pirates roam the ship and one slash with their cut-throat swords, and you're dead. To make picking up treasure a harder task, random ones have bombs inside them and you have only a few seconds to escape before it explodes. Add to that the occasional giant rat, bird or disappearing platform and you can see that Jim's task isn't as easy as expected. CA Booty Review The game begins with a nice little intro which introduces the programmers (some surprisingly close resemblences on the pictures) and other people involved, including a deserved mention to John Cain, the programmer of the original (who I almost forgot about). A nice piece of Lee Willis music plays in the background as you read (probably for the last time) the introduction. Thankfully, a key press starts the game. I'm not saying the introduction's bad, it's just that you'd get bored of it after a couple of read throughs. The SAM version has greatly benefitted from the extra power. Booty is written on SCADs, but that fact is well hidden. The graphics (by Steven Pick) are brilliant (even though the pirates seem to be ice skating - lovely bird though) and the programmers have stuck to the original in terms of gameplay and feel very well. It's a great game to convert, and ideal for SCADs. It's also nice to see that there have been 10 extra rooms added as well, making 30 in all. CA Booty Review There are negative points to the game however, and are mostly the fault of SCADs. Firstly, there's no music after the intro finishes which makes the game feel a little empty. It also suffers from the occasional slow-down when there's too much on screen. Lastly, there's the odd door that's missing the top half, which surprises me as it's something you'd expect them to spot. Despite this, it's a well programmed conversion which hides the SCADs element well and should appeal to a number of people. The scores ***************** Playability : 73% * * Lastability : 67% * Award: * Graphics : 90% * BRONZE FREDal * Sound : 75% * * ***************** Overall : 74% TnT Review by Graham Goring - to prove Matt isn't paying me I have been looking forward to this game for sooo long that during my wait three American presidents have been assassinated! And was it worth the wait? Well, shockingly enough at first I thought it wasn't. I thought to myself, "Graham you berk, you've betrayed your good chum Matt Round!". Then I played the game a little longer and realised what an absolute corkstrously playable monster of a game it is! Some people may be put off by fact that it only has 17 leves (plus 8 bonus ones, which you'll need!). Well, don't. Unlike Bombjack (which in some respects it pays an uncanny resemblance to) which just had lots of levels in very much the same vien T'n'T has more variety than a 24 pack of sainsbury's crisps. (And that's without boring old ready salted). Each level brings a new challenge into play which has to have a definite strategy employed in which to beat it. It's simply quite clever. F'rinstance (and without giving away too much) some levels will see you flying, swimming and even shooting your way through the task at hand. One thing that impressed me especially is that even though on most levels there are only one or two enemies GG TnT Review they always seem to be in the right place to be a pain, and this combined with a not unfair time limit create a game which moves at a cracking pace and has an enjoyable sense of frustration about it. As with anything Matt Round has anything to do with the presentation is slicker than a seagull at the Exxon Valdees disaster, and the graphics are detailed and beautiful as ever. But, you ask, will it last me? Yes! The learning curve has been well thought out so that you get a little farther every time, and with the variety in the graphics and gameplay there is ALWAYS a good reason to see what hides round the corner of the next level. It's the sort of game which picks you up by the unmentionables and whispers "play me" in a hoarse and threatening manner in your ear. You know you have to play it, because the withdrawal symptons of an afternoon without it will be unbearable. Gosh, I'm starting to sound like the people who review cars on top gear. Damn. One other really big bonus that this game has going for it GG TnT Review (besides a faultless two player option - wooh!) is the sense of humour that prevails throughout. Shown by little touches here and there that only a real craftsman puts in his games. The way the cigerette shortens on the first level, and is a good indicator of time. The outstanding and amusing backgrounds on a lot of the levels. And a wonderfully nostalgic level that hints