THE ARENA is an arcade adventure for two players, in which, as a denizen of Ancient Rome, you go hunting for treasure against immeasurable odds.
In THE ARENA, two players fight and each controls his character inside its own scrolling window.
The object is to collect treasure chests scattered throughout a large maze. Each player needs to collect eight. Player one collects chests marked 1 and player 2, chests marked 2.
When they have all been collected you have to reach the finish before your oxygen runs out. This can be found at the tip of the large arrow that forms part of the wall at the bottom centre of the playing area. This area can only be reached by a teleport.
Oxygen levels become depleted faster by running or bumping into walls. More oxygen can be picked up by running over the ox symbols.
The skulls and protectors are fatal to the touch. The protectors may be destroyed using a neutraliser, skulls on the other hand must always be avoided.
||Space reserved for the machine code
||Amount of oxygen carried by player one
||Player one's score
||Number of chests player one has found
||Direction of player one's movement
||Places data for map in memory
||Draws the screen display
||Assembles the machine code
||Calls the machine code
||Main game routine for player one
Dropping a sandbag leaves a pile of sand, which may trap the other player since they can only be removed with a spade.
To pick up an object simply walk over it. Unfortunately, your shield is heavy, and you can only carry one object at a time, although objects that are used immediately, treasure chests for instance, can be picked up any time.
The game ends when a player finishes or both players die, the winner in this case being the one with the highest score.
Although THE ARENA is intended for two players it can be played by one. This can be an advantage if you want to practice and beat your friends to the treasure.
Due to the compact design of the program it should be entered with care and saved before being run.
Be careful only to enter spaces where they are printed, except the ones between the line number and the start of the line. For instance enter line 650 as:
without any spaces, and not as:
650 IF INKEY(-67) AND ADIR%=0 ADIR%=4:NA%=A%-1:n%=n%+1 ELSE IF INKEY(-83) AND ADIR%=0 ADIR%=2:NA%=A%+1:m%=m%-1
However, some spaces are essential and have been left in certain lines.
Watch out for variables with similar names, like O2% and O2. Also S and 5 look very similar.
Enter THE ARENA at your peril, your destiny is upon you.