May 11th, 2020
Still busy fixing the previous games so they could run on genuine hardware (super excited about that...) also, I'm "working" (on paper) on a tile-based map editor with a few nifty features that could make it flexible and rebust enough to be used for different projects. It's gonna be great.
It works in my DOSBox!
April 30th, 2020
Erik tried to launch several of my games on his genuine 486 with mixed results. Since I have no idea how I could possibly fix bugs that never show up in DOSBox, I set a virtual machine up with DOS 6.0 to give them a go. So far, I've patched Panda BLAST! (no downloadable fix available yet) and I'm not sure what's going on with MineSweeper Duo (crashes on initialization while Erik says it works fine.) Cody McCloud works on the virtual machine (except it doesn't seem to recognize the mouse) while Erik says it refuses to run... I desperately need to get my hands on a genuine DOS machine... On the plus side, Sexy Smart Slide and Mode Y seem to work as intended.
April 29th, 2020
Do you (or someone you know) like wandering around a spooky house, collecting ropes, murder confession letters and blood-stained knives? My housekeeper doesn't want to clean my place anymore. In other news, you'll find a code-centric review of Helter Skelter, an edutainment game where you wander around a spooky house, collecting ropes, murder confession letters and blood-stained knives for the Charles Manson murder trial. Who would have thought my life you be so much like a QuickBASIC game? Oh, and Happy Halloween!
EDIT: This quarantine stuff has been going on for so long I lost track of time entirely, so it may not actually be Halloween. Fun fact: time is also something Manson's followers were not aware of! Man! It's like edutainment DOES work after all!
April 9th, 2020
Quick note: I just uploaded MIDI (Musical Instrument Digital Interface) file specifications. It's an old document (1999, twenty years ago, holy shit!) I've seen floating around, just fixed a few typos and converted it to plain text. I've got other formats like MOD too, but I never used that format, so I don't know how accurate it is. Given the rarety of that stuff, I'll probably have a look, see if it makes sense, and upload anyway.
New Game: Cody McCloud
April 8th, 2020
Yes! FUCK YES! I'm done with this thing! Free at last! Time to do something else, go outside, see people and... what are you talking about? "Flesh-eating bacteria," "everyone is infected," "have you not been prepared?" Anyway, Cody McCloud, a BreakOut clone in QuickBASIC has finally been released and it's available for download in the "Games/tools" droplist (I'm leaving the demo around for now just in case anyone's interested, I'll remove it later.) Be warned that it's not bug-free but so isn't anyone according to the news.
What do you mean too soon? It's been months! MONTHS I SAY!
Sorting things out
April 6th, 2020
Cody is on the way, for real this time, I swear. In other news, I added a super tiny code snippet showing how to do "top down sort" in QuickBASIC, showing how much faster it is compared to "bubble sort." It's in the Articles section.
March 29th, 2020
Just a little note to let you know about qpschool, a new Neocities page featuring a few tutorials for Basic-256, an "easy to use version of BASIC designed to teach anybody how to program." It's completely interpreted so there's no need to compile anything (write, execute and enjoy right away.) In that respect, it is similar to projects like CoolBasic, thinBASIC, SmallBASIC and PC-Basic. By comparison, FreeBASIC and QB64 both require the code to be compiled and cannot be executed on the fly. So, if you think this might be right down your alley, go check it out!
March 27th, 2020
Behold! Another category has been added to the menu: "interviews." While browsing some archives, I found three interviews that I thought would be interesting to share.
The first interview is with then Microsoft employee Greg Whitten, responsible for porting BASIC to IBM computers and one of the key programmers behind QuickBASIC. The second interview is with Pete Berg, webmaster of one of the most popular QuickBASIC website from the late 90s, talking about the demise of BASIC as a language and the importance of a strong community. And finally we've got an interview with Richard D. Clark, retired professional programmer, sharing his thoughts on the QuickBASIC/FreeBASIC community, the differences between professional and hobbyist programmers, and the industry as a whole.
If I find other interesting chitchats, I'll make sure to upload them.
March 4th, 2020
Still busy with the house; we used to think we'd only repair what needed to be repaired, but given the overall mess that's currently going on in there, we decided to go all the way through. This project keeps getting bigger and bigger and we can't wait for it to be over. Anyway, I added a quick review for MiniRPG1 Boardgame, which is supposedly a demo of some sort although it features a beginning, an end, and everything in-between. It's also supposed to have RPG elements, but I'm not too sure about that either. It could use some tiny improvements, but it's still nice (albeit sluggish.) Go check it out. EDIT: fixed some typos.
February 5th, 2020
I'm being a big scatterbrain lately and I can't seem to focus on anything. I just noticed a few typos, mistakes and dead links in the Mode Y Introduction article so I fixed them. I'll probably reformat the palette article too. I've recently toyed with randomly generated mazes and pseudo-3D rendering and may attempt to do something with that. An infinite dungeon-crawler maybe? I don't know. Having a proper raycaster for the 3D view would be nice (although I'm not too eager to trip and fall for the full-screen real-time raycasting engine in pure QBasic joke.)
Not to be confused with Cool Spot
January 23rd, 2020
I wasn't planning to review Wetspot 2 (especially since I name-dropped it last week-end,) but then I found the source code lying around, so here we are. The safe word of the day is candidiasis. Love you.
Let's play a game...
January 18th, 2020
I'm having a hard time drawing the last elements of Cody because I feel like at this point, "everything is done" (as in: there's nothing new and exciting to do - only more of the same.) So I've been working on other things in the meantime, along with taking care of the house. And because it's been a while since anything consequential has been uploaded, I've been tidying up previous articles (AGAIN) and I'm done writing an overview of interrupts (so I stop covering the same stuff over and over again.)
If you need a quick fix for QuickBASIC games (who doesn't?) here's a short list: Columns (a perfect reproduction of Sega's arcade game,) Super Stack and Ultimate Super Stack (great game inspired by Kirby's Star Stacker,) Frogger (a remake of the original arcade game,) Scrambled Eggs (a somewhat clunky clone of Puzzle Bobble/Bust-A-Move,) Wetspot 1 and 2 (a very polished arcade game based on Sega's Pengo with Disney music and A-Ha's "Take On Me",) Qoop (a fast-paced color-matching game based on Zoop,) and Crazy Numbers (a two-player strategy game based on Penthouse Hot Numbers according to the author, but based on Maxit if you ask me, because I'm a pure and innocent soul.)
January 10th, 2020
New year, new me. Where's the previous me? I don't know and neither do you if the IRS asks. With that out of the way, I think I should be able to release Cody McCloud soon-ish: I still need a couple of new backdrops, some illustrations for the story and a few more levels (I finally wrote a level editor, so that's nice.) I'm so late on that project that I don't feel the urge to even rush it anymore, which is both a blessing and a curse.