With news of a new game for the Amstrad CPC and an interesting piece of Atari hardware, Shaun brings your weekly dose of retro
The Computer EmuZone (CEZ) Games Studio have recently announced that there's a new game for the Amstrad CPC starring, of all things, a humble bubble. This one is trapped deep below the surface in a strange underwater world. So, as this trapped air is simply that, and therefore cannot think for itself, the task in hand is to guide it to the surface and to freedom.
But it isn't that simple. Obviously, air will find its way upwards in any environment dominated by H20, so guiding the oxygen molecules isn't as simple as you might think; hazards from each screen will weaken our 'hero' as he travels, and he could also be trapped permanently if he is not guided accurately enough.
The game is akin to an arcade puzzler, using colourful, well-defined graphics, and it can be downloaded freely and legally from https://computeremuzone.com/ficha/15/aqua-viaje-a-la-superficie&sec=amstrad&l=en
While you're there, you might also like to note that there are other wares available to download for Z80-based machines such as the Sinclair ZX Spectrum and MSX. Just click the 'Games' tab at the top.
While on the subject of the Microsoft-affiliated 8-bit monolith, www.msx.org has announced that the Spanish developer Imanok has recently improved all of his games which may be downloaded at will. For more information, head over to the aforementioned MSX site.
There appears to be a new video processor for the Atari XE machines. Briefly announced over at www.atari.sk, this new piece of kit in an internal upgrade for Atari's famed 8-bit machines. According to what translations of the original Polish text I can decipher, the Video Board XE (VBXE) is an FPGA-based upgrade and adds many new capabilities to the aged machine, including blitter objecting, presumably while not compromising on compatibility. Soldering skills might be required here, so you have been warned. As soon as I have a fuller explanation, I'll let you know, but for now, there are some pictures to peruse and other files to download over at vbxe.atari8.info, or you can email the creator directly at email@example.com
The MCC64 device is a Commodore 64 and 128-compatible upgrade allowing the use of up to 4GB Multi-Media Cards (MMC) and Secure Data (SD) storage cards on the humble 8-bit. Recently, Oliver Achten has been improving the capabilities of this device, including a new BIOS that will allow FAT32-formatted cards to be used with it. It's also possible to play MP3 files using the nifty hardware, with other new features, improvements and bug fixes announced, such as the ability to read long filenames, and therefore ironing out the loading problems that can occur with long filenames. More information has been announced over at www.protovision-online.com.
The MCC64 is manufactured by Individual Computers, who have other such devices for Commodore's mighty 8-bit machines. Be sure to check out www.jschoenfeld.de too.