:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: :: Volume 2, Issue 2 JAGUAR EXPLORER ONLINE July 20, 1998 :: :::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: :: :: :: JAGUAR ............. News, Reviews, & Solutions ............. JAGUAR :: :: EXPLORER ........... For the Online Jaguar .......... EXPLORER :: :: ONLINE ................ Community ............... ONLINE :: :: :: :: Published and Copyright (c) 1998 by White Space Publishers :: :: All Rights Reserved :: :: """""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""" :: :: Publisher Emeritus Plus .................... Michael Lindsay :: :: Publisher Emeritus .............................. Travis Guy :: :: Editor/Publisher ............................ Clay Halliwell :: :: JEO Mailing List Maintainer .................. Joachim Vance :: :: Genie Uploader .............................. Clay Halliwell :: :: CompuServe Uploader ......................... Richard Turner :: :: America Online Uploader ....................... Lonnie Smith :: :: FidoNet Uploader ................................ Troy Cheek :: :: :: :: Contributors: :: :: (voluntary and otherwise) :: :: """"""""""""""""""""""""" :: :: Doug Engel, Scott Le Grand, Stephanie Wukovitz, :: :: Don Thomas, Carl Forhan, Wes Powell :: :: :: :: Telecommunicated to you via: :: :: """""""""""""""""""""""""""" :: :: GEnie: ST/JAGUAR RT Library 15 :: :: AOL: VIDEO GAMES FORUM Hints, Tips and Tricks II Library :: :: CompuServe: ATARIGAMING and VIDGAME Forums :: :: FidoNet: ATARI_ST and VID_GAME Echoes :: :: :: :: World Wide Web: http://www.atarihq.com/jeo/ :: :: :: :: E-Mail Request address: JEOfirstname.lastname@example.org :: :: :: :: To subscribe to JEO, send e-mail to the request address, :: :: with the following line (no subject): :: :: :: :: subscribe JEO :: :: :: :: Your request will be automatically processed and your e-mail :: :: address will be subscribed to the list. To unsubscribe from :: :: the JEO list, send the following: :: :: :: :: unsubscribe JEO :: :: :: :: to the same request address, making sure you send it from :: :: the same address you subscribed from. :: :: :: :: Subscription problems requiring human assistance can be sent :: :: to JEOemail@example.com. Thanks to Maximized Software for :: :: hosting the JEO list. :: :: :: :::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: Table of Contents * From the Editor ................................... Puttin' the Moves On. * Jaguar Trivia Challenge II: The Questions ............ Strain Your Brain. * Jaguar Tackboard .................. Newsletters, Message Boards, Mailing Lists, FAQs, Codes, Development List, Mail Order Directory. * New Cheats and Codes .................................. Mmmm, Fresh Kill. * CyberChatter .......................................... Overheard Online. * BattleSphere News ..................................... 4Play Marches On. * Llatest from Llamaland ........................................ Yak yaks. * VoiceModem Update ..................... Reach Out and Decapitate Someone. * The Two Cybermorphs .......................... Skylar, We Hardly Knew Ye. * JagFest '98 ............................................. Latest Updates. * Alastair Lindsay Interview ............... Imagitec Tunesmith Takes Note. * Worms Review ................................ Let Loose the Worms of War! * Big Code Hunting ................................. The Search for Cheats. * The Big Spin ................................................. Don Talks. * Pecking at the Scraps ..................................... Don Talks On. * Jaguar Trivia Challenge II: The Answers ........................... D'Oh! * Shutdown ............................ Around the world and up your block. --==--==--==--==-- || From the Editor || By: Clay Halliwell \__// firstname.lastname@example.org ------------------------------------------------------------------ Well, there's certainly been a whole lotta changes goin' on since the last JEO came out. The big, albeit old, news is of course the sale of JTS's Atari assets to Hasbro. It's still too early to tell what Hasbro will do with this rich portfolio. For now, it looks like they're sticking to the still-cresting retroware craze. Anyone interested in the full details of the Atari sale should go to http://www.freeedgar.com/search/WL.asp?C=941167&F=8-K&D=3/9/1998, where the full text of the Form 8-K is available. Of more immediate concern to Jag owners, Worms was finally released about a month ago. This is a fantastic game, and well worth the somewhat high purchase price. And the final big change... JEO has moved! We've got a nice comfy new home at that bastion of Atarian goodness, Atari Gaming Headquarters. I'd like to thank Frans Keylard for hosting the Atari Explorer Online and Jaguar Explorer Online pages for the last few years, and the guys at AGH for taking JEO in. Stephanie Wukovitz of 4Play has requested that all Jaguar owners still interested in purchasing BattleSphere go to http://www.best.com/~sebab/ dvidgames/dsphere and complete the survey there, even if you've already done so in the past. Speaking of BattleSphere, it's looking very likely that the BattleSphere soundtrack CD will be published. The petition at Jagu-Dome (http://jaguar. holyoak.com/bspetition.html) just hit 113 copies! As of this issue, I've finally gotten around to removing Brett Hull Hockey and Charles Barkley Basketball from the Development list. The license for Brett Hull expired long ago, and Charles Barkley was never finished (no great loss, if you go by reviews of the finished version on other platforms). Included in the ZIPped version of this issue is a full-color keypad overlay for use with Worms. Print it out at a size of 3.13" x 2.21". --==--==--==--==-- || Jaguar Trivia Challenge II: The Questions || By: Carl Forhan \__// email@example.com ----------------------------------------------------------------- Here's another trivia quiz to see how well you know your Jag library. 1. Which two games were announced on CD, but released as cartridges instead? 2. What words are in the Fight For Life title song? 3. Which two companies, besides Atari and Telegames, released games for both the Lynx and the Jaguar? 4. What's the difference between the control schemes in HoverStrike cart and HoverStrike CD? 5. What mode is enabled in Tempest 2000 once you beat the game the first time? 6. Which Jaguar game (besides WMCJ), came with something other than the cartridge, overlay, and manual? 7. What was the last Jaguar game published directly by Atari? 8. Which published game(s) share the same title on both the Lynx and the Jaguar? 9. Which character in Atari Karts appeared previously in another Atari game? 10. Name two unreleased Jaguar peripherals announced by Atari. BONUS QUESTION: How many Aircars cartridges were manufactured with serial numbers on the cart label? --==--==--==--==-- || Jaguar Tackboard || Confirmed information about Atari's Jaguar \__// Compiled from online and official sources ----------------------------------------------------------------- =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= //// Atari Times Jaguar Newsletter =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= Greg "Fruitman" George (firstname.lastname@example.org) has decided to discontinue publication of his Atari Times fanzine. However, the online version is still available at: http://www.geocities.com/TimesSquare/Arcade/8341 =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= //// Jaguar Message Boards =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= Anyone with web browsing capability can join in on the discussions on several web-based Jaguar message boards out there on the net. Note that, due to the rapid message turnover and instant-update nature of these boards, they have a tendency to burn through topics in a matter of days instead of weeks (or hours instead of days). Just point your browser to: Jaguar Interactive II (hosted by Atari Gaming Headquarters) http://www.atarihq.com/interactive/ Atari Times Boardroom (hosted by The Atari Times) http://venus.beseen.com/boardroom/c/17653/Date JagTalk (hosted by Toad Computers) http://www.ataricentral.com/wwwboard/jagtalk.html =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= //// Jaguar Chat =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= Anyone with web browsing capability who wants to chat in real-time with their fellow Jaguar enthusiasts, but has no access to IRC, should take advantage of this Jag chat page: JFPN's Jaguar Chat http://www.geocities.com/SiliconValley/Heights/5916/chat.html =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= //// Jaguar Discussion Mailing List =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= It would appear that the Jaguar mailing list has been deactivated. A moment of silence, please. =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= //// Atari Underground Mailing List =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= Anyone with Internet e-mail access can request to be added to the Atari Underground mailing list. This is a read-only mailing list maintained by Matt "MHz" Bruce, generating periodic messages describing current events of interest to Atari Jaguar owners. To subscribe to the list, send an e-mail request to MHz@earthlink.net. Please do not confuse the Atari Underground mailing list with the Jaguar Underground hackers. =-=-=-=-=-=-=-= //// Jaguar FAQ =-=-=-=-=-=-=-= Robert Jung (email@example.com) maintains the Jaguar FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) file, a continually updated list of Jaguar specs and facts. The Jaguar FAQ is posted to rec.games.video.atari on Usenet around the first of every month, and can also be found at http://www.digiserve.com/eescape/atari/ Atari.shtml. =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= //// Jaguar Cheats and Codes =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= Clay "No Handle" Halliwell (firstname.lastname@example.org) maintains the Atari Jaguar Game Cheats and Codes FAQ. It's available by e-mail request or from Atari Gaming Headquarters http://www.atarihq.com/jaglynx/jag/jagcheat.txt. Lonnie "The Mage" Smith (email@example.com) maintains the Concise Compendium of Frequently Asked Codes, Moves, and Cheats (FACMAC). It's available via FTP from ftp://users.aol.com:/TheMage1/jaguar, or from http://users.aol.com/ TheMage1/jaguar/jagcodes.txt =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= //// JEO Development List =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= The following list of game titles has been confirmed to the best of JEO's ability as of publication. Entries in the "S"tatus column reflect any "u"pdates, "n"ew titles, or "?"uestionable listings since the last JEO list. Entries in the "M"edia column reflect whether the title is "C"D-ROM or "J"aguar Server/BJL (blank entries indicate cartridge software). "NEW" indicates titles released since the last issue of JEO. ETA dates are dates that have been provided by the developer or publisher. //// Titles in Development or Limbo S M Title ETA Developer Publisher " " """"" """ """"""""" """"""""" ? Arena Football ? V-Real Productions BattleSphere 1998 4Play 4Play J Bong+ 1999 ? Just Claws Software ? C Creature Shock ? Argonaut ? Deathwatch ? Data Design ? C Demolition Man ? Virgin Interactive J Gorf 2000 ? Krunch Korporation ? Hyper Force ? C-West J Jagmania (PacMania clone) ? Matthias Domin J Jagmarble (Marble Madness clone) ? Matthias Domin J JagTris (Tetris clone) ? Bastian Schick J Painter ? Sinister ? Skyhammer ? Rebellion ? C Soulstar ? Core Design Ltd. ? Space War 2000 ? Atari //// Current Software Releases M Title Rated Developer Publisher " """"" """"" """"""""" """"""""" AirCars 5 MidNite ICD Alien vs. Predator 9 Rebellion Atari Atari Karts 6 Miracle Design Atari Attack of the Mutant Penguins 6 Sunrise Games Ltd. Atari C Baldies 6 Creative Edge Atari C Battlemorph 10 Attention to Detail Atari C Blue Lightning 6 Attention to Detail Atari C BrainDead 13 5 ReadySoft ReadySoft Breakout 2000 7 MP Games Telegames Brutal Sports Football 6 Millennium/Teque Telegames Bubsy 5 Imagitec Design Atari Cannon Fodder 8 Virgin Interactive C-West Checkered Flag 4 Rebellion Atari Club Drive 5 Atari Atari Crescent Galaxy 3 Atari Atari Cybermorph 7 Attention to Detail Atari Defender 2000 8 Llamasoft Atari Doom 8 id Software Atari Double Dragon V 4 Williams Enter. Williams C Dragon's Lair 5 ReadySoft ReadySoft Dragon: The Bruce Lee Story 6 Virgin Interactive Atari Evolution: Dino Dudes 6 Imagitec Design Atari Fever Pitch Soccer 6 U.S. Gold Atari Fight For Life 6 Atari Atari Flashback 7 Tiertex Ltd. U.S. Gold Flip Out! 6 Gorilla Systems Atari C Highlander I 8 Lore Design Ltd. Atari Hover Strike 5 Atari Atari C Hover Strike: Unconquered Lands 7 Atari Atari Iron Soldier 9 Eclipse Atari C Iron Soldier 2 CD 10 Eclipse Telegames Iron Soldier 2 10 Eclipse Telegames I-War 4 Imagitec Design Atari Kasumi Ninja 5 Hand Made Software Atari Missile Command 3D 8 Virtuality Atari C Myst 9 Atari Atari NBA Jam: Tournament Edition 9 High Voltage Atari Pinball Fantasies 6 Spider Soft C-West Pitfall: The Mayan Adventure 8 Imagitec Design Atari Power Drive Rally 7 Rage Software TWI C Primal Rage 7 Probe TWI Raiden 6 Imagitec Design Atari Rayman 10 UBI Soft UBI Soft Ruiner 6 High Voltage Atari Sensible Soccer 6 Williams Brothers Telegames C Space Ace 3 ReadySoft ReadySoft Super Burnout 7 Shen Atari Supercross 3D 5 Tiertex Ltd. Atari Syndicate 7 Bullfrog Ocean Tempest 2000 10 Llamasoft Atari Theme Park 6 Bullfrog Ocean Towers II 7 JV Enterprises Telegames Troy Aikman NFL Football 6 Telegames Williams Ultra Vortek 8 Beyond Games Atari Val d'Isere Skiing/Snowboarding 7 Virtual Studio Atari C Vid Grid 6 High Voltage Atari C VLM 9 Llamasoft Atari White Men Can't Jump 6 High Voltage Atari Wolfenstein 3D 7 id Software Atari C World Tour Racing 6 Teque London Ltd. Telegames Worms 9 NEW Team 17 Telegames Zero 5 7 Caspian Software Telegames Zool 2 7 Gremlin Graphics Atari Zoop 6 Viacom Atari Total Carts 50 Total CDs 14 (counting VLM) Total Combined 64 Pts Stars JEO Ratings """ """"" """"""""""" 10 ***** THE ULTIMATE - Flawless, beautiful, deviously addictive. 9 ****+ EXCELLENT - Something to throw in the face of N64-heads. 8 **** SMEGGIN' GREAT - Something to kick on the shoes of N64-heads. 7 ***+ DARN GOOD - Plays as good as it looks. 6 *** DECENT - Plays better than it looks (or vice versa). 5 **+ TIME KILLER - If there's nothing else to do, you play this. 4 ** INEPT - The programmer's first Jag game? 3 *+ INCOMPETENT - The programmer's first game ever? 2 * UNPUBLISHABLE - Heaven help us! 1 + INCONCEIVABLE BAD - ...but someone conceived it. Too bad. 0 - EXECRABLE - This is an April Fool's joke, right? //// Current Hardware Releases Item Manufacturer """"" """""""""""" Jaguar 64 Atari Jaguar 64 CD-ROM Drive Atari 3-button PowerPad Atari 6-button ProController Atari Team Tap Atari Jag-Link Atari Memory Track Atari Composite Cable Atari S-Video Cable Atari VoiceModem (prototypes) Atari/Phylon Controller Extension Cable Best Electronics CatBox ICD/Black Cat Design Lap Cat/Lap Cat Pro joystick Ben Aein Jaguar Extreme Joystick Dark Knight Games (modded Gravis Blackhawk) Jaguar Server devkit Roine Stenberg (Istari Software) Behind Jaggy Lines devkit Bastian Schick =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= //// JEO Mail Order Directory 1.2 =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= The following list of vendors carrying Jaguar software/hardware has been confirmed to the best of JEO's ability. Please e-mail JEO for additions/ corrections. //// B&C ComputerVisions Mail 1725 De La Cruz Blvd #7 Santa Clara, CA 95050-3011 Voice 408-986-9960 (Tue-Fri, 10am-6pm) Fax 408-986-9968 Email firstname.lastname@example.org Web http://www.myatari.com //// Best Electronics Mail 2021 The Alameda, Suite 290 San Jose, CA 95126-1127 Voice 408-243-6950 //// Bits of Fun Mail PO Box 12345 San Luis Obispo, CA Phone 800-FUN-JAGS Email email@example.com Web http://www.cwest.com/atari //// Buy-Rite Video Games Voice 919-850-9473 Fax 919-872-7561 Email firstname.lastname@example.org Web http://www.buyrite1.com //// Demand Systems Voice 805-482-7900 Orders 800-593-0059 Fax 805-484-3745 805-987-1998 Email email@example.com Web http://www2.demand-sys.com/demand //// Dentec Computer Products Mail 465 Milner Ave #3 Scarborough, Ontario M1B 2K4 Canada Voice 416-292-2996 Fax 416-292-4075 416-292-248 Email firstname.lastname@example.org Web http://www.dentec.com/warehousesale //// Flashback Video Games Mail 2284 Kresge Drive Amherst, OH 44001 Voice 216-960-1622 Fax 216-960-1663 Email email@example.com Web http://www.sunmarkinc.com/products/flashback //// GameMasters Mail 14393 E. 14th Street, Suite 208 San Leandro, CA 94577 Voice 510-483-4263 Email firstname.lastname@example.org Web http://www.game-masters.com //// Game Pedler Voice 801-273-0787 (ask for Internet Sales) Fax 801-273-1357 Email email@example.com Web http://www.gamepedler.com //// Games To Go Mail 7632 Lyndale Avenue So. Richfield, MN 55423 Voice 612-798-5879 Fax 612-869-5925 Email firstname.lastname@example.org (orders) email@example.com (info) Web http://www.gamestogo.com //// Hardysoft Mail 24 Lawnside Drive Lawrenceville, NJ 08648 Orders 609-883-1083 Fax 609-538-8674 Email firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org Web http://ourworld.compuserve.com/homepages/hardysoft //// O'Shea, Ltd. Mail 330 West 47th Street #203 Kansas City, MO 64112 Voice 816-531-1177 Fax 816-531-6569 Email email@example.com Web http://www.oshealtd.com //// STeve's Computer Technologies Mail 405 Main Street Woodland, CA 95695 Voice 916-661-3328 Fax 916-661-1201 Email firstname.lastname@example.org Web http://woodland.net/steves/ //// Telegames Mail P.O. Box 901 Lancaster, Texas 75146 Voice 972-228-0690 Orders 972-224-7200 Fax 972-228-0693 Email email@example.com Web http://www.telegames.com //// Toad Computers, Inc. Mail 570 Ritchie Highway Severna Park, MD 21146-2925 Voice 410-544-6943 Orders 800-448-8623 BBS 410-544-6999 Fax 410-544-1329 FaxBak 410-544-0098 Email firstname.lastname@example.org Web http://www.ataricentral.com //// United Game Source Mail 232 East Eau Gallie Blvd Indian Harbour Beach, FL 32937 Orders 800-564-1458 Fax 407-777-3940 Email email@example.com Web http://www.unitedgame.com //// Video Game Advantage Mail 6861 Anthony Lane Parma Heights, OH 44130 Orders 216-843-8815 (24-hr answering machine) Email firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org Web http://www.io.com/~vga2000 //// Video Game Liquidators Mail 4058 Tujunga Ave, #B Studio City, CA 91604 Orders 818-505-1666 (9am-5pm PST) 888-944-4263 (toll free) Fax 818-505-1686 Email email@example.com Web http://www.vglq.com =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= //// Announcements and Press Releases =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= //// JTS Off the Market Wednesday, May 20, 1998 JTS Announces Consent to Removal of Listing From the American Stock Exchange Monday May 11 4:00pm SAN JOSE, Calif., May 11 /PR Newswire/--JTS Corporation (Amex: JTS), today announced that it is consenting to the removal of its Common Stock and 5 1/4% Debentures from the American Stock Exchange (AMEX). This action became necessary because the Company no longer fully satisfies all the guidelines of the AMEX for continued listing. The AMEX has advised that the last day for trading of the Company's securities on the AMEX will be Friday, May 22, 1998. The Company expects that a market for its securities will develop over the counter following removal from the AMEX. //// Worms Limited Edition Telegames is pleased to announce its plans for a limited edition cartridge version of WORMS. We will only manufacture enough products to satisfy pre- release orders and allow minor inventory stocking. Each product will be packaged in a full color box and contain a Jaguar cartridge with 2 color label (red type on black background) and an instruction manual. To reward those of you who pre-order and pre-pay for this quality product, Telegames USA is offering the following promotions: 1. If your order and payment are received between 3/20/98 and 4/03/98, you will be mailed two $10 Kwik Kash coupons for use on two subsequent purchases for any in-stock product, excluding any Limited Edition product. These coupons cannot be combined for use on a single item purchase (i.e. one product, one coupon). 