Sunday, 15 October 2017

RetroChallenge 2017/10: Zector Adventure

"Zector Adventure" is a text adventure program distributed by T&D Software in 1984. From a clue in the game itself it seems like the original programmer's name was Darrell Ulm and that he had subtitled it Adventure #1.  It is science fiction themed and based roughly on the original Star Wars film. You must escape from the Death Star with some battle plans that will help aid the rebel fleet defeat the station you are on.
The game has a handy "MAP" command
The original version was programmed for the TRS-80 Color Computer. It has a hires graphics "MAP" command that shows you your progress. In porting it to the MC-10 I had to change the map command to display a simple text graphics map instead.  I used a subroutine to translate the former graphic commands to insert into a text array space "O" characters for rooms and "-" and "!" characters for passages that you haven't explored yet.  I also added a circular "Death Star"graphic into which the unfolding map is inserted.

I also fixed up a tonne of spelling mistakes. So I guess you could call the MC-10 version a bit of a "fix" of the Coco version. The author, for example, had spelled the "examine" command as "exemine" and many of the words with "ie" were spelled with "ei" instead.  I suspect, he was a teen programmer.  The game is a lot like the classic game "Dog Star Adventure" written by Lance Micklus for TRS-80 and published in SoftSide magazine.  I have also ported that game to MC-10:
I played through Zector Adventure and created the following walkthrough, which has been posted on the CASA Solutions Archive website:


****** WARNING SPOILER ALERT ****** 

PUSH BLUE, E, GET GARBAGE, S, S, E, GET SUIT, W, W, W, GIVE GARBAGE, E, PUT QUARTER
N, W, LOOK COMPUTER, TYPE D$8, GET CARD, E, S, W, W, S, E, S, GET GRENADE, E, S, N, W,
N, E, E, LOOK CREW, SHOOT MEMBER, LOOK, GET STEEL, W, W, S, E, S
THROW STEEL,LOOK, MAP, W, GET DISKS, INV, E, N, W, N, E, E, N, N, N, W, W
PUT CARD, LOOK, N, THROW GRENADE, DROP DISKS, E, LOOK TERMINAL
TYPE OPEN, W, S, MAP, W, GET PLANS, E, E, PUSH RED, E


I hope you enjoy the Zector Adventure!

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