Elon Musk - Blaster game for Spectravideo 318/328 (pre MSX)

By encore

Supporter (9)

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25-01-2020, 11:03

Posting this here as it might be of interest.

Last summer there was a discussion on a C64-forum about Elon Musk (known for Tesla and SpaceX) having a VIC-20 growing up. In a book by Ashlee Vance about Elon Musk there's a scan from the magazine "PC and Office Technology" of a game listing. When I and others examined the code however we figured out that the listing must be for the Spectravideo 318/328 (my first computer when growing up).

I think so because the program starts with CLICKOFF which MSX BASIC doesn't have. There's also a Spectravideo-logo on the scanned page. As some of you know, the SCREEN layout are also a bit different with regards to Spectravideo 318/328 vs MSX. This is how it looks:

Anyway, the scan is here along with notes how to run the transcribed listing in OpenMSX: https://archive.org/details/blastar-elon-musk-spectravideo

The transcribed listing is here: https://ia903005.us.archive.org/4/items/blastar-elon-musk-sp...

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By ericb59

Paragon (1099)

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25-01-2020, 11:42

OH Damned. I 'm 1 year older than Elon, and in 1984 I was playing on my MSX PHC28, but at this time I was unable to program a game... I understand why he is a billionaire and not me! LOL! Wink

By Guillian

Prophet (3516)

Guillian's picture

25-01-2020, 17:38

Thanks, encore.
Some months ago, I adapted the game to MSX and tested it on my Model 3 using WebMSX:

By encore

Supporter (9)

encore's picture

02-02-2020, 12:03

Guillian: That's cool! The game is coming full circle. Smile Did you also scan and transcribe it from the book or did you use my upload? The game itself is not very polished in my opinion, it seems that if you don't do anything (f.ex. when struggling to figure out joystick configurations as the game starts) and the first "status beam" is sent, then the game goes into a kind of loop where you loose all your lives. Either its a transcription error (which is not entirely impossible as it's quite hard to read some of the code) or the game was not tested much. Either way it's very cool to be able to replay it.

(I also noticed now when reinstalling openMSX 0.15.0 (from Ubuntu repository) that I had to change the line ending-characters in the text-file from Linux to Windows for the file to be typed in properly - otherwise it would be one long line, but I probably compiled OpenMSX the last time I used it and it's probably fixed in the source, just no official release version of the emulator since then).