2. If your order and payment are received between 4/04/98 and 4/18/98, you will be mailed one $10 Kwik Kash coupon for use on a subsequent purchase for any in-stock product, excluding any Limited Edition product. 3. If your order and payment are received after 4/18/98, no coupons will be earned. (Telegames reserves the right to cancel or modify this promotion at its sole discretion) Don't delay, place your order today for this outstanding product! $69.95 (plus s/h) Contact: Telegames P.O. Box 901 Lancaster, Texas 75146 (972)224-7200 firstname.lastname@example.org http://www.telegames.com //// JTS Announces Sale of Atari Assets for $5 Million SAN JOSE, Calif., March 13 /PRNewswire/ -- JTS Corporation (Amex: JTS), announced the completion of the sale of the company's Atari Division assets to HIACXI Corporation, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Hasbro Interactive, Inc. (Amex: HAS) for $5 million in cash. "The proceeds from the sale of these non-core assets will be utilized to support our working capital requirements as we increase our production," said Joseph Prezioso, Executive Vice President, Finance and Administration, and Chief Financial Officer of JTS Corporation. The Atari Assets were acquired by the company in July 1996 when the company merged with Atari Corporation and consisted primarily of Atari home computer games and the intellectual property rights and agreements associated with such games. JTS Corporation is a leader in information storage products. The company designs and manufactures hard disk drives for personal computers, and markets them to leading systems manufacturers and selected resellers. JTS is committed to providing world class hard drives at value prices to support personal computing. The president and chief executive officer of JTS, Tom Mitchell, was formerly the President and Chief Operating Officer of Conner Peripherals and Co-founder, President and Chief Operating Officer of Seagate Technology. For further information, contact JTS Corporation at 166 Baypointe Parkway, San Jose, California, 95134. Phone: 408-468-1800 Fax: 408-468-1619. Website: http://www.jtscorp.com SOURCE JTS Corporation Contact: JTS Corporation; Hasbro Interactive, Inc. ST: California IN: CPR MLM SU: 03/13/98 17:00 EST http://www.prnewswire.com //// Hasbro Interactive Acquires Legendary Atari Game Property Assets Business/Technology Editors BEVERLY, Mass.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--March 16, 1998--Leading interactive games publisher Hasbro Interactive, Inc., a subsidiary of Hasbro, Inc. (AMEX:HAS), announced today that a subsidiary has acquired copyrights, trademarks, patents and other intellectual property assets of the Atari Division of JTS Corporation, giving Hasbro Interactive rights to some of the greatest video games and play patterns ever created for multimedia entertainment. The Atari properties and assets include over 75 game properties including the legendary titles Centipede, Missile Command, Pong, Breakout and Tempest . Hasbro Interactive plans to release its first Atari title this fall with Centipede for both the PC and Sony Playstation game console. "We are thrilled that the classic Atari game properties will now be a part of the Hasbro family," said Tom Dusenberry, President of Hasbro Interactive. "These ground-breaking games helped pioneer the video game industry," added Dusenberry. "We intend to bring these classics back to life by updating them with the latest technology and interactive game design, while preserving their heart and spirit." Hasbro Interactive has proven its ability to bring beloved arcade classics successfully back to life with its blockbuster launch of Frogger in 1997 for both the PC and Playstation game console. Frogger, based on the 1980s' mega video game originally developed by KONAMI Co., Ltd., was a huge hit over the holidays and continues to hop its way up the best-selling interactive game charts. "We plan to implement the same aggressive strategy we used with Frogger, in bringing back the Atari classics," added Dusenberry. "We will develop games that appeal to the players who loved the titles as kids, while attracting a whole new generation by bringing the games up to today's highest standards. Of course, like all Hasbro Interactive titles, they will be backed by major marketing and merchandising programs." With the acquisition of Atari's deep library of game properties, Hasbro Interactive seeks to strengthen its position in the action game category. Hasbro Interactive intends to develop various titles for all viable and available gaming platforms - PC CD-ROM, the Sony Playstation and Nintendo 64 game consoles, among others. Background on Some Atari Favorites: The largest insect invasion in history was recorded when Centipede hit the arcades in the 1980s. "Getting the bugs out" was the mission in this perennial favorite. The player launched rapid-fire attacks against persistent centipedes, sticky spiders, mushroom-dropping fleas and poisonous scorpions in order to re-claim the sacred mushroom patch. No guts, no glory was the motto in the Atari classic, Missile Command. Players needed quick thinking and rapid fire to combat the battalions of bombers, satellites, missiles and smart bombs in this fast-action shooter. Blow them away first -- otherwise you're vapor! The two games that gave birth to the video game industry were pioneers Pong and Breakout. No fancy graphics were needed in these addictive thrillers - just a good dose of quick reaction and hand-eye coordination would do the job. Pong, the game of "virtual" handball, mesmerized gamers for hours as they battled their friends and foes match after match. Breaking through walls of bricks by ricocheting balls off of a video paddle was the simple, but very addictive premise behind Breakout. The desire to get a better score, kept the early gamers coming back for more. Hasbro Interactive, Inc. is a leading all-family interactive games publisher, formed in 1995 to bring to life on the computer the deep library of toy and board games of parent company, Hasbro, Inc. (AMEX:HAS). Hasbro Interactive has expanded its charter to include original and licensed games for the PC, the Sony PlayStation(tm) and for multi-player gaming over the Internet. Headquartered in Beverly, Massachusetts, Hasbro Interactive has offices in the U.K., France, Germany, Japan and Canada. For more information on Hasbro Interactive titles, please visit http://www.hasbro- interactive.com. Frogger is a registered trademark of Konami Co., Ltd. 1981 KONAMI. All rights reserved. PlayStation and the PlayStation logo are trademarks of Sony Computer Entertainment, Inc. Nintendo is a registered trademark of Nintendo of America, Inc. 1998 Hasbro Interactive, Inc. 1998 Hasbro, Inc. --30--ls/bos* CONTACT: Hasbro Interactive Dana Henry (978) 921-3759 or Agnew, Carter,McCarthy Cale Barrett (617) 437-7722 KEYWORD: MASSACHUSETTS INDUSTRY KEYWORD: COMED COMPUTERS/ELECTRONICS INTERACTIVE/MULTIMEDIA/INTERNET ENTERTAINMENT MERGERS/ACQ //// Project X Unveiled For Immediate Release May 11, 1998 VM LABS POISED TO REVOLUTIONIZE HOME ENTERTAINMENT WITH 'PROJECT X' TECHNOLOGY 'Project X' to Add Unprecedented Power to Existing Consumer Electronics Products LOS ALTOS, CA -- VM Labs, creators of the long-under-wraps, top-secret code-named 'Project X,' today unveiled the capabilities of its next generation graphics and video processing technology. Project X is a powerful and versatile technology that transforms passive digital video products such as DVD players, digital satellite receivers and digital set- top boxes into interactive multimedia centers. As an embedded technology, Project X will add unprecedented programmable processing power to existing consumer electronics products, turning the average home entertainment center into a truly interactive multimedia center with games and other interactive applications, as well as options like e-mail, Internet access and video telephone capabilities. VM Labs is licensing their technology to semiconductor and consumer electronics manufacturers and nurturing third party software applications. Products are scheduled to hit store shelves next year. "Our goal is to bring a powerful interactive experience to the consumer video entertainment market," said Richard Miller, Chairman and CEO of VM Labs. "We have accomplished this at little to no additional cost to the manufacturer." Project X is a flexible, scaleable architecture that will allow interactive content developers to create visually stunning software on a very short development cycle. The broad functionality and minimal cost of Project X make this technology a catalyst for bringing interactivity into the living room for millions of people who may have never owned a computer or a game console, but who already participate in video entertainment through their television sets. For instance, owners of DVD players incorporating VM Labs' technology will find themselves with a truly interactive platform that goes beyond the movie experience. Due to the technology's versatility, all members of the family will find enjoyment in this interactivity, ranging from challenging games to children's education programming. The Project X technology not only adds the capability of playing games and running other interactive applications, but actually enhances the passive entertainment element of digital video products. A powerful new media processor provides the raw horsepower to decode digital video and audio, while also delivering advanced trick modes and an enhanced user interface. Furthermore, a rich set of software development tools and APIs support independent software developers with existing and new applications. The Project X platform has the flexibility and power to allow developers to incorporate advanced new graphics and audio algorithms, never before possible, thus providing the opportunity to truly differentiate their products in the marketplace. VM Labs was founded in 1994. Richard Miller, Chairman and CEO at VM Labs, was previously responsible for Atari's development of computer and video games, including the original 64-bit system called Jaguar. Nicholas Lefevre, VP business and legal affairs, has worked with Commodore, Atari, Sega and many other hardware and software companies over the past 15 years. Bill Rehbock, VP of 3rd party development, was VP of research and development and technical support at Sony Computer Entertainment America. Contact: BENDER, GOLDMAN & HELPER Jenny Rosas, Ext. 277/Stacey Johnes, Ext. 263 310/473-4147 email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org Linda Thurmond 510/653-3010 email@example.com =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= //// Hasbro to Buy Atari from JTS =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= According to SEC documents and inside sources, JTS will be selling all of its Atari holdings to a subsidiary of Hasbro. March 11, 1998 Atari properties will almost certainly be put to good use. JTS Corp merged with Atari back in July of 1996, but since that time it has done little with the heritage that it held when it acquired all of Atari's games, patents and technology. It would now seem that Hasbro has had its eye on Atari and will be buying the former assets of Atari at a price of $5 million. According to the Form 8K JTS filed with the SEC yesterday: "On February 23, 1998, JTS Corporation (the "Company") sold substantially all of the assets of the Company's Atari Division, consisting primarily of Atari home computer games and the intellectual property rights and license agreements associated with such games (the "Atari Assets"), to HIACXI, Corp. ("HIAC"), a wholly-owned subsidiary of Hasbro Interactive, Inc., for $5,000,000 in cash. The purchase price was determined based upon arm's- length negotiations between the Company and HIAC. The Atari Assets were acquired by the Company in July1996 when the Company merged with Atari Corporation. There is no material relationship between HIAC and the Company, any of its affiliates, any director or officer of the Company, or any associate of any such director or officer." The report goes on to detail the exact platforms that Hasbro will gain from the purchase: "Atari Hardware Platforms" means the following hardware platforms: Atari 2600, 5200, 7800, Lynx hand-held and Jaguar game system hardware, Atari 800, ST and Falcon 030 computer family hardware, TOS operating system, 8- bit operating system, and Portfolio palmtop computer." On the title side of the arrangement, Hasbro will be getting the following pieces of intellectual property and then some: "Key Marks" means each of the following marks: Atari, the Fuji logo, Asteroids, Battlezone, Breakout, Centipede, Combat, Crystal Castles, Millipede, Missile Command, Night Driver, Pong, Ultra Pong, Tempest, Warlords and Yar's Revenge." Hasbro has experienced excellent sales success with its previous retro title efforts and with the Atari brand and properties to use, it's likely that Hasbro will continue to ride the retro wave of financial goodness. A spokesperson for JTS offered little insight into the sale, merely stating that he could "neither confirm nor deny the sale." He went on to say that if there had been such a major deal completed there would have been a press release issued. Strangely though, as Atari passes into the hands of Hasbro, it ends the company's jaunt with JTS raising some probing questions. The SEC approved Atari's "merger" with JTS on the premise that JTS would make a good faith effort to keep the Atari side of business alive. They "absorbed" $50,000,000 plus from Atari's coffers based on that premise. In a little more than a year, JTS sells what's left of Atari for $5,000,000. What happened to all that money? What investments went into satisfying the SEC commitments and understandings? Was this fair to ATC investors? Jaguar titles that were released after the merger had long since been completed (Fight for Life, Iron Soldier 2, etc.) which means that there had been no new development of titles. Sources close to JTS have indicated that at that point only one major project was in R&D at that time (a PC graphics converter which is obviously far outside the scope of any project Atari would have worked on). Numerous Jaguar developers have indicated that after the merger (and even before the merger was complete), all new contracts with Atari/JTS were discouraged and milestone rewards for existing contracts were not infrequently 're-negotiated'. Based upon these accounts, the attempt to keep the Atari side of the business running didn't quite seem like a 'good faith effort'. Next Generation Online is still awaiting comment from Hasbro and the SEC on the matter. [This article originally appeared at Next Generation Online http://www.next- generation.com. Reprinted with permission.] --==--==--==--==-- || New Cheats and Codes || Compiled by: Clay Halliwell \__// firstname.lastname@example.org ----------------------------------------------------------------- //// Blue Lightning Comedy Mode (this one isn't new): At the option screen, hold 0+1+2+4+5+6+7+9. Thud sound confirms. Changes voices and adds an extra FMV segment to the end game. Instant Repair: Comedy mode must be enabled. Anytime during play, press *. //// Breakout 2000 Banish Robots: When robots appear during gameplay, press * + #. //// Fight For Life Passwords: Enter on character select screen after pressing Option. Demo Mode (default) JAGUARTIME (or 1+5+9) All Special Moves IWANTPOWER (or 1+3+5+9) Play Junior vs Junior LOVEJUNIOR (or 1+3+5+7+9) (Morph as Junior: C+U,L,D) Shorter Junior Battle: Defeat Junior the second time with a ring-out. When the next fight begins, pause and rewind to before the electrocution. //// Kasumi Ninja Cheat Codes: At the Options screen, select Change Code (a lockout code must already be entered). Hold A+C on controller #2, then type code on controller #1. Various sounds confirm. Play as Gyaku/Demon Gyaku 3,7,4,9,6,1 (VS mode only; Gyaku/Demon Gyaku replace Senzo and Habaki) Allow Same-Character Fights 6,2,1,5,4,4 Sensible Fighter #1 7,4,3,8,7,1 Sensible Fighter #2 8,9,9,2,4,4 (named after the tiny characters in all Sensible Software games) Reset Parental Lockout 5,2,4,6,4,8 Start w/Key to Temple 6,3,7,4,0,4 Self-Test Mode 9,3,1,4,2,7 (reset and press fire after entering code; cycles through all player and background combinations one fight at a time; press A/B/C/Option on controller #1, or Option on controller #2, to skip to next fight) Demon Gyaku Moves: Uppercut A Fire Breath Toward+A Earthquake Stomp B Shake & Toss B (close) Slam & Taunt Away+B (close) Jump Kick Jump, B Head Rip Fatality C+circle clockwise twice //// SuperCross 3D Crash Replay: Anytime during play, press Pause, then 1-5 to replay the first, second, third, fourth, or fifth crash. After the fifth crash, 5 becomes the most recent crash, 4 the second most recent, etc... //// Worms Cheat Codes: After the landscape is generated, press B and enter code. Recall Last Played Level 1471 Allow All Levels ALL Only Alien Levels ALIEN Only Arctic Levels ARCTIC Only Candy Levels CANDY Only Desert Levels DESERT Only Forest Levels FOREST Only Hell Levels 666 Only Junkyard Levels JUNK Only Martian Levels MARS Cool Landscapes: After the landscape is generated, press B and enter code. 62997503 Injun Joe's Hideout - Desert OUCH King of the hill - Forest BEN Two sides of the ocean - Hell 24833916 Flat and featureless - Hell TISSOGDRIT Flat w/evenly spaced statues - Alien WILTON Flat w/evenly spaced snowmen - Arctic MYSTEE Flat w/trees - Forest 731931229 Long bridge - Ice 99289 Long bridge - Forest HOPELESS Long bridge - Forest BADRAN Long bridge - Desert SEAGULL Long bridge - Candy 02180719 Big columns, bottomless - Arctic 02182719 Big columns, bottomless - Hell 02184719 Big columns, bottomless - Beach 02186719 Big columns, bottomless - Junkyard 02188719 Big columns, bottomless - Arctic 7373888390 Big columns - Hell 8131166523 Short columns - Beach 02183719 Big dome - Forest 02185719 Big bowl - Alien 02187719 Slope/dome - Arctic 02189719 Slope/dome - Beach 70345 Shallow slope w/bars - Candy 7007230 Big slope - Arctic 416241 Caverns of Viet Nam - Forest LOSE Outcrop at sea - Martian 66888 Tiny outcrop at sea - Junkyard 980351 Pedestal at sea - Alien HIDEYHOLE Bigger pedestal at sea - Forest 75912494 Yet another pedestal at sea - Forest 98620 Caverns of Mars - Martian TRIFECTA Underground maze - Hell CLITO Underground maze II - Hell 8878942 Trash heap at sea - Junkyard 3333333333 Bridge and land bridge - Forest //// Zero 5 Cheat Codes: At the Options screen, select Change Mission and highlight the high mission to be unlocked. Hold Pause while entering code. Sound confirms. Unlock Mission 1 0,5,0,5,0,5 Unlock Missions 1-2 6,8,9,2,1,4 Unlock Missions 1-3 1,2,2,1,6,9 Unlock Missions 1-4 6,7,6,3,9,6 Unlock Missions 1-5 4,9,3,1,7,5 Unlock Missions 1-6 3,2,9,7,8,1 Unlock Missions 1-7 7,4,8,6,2,7 Unlock Missions 1-8 2,4,9,3,4,7 Unlock Missions 1-9 (unknown) Unlock Missions 1-10 2,7,6,5,4,9 Unlock Missions 1-11 1,0,7,8,4,0 Unlock Missions 1-12 2,9,7,4,3,0 Unlock Missions 1-13 9,2,1,7,5,3 Unlock Missions 1-14 3,8,5,1,7,9 Unlock Missions 1-15 9,0,1,9,3,4 NOTE: Entering a mission-unlock code will lock all missions above and beyond that one, even if you've previously unlocked them. --==--==--==--==-- || CyberChatter || Random topics about the Jaguar \__// Compiled from online public discussion areas ----------------------------------------------------------------- =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= //// Jag Internet Interface =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= Jaguar Interactive Date received: 2/12/98 9:51 from bas01.csfb.com Subject: Jaguar Internet Terminal Hi everyone, Just a little tid-bit of info to all Jaguar enthusiasts. I spoke several evenings ago with an ex-Atari employee who was working with John Mathiesan in Atari's Jaguar hardware division. Apparently Atari and Time Warner were inking a deal with which Atari was building an interface board and cartridge setup for the Jaguar. The interface board could use standard PC keyboards and Mice and external modems. The cartridge would supply the browser needed for communication. Although he is still digging around looking for it, a few prototypes of the interface board do in fact exist. Hmmm, too bad Sam Tramiel had to have that