Neohabitat Reawakens Lucasfilm’s First MMORPG

It seems that we may have been living under a rock all this time! We are the first to admit that we aren’t massive fans of adventure or RPG style games, but when the C64 is involved, we always sit up and take note!

Now cast your mind back to 1986 when Lucasfilm Games (LucasArts) began previewing their new online game Habitat (developed a year earlier) in magazines of the time. If you are lucky enough to remember, you’d recall that the game looked bloody amazing, a cross between an adventure game and something akin to an online chat room. If your recollections are a bit fuzzy, then think of a multiplayer SCUMM game before Lucasfilm were anywhere near releasing Maniac Mansion! Then, the game went into a closed beta and didn’t see the light of day till 1988, when it was scaled back as Club Caribe. Ah, you would be forgiven in thinking that the game was lost to the sands of time. But wait, there is a new ending to this story.

Before we get swept away by the nostalgic tide, let us give you the good news – Neohabitat have reawakened the original Lucasfilm Habitat server, which is now available for anyone and everyone to play online – for free! How awesome is that! It will feel familiar to those accustomed to the SCUMM-like interface, complete with cross hairs with a modern twist, which ain’t a bad thing at all.

Who would have thought that we’d be playing an MMORPG in 2017 that was made over three decades ago! It is indeed a great time to be a retro gamer!

source: Bobby Blackwolf on YouTube

Concept art for the box cover of Lucasfilm’s Habitat game. Source: Wikipedia

 

Atari ST: Accidental Musical Workhorse

Atari STIt became the music sequencing tool of choice for countless musicians, almost completely by chance. The Atari ST, Atari’s 16-bit successor to their long running 8-bit computer range, was launched almost 32 years ago, and Dr. Steve “Heartbleed” Bagley shows us his own extensive collection!


source: Computerphile on YouTube

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msausretrogamerMs. ausretrogamer
Co-founder, editor and writer at ausretrogamer – The Australian Retro Gamer E-Zine. Lover of science fiction, fashion, books, movies and TV. Player of games, old and new.

Follow Ms. ausretrogamer on Twitter

 

 

MAX: The Forgotten Commodore Computer

commodoremax_headerWe take a closer look at the long forgotten Commodore computer, the MAX MACHINE. Step back in time and take a look at this pretty little thing in the below pics!

Before you do go wandering down below to check out the MAX, let’s just pause and reflect on this Japanese made Commodore computer that never really got any market traction. The Commodore MAX Machine (aka: Ultimax in the US and VC-10 in Germany) was a home micro computer designed and sold by Commodore International in Japan at the beginning of 1982. It was the C64’s predecessor, and hence it was swiftly discontinued when the Commodore 64 went gangbusters! Due to it’s low production run, it is now considered a rarity.

The MAX did share the same CPU (MOS 6510) and SID (sound) chip as the C64, but that is where the similarities stop. With only 2KB of RAM, the MAX Machine was severly handicapped when compared to it’s bigger and more successful brother. One saving grace of the MAX was its ROM cartridges – they worked on the C64, and it also paved the way to the ‘freezer’ carts (like the Action Replay) due to the MAX compatibility mode that was built into the C64.

For those technically minded, here are the specs to whet your MAX appetite:

Operating system: MAX BASIC (Cartridge), 2047 bytes to program in, LOAD/SAVE support
CPU: MOS Technology 6510 @ 1.02 MHz
Memory: 2.0 KB, 0.5 KB color RAM
Graphics: VIC-II 6566 (320 x 200, 16 colors, sprites, PETSCII keyset)
Sound: 3 / 4 channel 6581 “SID” chip
Ports: expansion port (cartridge), RF/TV port, audio port, cassette port, 2 joystick ports

The MAX♦Machine bundle!

Nothing too exciting on this side of the box!

The back of the box reveals something out of this world!

Not to be outdone, the sides are look lovely!

Not sure about those keys, but it’s still beautiful

Taking closer look at the membrane keyboard…

The MAX does have a few interfaces to insert bits into them!

Not matter which way you look at it, the MAX Machine has gorgeous curves

Aha, so the model reveals itself, it’s the MAX-04!

Even the MAX requires power! Oh, and it’s all RF baby!

No gaming computer is complete without a killer game! 

Hook us up to the MAX!
image source: eBay


Awww – A Tiny Commodore PET

pet-2 Follow this Adafruit tutorial and you can have your very own 3D printed mini replica of the iconic Commodore PET (Personal Electronic Transactor) computer.

pet-1


Video source: Adafruit Industries on YouTube

Source: Adafruit via Laughing Squid

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msausretrogamerMs. ausretrogamer
Co-founder, editor and writer at ausretrogamer – The Australian Retro Gamer E-Zine. Lover of science fiction, fashion, books, movies and TV. Player of games, old and new.

Follow Ms. ausretrogamer on Twitter

 

 

Reset Podcast Episode 01: The Hewson Episode

reset_podcast_eps1_hdrIf you have ever wondered what shenanigans go on behind the scenes in creating a retro computing magazine, then you are in luck! For those of you in the know, the Reset magazine crew got together for the inaugural podcast of the same name to chat about the making of Reset issue #9 (it was the Hewson Consultants theme issue).

If you weren’t in the know, now you know! Listen in and make sure you grab the issue for free over here!


source: Reset on Soundcloud

 

Shotgun: 4-Player Death Match On Your C64

shotgun-box-contents-1What’s better than playing a death match with a friend in the same room? Playing a 4-player death match with your closest mates in the same room on your venerable Commodore 64!

Forget Goldeneye 007 on the N64, we give you Dr Wuro Industries’ Shotgun! This fast-paced death match game is available to download for free or you can grab the awesome boxed version (€16.90 + shipping) which comes in a plastic box with a flip-cover (which can be turned around to showcase the different covers), a 5.25″ floppy disk and a printed manual! The boxed version also comes with three additional extras – everyone loves surprises!

So grab the Protovision 4-player interface, plug in four joysticks, invite three of your closest friends and load Shotgun for some death match shenanigans on your C64 – let the rage begin!

shotgun-box-contents-3

shotgun-box-contents-2image source: Dr Wuro Industries

 

Press Play On Tape: The Commodore Is Still Keeping Up With You

PPOT17_TitleAs Commodore 64 month draws to a close, episode 17 of Press Play on Tape rolls in to prove that the Commodore is still keeping up with you! Hosts Alex and Aaron are joined by Ant Stiller and Hellfire64’s Rob Caporetto on a round-table discussion on everyone’s favourite 34 year old breadbin.

The group discusses what makes the system special to them, how they’ve been celebrating C64 month, and if there’s anything they’d ever do to change the system. There is also a look at some of the brand new releases that have caught their eye in recent times, and a few of the upcoming titles on the horizon.

The audience were challenged to come up with what game defined the Commodore 64 for them. The lads definitely weren’t ready for the overwhelming response – definitely proving that people are still keeping up with the Commodore!

This episode of Press Play On Tape along with all previous podcasts can be found on Podbean and also iTunes – we’d love it if you gave us a review while you’re there. It all helps!
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blahjediAaron Clement
Tassie based retro gaming guy. Father of 3 and married to the very tolerant Kellie Clement. Coffee powered!

Follow Aaron Clement on Twitter and Instagram