Psychoball available for download

Psychoball available for download

by Meits on 15-07-2017, 22:14
Topic: Software
Tags: Psychoball, RAT
Languages:

It feels like just a few years, but 1993 is 24 years ago. Back then Reinier, Abi and Thom had a MSX gang going on called RAT. Together they were the perfect recipe for ridiculous humour and that shows. Everywhere they went people were baffled by what they just witnessed.

Either way. Back in the day of teens owning an MSX and the absence of internet it was obvious they'd flock together and get creative. Every club came out with a demo, disk-magazine or even a game. RAT was no exception. Their share in demos and diskmagazines can still be traced back in Emphasys' Golden Power Disks. But releasing a game is what they did on their own brand.

Psychoball is an original mix of table tennis and shuffle puck. Table tennis for the bounce and shuffle puck for the lack of a net. That's the ball part of the game's name explained. The psycho part is what you'll find out yourself once the ball starts acting weird or the state of mind you'll go in when you missed the ball for the 100th time.

The story is... well... weird. It's about two women who meet up at the hairdresser. There the women talk woman talk. At the end they go home to test this new detergent that supposedly would clean at 60 degrees. This is where it all goes wrong. The bottle beams both women to a planet ruled by Weirdo Bald and their only way to escape is playing 28 stages of Psychoball. You win if you score more points than the oponent within the given time. This story is graphically told to the viewer in a demo which takes long and goes into every detail both women are talking about. Reviewers have gone silly by the weirdest intro demo they had ever seen. Find out if you can relate to those reviewers after you witnessed it yourself.

The game comes on a 720kB disk, requires 64kB of RAM and supports MSX-Music and/or MSX-Audio. Each stage has a password so you don't need to finish the game in one go.

We'd like to thank RAT's Mediaman to kindly allow us to share this oddball of a ballgame with the rest of the MSX world.

Here is where you download it.

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  • Psychoball available for download
  • Psychoball available for download
  • Psychoball available for download
  • Psychoball available for download
  • Psychoball available for download

Comments (14)

By mth

Champion (455)

mth's picture

15-07-2017, 22:24

1993 was the year of Omo Power, or Persil Power in the UK. The detergent plot is probably a reference to that.

By Hydragon

Hero (549)

Hydragon's picture

15-07-2017, 22:26

Passwords for the levels can be found here

By Pippo

Master (223)

Pippo's picture

16-07-2017, 08:39

Thanks a lot to RAT for sharing and Hydragon for the passwords! Smile

By Thom

Champion (454)

Thom's picture

16-07-2017, 13:40

Thanks Meits for your extensive article about Psycho Ball LOL!

After all those years (nearly a quarter-century oO ) I both feel proud and embarrassed. To be honest, I don't think it was a very good game. We were only 19/18/17 at the time and I wasn't a very good coder.

Some anecdotes:

* Coded in both compiled BASIC and assembly (sector boot, disc I/O and de-crunching). Could've saved myself a lot of hassle if'd used assembly only. I Couldn't figure out at the time why the game wouldn't start from #4000 without crashing (At least I do know now).

* Although I made up that weird story, I've never ever used drugs or alcohol.

* My English teacher at high school always randomly asked his students to tell a story. Almost everybody told about their hobbies. I didn't. I told him a story about two ladies buying a detergent and being warped to a giant bouncing ball shaped planet. I've been avoided by classmates and teachers from then on.

* Drawings were made using DD Graph I think. R did the cartoons, I spent my summer holiday of 1993 pixelating the logos, battlefields and fonts.

* Musics were done by MOA (Emphasys) and myself (tiny bit)

* Couldn't make sound effects, so incorparated that into the story: "there are no sound effects during the game" (lazy).

* The loading screen after the RAT logo had a last line with the words "har har har". R hated that a lot and removed it using a HEX-editor Crying

* PB was sold for 9,965 Dutch guilders, exactly half of 3Square's (made by the Emphasisters) price (19.93). It was not fortuitous. Please forgive us.

Although we never speak to each other anymore (though I do chat to A via Facebook once in a while (i.e. years)), technically speaking we've never offcially stopped haha. Sometimes I feel I should teach myself Z80 again and make a demo or a game. But it's hard to find the peace to do so.

Still love MSX and read MRC every day. Multiple times. But I only use emulators.

By Thom

Champion (454)

Thom's picture

16-07-2017, 14:12

One final cheat: stage 28 doesn't have to be won, you'll proceed to the end demo anyway when time is up.

By Meits

Scribe (4393)

Meits's picture

16-07-2017, 17:18

So, what you say is that it was all for nothing that I finished stage 28 yesterday? That's good to know Smile

By Hydragon

Hero (549)

Hydragon's picture

16-07-2017, 20:18

Thom wrote:

One final cheat: stage 28 doesn't have to be won, you'll proceed to the end demo anyway when time is up.

Thanks I'll add that hint as well on the website, always good to know. ( edit: hint added, and added a some screenshots as well )

By Samor

Paragon (1773)

Samor's picture

24-07-2017, 21:15

well, that wasn't a hard game to finish using that password Tongue
...the hardest part was witnessing the entire demo Wink ...thank goodness for turbo mode in emulators.
I remember the game only because I read the review in a magazine and because I knew A a bit.

....just wondering though... what's up with all the capital L's ?

By Thom

Champion (454)

Thom's picture

25-07-2017, 16:00

Samor wrote:

well, that wasn't a hard game to finish using that password Tongue
...the hardest part was witnessing the entire demo Wink ...thank goodness for turbo mode in emulators.
I remember the game only because I read the review in a magazine and because I knew A a bit.

....just wondering though... what's up with all the capital L's ?

I guess I couldn't find a better way to have a fixed width font without too much empty spaces on both sides of the l...

BTW, congrats on being the first person to watch the end demo. It must have been a complete waste of time.

By Samor

Paragon (1773)

Samor's picture

25-07-2017, 19:52

I learned a lot about detergents. Running Naked in a Field of Flowers

By Hydragon

Hero (549)

Hydragon's picture

25-07-2017, 21:01

Thom wrote:

BTW, congrats on being the first person to watch the end demo. It must have been a complete waste of time.

Before adding the hint, I did test it myself as well to confirm the hint on the end level and what Samor said, yay for the F9 in openMSX for the end demo, it's a great game though.

By Samor

Paragon (1773)

Samor's picture

25-07-2017, 23:15

I think it's a decent game, and some of the graphics give it a proper 3D look which works rather well, IMO (like the "castle walls" in the first stage).

By MOA

Champion (260)

MOA's picture

26-07-2017, 02:01

If I'd known the intro would've been that long I would have provided a more varied intro song; I even got bored after 20 loops orso (an increase in the text printing speed would've helped, Thom! Tongue)

Glad to see the game is downloadable here now!

By Thom

Champion (454)

Thom's picture

26-07-2017, 10:45

Thom wrote:

One final cheat: stage 28 doesn't have to be won, you'll proceed to the end demo anyway when time is up.

I just found out that it's much quicker to let your opponent score 100 points.
The end demo is truly, truly embarrassing oO

MOA wrote:

(an increase in the text printing speed would've helped, Thom! Tongue)

Certainly. Someone willing to hex edit the text printing speed? I don't think I still have the original source codes.

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