untimely heart attack (then again, when is a good time for a heart attack?) and his father Jack had to step in and just shut Atari down and sell it to his friend over at JTS. If Sam hadn't have fallen ill, I'm sure a lot of those unbelievably hot looking unreleased software titles, the Jag Modem and the Time Warner Cable interface system would have all been released and the Jaguar Duo probably would have been out. However the bright side to all this is that now Richard, John, Bill and most of the other top Atari Jag people are now VM Labs with probably the hottest piece of hardware since the Atari VCS, bound for glory. Curt www.atari.nu =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= //// Towers II Part Deux =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= Jaguar Interactive Date received: 2/22/98 11:28 from jackg.interlog.com Subject: Towers II (Win 95) is great! ... is Vince out there? Wow, I just finished playing the Towers II demo on my Pentium 166MMX. The frame-rate is 30+ fps, the characters talk and things like those blue globes that shoot out of the walls are transparent. The wall textures are much better and full of colour. Obviously the storage space isn't a problem with a PC. The Jag version is fun (albeit a slow frame rate) but the PC version is just terrific! Great work Vince and JV! Vince, if you are reading .... if you did a Towers II or had a chance to reprogram the Jag version would you be able to get a higher frame-rate, transparencies etc... technically speaking, could the Jag do it? Thanks =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= Jaguar Interactive Date received: 2/24/98 18:19 from pm2-103.vegas.infi.net (Vince Valenti) Subject: RE: Towers II (Win 95) is great! ... is Vince out there? > Vince, if you are reading .... if you did a Towers II or > had a chance to reprogram the Jag version would you be > able to get a higher frame-rate, transparencies > etc... technically speaking, could the Jag do it? On the PC, we used 128x128 textures. The transparencies are software based algs. On the Jaguar we used the blitter to keep the speed up. If I reprogrammed the Jaguar version, the textures would be improved, but not enlarged, because we have a better render. :) The extra size would take too much internal memory. I could increase the frame rate, but reducing the rez on the floor an ceilings, since they are the slowest parts. And on a 4meg cart, all the voices could be included, at a low sampling rate.... Thanks for the kind words, Vince =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= //// BattleSphere Chatter =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= Jaguar Interactive II Date received: 3/13/98 15:52 from RYLOS.ag3d.com (Scott Le Grand) Subject: BattleSphere Update Last night, we may have more or less put together our first candidate for a final BattleSphere build. Thanks to Doug's tireless efforts, 100% of Steph's intro will be music to the ears of any lucky BattleSphere buyer. Tonight, this edition goes out to our playtesters while Doug figures out how to make sure Steph's intro music syncs properly on PAL jaguars. Barring the discovery of a whole new species of bug, I think we're done... Quick not: I personally think the Hasbro deal is for real, but this has no effect on Jaguar BattleSphere one way or the other as far as I can see. Sure, it'd be great if there were some way we could get the Star Raiders license out of them or have them license BattleSphere, but don't count on it. The industry SUCKS right now, they won't even fund a M.U.L.E. sequel. In that environment, what kind of chances do we stand? Scott =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= Subject: Re: What the hell is up with Battlesphere? From: email@example.com Date: 1998/03/30 In article <firstname.lastname@example.org>, "Jeremy Holloway"
wrote: > > What is up with Battlesphere? If they'd just release the damn thing, > then maybe they could use their former Atari contacts at VMLabs to get > them a deal and cash to port the game to other systems (like > maybe...hmmmm...ProjectX?) .... Get the damn game out before the Jaguar > installed user base dwindels down to the Commodore Pet level.... > > I would submit that there are far more Commodore computers out there than Jaguars :-)... I'd really love to ship BattleSphere today, but there's this nagging issue of tiny little cosmetic bugs that are holding the thing back (if Atari's playtesting department were still alive, this would have been taken care of many moons ago, but it's not). If this were a PC game, we'd have shipped 6 months ago and we'd have released patches in response to nags from the game-playing public, but it's not, and we can't. I'm well aware of the game's irrelevance outside of the Jaguar community and like the man said, I don't care. The experience we got creating the thing taught us more about software development than anything else we've ever done and that has already paid off for ALL of us... Just don't expect the suits to ever give us a break or even notice us until we've already created a hit game on a viable platform, shipped the thing, and obviated the need for them to back us in the first place. All they know how to play is a giant game of chicken and the egg. We're not ever going to find funding and we're not going to waste any more time looking for it at this point... Good games take time. Look at Starcraft, it's been in full-time development for 3/4 of the time we've been developing BattleSphere on the very much alive PC and they STILL haven't shipped (and it will probably be the first truly great PC game in over 2 years and well worth the wait). In contrast, we're part-time, zero-funded, based on a system whose creators died 2 years ago. Wait a little longer, curse us and our ancestors, or just stop caring, your call. We'll ship when we're done and that's that... Scott Le Grand Lead Coder 4Play =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= Subject: Re: What the hell is up with Battlesphere? From: email@example.com (Scott Le Grand) Date: 1998/03/31 In article <firstname.lastname@example.org>, Robert Di Benedetto wrote: >Hi Scott, > >I'm a little surprised by your comments above. I sent a note to Stephanie >a few months ago stating that I could get Battlesphere in front of the >right people at Microsoft. She seemed interested at the time. So if >you're serious about getting some financing for a PC version of the game, >drop me a note and I'll get the ball rolling. >Regards, >Robert Di Benedetto >Microsoft Canada Co. Hi Robert, actually, she forwarded that message to me, I sent some email to you, and I didn't hear any more of it. In any event, I'm responding publicly in order to say that of course we're interested! It's best to take it to email from this point onwards methinks :-)... Scott Le Grand Lead Coder 4Play =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= Jaguar Interactive II Re: 4Play Posted by KittyFight (dynamic6.pm06.san-jose.best.com) on April 03, 1998 In Reply to: 4Play posted by Wes on April 03, 1998 at 14:59:48: >Hey 4Play... > > What's the latest scoop on BattleSphere...had any time to work on it? Well, last night I made some minor corrections to the music (had to be done on Scott's PC, as I have REMOVED the damn SB16 from mine in order to use a far superior soundcard which unfortunately isn't supported by Digitracker - - theoretically I'll never have to touch it again, though I don't think I've heard all of the final results. The corrections were minor and involved cutting a few samples short in order to make a tiny bit more room -- actually shifting them up an octave, then shifting the corresponding notes in the MOD DOWN an octave, thus effectively making them 11kHz rather than 22... Digitracker will run but not make sounds on Scott's PC, so I won't know about the finality until the music gets incorporated into BS... Yes, the cart is SO full that it was necessary to remove 25K or so of samples...you guys are DEFINITELY going to get your money's worth... As for the rest of the project, I have no idea except that I keep hearing "we're wrapping up" sounds from the other room... Talking about music, Wes, did you get that mp3 I sent you? Looked at Jagu- Sounds this morning and it wasn't up yet -- I can resend if you like! -Stephanie =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= Jaguar Interactive II Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Is Battlesphere coming out? Check NGO... Posted by BattleSphere Bob (dynamic0.pm14.san-jose.best.com) on May 18, 1998 at 21:27:10: In Reply to: Re: Re: Re: Re: Is Battlesphere coming out? Check NGO... posted by Wes on May 18, 1998 at 20:46:39: The trouble with the game industry these days is that you guys want and demand perfection, but a lot of you have no idea what that takes. Atari is gone and BattleSphere is the most ambitious game ever created on their ill- fated platform. We're not going to make money on the thing, and we'll release it whenever we all decide it's ready, case closed. In all honesty, the version I sent out last night after fixing two minor bus had the statement "Could this be the end?" within the message signifying just that, but I have NO idea if it is and if our playtesters find a reproducible bug in the thing, then we're going to fix it. Admittedly, I can understand the frustration, but that's how it goes. There's no business model that leads to us making money off this thing (and there wasn't one the minute we missed Xmas '95) and we're only doing it to show that we finish what we started. It's a funny thing, but I expect we could get the same kind of sales with the thing as one could get with a new 2600 game. The only people interested in it are the jaguar hardcore and they will get it. Be they 5 people or 5,000. Now onto VM Labs. Yep, I'm there guys. It's the most fun I've had in years (well since the salad days of BattleSphere) and the big difference is that I'm getting paid to do what I love rather than paid to fix other people's mistakes like at my previous job or paid a pittance to deeply analyze problems in science and then get forbidden to publish any of my results at the job before that. Anyway, back to hacking. I await bug reports on the latest edition of the Sphere and if there aren't any, the question of when you see BattleSphere becomes Tom's problem, not mine :-)... Scott =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= Subject: Re: 4Play? Battlesphere update? Anyone else still care? From: Mark Santora Date: 1998/06/13 email@example.com wrote: > Last I heard, the final music assignment was the only thing needed for > Battlesphere to be finished once and for all. > Well, the 4play team has been putting in the last(and must I say an EXTREMELY KICK ASS easter egg) which took a little while. Then, Doug found quite a few bugs that only he would find(ie I couldn't find them and he still plays it too much =-). Last week Scott and Steph moved into a house(kudos for them) and don't have a phone line hooked up to the computer as of yet(although I'm sure they check email and stuff periodically on their voice line). Then Doug's system got fried during the hellish storm front that crashed through the Northeast. The game is fine, Doug's computer is not. I have been working 16 hour days for the past 14 weeks on a couple of films which I can not talk to much about(NDA) and that's why my BS Playtester's Page has not been updated. Oh yeah, in case you didn't know, Scott is now hard at work over at VM Labs. That's the BS update while I recover from last night's pseudo wrap party. -Mark "Stingray' Santora 4Play Playtester http://home.earthlink.net/~santora =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= //// Coroner's Report =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= Jaguar Interactive II Subject: Re: *sigh* Why must everything good... Posted by Oppressor (dynamic11.pm14.ba.best.com) on March 25, 1998 at 22:06:19: The Jaguar was doomed before it was released... It was too complicated an architecture for general consumption. Complicated architectures bring delays. Delays bring the lack of titles and abandoned efforts. The lack of titles brings the system's doom... Had the Tramiels waited a year on the system and jacked the processors up to 40 MHz as well as provide something approaching the quality of the Playstation's development system (not much of an effort, but an effort nonetheless), it might have lived. And that's all she wrote. Here we are in 1998 still dealing with esoterica of the architecture before we can release our damned game... Scott =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= //// Those Wacky Jag CDs =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= Subject: Re: Copying Jag CD Games From: Mike Fulton Date: 1998/03/17 BELJAN E wrote: > > In <firstname.lastname@example.org> email@example.com > writes: > > > >Are you positive that they are 790? I was trying to copy Primal Rage > >and if I remember correctly the game was only a little over 400 megs. > >Although that could be my prob. Maybe my drive does not see the extra > >390. > > > The capacity of the CDs is different, so they must be compressed or > something and probably cannot be read in the same way in a standard CD > player. The game size may vary, but the CDs are 790 megabytes. The capacity of the Jaguar CD is exactly the same as any other CD. However, the information is stored somewhat differently than on standard ISO-9660 format CD. The raw capacity of a CD sector, regardless of the disc format, is always 2352 bytes. The only standard disc format that uses this much data per sector is "Red book" aka a standard audio CD. (2352 bytes per sector @ 75 sectors per second = 176400 bytes per second, divided by 2 channels = 88200 bytes per channel, or 44100 16-bit samples) The CDROM standard typically uses the ISO-9660 standard for storing files onto a disc. Of the original 2352 bytes per CD sector, ISO-9660 uses 304 bytes housekeeping and error detection/correction information, leaving a total of 2048 bytes available for user data in each sector. Jaguar CD is a non-standard format and does not use ISO-9660. It uses what amounts to audio-format sectors even for data. As a result it gets 2352 bytes of useable space in each sector. The downside is that there's no provision for error correction (errors are still detected by the hardware) or file system management. There is also copy protection placed onto each disc. This is encrypted data which is specially formatted to look like an error. When you try to copy a disc, the CD-R can't deal with those sectors because it gets errors. Even if it reads it, it probably won't write it back out the same way. Mike Fulton (formerly Jaguar Developer Tools & Documentation Manager @ Atari Corp.) =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= //// Jag Bomberman? =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= Next Generation Online Q&A April 2, 1998 Q: UGP online says that Bomberman was finished for the Jaguar, but was never released. Do you guys know anything about this? A: Sure do. Actually, one of the staff members of Next Generation Magazine was the lead programmer on the project. Essentially, Atari was going to get the license from Hudson for it (after the game was nearly complete) and then in the face of the Atari merger with JTS, the project was deemed not feasible by Atari and canned. =-=-=-=-=-=-=-= //// Texturing =-=-=-=-=-=-=-= Jaguar Interactive II Re: Re: T-Mapped Poly-Grip Posted by Dirk Debuggler (126.96.36.199) on May 05, 1998 at 00:50:23: In Reply to: Re: T-Mapped Poly-Grip posted by Stephen Anderson on May 04, 1998 at 19:56:07: >>Did you ever notice how almost all t-mapped polys on the Jag kind of shimmer and warp around the edges when they move/rotate? I don't see this on other systems. Why? What is it about our t-mapped polys that make them dance and flicker on their edges?? >>-Jay >The Jaguar has no hardware for texture mapping. All the math has to be >handled in software. This is very slow (time consuming as far as the CPU >is concerned). >With better programming, the Jag could do perfect t-maps, but the frame >rate would probably be single-digit. >The PSX is better at handling t-maps, but it has its limitations also. >Very poor z-buffer, tons of polygon "tear" and flicker. Not bashing it (it >sits right next to my Jag), but it's not perfect either. > >Stephen Anderson OK, let's get down to brass tacks. What you're seeing at the edges is called texture swimming. It results from using fixed point math to interpolate the left edge of the polygon rather than a strict Bresenham Digital Differential Analyzer DDA. In essence, at each scanline, one rounds down the edge coordinate to the nearest integer coordinate less than or equal to the fixed point value. This causes individual scanlines to jump randomly up to 1 pixel to the left. The low resolution of the Jaguar makes this all the more noticeable. I'm even guilty of this in BattleSphere because at one time I didn't know any better and I'm scared poopless to go back in and monkey with the rendering code so close to production. But I never make the same mistake twice... The warping that you are seeing is a result of doing affine (linear) texture mapping rather than perspective. The texture coordinates vary non- linearly across an individual scanline and approximating them linearly causes the warp effect. The solution is to interpolate multiples of each coordinate by 1/Z. Texture coordinates divided by Z are linear across a scanline. The problem is that to convert back to the normal texture coordinates for each pixel, one must perform a divide and this takes forever :-(. The approximate solution is to do a divide every 8 pixels, and then use affine mapping within the 8 pixel stretches between any two divides. The Nintendo 64 is the only console system that does perspective correct texture mapping in hardware. Technical enough for you guys? Scott =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= //// M.U.L.E.