at other games Matt has written and that should appeal to anybody that remembers a certain green creation of Ian Slavin. So, all in all, if you've got ten quid which would otherwise be frittered away on sweets and crisps (like me) then you'd be an absolute lobotomised bladder not to send off for this game today. Playability : 91% *************** Lastability : 79% * * Graphics : 94% * Award * Sound : 88% * GOLD FREDal * * * Overall : 90% *************** CA Addresses TnT : See FRED Price list or Revelation Software, [redacted] Mega Blast : Jupiter Software, [redacted] Booty : Phoenix Software Systems, [redacted] Note: Due to changes to delivery service, please ring [redacted] before ordering. Review a game... If you own a game that was released within the last year, and you feel you have what it takes to review it, write a review (preferably on disc, but don't worry too much) and send it in. Tell us a bit about the game along with your opinion and the score. Mark it on Playability, Lastability, Graphics, Sound and Overall. Be honest with reviews (even of FRED games!), and try to stick by this sort of rating. Award(%): MEANING OF AWARD 00 - 25 : Pretty appaling; doing the SAM no justice. 26 - 50 : Passable, but should have been improved on. 51 - 70 : Not bad. Could be improved on, but above average. 71 - 80 : Pretty good. A worthwhile buy. -> BRONZE FREDAL 81 - 90 : Very good. Well worth the money. -> SILVER FREDAL 91 - 99 : Stunning. VERY impressed with results, snap it up. 100 : As if. ↑-> GOLD FREDAL You wanted more reviews, get them written.
Rachel LAST TIME... Having managed to collect (with a bump) some of the missing cows, the Cowseeker had folded space and, with the Spacerat close behind, leaped to another galaxy. There, it was piloted down onto a new world... As you may remember, Merdyl was asked by an Enterprising Alien to take part in a talent contest. To Diggy's dismay (since Merdyl was bound to win and he'd lose his Bovine Detect-O-Matic operator,) she agreed to compete. We ended last time with Merdyl about to choose to leave or stay... A long, long time ago in a galaxy far, far away there existed a planet full of Delta Omegan Peribeetles. Delta Omegan Peribeetles look just like the common black beetles found crawling around the groundsheets of tents in the camping grounds of England, Earth, except they have developed the truly remarkable feat of speech without speaking. "Bripp", "Ffft" and "Fumup" is all they are capable of saying. Body language is out too, Delta Omegan Peribeetles are amongst the top ten of the laziest creatures in existence. Since the planet they live on was polluted to the point where the rain actually became a source of perfect nourishment for the average Peribeetle, (unfortunately it was extremely toxic to the former inhabitants, which is usually the way,) which is fine since all Peribeetles are average, they don't even need to move to feed, just to absorb the rainfall through their outer membranes. Due to their permanently relaxed state, and perfect food, Peribeetles live between four hundred years, three months, two weeks, a day, seven hours, fourteen minutes and twenty-nine point five seconds, and four hundred years, three months, two weeks, a day, seven hours, fourteen minutes and twenty-nine point eight seconds. ---- Merdyl opened her mouth, about to speak, then shut it again. The Spacerat still had its breath held, which wasn't a problem since Spacerats don't breath as we do, and was only appearing to hold its breath for dramatic effect. ---- One Delta Omegan Peribeetle sat watching another Delta Omegan Peribeetle. It had been watching the other Peribeetle for three hundred years now, and had reached an amazing conclusion. Not only was it bored, but it for some reason hated the other Peribeetle. It needed to express this. But how? ---- "It's all I ever wanted," started Merdyl. "A singing career, a life amongst the stars, bringing happiness to trillions..." "And getting fabulously rich in the process," answered Diggy, drily. "Well yes..." "So you'd leave us, to find the cows without a Bovine Detect-O-Matic operator, all by ourselves, just to go and make records, jet around the galaxy, being treated like a princess and having more money than you know what to do with? How can you possibly have to make a choice? The path to take should be obvious!" It struck Diggy that there was something fundamentally wrong with his argument, but it had escaped him for the moment. "I'm sorry..." "Humph!" said Diggy, leaving. "He handled that well," said the Spacerat sarcastically. "Never mind, just think of the money you'll make." But of course, Merdyl couldn't