Chris Hellfire and the Pyramid of the Damned!
A revival of an ancient gaming genre by MacFalcon for Atari!
A little while ago, a kind individual by the nick of MacFalcon advertised
on the DHS BBS promoted an early version of a text adventure game that he
So I got in touch with MacFalcon to investigate this breaking story, and he
kindly sent me an early beta copy by return. So what is this all about?
To set up is a little fiddly, you have to copy all the files to the 'F:'
partition of your hard drive. So if you haven't got that far with your
partitioning scheme, then tough! However, this is a very temporary
workaround, which won't afflict the final release version.
It runs in ST-mono res, and is better off in plain TOS mode. Christian has
tested it on the Milan, Falcon '030 and CT60
Starting it up reveals a very bolted on title sequence, the credits include
'Falcon Wing Software', and the title reveals the name of the adventure,
"Chris Hellfire and the Pyramid of Damnation. At this point, the opening
page reveals itself, and tells you that you are in a jungle, and facing the
entrance to a Mayan Pyramid temple. There is even a little bit of graphics,
with a still picture very reminiscent of an early ZX Spectrum graphical
text adventure, but in ST-mono. All very nostalgic and homely in feel.
The control method uses a multi-choice menu of possible responses to a
given situation, 1. Go into the pyramid, 2. Climb it to get a better look
around, or 3. Give up and go home. Of course you can plunge straight into
the main part, but often it is better to explore around the sides a little
bit first ;-)
The game itself is very incomplete. I've got into a chamber, which opens to
reveal another secret chamber, but which doesn't seem to want to stay open
for long? I'm not sure whether this is a particularly devious puzzle, or
merely something missing?
Christian does have a reasonable grasp of English, and quite a nice line of
humour, much of it expressed when you fail to complete a task in the
correct manner ;-)
There isn't too much too see right now, and the beta will seem a bit untidy
to people who like their GEM games running nicely, but the idea of a very
oldschool text adventure on a Falcon or higher end machine near you, is
quite appealing. I hope Christian manages to maintain the motivation to
shift this project.
Because I'm feeling lazy, and near the end of doing a shitload of articles,
I'm handing over to Christian for a bit to explain a bit about what's
Development is now a bit further, I eliminated most bugs and added some
more gfx, but don't expect too much from the final version, as I will put
most work in the story, which hopefully will then be very interesting to
Things the final game will definitely have:
- Window support, so that it runs clean under GEM
- Load and Save... Now it's just an alert box...
- Running from drive c: or a:
- Input with the mouse or maybe a parser, but for me as it is now it is not
that bad, as everyone will understand
- A "fighting" system which is based on randomize-timer (70% finished now)
- It will work in every resolution (I hope) when it runs in a
gem-window... If I find other gfx.routines, a special Falcon and clone
version (640*480*256) should also be no problem, as I have the b/w
paintings and it's easy to put colors in.
- It also should work with magic when it supports gem-windows
Thanks so far, I will keep you informed!
Ok, that's it for now, but be sure to check out the release version.
CiH, for Alive Mag,April '04.