-Headed =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= Subject: M.U.L.E.: What are the suits afraid of? From: Scott Le Grand Date: 1998/02/21 Newsgroups: rec.games.programmer It's rant time guys, feel free to skip this if you don't like that kind of stuff. If you're still reading, and you're one of those struggling game coders who can't get the attention of the suits, here's something to put it all into perspective. Danielle Bunten Berry, the legendary author of the equally legendary M.U.L.E has a rather virulent case of lung cancer and she has been unable to obtain funding for an updated online edition called Planet Pioneers because when she shows the original edition, game suits are unimpressed by the crude 8-bit graphics. Gameplay? We don' need no steenkin' gameplay... This sums up the state of the videogame industry today. I've always wondered why such a no-brainer decision to make a sequel has not already been made. M.U.L.E remains one of the best video games ever written. Disagree? Too bad, you're a moron who probably wants to colorize Citizen Kane, end of discussion. It's still as fun today as it was 15 years ago. Who the >multi-definition slang for reproduction< are the succubi standing in the way of giving the gamers a modernized version of the fun I and millions of others had during another age, getting drunk out of our minds, inhaling of unapproved substances, and humming the wonderfully annoying but totally unforgettable M.U.L.E. theme which reverbs in my memories to this very day right alongside the Kool-Aid music. What? Do I have to wait another 5 years for the 80s to become nostalgic so M.U.L.E. is suddenly retro? That's not soon enough, you read the bit about cancer, right? In an age where millions are spent on a remake of a third-rate action flick like _The Taking of Pelham One Two Three_, sequels are made ad nauseum for Street Fighter long past its natural death, and the gaming media still thinks Dave Perry has fresh and new things to say, you and I are being deprived of the right to see a sequel to one of the top 10 videogames of all time because some pipsqueeks in pinstripes don't remember the thing because they didn't go concrete operational until after the release of Doom. With this decision, I'd say the game suits are going for an all-time personal worst. It's the gameplay, stupid... Now I'm not going to pretend there's much that can be done about this. The industry and its stultified soldiers of suitliness need to consume themselves in a blaze of bankruptcy and that will take some time, but if you are a game suit reading this post, and you think M.U.L.E. is outdated garbage, do the gamers and me a favor: off yourself now, you're beyond hope. If you haven't heard of M.U.L.E before, go play it. Don't like it? Go look at all the gamers who do are STILL working out new strategies to this 15 year old game and make a smart business decision before it's too late (http://www.mindspring.com/~ozarksoft/biz/). If you're a gamer, be aware of what has been stolen from you by these titans of terrible taste. Videogames used to be fun. M.U.L.E. was one of the most fun. Go figure it out... Scott Le Grand Lead Coder 4Play PS SegaSoft seems to think cloning M.U.L.E in 3D is a good idea so now you don't even have to be a trail blazer (http://www.10six.com). Just do it guys before it's too late... =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= //// Great Scott! =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= Next Generation Online 4Play's Scott Le Grand has long been a vocal and insightful member of the Net on gaming topics. In an informal letter to NGO, he shares his current thoughts on the industry. April 29, 1998 Always outspoken, 4Play's Scott Le Grand has been one of the more vocal developers on such past topics as OpenGL vs DirectX and Atari's mismanagement of the Jaguar, among others. Recently Le Grand wrote in to Next Generation Online with his thoughts on the current state of Nintendo, Sony, and those of the upcoming consoles. Finding them quite insightful, we figured we'd share them with our readers It's nice to see that sometimes one actually can predict the future. Back when Nintendo originally announced the "dream team" of developers for the Nintendo 64, anyone I knew with more than a year's programming experience proclaimed it the most incestuous pack of middle-level mediocrity that the industry had ever seen. Then came the absurd exclusivity required of anyone who wasn't Williams or LucasArts, and then after a long delay, came the crappy games and the hits just keep not coming. Hello, McFly? Sure, compared to the Atari Jaguar, the N64 is a raging success. It even annihilated the 3DO and it made mincemeat out of the CDI. Wow, I'm so impressed. And now comes the news that they've alienated their technology partners and the "Discontinued in America" Sega Saturn outsold them in Japan. I'm laughing at the superior intellect. A year in the valley has taught me that all these companies are arrogant and they all mismanage, it's just a question of degree. Just look at what a killer position 3Dfx was in a year ago and now they're fighting for their lives just like everyone else. Ever see Massacre at Central High or Heathers? It doesn't matter who's on top of the food chain, the mere state of being there will turn them into jerks until someone knocks their block off. Meanwhile, everyone's favorite Colin is dissing on the upcoming Project X, decrying it as all business model and no technology. Take a look around you my friend and look at the winners. It's the games, stupid, and Nintendo didn't deliver them (but they sure whupped that Atari Jaguar! Yee haw!), coffin closed (ding dong the wicked witch is dead!). The aptly named X is a big unknown. Yak's demos make it clear that it's quite powerful in the right hands (so was the Jaguar, whee!), but no one has demonstrated a killer app on the thing yet nor have we gotten the scoop on this mother of all business models. Still, it's gotta be more exciting than yet another venue for a Microsoft OS (gag me). X and the Katana will rise or fall on the quality of the software regardless of whether they are light years ahead or parsecs behind. Technology is irrelevant, whiny developers are irrelevant, you will be assimilated (and pray you get a good options package before you sign on). I'd continue this rant, but I think it's time for my daily round of Minesweeper. Love that gameplay, hope that X and Katana provide some. I just hate the way my disposable income keeps piling up in bank accounts and mutual funds these days. Scott Le Grand firstname.lastname@example.org =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= //// News Flash: Jag not 64-bit! =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= Subject: Videotopia excludes the Jaguar From: email@example.com (Robot2084) Date: 1998/06/08 Newsgroups: rec.games.video.atari The traveling exhibit whose purpose is the preservation of video games as they relate to gaming and computer history is on tour now in Tampa, FL. I eagerly awaited its arrival to FL so I could finally play all the arcade games (some rare) that I played as a kid. (I am now an avid arcade machine and console collector). The exhibit is phenomenal. They have every Atari vector game ever on display (Lunar Lander was down, but I was taken in the back to see it). The president of the Electronics Conservancy, Keith Feinstein happened to be on hand and we had some extended conversations (sparked by his overhearing that I own a very rare Vectorbeam machine called Speed Freak-- he took me in the back to see his, which was not working). One topic of the conversation which is relevant to this message board is the exclusion of the Atari Jaguar from the Home Video Game exhibit. The PSX, Saturn, N64, Virt boy, 3DO, Odyssey, 2600, Pong, Lynx, Vectrex, etc etc were all on display. But no Jag. I politely inquired. His answer was short and curt, "Why?" I said, "Because it was the first 64 bit system." He said, "It wasn't 64 bit." I smiled and contemplated telling him to Do the Math. :) He went on to say that it had two 32-bit processors and blah blah blah. I told him, "I didn't say 'It was the first 64-bit processor.' I said 'The first 64-bit system.' The first machine to incorporate 64 bits of processing power into a console." He said, "No it doesn't work that way." And continued into a long-winded overly technical explanation that I couldn't compete with. (I am no techie. I majored in Zoology :) I told him the Jag was released in late 93 and competed with the SNES and Genesis and did things they couldn't dream of. Whether or not the hardware was designed to fully utilize certain processors and what not is irrelevant. It made a leap in console game systems. He said it competed with the 3DO and was not up to its capabilities. I said the Jag cost 249 and the 3DO cost 699. Two different ballparks. The bottom line is nothing got resolved and the Jag looks to be left off the console display forever. I would like anyone here who thinks they have more to offer Keith than I did to politely email him with a convincing reason as to why the Jaguar should be included in the display. PLEASE be polite. Keith is an extremely nice man and anyone who loves video games should be thanking him for his efforts in conserving and educating the public in videogames and how they influenced popular culture and personal computing as we now know it. And the exhibit has a HUGE Atari section which confirms the fact that Atari overwhelmed and dominated the arcades for many years. Almost every Atari console is there also. So any Anti-Atari conspiracy theories should be abandoned. (Anti-Jag theories are welcome:) His email is Keith@videotopia.com The webpage is videotopia.com Like I said, please don't be rude and belligerent. That will certainly accomplish nothing. Anyone who has an opportunity to visit this exhibit....it is the closest thing I have ever found to a time machine. Awesome! Thanks Jason W Cody PS..those of you who remember my Tempest 2000 arcade machine project. Hold on tight. It is close. I am designing the marquee and will be asking opinions in another post. :) ___________________________________________________ J.W. Cody----Robot2084@aol.com---VAPS Member--FLORIDA http://www.geocities.com/TimesSquare/Arcade/1351/JNG.html --==--==--==--==-- || BattleSphere News || By: Doug Engel and Stephanie Wukovitz \__// firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com ----------------------------------------------------------------- =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= //// BattleSphere Update =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= [from Doug Engel's Thunderbird's Garage home page (http://home.sprynet.com/ sprynet/Thunderbird).] //// 2/15/98 Okay... so there hasn't been an update for some time. So sue me... What the heck have those losers at ForePleigh been doing with YOUR BattleSphere all these past weeks? Well, we have been finishing it up. We have discovered TONS of little annoying bugs, and repaired them all. I can't begin to explain how difficult it is for a small team like ours to test a program of this size ourselves. Last count has 358,000+ lines of code and that was a couple of weeks ago. This project is immense. Anyhow, the bugs we're finding now are of the 'non-fatal-but-imperfect' type. Nothing here is going to ruin anyone's great run at the high-score with an unexpected crash. The kind of thing we're talking about are bugs like the way the music would glitch if you reset the game, or some menu screens having text off-center, or one controller setting not being saved, or the ship type menu option in one play level referring to the wrong type. Unfortunately, 4Play is jam-packed with all sorts of perfectionist types (we could make 10 CD's out of all the music tracks Steph has wrote and discarded or left on the cutting room floor) and so we really can't stand these glitches. The upside of this is that the extra time has also given us the opportunity to add a couple of extra easter-eggs and some clever touches and redone graphics. We think we have more easter eggs than any game on the market. The only things remaining now number very few. First, we have to get all the music finished. After that, we need to see how much ROM is left over and potentially add a few more sound samples to fill the ROM. I discovered a few more things I want to change aesthetically, but those can be fixed in a few hours. Beyond that, it's a simple matter of writing a manual. Whew! In the Immortal Words of 'Gold Leader': "Almost there... Almost there..." =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= //// BattleSphere Brief =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= [by Stephanie Wukovitz, from JI2.] //// 6/7/98 4Play West is moving to Santa Cruz and has been making 2 or 3 round trips daily from San Jose for the past 2 days. (And um Doug, it's a bit different when you have to move furniture as well). Scoph and Steff's new house is an incredible mansion which they are currently painting black with touches of red clawmarks and yellow eyes. The jacuzzi's broken for the time being, but the dungeon and moat are in fine shape. Doug got hit by lightning or something and has acquired telekinetic powers but also lost his computer in the same incident. He was last seen cursing Zeus while flying through the air wearing a toga emblazoned with the Project X logo (which does not in any way resemble the Nutrasweet or Cinnabon ones). Tom has not been in contact for weeks but we did hear that his attempt to be the first human in geostationary orbit without a spacesuit was entirely successful, and that he's now off to find the giant gasbags on Jupiter... --==--==--==--==-- || Llatest from Llamaland || By: Jeff "Yak" Minter \__// firstname.lastname@example.org ----------------------------------------------------------------- [All of the following postings are taken from Jeff Minter's web page, Yak's Zoo (http://www.magicnet.net/~yak/zoo.html). Check it out, and see what else Jeff has yakked up lately.] //// 23 March 1998 Hey, it's been awhile. Actually it's been awhile since I have really hung out online in any form just recently. At first I was just busy, the usual stuff. Just recently though I have had some lame glandular infection which is on the way out now but which has had me feeling a little wiped out for a couple of weeks, so I haven't felt much energy to do much non-work stuff. Also, and probably a greater contributory factor to my not-onlineness, I have been going through the throes of eschewing burning cylindrical objects. Overcoming the craving for the drug that the cylindrical objects impart really isn't too bad. The hardest part lies in overcoming the habits which would usually cause me to reach for the cylinders, and I habitually used to consume many cylinders whilst relaxing at the PC, either online or updating my stuff. So I have stayed away from such activities whilst I get the worst part of the withdrawal process over with. Now, two weeks into the process, I am sufficiently confident that I will continue to not burn and inhale things, that I can resume my old activities, just without cylinders. I have already proven to my own satisfaction that I can eat curry without cylinders, and drink beer without cylinders, and that I do not necessarily need to have a cylinder after I've finished a particularly satisfying go on a videogame, so I figure I am safe to resume my usual leisure modes at the computer. It'll be good not to get so much ash down the keyboard, anyway. In the meanwhile, I have been getting on with my usual stuff on the new system - basically implementing the system which makes it really easy to have lots of interesting parameters varying rhythmically all over the place, just the kind of thing that's handy if you happen to have an interest in lightsynth kinda thangs :-). In my leisure time, I have been relaxing with MAME 0.30, of course; although I should warn you that a proper addiction to Star Wars will knacker your mouse. The ball gets dirty, of course, but that's OK, you just clean it. But I have found that the continual thrashing of the mouse buttons to fire the laser completely buggers 'em up. My left mouse button can no longer reliably do a single click. It frequently double-clicks unintentionally, which means that sometimes you go to move a window, and it fulls itself instead. This leads, as you can imagine, to frequent cursing. I should install a swear-box. It'd pay for my weekly curry, for sure :-) Oh yeah... brag mode on... [picture of Yak's pinball room --Ed.] Hehe... that's my pinball room, which as you can see now contains a stool shaped like a sheep, a yak on wheels, and an actual pinball machine, which I have found to be most useful as a displacement activity at times when I feel an overwhelming urge for a burning cylindrical object. It certainly helps that the pinball is an excellent game, with much fun to be had with the Borg Multi-Ball, the little guns that you can fire the ball at targets with, and the wealth of interesting objectives to achieve. Mucho coolness. Mind you, they are bloody heavy, pintables. When I ordered mine, I was under the distinct impression was that it was going to be delivered by a couple of guys who would get it into the house and set it up for me. In reality, what happened was that one guy who knew nothing at all about pinball showed up at my place with the table in a van (and at 8:30 in the morning, to boot. Why is it whenever I have stuff delivered it's always at some totally ungodly hour? 8:30 in the morning! Who the smeg gets up at that time?)... anyway, basically me and him had to horse this huge object out of the van and into my gaff, at which point I found out that pinball tables weigh precisely 16.7 million tons. I just about managed to avoid activating herniated mode, and eventually we got the thing indoors, which was cool, and a relief to a not-particularly buff geek like myself. (Note for my UK readers: "buff" is an Americanism for "the state that you get into when you go to the gym and lift weights". It's one of those words which sounds extremely weird the first time you hear it in an American context. To a true Brit, of course, "buff" has connotations of "in the buff", i.e., starkers. So, when an Englishman hears that an American bloke likes to go to the gym three times a week to get "buff", he naturally thinks that there must be some pretty strange gyms in the USA. But, as ever, I digress). So, we got the table in the house (barely), and far from hanging around to help me set it up, the delivery guy buggered off in short order. At this stage the table still had no legs on and was far from being operational. Eventually I had to call a mate over to help me finish setup, and then bugger around for hours actually trying to get it to work. Eventually got it sorted, though, but I can tell you the bloody thing's not moving from the spot it currently occupies! Of course, now there is this suggestive gap just the other side of the pinball table, which I happen to think is exactly the correct shape to get filled by a nice, big, coin-op Robotron machine.... hehe..... You may also be wondering why I haven't yet posted a nice picture of me reunited with Flossie yet. The reason for that is that she still isn't home! You would not believe the hassle I have had trying to get the fencing done on my back field... the first guy came up on the 7th December, walked around the field a bit, and left, telling me he would be back with an estimate in a few days. I have never seen him again. The second guy didn't even get so far as coming up. It was arranged on the phone that he would definitely, for sure, come up at 4pm on a particular Tuesday. Of course he did no such thing, in fact turning up several Thursdays later, whilst the third guy was actually here doing the job. Yeah, I did get a third guy, and he was actually doing the job. Had, in fact, almost finished the job. Only a few more bits of fence, and getting some gates together, and I'd have my back field ready for Flossie, and my small middle field sorted for goats as yet unspecified. I'm pretty pleased with my third guy, and he's doing the job well - so what happens? The poor guy gets mugged. In a small seaside town in Wales, for flip's sake. That just should not happen. Like, he's OK, not seriously hurt, which is cool, but he's broken his hand, and as such is unlikely to be able to do any fencing. I haven't seen him for a week. I am hoping he might have a mate he could send in to finish off... but jeez, it's gonna be such a relief when it finally gets done, and I really do get to have my Flossie back again... it has been waay too long... Anyway... I'm knackered. I'll upload this now and hope to do more frequent updates. Really. :-) //// 4 April 1998 Well, I did promise to keep the page a bit more frequently updated. I've been busy, as per usual; writing more documentation than code, it seems, at the moment; although the stuff I'm working on at the moment is well worth documenting well, because hopefully a bunch of people will be able to use it to get stuff happening easily with X. Outside, spring is beginning to happen in Wales. This involves certain floral entities emerging, my grass looking like it is going to need mowing soon, and a fairly large amount of descending moistness. Happily, the fencing I mentioned last time is now actually finished, so it remains only for me to arrange for the physical transportation of the Prettiest Sheep in the World and she will be back home at last. Expect pictures in the next update :-) In my spare moments, when not pondering the mysteries of X, I have been relaxing as usual with the latest releases of the emulators; it's been a while since there was a new MAME, but there are still goodies such as System16 and Callus to keep one occupied until v0.31 comes out. Callus in particular is a fine example of the emulator coder's art, running many fairly recent games at full speed on my trusty Penty 300 (which I am saddened to see is no longer state of the art, being as Dell are now offering a Penty 333... hehe... oh well, I knew that day would come... in a few months my system will be entry-level :-)). Not really much to report new over the last two weeks, really - nothing earth-shattering has occurred here. I have had a run of good luck recently though - a couple of weeks ago, when Wales played Ireland at rugby, all and sundry from the village around here, myself included, buggered off down the pub to watch the game. Someone was keeping book, and despite knowing next to bugger-all about the finer points of rugby, I had a bet, more or less just by guessing and hoping that Wales would win. I won a tenner, which was cool, as