Walther Miller, the story?

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Par Manuel

Ascended (17943)

Portrait de Manuel

29-04-2021, 19:45

Who can tell me more about Walther Miller and his products?
I read in an InputMSX magazine about this topic and on several places on the web his products are marked as dubious....

What is the story behind this? And are MemoryMiller cartridges really dangerous for the hardware? And why?
What about MultiMiller? Did someone actually check what it does exactly?

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Par geijoenr

Master (254)

Portrait de geijoenr

29-04-2021, 23:26

I purchased one of their cartridges back in the day (Miller Graph) and I can tell the quality was not very good.

I remember I found the cartridge was actually running a BASIC program because I could stop it using CTRL+STOP.

Par gdx

Enlighted (4496)

Portrait de gdx

30-04-2021, 02:48

Manuel wrote:

What about MultiMiller? Did someone actually check what it does exactly?

I never tried it but it sounds like the homeopathy, the miracoulous drugs sold in the magazines that promises to cure all our diseases.

Par jltursan

Prophet (2520)

Portrait de jltursan

30-04-2021, 08:54

The available info is close to zero. I've found references about there's some "secrecy" around them, seems that someone don't want to live again these years.

This is the more detailed info I've been able to find (in Spanish): The wonderful world of Walther Miller

The last paragraph summarizes a bit how the company was perceived back then...

Par Wiebe_W

Supporter (10)

Portrait de Wiebe_W

30-04-2021, 08:55

He/they published four Star Wars games in the second half of the 80s (two Droids games, two Ewoks games, based on the cartoons) but I doubt if they actually had the licence. Seems like it was a Spanish company with a very English sounding name?

Par Guillian

Prophet (3439)

Portrait de Guillian

30-04-2021, 10:41

Manuel wrote:

What about MultiMiller? Did someone actually check what it does exactly?

IIRC, it just sets in pages 0 and 1 the same subslots than in pages 2 and 3. So it is some kind of "universal poke" that is executed after every BASIC command.

di
ld      a, (#FFFF)
cpl
and     #F0h
ld      b, a
rrca
rrca
rrca
rrca
or      b
ld      (#FFFF), a
ei
ret

The cartridge was advertised as:
"Multimiller is an Msx-1 and Msx-2 operating system reconfigurator, allowing you to get 100% performance from your personal computer. Thus eliminating any hardware problems. Be ready to use all the software of the market from this moment, since you will be able to use the one of Msx-1 for Msx-2"

But what it basically does is a POKE -1,x

Here is the BASIC program of the cartridge:

10 DEFUSR=&H8100:A=USR(0):FOR X=1 TO 1000:NEXT
20 SCREEN 0:WIDTH 40:COLOR 15,4,4:KEYOFF:CLS
30 PRINT"MULTIMILLER"
40 PRINT"Copyright 1987 WALTHER MILLER"
60 PRINT"Ready"
70 DEFUSR=&HBA00:A=USR(0)

The asm routines draw a intro screen, verify that the code is run from ROM and patch the hook at #FF0C to run the "poke" after every BASIC command.

Par gdx

Enlighted (4496)

Portrait de gdx

30-04-2021, 12:13

It's amazing to make a cartridge for that. I would like to find the dump out of curiosity. I expected something like this except for the hook. I wonder if the idea is really reliable when there is a POKE -1 with some other value in the loaders. Anyway POKE-1,(15-PEEK(-1)\16)*17 is not as effective as what is claimed. This doesn't make it possible to run all the programs and even less on all the MSXs. Even BMMS that is more efficient (by using a Memory Mapper) is not perfect.

Par mars2000you

Enlighted (5917)

Portrait de mars2000you

30-04-2021, 12:59

You can find their dangerous joystick here: https://en.todocoleccion.net/video-games-consoles-msx/joysti...

Unfortunaly all the pictures are degraded by horrible watermarks.

Par Danjovic

Master (191)

Portrait de Danjovic

30-04-2021, 13:05

Why the joystick was consideres dangerous?

Par mars2000you

Enlighted (5917)

Portrait de mars2000you

30-04-2021, 13:07

Joystick without base, uses sensors to detect movement. The sensors probably use dangerous mercury switches to sense orientation. Not something you want children to play with.

Par Pbk71

Expert (101)

Portrait de Pbk71

30-04-2021, 13:38

This video calls the games "The worst Star Wars games".
I agree on that, especially for the picture games... you do not understand that you dare to ask for money for it :P

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