It's been a while since we've seen one of these, hasn't it?
You know what I mean: Those itsy-bitsy executables claiming to be 160
bytes in size (although that's a blatant lie, since they take at least 8 times
the space they claim on disk!) that you run'em, see a very bare effect (most of
the times people get disappointed by them too!), and then it's reset time, as
there is no-returning-to-system-due-to-incredibly-small-space, or because of the
And I'm not just saying that because I haven't coded one, because I have!
Squeezing the most out of 128 bytes (which is at most 64 instructions
due to the architecture of the 68K family!) seems to trouble coders at one point
or another. It's a nice coding excercise, and some people even get their kicks
out of it, but I get the feeling that for most users it's a bit of a chore even
But, still, for us coders it's fun! Some (including myself) jump
straight into the challenge of opening a debugger (or disassembler) and try to
figure out how the heck it was done. Jolly good fun (not!)! So let's get to it
and kick off (in alphabetical order) to...
DBUG 128 BYTES
By D-Bug II/NeXT (D-Bug of Defence Force?)
Ah. Here we have something new from someone which isn't that new to the
scene! Mr. Mickael Pointier, alias Dbug II of NeXT. A coder and graphist at the
same time. Complained (in the early days) that people always bugged him to draw
graphics and that activity didn't leave him enough time to code. Then there was
the Phaleon Demo and one very good STE-only screen called Illusion. Then some
utilities on Falcon, such as the art package "Rembrandt" (sorry, can't comment
on that). Allegedly some work on Oric Atmos. Then, the big turn to the consoles,
where he and Mr. Oliver Lhermite AKA Mit/NeXT (sorry if I got the spelling
wrong, but I'm getting old :) wrote "Little Big Adventure" 1 & 2 (I think - it's
all from memory :). Also, a PC/DirectX conversion of the Illusion demo. And, for
extra brownie points for my research, if you've got the PC CD of the game "V-
Rally 2 Expert edition", install the game (on Window$) and open file
CDRuro\rootspec.pak on a hex editor. You'll frequently see the message: "STNICC
2000 RULEZPADDING DATAS...-ORIC AND ATARI--COOL MACHINES-"!!!!
Now, let's get to the proggie itself. It's a ST-Low res affair, and D-
Bug claims that it runs only on STs (due to the fact that Falcons don't have VT-
52 emulation). He also claims that it's like the boot-up sequence of the Oric
Atmos micro, which I'll have to take his word for it! (mabye some day I'll deal
with this machine) This sequence is: Printing a message, then dislpaying some
bars of colour, using VT-52.
Ok, this isn't the most brainblasting intro you've ever seen on 128
bytes, but that's what you get when you take one's ST away and return it after 8
years and tell him to code in it! Everybody has to start (or re-start) somewhere
and I guess it could be much MUCH worse! Well done, and we all await your next
release with interest... (will you remember some cool tricks you used 10 years
ago? I certainly hope so!)
By MrPink of Reservoir Gods
Reservoir Gods. Having a name directly linked to Quentin Tarantino
(whose movies I can't say I particularly like) didn't make such a good
impression on me. Also, when I entered the scene they were sort of going into
hibernation status. Anyway, not owning a Falcon, I couldn't judge most of their
stuff, so I sort of forgot them for a while...
...Until, last year, when they came back and start releasing W4R3Z
(well, let's admit it, they didn't have a license to publish Chuchu rocket,
right? ;) and their main coder, MrPink getting involved in a myriad of projects
at the same time! (more about RG in some other articles, don't worry, they did
release an awful lot of stuff at EIL 3)
As with the previous intro in this article, this one too needs the same
specs (ST/E/Flacon Low res), only more machines are supported. The effect itself
is our good ol' friend Bob (you know him, from the ST's character set? ASCII
characters 28-31? Don't ring a bell? Never mind, I thought I was refering to
real Atarians :)))), only he's zoomed in, and swinging horizontally in strips
(each strip being 16 pixels high).
A quite pleasing effect, I might say. Taking a quick view under the hood
I noticed that Leon uses Line-A calls, so as to get some system specific stuff
(such as the screen address, the font's address, etc.) without using too much
system calls. BUT, if I'm not mistaken, Atari Corp. discouraged coders from
using direct Line-A calls, as at a later date, they would take it out of TOS!
Bad boy, Leon! But, of course, all's fair in love and demos, so it's fine by me!
All in all, a nice effect for your 10 seconds of interest that, for all we know,
might have taken Leon months!
GGN/KÜA software productions/Alive Team