it paid for a large steak and a few more beers. Then, the following weekend, I won the pub's Lottery Bonus Ball sweepstakes, which was on a double rollover, and won 100 quid! Hehe... the Milky Bars were on me that night :-) There's more rugby again this weekend, tomorrow in fact, and I am going to the pub with a video projector and an 8x6 screen to display the match on. It should be a good laugh, and I'll take down the Nintendo so that everyone can play large-screen videogames after the match - but I fully expect to lose my bet this time, nobody can be jammy enough to win 3 weekends on the trot... So what else is new?... ummm, my best score on the pinball is 1.9 billion, which I know isn't a huge amount yet, but I haven't had any really mega sessions on the table yet, I am still in the familiarisation stage; many thanks to everyone who wrote to me about ST:TNG. Oh, and speaking of email... generally, I get quite a bit of email from people who come across my page, and it's always good to hear from people who have enjoyed either the page, or the games I've made over the years, or both, or who just want to say hi. It cheers me up to read such mail, and although I can't hope to respond personally to every single piece that I get, I do try to get back to as many as I can, given my other commitments. However, last week, I had some eejit depositing unsolicited, unprovoked and abusive email in my box for no apparent reason. I remember a few years ago, when I was living in the US, there was a guy who maintained an excellent, and amusing site called the Highway 17 Hall of Shame, where he would depict and humiliate those drivers he encountered in his morning commute who were obviously driving in an asinine manner. Now I deplore the old "Information Superhighway" metaphor as much as the next man, but sometimes I do get the feeling that there are certain individuals who ought to have to get a "driving license" before being allowed anywhere near a network access point, and my friend the abusive emailer is definitely one of these, as a little research into his behaviour elsewhere on the Net soon revealed. Unfortunately I don't have a picture of his ugly mug to display in my Hall of Shame, but I thought at least I could dig up a few good samples of his abject stupidity for everyone to have a good laugh at. Therefore, I have made him my Wanker of the Week. Feel free to follow the link if you want a good snigger at his expense; I do enjoy extracting the urine out of the willfully stupid; but do be warned, there's quite a bit of bad language down there. All his, I hasten to add. Well, that's all for now - I have to go down the cashpoint before I go to the pub, or I won't have any money for my beer. I was thinking about a curry too, but my ring is still twitching from the Tindaloo I had the other night. I think I'll give my poor old chocolate starfish a bit of a break. :-) //// 5 May 1998 Bloody hell, I have to admit I have been crap at being on the Internet recently. At least in any kind of interactive mode, that is; I have of course done sufficient online time to have downloaded the new release of MAME and a fat stack of ROM images for it, but I have hardly bothered with email at all in the last few weeks and didn't update here for a month. At least part of the reason is the following: [picture of really cute puppy here --Ed.] This tiny entity is one of the new arrivals at the Yakly abode, and at the time the pic was taken she was just 5.5 weeks old (note the floppy disk for scale). She is by now a fair bit larger at 9 weeks, and subsequently is getting more energetic and demanding than this picture seems to imply. Every now and again I get a severe barking at (well, more of a yapping-at at the moment) and I have to go outside to play football or Chuck the Ball- and-Sock (the Ball-and-Sock is a dog toy of my own devising, being a rubber ball with a bell in it, down the end of one of my old socks. The microcarnivore prefers this device by at least an order of magnitude to any of the off-the-shelf doggie toys with which I have provided her in a vain effort to get her to chew things other than Those Which Must Not Be Chewed). This entity is named Vindy. Vindy Lou, I suppose the full name would be :-) Vindy's a Border Collie, which is the default ungulate-herding carnivore of choice around these parts; both her parents are working farm dogs. You wouldn't have known it, though, for today, she took one look at the other new arrival, who got here this afternoon, and fled at high velocity back into the Pinball Room. The other new entity looks like this: [picture of a goat --Ed.] As you can see, a very goaty-looking entity. If you look at this creature, you definitely think "goat". This is Alastair, the neutered male goat who has been keeping Flossie company since her other ovine companion, Molly, unfortunately went discorporeal last year. I would normally not be inclined to choose a male goat for a pet, coz they can get a bit bolshy and whiffy at times, but Alastair's a gent, now that he's had his bits off, and is neither whiffy nor aggressive. It must be cool to be able to scratch your back with your horns though :-) I did mention two new arrivals and a homecoming; and it gives me a great deal of pleasure to be able to finally display the following image: [picture of (sigh) Flossie --Ed.] Yes indeed, here is the Prettiest Sheep in the World just a few minutes after arriving back at the Yakly gaff. Her wool is a bit dirty and she should probably have it removed shortly, and she is a little greyer in the muzzle than she used to be, but she is still undoubtedly the Ultimately Pulchritudinous Ovine. And she still has a taste for Digestive biscuits :- ), and enjoys being hugged. I look forward to the next drop of rain we have, so that once again, after way too long, I can experience... the fine smell of damp sheep in the morning. And I shall be buying a lot more Digestive biscuits from the Spar now; when I need inspiration during a particularly heavy bout of T3K-coding I shall be able to go out to the back field, feed Flossie a nice biccy and run my hands through her wool, just like old times. Ahhh, the joyful sound of her melodious bleating... Speaking of T3K-coding, I have been asked to steer my development work back in a Tempestuous direction, with a view to perhaps having some fetching new goodies running in time for E3 (where I shall actually be going, as it turns out - if you're coming, maybe I'll cya there). This fits in really nicely, as it happens - a lot of the work I've just been doing is in need of a "real" game to apply it to, and although I knocked up a working version of Breakout in about half an hour (sure, not a very demanding game, but you can build it real quick using my system, and the bricks do break up into 1000 particles each when you smash them with the ball hehe), but a much better test will be to apply it to T3K. It also gives me a chance to develop some ideas I have for fancy particle system effects and a unique look for some of the enemies... Bit of a stretch getting Tempest running on top of the new stuff by E3 though - I can feel some late nighters coming on... Oh yeah, speaking of things Tempestuous, I got a copy of Grand Theft Auto the other day, and I was touched to see that the designers have used my Pixelshatter method out of T2K for displaying the incidental scores you get for various acts of nastiness. Cheers, guys! The game itself is fun indeed, driving around large cities doing various nasty things, ripping off cars, squashing peds, planting bombs and generally being a menace to society. The soundtrack consists of a variety of styles, including a Country and Western spoof which contains the excellent lyric "The menfolk found their women scary, because they were so big and hairy". Hehehe... The massive news on the emu scene is, of course, that MAME v0.31 is released, with a ton of new games now working. Highlights include Marble Madness, which many will recall was the definitive, Amiga showpiece game some years ago; Atari Tetris, the two-player version of which I remember kicking my mate Mark's arse at on a ferry in Greece one time; and Liberator, the little-known sequel to Atari's Missile Command, which has the missiles being launched from bases on a nicely-depicted rotating planet surface, attacking your ships at the corners of the screen. Many of the other games have been improved too, most notably all the vector games, which benefit greatly from some nice antialiasing routines. Humongous though MAME is, it has yet to cover all the games that can be emulated, and sometimes you can find a gem or two in the form of a standalone emulator. One such case in point is the recent I, Robot emulator. This game was poorly distributed, but fondly remembered by everyone who played it; I had a mate who had one in his flat, so I got to know the game very well, and when the emulator was released, I was overjoyed to see the game again (and I made the day of my mate who used to have the machine, by emailing him the emulator too). The game is of historical interest as one of the first (possibly the first) polygon-based arcade games; it's also of interest just from a fun point of view, because it's a great game to play! There is no sound yet, but apart from that, the emu is perfect. More than perfect, in some respects - since it uses polys rather than bitmaps, you can do cool stuff like run it in a higher rez than the original, whilst retaining the exact gameplay. The author hints at extra additions in future releases, such as texture mapping and a higher framerate. Definitely a cool emulator and one to watch. I wonder if the guy feels like doing a STUN Runner emu too? :-) Well, I better upload... with the short time to E3 and the stuff I must do, I will be more or less completely offline for the next few weeks. Yeah, you say, nothing new there... but I mean it this time. I may bang up another update if things are going well and I have time, but otherwise, expect me out the other side once E3 is done and I am back from the US, bleating gently into the furry ear of the Prettiest Sheep in the World and plying her with Digestive biscuits. Proper, McVities ones. None of your cheap, own-brand rubbish. Nothing but the best for my beloved :-) --==--==--==--==-- || Jaguar VoiceModem Update || By: Carl Forhan \__// email@example.com ----------------------------------------------------------------- Boy, it seems that JVM owners came crawling out of the woodwork since my brother Pat and I announced the JVM FAQ... well, OK, that's not quite true. There's less than 100 of these gems, after all. But several modems have been sold and auctioned off in the last few weeks, and so now I present the updated JVM owner list for your reading pleasure: 1. Carl Forhan - firstname.lastname@example.org 2. Patrick Forhan - email@example.com 3. Curt Vendel - firstname.lastname@example.org 4. John Hardie - email@example.com 5. Keita Iida - firstname.lastname@example.org 6. Don Rogers - email@example.com 7. Dave Stein - firstname.lastname@example.org 8. Mike Etler - email@example.com 9. Guy Dupre - firstname.lastname@example.org 10. Ken Dupre - email@example.com 11. Mike Szoke - firstname.lastname@example.org Official Jaguar Voice Modem FAQ: http://cs-sun1.truman.edu/~pforhan/jvmfaq.html --==--==--==--==-- || The Two Cybermorphs || By: Clay Halliwell \__// email@example.com ----------------------------------------------------------------- It recently came to my attention that there are TWO versions of Cybermorph floating around out there, one of which seems to be missing a few animations and voice samples. JEO contacted Fred Gill of Attention to Detail, and he had this to say: "Yes. There are two versions! The second version was commissioned when CyberMorph became the pack-in game and Atari wanted to increase their margins - it fits inside 1Mb, hence the missing speech and animations. Not our choice, but we only wrote it! "I'm very clear on why the second Rev came about - I had to do all the work which was around March '94. The 2Mb version was definitely shipped with the Jag at launch (Atari got us to fill the 2Mb because our code & data took a little over 1Mb). We filled it with animations mainly. In 1994 we were asked to generate a 1Mb version so that they could increase their margins while it was still the pack-in. I'm not sure you can guarantee the version by the purchase date - it will depend on how old the retailer/distributor's stock was..." When asked how so many levels could be packed into 1Mb, Mr. Gill replied: "The levels on Cybermorph were fractal height maps stored along with modifications that were made to make them playable. Most levels on Cybermorph were about 300-900 bytes big (including enemy placement etc). On Battlemorph they were about 200K. When they give you all that space you just go and use it!" Based on user reports, only late-release pack-in Cybermorphs are the 1Mb version, as are all versions purchased separately. These are the differences between the two Cybermorphs: Original Cybermorph Cybermorph Rev.2 -------------------------------------------------------------------------- Title Screen Animated morph sequence Still shot, no animation Copyright 1993 1994 Skylar Talk "Where did YOU learn to fly?" "Where did YOU learn to fly?" "Portal now open." "Portal now open." "Pod in trouble." "Pod in trouble." "Good luck." "Good luck." "Good work." "Good work." "Well done." "Well done." "Ouch." "Ouch." "Great shot." "Avoid the ground." "Only one more." Endgame Animated morph sequence Still shot, no animation To the best of my knowledge, this makes Cybermorph Rev.2 the only 1 Mb (or 8-megabit) Jaguar cartridge ever released. --==--==--==--==-- || JagFest '98 || Compiled By: Clay Halliwell \__// firstname.lastname@example.org ----------------------------------------------------------------- Remember the JagFest event that Jaguar enthusiasts across America staged last year? Apparently it went well enough that the organizers have decided to do it again this year. Sounds like it will be more of what made last year's JagFest great... networked games galore, weird hardware on display, and Jaggers of all distinctions coming together for a day of 64-bit camaraderie. //// When Is It? August 1, 1998 9:00am to midnight (and maybe a bit longer...) //// Where Is It? Corfu Fire Hall 116 Main Street Corfu, NY 14036 Kevin says, "This is a good location because it's close to the NYS thruway exit (48-A), is not IN the city of Buffalo, but still close enough to the airport (about 20-30 mins east, all on one road). Directions will be posted on the JagFest homepage." Accommodations: The closest hotel is an Econo Lodge. Expect rooms to cost about $65 per night, unless Kevin can work out a group rate deal (which he will try to do)... then the price should go down even more from there. Here's the address and telephone # of the hotel: Econo Lodge At Exit 48-A Pembroke, NY 14036 (716) 599-4681 Other Attractions: Darien Lake Theme Park and Camping Resort 9993 Alleghany Road Darien Center, NY 14036 (716) 599-4641 (Administration) (716) 599-2211 (Camping) Niagara Falls is also within driving distance from Corfu as well! //// Who Will Be There? Dark Knight Games has already committed to attending, and will be bringing along some cool surprises. Custom controllers anyone? Looking to buy Jaguar games at the Fest? Well you'll have no problem doing so since Dentec, a Canadian-based company, has agreed to attend and sell their large selection of Jaguar games at the Fest. For more info, check out their page at http://www.dentec.com/WarehouseSale. They have great prices on even hard-to-find games like Atari Karts, and may even start carrying the new Telegames titles! Score another for the JagFest! Scott Walters, of BJL modification fame will be attending JagFest '98, and with him will come some BJL Jaguars at a special JagFest-only price of $99. So, for everyone who was a bit wary of buying a modified Jag, you can come check out all the games at the JagFest, and then pick one up right there on the spot for a lower-than-ever price! //// How Much Is It/How Can I Help? You can order tickets for $10 or pay $12 at the door. With the purchase of each ticket comes a special JagFest issue of the Atari Zone fanzine and a set of Jaguar stickers (hopefully some surprises too). To purchase a ticket, e-mail Kevin Manne (email@example.com) and include your name, address and number of tickets, along with a list of Jaguar/Atari items you will be bringing. Things which are needed are Jaguars, monitors(!), CatBoxes, AirCars cartridges and (hopefully) BattleSphere cartridges, and other appropriate video game hardware. Feel free to bring classic Atari videogames too! If you decide to bring a monitor, make sure it is one that is CatBox compatible, such as the Atari SC1224/1435, or has composite inputs like the Commodore 1702. Here's a list of analog RGB monitors which work with the CatBox: Atari SC1224 Atari SC1435 CBM 1084D CBM 1084S Commodore 1950 Magnavox Pro RGB 80 NEC Multisync Color NEC 3D Sony 1302 Princeton Graphics Ultra If you want to help promote JagFest, go to the JagFest homepage, grab one of the premade flyers there, and print some out to hang in your town. //// Who's in Charge? Although it's everyone's combined team effort that will pull this off, five very dedicated Jag owners have taken charge and are constantly discussing JagFest possibilities. Head Organizer: Kevin Manne (firstname.lastname@example.org) The hotel-finding, location-setting, business-doing, hard-working, head organizer of this year's JagFest. Tournament Organizer: Dave Homenuck (email@example.com) Will organize all the game tournaments at JagFest. Also doubles as the JagFest USENET correspondent. :-) If you have any suggestions for tournament games, drop Dave an e-mail. Newsletter Dispatcher: Matt "MHz" Bruce (firstname.lastname@example.org) Has agreed to send out the JagFest newsletters via his Atari Underground e- mail list in Chad's absence. Web Master: Chad Ridgeway (email@example.com) Maintains the JagFest website, sends out JagFest newsletters, and tries to act like he knows what he's talking about. Currently on hiatus. Hardware Guy: Guy Dupre (firstname.lastname@example.org) Thanks to Guy, JagFest '98 will definitely have an 8-Jaguar network of AirCars, and Battlesphere if it's released by August 1st. Feel free to send questions and comments to any of the individuals above. /// Other Stuff Kevin says, "This year's Fest will have food! That's right. I have arranged for there to be plenty of food available right there for everyone's convenience. As for what will be served, I haven't decided yet. But it will most likely be something simple like burgers and dogs, unless everyone who is attending is vegetarian, then there will probably be a menu change :-) "Jaguar Underground games will be available to play... I will bring my modified Jag and PC so everyone can check it out. The PC will also be hooked up with Internet access, so everyone on the Net can stay updated. "Thanks to Guy Dupre, Jaguar fanatic extraordinaire, we'll be certain to have an 8 Jag network for the Fest, with 8 copies of AirCars, as long as ICD delivers before August 1st ;-). In fact, if enough other people bring Jags, we'll be able to have 2 8-Jag setups running simultaneously! I wonder what the record is? "Guy has also agreed to bring his Scuba virtual-reality helmet (designed from the never-released JagVR helmet), and even to make some Jaguar t-shirt transfers if he has the time/capability. Go Guy! "I'm working on getting some Jaguar games and accessories together to give out as door prizes, and for winners of competitions. We'll be giving away a BJL- modded Jaguar (courtesy of Scott Walters), a subscription to the Atari Zone Fanzine, a Prototype Dark Knight Games Rotary Controller, games, some T- shirts, and a Team Tap. If you'd like to contribute anything, please contact me (Kevin), and I'll put your name up in lights on the JagFest page :-). "Also, I've just been informed that the Jaguar Voice Modems will be at JagFest! I personally can't wait to check them out. Anyone who is not going to be attending who has a modem and wants to play some Ultra Vortek on August 1st, please let me know so we can set something up." //// Where Can I Get More Information? Official JagFest '98 Home Page http://www.geocities.com/Broadway/4062 