hear it. Diggy went back inside, and found the others at the intergalactic serve-U-what-U-want-when-U-want bar. "Mooo?" said Rachel. "Mooo hoo hoo, mooo hoo hoo!" "There's no need to get emotional," said the Dark, Shadowy Figure, who knew something they didn't. "But she'll be gone! We'll never see her again, probably!" sobbed Freeda. "No she won't, she hasn't wo -" began Harold, but the Dark, Shadowy Figure stopped him by dropping him in a nearby glass of blue liquid. Harold started to dissolve, so the Dark Shadowy Figure took him out again, on the strict understanding that speech was a quick way to get another free swim. "Well, we'd better get ready to say goodbye!" said Diggy. "Mooooooooooooooo!" cried Rachel. "Mr. Sensitivity Himself," said Harold. "Well I've had a hard day!" "YOU'VE had a hard day? What about me! You think these hoof prints are decoration do you? And now I've started dissolving! The most valuable and unique item in the known and unknown universe and this is how you treat me!" He switched off, the silence that followed being punctuated only by the thud of Freeda falling to the floor. "Me legs have baaa - " she started. "We know," replied Diggy, morosely. The Enterprising Alien stood up and announced the winner of the talent contest. A blue slug with four tentacles stood up and attempted to bow, collected a contract from Gothic Records to record the slugs song, "Always Look On The Bryte Syde Of A Complex Sequence Of Chemycal Reactions", and left. "Ahhhhhh," said Diggy, slowly realising why the Dark, Shadowy figure was looking so smug, and what Harold had been about to say before being dropped in the blue liquid. "Mooo," said Rachel, guessing the same thing. "Baaa," said Freeda, wanting someone to pick her up off the floor and tell her what was going on. Meep Meep Meep! "I was going to tell you that!" said Harold, who had just switched on. "Let's go," said Diggy, ignoring him. "What about Merdyl?" asked Freeda, who had stood up. "We'll tell you later." "Aren't we waiting for her?" asked Rachel, who'd found Harold was projecting his work field onto her again. Diggy didn't answer; he just left. The others, puzzled, followed him out. "Well that's a surprise," thought the Spacerat, who hadn't moved on in time since Harold was forcibly quietened. "I could have sworn that drink wasn't corrosive." "Start pre-launch checks," commanded Diggy. "Pre-launch checks started." They waited. A little more. "Er, finish pre-launch checks?" offered Diggy. "Pre-launch checks finished," came the reply. "Engage gravity pads." "Gravity pads engaged." From the underside of the Cowseeker came a soft, lilac glow. They waited. A little more. "Turn on navigation lights." "We haven't got any." "Oh. Then turn on something else." "Something else turned on." Outside, a small flag with ~Have a nice day~ written on it, popped out of a round door in the side of the ship. A short fanfare played, and the flag retracted, the door snapping shut behind it with a loud and totally unexpected SPLAT. A muffled "Baaa" might have then been heard had there been anyone nearby. A little more. Diggy sighed. "Close outer hatch." There was another pause... "Outer hatch closed." "Lift off." And the Cowseeker gently rose from the surface of the planet, launching itself into the infinite cosmos, leaving all but those aboard... behind. ---- The Peribeetle's antennae waved fitfully with the effort. The other Peribeetle watched, tired out by the strain of the other's activity. Then, it had it. "Guurp," it said. The other Peribeetle, without moving, looked amazed. -+* To Be Continued! *+- +--------------------------------------------------------------+ | | | Hipposoft Presents: | | | | An Epic Tale of For Fredatives | | an Accident, A "Rachel" /Fred Magasine | | Man And His Cows Hipposoft 1992 | | | | Or, "The Forgotten Enemy" | | | +--------------------------------------------------------------+ LAST TIME... The Cowseeker had landed on a world where an interplanetary talent contest was taking place. Merdyl was asked by an Enterprising Alien to take part, and she did. After a stunning performance, she told Diggy it was all she ever wanted to stay behind and take the contract she'd get for winning. Small problem - she lost... But the Cowseeker left without her, when she didn't turn up for the takeoff. Meanwhile, the Peribeetle civilisation is on the verge of revolution... The Cowseeker drifted through space, silent and solemn. "We left her behind," whispered Rachel, incredulously. "She never knew that she'd lost," said Diggy. "Perhaps she'll go on with a career! She must have come a close second... maybe a record