The Fandom Directory http://www.fandata.com Dentec Computer Products http://www.dentec.com/WarehouseSale Information about the Pembroke Econo Lodge http://www.hotelchoice.com/cgi-bin/res/webres?propinfo+NY143 Darien Lake's Homepage http://www.riversidepark.com An article on the JagFest will appear soon in the Star-Gazette (a Gannett newspaper in Elmira, N.Y., about a two hour drive from the site of the JagFest). http://www.star-gazette.com Telegames has agreed to send out JagFest flyers with Jaguar orders. So order something from Telegames! Also, JagFest will be listed in a magazine called "FanMan's ConFormation Guide", a comprehensive listing of fan conventions in the U.S. and around the world. Look for it in July. --==--==--==--==-- || Alastair Lindsay || Mini-Interview By: Wes Powell \__// email@example.com ----------------------------------------------------------------- Here's an E-mail conversation between Alastair Lindsay from the former Imagitec Design (creators of some of the best tunes on the Jaguar, if not the best games), and our own Wes "Jagu-Dome" Powell. [Alastair Lindsay] Hi there. Hope you don't mind me dropping you a line, but I've just noticed your Tempest 2000 soundtrack page on your website, great stuff. Actually I'm one of the musicians that did the music for that great game and it's very flattering that so many people like it, even all these years later. Tempest 2000 was actually my first game release 5 years ago, and I am still doing music for games, although things have changed quite a bit since then. I also did Defender 2000, I-War, Bubsy and worked on Dino Dudes. With regards to the voice samples, well they made me laugh, you've got most of them right. Bit of trivia for you - "Television is the retina of the mind's eye" was originally sampled from a film called Videodrome, but had to be redone by my good self as to avoid any copyright stuff. [JEO] I'm very glad you dropped me a line! I've been a big fan of your music for a long time now and I was hoping I could get in touch with one of you guys. What happened to the Company? [AL] Well, sadly Imagitec doesn't exist anymore, it was bought out by Gremlin Interactive a couple of years ago. One of the Imagitec musicians (Kevin Saville) still works there, but just seems to work on all the Actua Sports games, not very exciting unless you like sports games. I now work for Psygnosis Limited in London, UK, and have been there for nearly 2 years now. Most things that I have done for Psygnosis are still in development, but I have done 4 tunes on a game called Blast Radius, which is out in July in Europe, not sure about the US though. [JEO] I'll have to check those games out. Blast Radius, eh? Sounds familiar... [AL] It's very similar looking to Colony Wars, but much better gameplay. There is one last game that myself and Kevin did at Imagitec that was released earlier this year and that's I-War (not the same as the Jag version, in fact it's a totally different game), which is a space strategy game and has an orchestral soundtrack. The game was developed by a company called Particle Systems. [JEO] Ya! I heard about that game and I was wondering how they pulled that off without getting sued... hehehe. [AL] Atari allowed them to use the name I-War so there was no problem. [JEO] Did you have a part in the Zool 2 music? [AL] No, that was done by someone else before Imagitec became part of Gremlin. [JEO] How about Pitfall? How was it working with Jeff Minter? I would've loved a Defender 2000 soundtrack! Too bad Atari was heading downhill by that time. [AL] I didn't work on Pitfall, it was one of the other musicians. Well, I never really had any contact with Jeff Minter except a few phone calls. D2K was originally done as CD audio music, because it was to be one of the first games on the Jaguar CD drive, but at the last minute Atari changed their minds and decided it was to be cartridge only, so it was a mad rush to convert all the tunes. [JEO] Oh yeah! I've been wondering what that bonus track says... is it "Oh lassie" or "almighty"? I couldn't quite figure it out. [AL] No, no, it says "Oh Massive" and the other bit says "It's a jungle, brother". Don't ask me why, we didn't take any of this music seriously, a lot of it was a piss take of the rave/dance scene that was going at the time, same with T2K. [JEO] So, what kind of equipment are you using to create this great stuff? [AL] Well, my setup is quite minimal but very flexible and powerful. I have a Pentium II 333mhz PC running Cubase VST, in the PC is a Korg 1212 soundcard which is linked via ADAT optical cables to a Yamaha 02R. I have an Emu E4K sampler, Roland JV1080 with Vintage and Orchestral cards, a Yamaha AN1x Virtual Synth, Ensoniq DP/4+ effects processor, Quadraverb 2 effects processor. The 02R is also linked to a Tascam DA88 digital 8-track which is used to record the separate channels ready for encoding to an AC3 file. Software wise I use Cubase VST, as mentioned above, Sound Forge and I have a load of plugins for them. [JEO] Thanks for your comments! I look forward to hearing some of the other work you've done. Good luck. [AL] Bye for now. Alastair --==--==--==--==-- || Review: Worms || By: Clay Halliwell \__// firstname.lastname@example.org ----------------------------------------------------------------- Worms. This game of invertebrate warfare is something Jaguar owners have been looking forward to for a long time now. It's strangely fitting that the Jaguar version should be released almost two years after it was originally completed, and only shortly after the release of its sequel on most other platforms. But we Jaguarians are a patient lot, and now, thanks to Telegames, our patience has once again been rewarded. //// Wuzza Worm? Jaguar Worms is pretty much a direct port of the PC version of Worms... which is a bit odd, since the original Worms was written on the 68000-based Amiga. Due to cart space limitations, a few features of the PC version didn't make it to the Jag. These are noted through the rest of this review. In any case, for those of you who have been proverbially living under the proverbial rock for the last couple of years, this is what Worms is all about: Picture a two-dimensional scrolling playfield, two screens high by three screens wide. On this playfield draw a randomly-generated landscape, and adorn the landscape with trees and other objects. Finally, scatter two teams of four worms each on the landscape. Now take control of one of those teams and try to blow the crap out of the opposing team! Combat is turn-based, and rotates automatically through each worm on each team. That is, worm #1 on team 1 goes, then worm #1 on team 2, then worm #2 on team 1, etc... This in itself introduces an interesting strategic twist, as expert Worms players will make note of which enemy worm plays next, and act accordingly. Also, as worms get whittled away from each side, individual worms' turns come up more often. This means that the last worm on a team gets to move every turn... quite a tactical advantage! When a worm's turn arrives, it has a limited amount of time (usually 60 seconds) in which it can slither and jump across the ground, and use one of the many weapons at its disposal. Firing or falling from a great height ends your turn. While most games will be two-player, Worms supports up to four teams of worms at once. These can be any mix of human and computer-controlled opponents. //// I Claim this Landscape in the Name of Spain! The landscape, as previously mentioned, is randomly generated. If you ever get a landscape you particularly like, pause the game and it will display the code used to generate that landscape. You can then write it down and reenter it any time you like. Landscapes are composed of the contours of the ground (which can get pretty wild), random objects like trees, snowmen, devils, et al, and occasionally bridges spanning the ever-present water at the bottom of the screen. Oh, did I forget to mention the mines? Every landscape is randomly sprinkled with up to eight proximity-triggered mines, which do a nasty chunk of damage to any worm foolish enough to stray near. There are nine different landscape types you may end up playing on, and the differences between them aren't merely aesthetic. Each one introduces minor changes in the environment, which you have to deal with to play effectively.  Alien - Very low gravity, slippery ground.  Arctic - Very slippery ground.  Beach - Kinda average.  Candy - Slippery ground.  Desert - Rough ground.  Forest - Rough ground.  Hell - High gravity.  Junkyard - Kinda average.  Martian - Low gravity. Junkyard is my personal least favorite landscape type, since the ground is the same color scheme as the mines. Ouch... Note that the landscape shape you start out with, won't necessarily be the same one you end up with. As you'll see later in the weapons section, a major part of Worms is blasting, bombing, drilling, digging, and shooting chunks out of the terrain. //// They Kill Worms, Don't They? As stated, the goal of Worms is kill every opposing worm. Fortunately, Worms offers no fewer than three ways to do in the little guys.  Wear Them Down Each worm starts with 100 points of health, which is worn away by various weapon impacts. When it's all gone, your worm waves goodbye and blows himself up.  Drown Them Underlying every level is a vast expanse of water. Worms can't swim, so knocking one into the drink will kill it instantly.  Kick Them Out If a worm ever strays beyond the far left or right boundaries of the playfield, it's considered dead. This is something to consider when using explosives... The guys who wrote Worms must have been Street Fighter II fans, because at the top of the screen is an SF2-style health bar, complete with "KO" in the center. Each bar represents the total health of each team, and is a good way to judge how well (or how badly) you're doing. //// Weapons The selection of weapons available to you in Worms is vast. From close-combat to long-range, there's a weapon for almost every situation. You start the game with access to every weapon, except the ones marked "Weapon Crate Only". Weapon crates are dropped every three or four turns, and may contain:  Cluster Bomb  Homing Missile  Teleport  Air Strike  Dynamite  Minigun  Banana Bomb  Exploding Sheep Here's the part you've been waiting for, the Worms arsenal--  Bazooka - 50 pts (area affect) This is your basic weapon of choice in Worms. Unlimited ammo by default and good damage, but hard to aim over long distances, since bazooka shots are affected by wind. Fire bazookas by setting an angle and firing. The longer you hold fire before releasing, the faster the shot.  Homing Missile - 50 pts (area effect) Basically a guided bazooka shot, homing missiles take a bit of getting used to. When firing, you pick a target, then fire the same as a bazooka. They're unguided for the first half-second or so after you fire them, so the amount of initial velocity you give one directly affects where it will be when the guidance mechanism takes over. If you have a straight shot at your target, aim up and only give about a half-bar of charge... the missile will gain some altitude and then cruise straight in to its target. If the only way to get at your target is from above, aim straight up and give it full power. Depending on the wind and how far away from your target you are, it often helps to target the missile about a worms-width toward your worm.  Grenade - 50 pts (area effect) Grenades have the advantage of not being affected by wind, but also don't explode on impact. Firing is as with the bazooka... set an angle, give it some power, and fire. You can vary the fuse time and bounce height as needed for each situation... nothing more frustrating than bouncing a grenade right off an enemy worm's head, only to have it explode harmlessly a few feet away. Caution-- don't attempt to fire grenades (or cluster bombs) when in a tunnel. When your worm attempts to kick the grenade towards its target, the grenade will become lodged in the ceiling, and then, well... you figure it out.  Cluster Bombs - 50 pts + 30 pts x 5 (area effect) The poor-mans's airstrike, Cluster Bombs are fired just like Grenades, except that when they explode, they spit out 5 bomblets (for up to 150 points of damage). These are best used to shower an area with bomblets, or to Instant Kill a single worm.  Shotgun - 25 pts x 2 (area effect) Unique among Worms weapons, the shotgun lets you fire, move, then fire again. You can't use the Ninja Rope or Bungee while in the move phase, but you can fall any distance without ending your turn. The shotgun invites creative uses-- you can come out of hiding, fire, then retreat. You can finish off two weak but separated worms. You can blow a hole in the landscape, then shoot a worm into it. You can even send a mine bouncing toward a worm. The shotgun has a surprisingly large area effect, so be careful about using it in close quarters.  Uzi - 5 pts x 10 Kind of a disappointing weapon, the Uzi is best used on very weak worms. You almost never get the full 50 points of damage out of this, since each bullet tosses the target worm all over the place. An often-overlooked use of the Uzi is for tunneling. It's not as quick as the Blowtorch, but can easily be used to extend a tunnel without exposing your worm to the blast effect of Bazooka shots.  Fire Punch - 30 pts Your worm punches the enemy worm for a flat 30 points of damage. The real use of this move though, is to toss worms off the screen or into water (or onto mines). The worm is tossed more up than forward, which is useful for getting worms over small obstacles. While punching, your worm leaps up into the air, penetrating any overhanging landscape... so you can use the Fire Punch to collect Weapon Crates. Be careful you don't punch into a mine, because-- a) It'll really hurt, and b) Due to an obscure bug, any other worms you get tossed into will take 30 points of damage, as if you had punched them too.  Dragon Ball - 30 pts Basically the same move as the Fire Punch, this one tosses worms more horizontally than vertically. Unlike the Fire Punch, you can be a bit more than a worm-width away, since your worm actually shoots out a little blue fireball. This fireball can also be used to push mines a small distance.  Dynamite - 75 pts (area effect) A pretty straightforward weapon. Just drop near your target (or group of targets), and run away! Since Dynamite falls to the ground in front of your worm, you can drop it off cliffs. Dynamite is also great for tossing worms off the screen.  Mine - 50 pts (area effect) Identical to the mines that litter the landscape at the beginning of each round, these are only set off by proximity. So, you can use them to block off tunnel entrances, or (the more common use) simply drop them on enemy worms' heads. Since mines fall directly underneath the attacking worm, you can't drop them off cliffs. As with Dynamite, you have about three seconds to get away after dropping a mine.  Airstrike - 30 pts x 10 (area effect) Whenever a round starts with two or more worms of the same team clustered together, you can bet this will be the first weapon used. 10 bombs rain down on the coordinates you select, wreaking general havoc. If you can muster the self-control to save your Airstrike until the end (you only get one by default), it's great for plastering that last, elusive enemy worm. Airstrikes are also nice for clearing bridges.  Blowtorch - 15 pts Although it does damage to any worms it comes in contact with, this item doesn't really fall in the weapon category. Its main function is to tunnel horizontally or diagonally through the landscape. A popular tool of Darksiders. Won't destroy weapon crates. You can also use the Blowtorch to perfectly level your gunsights. Just select the Blowtorch, pick an angle (45, 90, or 135 degrees), then select your projectile weapon of choice. The Blowtorch-yielding worm digs for a set distance, or you can stop at any time by hitting the fire button. The Blowtorch stops automatically if there's nothing under the worm, so you don't have to worry about Blowtorching yourself out the side of a mountain and right into the water.  Pneumatic Drill - 15 pts Similar to the Blowtorch, but used for digging straight down. Be careful you don't drill right off the bottom of the screen! If you start drilling right on top of an enemy worm, it's possible to drag him down in your worm- hole with you, inflicting up to three or four 15-point hits. As with the blowtorch, can be stopped at any time, and won't destroy weapon crates. Unlike the Blowtorch, if the Drill hits air your worm will drop and continue drilling where it lands.  Teleport Pretty self-explanatory. Pick a spot and beam there. Most often used to pick up Weapon Crates or get out of bad situations, but also used by Darksiders to hide their worms. Extremely useful in situations where one team only has a single worm left... just beam yourself next to the enemy worm who most recently moved. Another, more devious trick is to intentionally teleport a weak worm onto a mine near an enemy worm, hopefully landing your worm's corpse on him as well, for another 30 points of damage.  Ninja Rope In the hands of a skilled practitioner, this is one of the most dangerous tools in the game. You simply point your crosshair and shoot out a rope that attempts to latch onto the first chunk of landscape it hits (it has a limited range, fortunately). Once latched, you can pull the rope in and out, swing back and forth, and release. Increasing a swing is a simple matter of holding left or right on the d-pad. Swings normally never take your worm higher than slightly above the horizontal. Momentum is simulated nicely, so if you're in the middle of a big swing and release, you'll go flying off into space. If you time it right, you can toss yourself over a ledge, or even swing up and over. The latter is accomplished by pushing up as soon the worm starts his up-swing. Although your worm will bounce off chunks of landscape, the rope itself has no problem passing through intervening junk, so you can use the rope in some pretty unlikely ways (and seriously piss off your opponent). Unlike the other weapons, you can use the Ninja Rope multiple times, and then use a weapon in the same turn. The move timer doesn't count down while using the rope, but 5 seconds are knocked off every time you deploy it. There's a well-known bug-- errr... undocumented feature of the Ninja Rope, known as the Indian Rope Trick. If the terrain under your worm is just right, facing right and pointing the rope straight down will let your worm rise straight into the air! Unfortunately you always fall to the left after this, so it's only good for moving right-to-left. Another devious use of the Ninja Rope: When you release the rope, your worm may slide a bit. You can use this to slide into enemy worms and herd them into an attack-friendly location... or knock them off-screen or into the water (very risky!).  Bungee A lot simpler to use than the Ninja Rope. Just select the Bungee and walk off any precipice-- your worm will automatically bungee-jump to within a few feet of the ground. You can swing back and forth, and retract the bungee cord a little bit, but not much. As with the Ninja Rope, you can use this, then attack.  Girders The Darksider's favorite toy. You have a choice of long or short girders, which can be rotated to any multiple of 45 degrees, and dropped anywhere in the play area. When placed, girders simply become part of the landscape, so you can use them to block off tunnels, wall in enemies, shield from enemy shots, patch bridges, guide Sheep, provide something to swing from... or whatever else your devious imagination can devise.  Kamikaze - 30 pts impact + 50 pts explosion (area effect) Almost never used, and tough to describe. Your worm basically flies in a straight line in the direction you face him, penetrating land if necessary, doing 30 points of damage to any worm he hits. After a certain distance, he stops and explodes for 50 pts of damage. If the kamikaziing worm hits a mine though, the kamikaze will be aborted.  Prod The ultimate humiliation weapon. Does no damage, just pushes the enemy worm a bit. Use to shove a worm offscreen or into the water.  Banana Bomb - 50 pts + 75 pts x 5 (area effect) Available only from Weapon Crates. Basically a super-duper Cluster Bomb, the Banana Bomb spits out 5 bananas when it explodes, each having the explosive force of Dynamite. The bomblets seem to scatter a bit wider than with the Cluster Bomb. Replaces Cluster Bomb when collected.  Minigun - 10 pts x 10 Available only from Weapon Crates. Exactly like the Uzi, only with more powerful bullets and a wider spread. Replaces Uzi when collected.  Exploding Sheep - 75 pts (area effect) Available only from Weapon Crates. Unleash the Sheep in the direction you're facing, and it will run and jump its way along the landscape until you either detonate it manually, or it blows up by itself (about 15 seconds later). Be warned that the Sheep will sometimes turn around unexpectedly. Can collect weapon crates. Replaces Mine when collected.  Surrender Self-explanatory, and probably used even less then Kamikaze, if such a thing is possible.  Dead Worm - 30 pts (area affect) Not really a weapon per se, but not to be ignored. Whenever a worm runs out of health, it blows itself up and damages anyone nearby. On the more slippery landscapes, slain worms have an infuriating tendency to wind up right on top of the worm who killed them. //// Graphics The graphics are simple, but appropriate to the game. While the PC version of Worms zoomed in and out while switching between worms, the Jag version simply pans. The instant-replay feature of the PC version is also absent. However, the eight-layer parallax scrolling was retained, and looks rather nice. The whole game runs in 256-color mode, with dithering used to simulate gradients. Fortunately the colors were very well selected, so it's not objectionably noticeable. The playfield seems to have been sized as a compromise between PAL and NTSC resolutions. As a result, the status bar hangs partway off the bottom of the screen. Nothing vital is lost, but it takes a while to get used to and does gives the game a somewhat "not-quite-finished" look. The worms themselves are tiny little Cannon Fodder-sized fellows, so the game will benefit immensely from an SVideo connection. Occasionally small byte-sized holes will get punched in the landscape during scrolling, but this is fairly rare and not a major problem. //// Sound Sounds consist entirely of weapons fire (and effects), background music, and the worm talk. Weapons effects are adequate to the cause. Each weapon has its own sound effect, from the "whoosh" of the bazooka to the "braaaapp" of the minigun and the teeth-rattling, pavement-crunching sound of the jackhammer. There's unfortunately only one explosion sound, a tinny, disappointing "bang". The background music is eclectic to say the least... it's an odd combination of lurking musical snippets dominated by ambient sounds. Kinda reminds me of some of the incidental music Vangelis did for Blade Runner. Sadly, the music has been much simplified from the PC version (cart space again). The Hell level in the PC version had this fantastic, drawn-out evil laugh that cropped up every now and then. I was looking forward to hearing it again in the Jag version, but alas... The highlight of Worms' audio repertoire is the worm talk. Worms features almost 50 words and phrases worth of squeaky, high-pitched work talk, which you'll hear throughout the game as a kind of running commentary. They scream "Fire!" and "Die!" when firing, "Take cover!" when a grenade lands near them, "Traitor" when you accidentally hit one of your own worms, "Stupid" when you damage yourself, and on and on... With the diminutive character graphics, Worms relies heavily on these voices to establish the game's character, and succeeds with flying colors (what the heck is a "flying color", anyway?). Two minor annoyances-- First, Worms' volume level is unusually low... low even for a Jag game. Expect to crank your volume to about double the normal level to get acceptably audible audio. Second, pressing "0" to disable music turns off ALL sound effects. This wouldn't be so bad, except Worms also flouts the Jaguar developer's guideline of letting you adjust volume levels while paused. Worms' sound effects are in stereo, but the implementation is weird. Stereo placement isn't based on where events occur onscreen, but on where they occur in the full playing area. //// Control and Other Things Worms was designed to be controlled with a mouse, and with this version absolutely no effort has been made to make the interface joypad-friendly. Meaning, all menus are operated by moving a mouse pointer around the screen and clicking. This is cumbersome, but tolerable. Once in-game, things clear up a bit. The use of the joypad to move your worm around and aim is fairly intuitive. One incomprehensible omission is that Worms supports exactly ONE controller, no matter how many people are playing. So get used to handing the controller around at your Worms parties. One of the many great little touches of Worms is that you can customize your team names. In every other version you can save these changes, but in the Jag version, not only is everything lost when you power down, everything is lost when you do a soft reset! That includes game options, volume settings, everything... Obviously Worms is the only Jag cart without an NVRAM chip. Speaking of game options, there are a lot of them. You can vary the supply of every weapon and tool in the game, set the move time, round time, number of rounds, starting health of your worms, number of mines on the landscape, and worm placing (random or grouped by team). //// Super Happy Fun Worm So far I've picked apart just about every aspect of Worms but the most important one... is it FUN? Yes. Worms is, in my opinion, the best multiplayer game available for the Jaguar. The computer is decent (sometimes a little _too_ decent) competition, but the true fun is to be found in slaughtering your friends. The free-form nature of the game, combined with a surprisingly complete physics model guarantees that you'll be discovering novel ways to bump off worms for years to come. And the interactions that arise with three or more players-- the spontaneous creation and demolition of pacts and treaties-- only adds to the mayhem. //// Worms Argot As with any cult phenomenon, Worms players have developed their own unique vocabulary. Memorize the terms below, and you'll be able to mingle with veteran Wormers with ease! Over the Shoulder Boulder - When you use a strong headwind to hook a bazooka shell around a ledge into an enemy worm. Dark Side - A Dark-Side player is one who buries his worms underground, uses girders to block in enemy worms, names his worms after letters of the alphabet, and quotes Star Trek when using the teleporter. Crevice Girl - A Dark-Sider who puts their Worms in impossible-to-reach locations using the Blowtorch or Teleport. Concrete Donkey - The Concrete Donkey represents the good side of every Worms player. It is almost like a god, guiding and helping players who need it. The Concrete Donkey is not, I repeat, is NOT a live donkey that has been concreted over to create a pleasing lawn ornament. The Buffalo - Well, we're not really sure how the buffalo became so evil, but it is, and that's all there is to it. So stay away from it or it will lead you to the dark side of the Dark Side... and that's very dark. Russian Roulette/Wheel of Fortune - Targeting a Homing Missile at an empty patch of sky and hoping it doesn't come down on you! Instant Kill - The immensely pleasing act of taking a worm down from 100 health points to 0 in a single attack. Mine Surfing - Almost painful to watch, a worm is mine surfing when he gets knocked onto a mine, which knocks him onto another mine, which knocks him onto another mine, and so on until he either runs out of mines and dies, or surfs right off the screen and dies. The Force - Is the Force strong in your worm? It is if you can hit an enemy worm over a screen away without even looking. Note that the Force is forever beyond the Dark Side. Cluster Hatting - Landing a Cluster Bomb on a worm's head at the precise moment of detonation, causing all the bomblets to detonate at once. See "Instant Kill". //// Final Ratings Title: Worms JagNet: No Design: Team 17 Players: 1-4 Published by: Telegames Media: 16 megabit cart Retail: $69.95 Availability: NOW - LIMITED A Summary of Ratings: "*" is a whole "+" is a half 5 stars maximum Graphics - *** Nothing that really flexes the Jag's muscles. Nice use of multi-layer parallax. Occasional glitches. Audio - **** Tons of funny sound bites, nice background music, appropriate weapon sound effects. Weird use of stereo. Too quiet! Control - **** Simple and straightforward. Poor use of ProController. Forces controller sharing in multi-player games. Gameplay - ***** An okay single-player game, but fantastic with two or more humans going at it. Overall - ***** A true videogaming classic. Key to Clay's ratings (a wormy state of mind) ***** - Shai Hulud (Dune) **** - Thread (Dragonriders of Pern) *** - Those Things in Tremors (Tremors) ** - Slimey (Sesame Street) * - Dean Wormer (Animal House) --==--==--==--==-- || Big Code Hunting || By: Clay Halliwell \__// email@example.com ----------------------------------------------------------------- Longtime Jaguar fans may know that, before I raised JEO from the ashes of AEO and took on the mantle of --Ed, I maintained the Atari Jaguar Cheats and Codes list. Since then I've continued to maintain that list, a task which has sadly become easier and easier as time wears on and games come farther and fewer between. But in those years since the Jag was first uncaged, a few codes have risen to near-mythic status. These are the great unrevealed codes-- the Bigfoot, the Yeti, the Loch Ness Monsters of the code hunter. There follows the empty (but gradually filling) wing of my gallery of codes... the hall of Unknown Codes, filled with nothing but vacant pedestals and bare plaques, unreturned emails and shrugs of indifference. The hunt goes on... //// Kasumi Ninja - Play As Demon Gyaku This is the original, the Mother of All Unrevealed Codes. Almost immediately following Kasumi Ninja's release, rumors were flying that a code existed to allow playing as Demon Gyaku. Eventually a couple of codes for KN were trickled out, but the Big One, the one everyone *really* wanted, remained in hiding. E-mails to Ted Tahquechi, the man reputed to be the Keeper of the Kasumi Codes at Atari, were unfruitful. First this: From: Ted Tahquechi Sent: Tuesday, February 18, 1997 To: Halliwell E SrA 436TS/DOC Subject: RE: Kasumi Ninja Thanks for the mail! I have gotten several requests to reveal the Gyaku code. I would love to do this, however, as I am no longer an Atari employee, it is not within my rights to release Atari confidential information. I am sorry. I'm glad you enjoyed the games though. Thanks again. Ted T. Producer Accolade Product Development Then this... From: Ted Tahquechi Sent: Friday, May 23, 1997 To: Halliwell E SrA 436TS/DOC Subject: RE: KN followup I will have to look around and see if I still have the codes. They are not in the forefront of my mind these days. I'll see what I can do... Ted And finally this... From: Ted Tahquechi Sent: Wednesday, May 20, 1998 To: Halliwell E SrA 436TS/DOC Subject: RE: KN Codes Hi... Look, I dont mean to be rude or anything, But I dont have the codes. I dont work for Atari, I cant help you. Ted T. Well, so much for Ted. John Skruch wasn't more helpful: From: John Skruch Sent: Wednesday, February 19, 1997 To: Halliwell E SrA 436TS/DOC Subject: Re: Kasumi Ninja Any Kasumi Ninja codes we may or may not have might be in storage in the warehouse some miles from here. Then I turned to the software house that actually programmed Kasumi Ninja, HandMade Software: From: rob.nicholson Sent: Monday, October 06, 1997 To: Halliwell E SrA 436TS/DOC Subject: Re: Kasumi Ninja Hi Clay, Unfortunately, I don't a) know the answer or b) have immediate access to the source code. Pete Wiseman was the lead programmer so he might remember. But (common thread here :-) Pete moved to the USA a while back and I don't have any contact. Regards, Rob. Youch! Turn for the worse here. I tried searching Deja News for any postings by a Pete Wiseman, but came up empty. It was then that I started hatching wild schemes involving a loose-leaf notebook, an intravenous drip, and six months of vacation time. Fortunately it won't come to that, since while writing this article I decided to do another search of Deja News... and success! A Pete Wiseman had posted a message just the previous month, and upon contacting him he confirmed that he was indeed Pete "Ninja God" Wiseman. A few amicable emails back and forth culminated in this message: From: Peter Wiseman Sent: Tuesday, June 02, 1998 To: Halliwell E SrA 436TS/DOC Subject: Re: Kasumi Pete? Okay, I've dug out my old source code and it appears that the following numbers should do the trick : 524648 AtariCode 743871 Micro1Code 621544 PlyVPlyCode 374961 GyakuCode 931427 TestCode 899244 Micro2Code 637404 PortalCode I can't even remember how you enter them. Hope they help, -- Pete Wiseman (author of Solitaire City) http://www.solitairecity.com firstname.lastname@example.org And so, at last, thanks to Mr. Wiseman, we can finally lay to rest the Great Kasumi Ninja Code Hunt. Fortunately for code hunters like me, there's more game out there lurking in the brush... //// Ultra Vortek - Play as The Guardian, Play As Carbon Do these codes really exist? Yes they do! This email from Clark Stacey at Beyond Games says it all: From: Clark Stacey Sent: Wednesday, October 22, 1997 To: Halliwell E SrA 436TS/DOC Subject: Re: Ultra Vortek There IS a way to play the as Guardian, and a way to play as Carbon. I've seen these codes released on the net, so I know they've been discovered. I doubt I could find them again around here, but I know they've been exchanged by Vortek players. Clark Stacey Beyond Games After I sent Mr. Stacey another email explaining that I had looked just about everywhere online for these codes and still hadn't found them, I got this response: From: Clark Stacey Sent: Tuesday, November 04, 1997 To: Halliwell E SrA 436TS/DOC Subject: Re: Ultra Vortek I'm sorry these didn't turn up, but the original Vortek coder doesn't still have these codes and they're buried in our archives somewhere. If they turn up, I will certainly send them to you. Clark Stacey Beyond Games While researching this article, I sent yet another email to Mr. Stacey, and received this more encouraging response: From: Clark Stacey Sent: Friday, May 22, 1998 To: Halliwell E SrA 436TS/DOC Subject: Re: Ultra Vortek Someday, when Redline is released, I'll track down the Guardian code and post it on Usenet. The Carbon code was widely posted, and was at one time part of our FAQ. I'd be surprised if it weren't archived on Deja News somewhere... Clark Stacey Beyond Games Someone remind me when Redline Racing is finally released, okay? //// AirCars - Any Cheats The only thing we know for certain about the existence of AirCars cheats is this snippet of email forwarded to me by Carl Forhan (original author unknown): Now at the End I have a little Cheat for Aircars: In the Title or Options-Screen type 3,5,8,5 to get Access to all Missions. In the Beta-Test-Versions this Cheat has worked. Well, it doesn't work in the release version. However, if you type any four digits on the Select Starting Mission screen, the game makes a click sound. So this is where we would enter our cheats, if only we knew what they were. For the record, Tom Harker at ICD (the publisher of AirCars) almost certainly knows what the AirCars cheats are, or can most easily find them out. We're waiting, Tom... //// Zero 5 - Invincibility, Unlock Levels Several months ago, Matthew Gosling, lead coder of Zero 5, released codes for unlocking levels 1 through 3 of Zero 5, and stated that there were also codes to unlock the rest of the levels, plus an invincibility code. At the time, he felt that releasing all the codes (especially the invincibility code) would ruin the game for people by taking all the challenge out of it. But when I recently contacted Matt, he agreed that enough time had passed that releasing the codes probably wouldn't ruin the game for anyone. So he passed me the remaining codes (except invincibility, which he hasn't been able to find yet), and they're listed in the New Cheats and Codes section of this issue. Thanks Matt! //// Double Dragon V - Play as Shadow Master Yeah, Double Dragon V... who cares? Well, a code is a code, and the manual for this game lists special moves for the Shadow Master, so there must be a way to play as him, right? The FAQ for the SNES version of this game lists seven different codes, none of which work on the Jag. Williams Entertainment used to have a web page , but that seems to have been taken down. Is Williams Entertainment even in business anymore? //// Super Burnout - Move to the Head of the Pack Way back in the August '95 AEO review of Super Burnout, then-editor Travis Guy mentioned that there was a "Move to the Head of the Pack" cheat, in addition to the Punisher and Turbo Boost cheats. I contacted ye ol' Travis: From: Fenric Sent: Sunday, May 24, 1998 To: Halliwell E SrA 436TS/DOC Subject: Re: Super Burnout Cheats Hmmm, a cheat (or a hint OF a cheat) for a game from that era would have came from either Don Thomas or Tal. The last I heard of Tal, he was at GolfWeb (I believe that was the name), and everyone knows Don's location. IIRC, that cheat wasn't published because it would lock up the game every so often. I guess it wouldn't matter too much now. :) How's things? I scan rgva only once in a blue moon. I saw that JTS forfeited its seat on the AMEX. Serves them right! ;-) Best, --Travis Don Thomas didn't know anything about the cheat, but Tal said: From: Tal Funke-Bilu Sent: Tuesday, May 26, 1998 To: Halliwell E SrA 436TS/DOC Subject: RE: Super BurnOut Yeah, I remember there was that 3rd cheat. I didn't remember it crashing the game, however, it's quite possible that it could. The only problem is that I don't have the code on me, nor do I know where to find it...sorry. -Tal. Tal Funke-Bilu Creative Producer http://www.golfweb.com GolfWeb : A SportsLine USA Subsidiary Since it's doubtful that anyone at Atari, err... JTS, uhhh, I mean Hasbro knows anything about this anymore, I guess we'll have to track down one of the guys at Shen or Virtual Xperience. Anyone here speak German? //// Baldies - Warps and Hidden/Bonus Levels The official PC Baldies FAQ, available at http://www.baldies.com, specifically mentions level warps, hidden levels, and bonus levels. However, the instructions for accessing these don't work on the Jaguar version. It's distinctly possible that the Jag version has no secrets to reveal. Bummer. //// Virtual Light Machine - External Input My Cheats and Codes list mentions an external input mode code, but this is just a guess on my part. The only way we'll really know is if Jeff Minter ever decides to spill the beans on how to hook up external audio to the VLM. He's said it can be done, and that it's fairly simple. Now if only he'd say how. --==--==--==--==-- || The Big Spin || By: Don Thomas \__// email@example.com ----------------------------------------------------------------- There are different types of spins. There is the spin around the block. There is the spin programmers use to rotate sprites in a video game. There are spins on the way stories are told. There are dance spins and toys that spin. There is also the BIG SPIN as it applies to the evolution of the computer industry. On Wednesday, August 6, Mr. Bill Gates and Mr. Steve Jobs cooperatively announced that Microsoft was contributing to Apple's bottom line with a monetary figure of $150 million. Assuredly, there are undisclosed stipulations Microsoft is placing on that contemporary bail out, but Jobs says Microsoft wants to "own the industry". In theory, Microsoft now has influential control over Apple-based proprietary PCs as well as traditional IBM-compatible PCs. Microsoft will tell you that consumers deserve a choice and that they are protecting their investments in Apple-based applications by helping to revitalize the platform. It is as if the investment community does not care about the whys. They simply see "Microsoft" and "Apple" in the same press release and stock values bend up on the speculation. But, what are they speculating on? All they really know is that Apple's dike is