company will remember her? Yes, that's what will happen. She'll be happy, rich, famous, much better off than here with us..." And he ran out of things to say. ---- The Spacerat was eating lunch. It knew that this would only make people moan, what with all the wormholes in the Continuum he'd leave, but he had to live. And it'd make the scientists happy, what with a brand new dimensional instability to look at, and all that. Yes, he was definitely contributing to the development and social climb of culture in general. What he gave them was an, er, a, yes, a Responsive Organizational Concept (ROC), with which they could develop, um, Systemised Digital Capability (SDC), whilst retaining a Balanced Third-Generation Time-Phase (BTGTP) with Optimal Incremental Flexibility (OIF). Hey, he could even supply them with the means to create, to create, an, er, a, um, Parallel Monitoring Policy (PMP), with a Compatible Transitional Programme (CTP.) With a start like that, who could complain? "Load of rubbish if you ask me," said a passing estate agent. ---- "Guurp," repeated the Peribeetle, more clearly. The other Peribeetle did the motionless equivalent of raising an eyebrow. "GUURP." ("More certainty, more reinforcement, that's what I need," thought the Peribeetle, using only three words to do this.) The other Peribeetle suddenly got the impression that its partner was trying to convey the utter and complete loathing of the Peribeetle's family, moral concepts, life and general existence. It was probably complaining that the average Peribeetle is one tenth of a millimetre long at the same time. And against all that their society stood for, the two Peribeetles began to get angry. ---- "Hi guys!" said Merdyl, appearing on the bridge. "Did you miss me?" ---- The two Peribeetles were getting furious now. Tentacles waved, legs twitched, and sporadic bursts of three (or four) worded speech filled the air. A group of Peribeetles in the immediate vicinity, which did not move in any way, began to form the crowdless approximation to the Jeering Crowd. If they had been bothered, which they were not, they would have been saying, "Fight! Fight! Fight!" in unison. (In reality this would have sounded like "Bripp Bripp Bripp," which translated could have meant "Fight! Fight! Fight!", "Periapple! Periapple! Periapple!" or "Perilemming! Perilemming! Perilemming," or, indeed, several thousand other things.) Suddenly a leg moved forward, not a twitch, but, impossible! A thoughtful, controlled movement! Another followed, and another, six in all, and there! For the first time in any Peribeetles' living memory, a fellow Peribeetle MOVED! "Bripp Ffft Ffft Ffft Fumup, Bripp Fumup Fumup Ffft Fumup!" exclaimed the Peribeetle suddenly. ("One Small Step For Peribeetle, One Giant Leap For Peribeetlekind!" - which could have been taken, for example, as "Could I have a raindrop, I'm really hungry right now!", hence the historical significance of this statement was not so much lost, as never found in the first place.) The other Peribeetle, still staggered by its partner's apparent loathing and ability to actually TALK and MOVE, was not slow to catch on, and began to edge forward as well. They drew closer... ---- "Gng," said Diggy. Everyone else just stood there. "Well aren't you going to say hello?" asked Merdyl. "It's not as though I could have stayed there, what with losing the contest and all that. I got on board as soon as I heard the result. Didn't you know? I found this little door with a flag in it. Anyway, it's not a big deal, you know. I wouldn't have liked all that publicity anyway, come to think." "You mean you KNEW about the result?" asked the Dark, Shadowy figure incredulously, speaking for the first time since the Cowseekers departure from the planet. "Do you think I'd go to all that trouble and not stick around to find out if I'd won? I went backstage with all the other performers!" "We thought we'd left you be..." started Rachel, then stopped suddenly, realising Merdyl might take that the wrong way. This was not the case. "Oh, no! Sorry about that." "Er, right then, er, yes, er, er. Er,..." said Diggy, with a superb lack of eloquence. "We'd better get looking for the rest of the cows, hadn't we?" There was a general murmur of agreement. "Plug the Bovine Detect-O-Matic into the navigation system, then!" Merdyl did it. "And... Get ready everyone... Activate!" The Origami drive engaged... ...time and space folded, the Cowseeker rode the wave, the Spacerat close behind... ...Time and space unfolded... And the Cowseeker arrived in a strange, new universe. A very strange, new universe... -+* To Be Continued! *+-