being plugged by Microsoft. They know that Microsoft will benefit in some way by having some non-active share in the company. If we spin the world back to 1994, Wednesday, September 28 to be exact, there was an announced $90 million bailout Sega promised to Atari. Terms included Sega's acquisition of Atari shares, tentative agreements to exchange software titles and a forgiving of a pending lawsuit Atari had registered against Sega. Hmmm, what parallels exist there? Are there any? For $150 million, has anyone bothered to find out? Some answers are revealed with an understanding of motivations. There are two types of motivations in making business decisions; both start with "P". They are "Performance" and "Pride". Companies get in serious trouble when these motivations are not spinning together in a synchronized balance. These two categories can be demonstrated by looking at advertising decisions. There are "institutional" ads. Those are advertisements that promote brand awareness, but lack any sense of urgency. For instance, there are no prices, no sales and no limitations on the act to purchase. An ad that simply states "Drink Coca-Cola" is an institutional ad. Institutional ads fall under the category of "Pride". If you run nothing but institutional ads and never give consumers motivation to buy now, the competition storms in with a strong price/value message and steals the consumer. A "Performance" orientated ad is one that creates some urgency. The ad is strictly placed to generate a measurable profit after backing out the cost of manufacturing, distribution and advertising. The ad features a sale price or a value message or places some type of "get it now or lose" theme such as limited edition collectable items. Running too many performance- orientated ads teaches the consumer to only buy the product when there is a deal. Companies need the "Performance" advertising to get people to often think about purchasing their product. A basic example is the decision to buy Coke or Pepsi in the grocery store. Many consumers will buy either one first based on price- secondly what they prefer. Personal preferences are statistically based on name recognition. Therefore, the institutional ads help to make decisions when the prices are virtually the same. Rather than dwell more deeply in the philosophies of business principles, let us look specifically at the motivations between Apple and Microsoft while keeping the philosophies in mind. Apple is in serious trouble. They have had consistent quarterly losses, write-offs and lay-offs. They are desperately trying to make "Performance" orientated decisions to compensate for the years and years of imbalance of a "pride" orientated business philosophy... decisions that successfully built a huge dedicated base of users, but failed to lure new generations of new users. Instead, novice purchasers were swayed by the appeal of universal compatibility offered by the IBM clone. Microsoft, on the other hand, is so immensely successful that they very well may face litigation for forming a monopoly. They do not have a dire need to generate quick profits, but they do have a need to make sure the population is pleased with them as a company and for the products they sell. Imagine the problems if/when Apple fails and Microsoft seems to be standing over them with the dagger in their hands. In the long run, it is healthier for Microsoft's image to show they made every effort to help Apple be successful. Not to belittle the value of $150 million, but Microsoft will not feel the loss. It can be compared to many of us buying a new microwave oven... we certainly have to juggle some finances around, but it won't come close to bankrupt most of us. On the flipside, $150 million is a big bite of what Apple needs to survive and Microsoft (Gates) knows the public views $150 million to be a great deal more than a couple annual salaries. So why did Microsoft give Apple the money? Last evening my wife and I had an occasion to stroll the Hillsdale shopping mall. I always enjoy ducking into a B. Dalton when I can and I did again. Predictably, the magazine rack was full of cover stories of the Apple/Microsoft deal. If it was not a picture of Bill Gates, there was a headline about him or Apple. I picked up three of them... BusinessWeek, Newsweek and Time. Each of them is chuck full of stories that provide Gates and Jobs a forum to express their views. Just for fun, have any of you ever checked what it would cost to buy the cover of BusinessWeek, Newsweek, Time, every computer journal, newspaper as well as formidable exposure on television and radio? Assuredly, $150 million would not make a down payment except, perhaps, with the agency placing the exposure. The sum of $150 million was a bargain for the measure of "Pride"-orientated exposure the two companies are now enjoying. Microsoft certainly did not deliver $150 million to Apple believing that Jobs already has a plan to turn things around. As of this writing, no one at Apple really knows who will be in charge. Jobs is making decisions now, but he makes it clear that he does not want to be the CEO. Jobs wants to remain faithful to his Pixar endeavors. He knows that the Apple problems are too big and he does not want to go down with the ship. On the other hand, Pixar is doing well and is a better career bet. Jobs does more than hint that facility and headcount downsizing is imminent. This should have been clear long ago anyway. Every business must bring expenditures to be below income. This provides us to another opportunity to spin back the hands of time. Let us return to Monday, July 2, 1984 and the takeover of Atari by the Jack Tramiel regime. At that time, Atari was losing hundreds of millions a year and Warner Communications was literally bleeding money and in desperate need to stop the crisis. Jack walked in and, almost overnight, offices and buildings were vacated. People left so fast that over $100,000 in unsigned travelers checks were left in an unlocked safe in the finance office according to one takeover executive. The casualties of personnel and real estate proved to be a key part to Atari's saving grace. Within a few years, Jack made Atari profitable, transformed it into a publicly traded company and repaid Warner for all outstanding debts. In the mid to late eighties, PCs and Apples still cost a lot of money and Tramiel's Atari found success selling a new generation of 16/32-bit machines for a fraction of IBM-compatible investments... especially in Europe. But as IBM compatible prices dropped so did Atari's ability to be competitive and make money. All along the mass market really wanted 100% compatibility with office computers. When they became almost as affordable as Atari computers, they won the "Performance" war against any "Pride" that Atari's proprietary systems built with their users over the years. So now, we spin ahead again to present day. We see Apple hanging on to proprietary technologies just like Atari did. The are defending their niche markets in graphics and education just like Atari did in the music industry with integrated MIDI ports and with affordable desktop publishing solutions using Calamus or Pagestream. We know $90 million did not save Atari when Sega gave it to them and we know there is historical proof that companies that attempt to sell proprietary closed environments such as (Atari, Commodore, Texas Instruments, Coleco Adam, Next, etc.) to the mass markets ultimately fail. The consumer wants his home applications to work at the office. The retailer does not want to carry multiple versions of like software. Software developers do no like having to provide like development and support functions for multiple platforms. Just spin the dial in history and these examples appear again and again. Another recurring spin is that technology companies fail to look at historic evidence to make decisions for the future. They too often feel what they have is so cool that everyone will want one, regardless of price compatibility, trend or overall business sense. It is enough to amaze anyone that Apple encounters a $150 million windfall without having to expose a firm and conservative plan to turn things around... not just philosophical, but itemized actions. Actions that will expand the amount of Mac software exposure in retail stores. Actions that will inspire die-hard Apple users to give up the machines and buy new ones. Actions that attract new customers. Actions that attract new software developers. Actions that satisfy creditors. Yet again, $150 million cannot do all these things, so we will have to see how Jobs applies his newfound capital assets. By looking at the industry spin over the years, Apple's charter should be quite clear with or without the infusion of $150 million. They need to build affordable personal computers that are 100% cross compatible with the rest of the world. They need to cater to their established base with optional PC-compatible emulation cards that permit the use of Mac software. They need to divert their technologies to a strong software development plan based on a MS-Windows framework. Alternatively, they need to put 100% energies into a relatively small, yet focused high-end solution that will be out of reach to the mass market (a.k.a. Silicon Graphics). Steve Job's pride may prevail and insist on downsizing Apple to a model that he remembers in days when consumers were willing to consider incompatible platforms. He may downplay the corporate image of boardrooms and office formalities. Just like Jack Tramiel at Atari, he may not see that the world has spun around and has different buying trends than they did ten or more years ago.... that the money and power of IBM couldn't make OS/2 fly and that we are now a world that ultimately must have a Start icon in the corner of their computer screen. It is amusing to watch the industry spin so fast that it never slows down to take a look at where it has been already. -- by Donald A. Thomas, Jr. [firstname.lastname@example.org] --==--==--==--==-- || Pecking at the Scraps || By: Don Thomas \__// email@example.com ----------------------------------------------------------------- As of 5:00 PM, Friday, March 13, 1998, JTS Corporation has released a formal announcement regarding the recent sale of Atari properties to a subsidiary of Hasbro Interactive. Details of this transaction are accessible throughout the Internet and a compilation of these materials can be found under "Hot News" at http://www.L4software.com/icwhen. The JTS announcement comes hot-on-the-heals of the discovery of an 8-K posted on the web site of the Security Exchange Commission (SEC). The news is exciting. Hasbro, a company focused on quality home entertainment, has acquired the rights to Atari's home-based properties, including patents and intellectual rights. Updates and reissues of classic video games is proving to be a great way to inspire new profits, and it's refreshing to us classics aficionados to see companies realize that fact. Hasbro Interactive's release of Frogger turned out to be fruitful, and they will be anxious to repeat that kind of success by applying the same formula to other titles. There are a few other reasons that Hasbro may have happened upon the unusual deal that JTS placed at their doorstep. VM Labs, a small company that might often remind people of 3DO in their early days, is developing software for a new machine which is getting a veil placed over it at this very moment. One of VM Labs attributes is the well-known Jeff Minter who did spectacular remakes of Tempest and Defender on the Atari Jaguar. VM Labs has already demonstrated his latest work of their "Project-X". Some sources indicate that VM Labs was very interested in other titles Atari had collecting dust in their unguarded vault. VM Labs' bids to JTS Corporation fell short of Hasbro's ability to step forward with cash. something that the fledgling JTS needs very badly. Interestingly, it looks like VM Labs may have gotten their hands on those titles after all. Hasbro Interactive, many claim, is a "favored-nation" third-party developer for Project-X. It is very likely that these companies actually do not know too much more about themselves than what we find out. There exists a belief that these companies survive based on infinite wisdom. That everything that happens is part of some big conspiracy. Companies like for us to believe that day-to- day decisions are based on business models that they established for themselves. It is critical that investors are convinced that management makes decisions based on an armored plan of action. The simple truth is that gaming and technology companies are filled with people who are fresh out of school and enjoyed their computer science courses a lot more than their history and business management courses. Frequently, the people at the top are those who were at the right place at the right time. Many of them barely spend a full hour each week ever playing a video game. For instance, Leonard Tramiel was the only one of the primary four at Atari (Jack, Sam, Leonard and Garry) that really knew how to use a computer, much less program one. Jack finally had a non-Atari PC hooked up in his office during the final months so he could track his investments on the Internet. Sam has been "on-line" for a few years now, but I don't think Garry really uses a computer to this day. I don't think I ever saw any of them play a video game. If I did, it was definitely Leonard. I don't know what your thoughts are about the Hasbro acquisition of Atari, but I would like to share some questions that come to my mind. I ask these in a rhetorical spirit because I do not know if they can be answered. The mainstream press was not much interested in Atari when it was worth $50,000,000. I doubt they'll take much notice of it with it being worth only $5,000,000. Until the press starts asking the questions, I doubt there will be much motivation to answer them. 1. JTS acquired Atari and a number of employees. What has happened to those employees, specifically those assigned to the "Atari Division"? 2. Other than liquidating the material assets and inventory of Atari in a year and a half, what steps did JTS take to pro-actively turn that part of the company around? 3. ATC investors purchased stock in a company that was in the video game business and being led to believe that their investments would remain in that business. What efforts were invoked by JTS to honor the spirit of those investments? 4. Persons who have purchased Atari products in recent years (Lynx, Jaguar, etc.) have been led to believe that a responsible company would back these items should they ever cause damage or be in need of repair. What steps have been taken to offer out-of-warranty repair and parts? Which company has assumed those responsibilities? What steps has any involved company taken to inform customers about their options? 5. JTS absorbed a sizable inventory of product from Atari. What has happened to those goods? 6. Specifically, how were the initial funds from Atari to JTS spent? Did any of the money go to management bonuses? If so, how much? How big was that Atari accounts payable? 7. Did Atari or JTS actually start up any new software projects after their merger was announced? 8. Where does mail addressed to Atari get routed? Who answers them? Are they returned? Are they thrown away? Regardless of what the answers are and what new questions we ask, Hasbro will have no interest to revive Atari. Atari was once a very large company. The predators are circling and buzzards are pecking at the scraps. It seems to me that the best way to keep classic gaming alive is to pressure companies such as Sony Computer Entertainment and Nintendo into releasing more and more retro titles. So far, there's quite a library of classic game reissues on the PlayStation. These are not rental titles. These are buy-and-keep titles. Titles that you'll want to play again and again. These are titles that exploit the "fun factor"; an attribute in so many Atari games. even the ones that were scrapped. -- by Donald A. Thomas, Jr. [firstname.lastname@example.org] --==--==--==--==-- || Jaguar Trivia Challenge II: The Answers || By: Carl Forhan \__// email@example.com ----------------------------------------------------------------- 1. Which two games were announced on CD, but released as cartridges instead? Defender 2000 and Attack of the Mutant Penguins 2. What words are in the Fight For Life title song? "Oooh", "Yeah", "Fight", "For", and "Life" 3. Which two companies, besides Atari and Telegames, released games for both the Lynx and the Jaguar? Beyond Games and Hand Made Software 4. What's the difference between the control schemes in HoverStrike cart and HoverStrike CD? HoverStrike CD adds a keypad command for moving backwards. In the cart version, you have to "shift gears" into reverse. 5. What mode is enabled in Tempest 2000 once you beat the game the first time? Beastly Mode 6. Which Jaguar game (besides WMCJ), came with something other than the cartridge, overlay, and manual? Kasumi Ninja (the headband) 7. What was the last Jaguar game published directly by Atari? Fight For Life 8. Which published game(s) share the same title on both the Lynx and the Jaguar? Raiden, Checkered Flag, Blue Lightning 9. Which character in Atari Karts appeared previously in another Atari game? Bentley Bear (in Crystal Castles) 10. Name two unreleased Jaguar peripherals announced by Atari. VoiceModem, VR Headset BONUS QUESTION: How many AirCars cartridges were manufactured with serial numbers on the cart label? Exactly two. Tom Harker made sure I (Carl Forhan) got the first two AirCars carts "off the line", and also added computer-printed serial numbers to their labels. It was his way of doing a little extra for me to say "thank you" for building the support to get AirCars published. --==--==--==--==-- || || Shutdown ....................... Power off, * + #, EOL, Game Over \__// ----------------------------------------------------------------- Buzzword Index: Buzzword Occurrences HTTP 50 CD 27 Texture 11 Bug 13 Polygon 3 Render 2 Network 4 Useless Fact O' The Month: The first videogame to bear the Worms moniker was actually "Worms?", a crude sim-life game published in the 80's by Electronic Arts. Until the next issue of JEO, I remain, Your Editor Clay Halliwell firstname.lastname@example.org --==--==--==--==-- (This issue printed on recycled photons) --==--==--==--==-- Launch Sequence Initiated --==--==--==--==-- All Hail the Concrete Donkey --==--==--==--==-- Where do you want to play Atari today? --==--==--==--==-- Jaguar Explorer Online Magazine is a bilingual publication covering the Atari Jaguar community. Reprint permission is granted, unless otherwise noted at the beginning of the article, to registered Atari user groups and not for profit publications under the following terms only: articles must remain unedited and include the issue number and author at the top of each article reprinted. Other reprints granted upon approval of request. Send requests to email@example.com. No issue of Jaguar Explorer Online Magazine may be included on any commercial media, nor uploaded or transmitted to any commercial online service, in whole or in part, by any agent or means, without the expressed consent or permission from the Editor or Publisher of Jaguar Explorer Online Magazine. Opinions presented herein are those of the individual authors and do not necessarily reflect those of the staff, or of the publishers. All material herein is believed accurate at the time of publishing. I was sad because I had no ProController, but then I saw a man who had no Jag. --==--==--==--==-- Atari, 400/800, XL/XE, 2600, ST, Mega ST, STe, Mega STe, Atari Falcon030, Blitter, Atari Lynx, ComLynx, Atari Panther, Atari Jaguar, AtariTel, Pong, and the Atari Fuji Symbol are all trademarks or registered trademarks of Hasbro Interactive, Inc. All other trademarks and identifying marks mentioned in this issue belong to their respective owners. --==--==--==--==-- Jaguar Explorer Online Magazine "Your Source for Jaguar News" Copyright (c) 1998, White Space Publishers ****** ** ** ** ** **** ::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: J E O :::::::::::::::::::::::::::: :: Volume 2, Issue 2 JAGUAR EXPLORER ONLINE July 20, 1998 :: ::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::