Helena's BASIC Games released

Today I can finally release the two Atari BASIC games which I created together with my daughter Helena in 2016. She had to give away her smart phone for two 2 weeks because she did nothing else anymore than playing with the smart phone. Normal family life wasn't possible anymore. Instead she received an Atari 800 XL with two joysticks, a datasette and later a floppy drive. And we sat down together to dive into the essentials of Atari BASIC and game coding.

Pure computing power

Or as an old friend of mine put it "The Atari is exactly what your parents had to take away from you" :-)
In this video she presents the results of our efforts.

Silly Venture 2k17 surprise

Today I found a very nice suprise in my mail box with neat goodies and my very first physical trophy. I already found the best place to put it :-). Thanks Grey, and count me in for Silly Venture 2k18!


The right place for my first trophy

Time Pilot for Atari XL/XE released

In May this year, an excellent port of the classic arcade game Time Pilot was released for the Atari XL/XL line of computers. And as I found out today, it was created using WUDSN IDE. The complete sources of the game are available for download at http://timepilot.atari.pl and also on Github. Thumbs up to New Generation for this master piece and for releasing the source code, so others can learn from it.

SillyPack 2k17 released at Outline 2017

This pack contains a disk image in MyDos format with all Atari 8-bit releases of SillyVenture 2k17. It contains a proper results viewer which also acts as a menu from where you can directly start all releases and read the readmes. The menu remains memory resident, so you don't have to load it again every time. This makes watching the graphics entries and listening to the music entries much more fun, esp. on the real machine. These are the controls for the menu:

  • Pressing any key during loading the menu takes you to the DOS shell.
  • Pressing RESET in the menu performs a cold start.
  • Pressing RESET in while a release is running returns to the menu, if possible.
  • Further controls are displayed in the menu itself.

SillyPack 2k17


The download comes with a preconfigured Altirra which you can run with the required settings by simply clicking the "SillyPack2k17.bat" file. The demo "WePlash" by Nir Dary and Motionride requires a separate hardware configuration with a SIDE II hard disk image. To run this demo click the "SillyPack2k17-WePlash.bat" file.

I have released SillyPack 2k17 at at Outline 2017, which was my first Outline. Thanks to Havoc for inviting me, it was really great. I had the opportunity to present the pack myself. That was essential to show how much work is involved to actually get it done with the right quality.

Alpha C did a good job had a hard time getting all the stuff presented correctly and unfortunately sometimes failed. My 10 minutes before dinner hack No time, No memory, just Outline! for the 128 bytes compo was shown without sound. And F#READY's excellent Outlove didn't work at all because the wrong OS was active despite the explicit note in the readme. Really a pity, that one would have ruled the 128 bytes compo hard. Since most of the stuff is shown from emulators anyway, I really hope the compo team records the entries upfront next time.


The!Cart Studio update released


  • If the title derived from the file name and the title in the cartridge database are equal, no confirmation dialog is displayed anymore.
  • Usage of the SHIFT modifier is now the same in the expert menu and the extended menu. When starting and entry with SHIFT, i.e. FIRE+SHIFT, RETURN+SHIFT or RETURN+SHIFT+CONTROL, the configuration registers of The!Cart remain unlocked. Using the CONTROL modifier in addition, i.e. RETURN+CONTROL or RETURN+SHIFT+CONTROL indicates that the inner menu of the cartridge containing the entry is started instead of starting the entry directly. Note that FIRE+CONTROL alone cannot be detected on the Atari due to way POKEY works.
  • Built-in MyPicoDOS and flasher software from hias updated from version 4.05T (2014-04-07) to 4.06T (2017-09-24):
    • Added .CAR file loader so you can load cartridge images up to 512k from the disk into the The!Cart RAM without flashing them. very useful for fast test cycles during development.
    • Attract mode is now disabled when using joystick navigation.
    • Added directory and drive switching using joystick.
    • Bugfix: Don't disable high speed SIO if reading a directory fails.
  • The generated unit test cartridges now contain more details including the The!Cart mode used for emulation. In addition the VBI is now still active, so the cartridge can be freezed using TurboFreezer to analyze problems on the real hardware.


  • Fixed a bug added in the 2018-05-05 version that can prevent entries from being added when they are in the cartridge database.
  • Content type "XEGS 32 KB" is now correct mapped to the The!Cart mode for "XEGS 32 KB" instead of "Switchable XEGS 32 KB" in the extended menu. With this cartridges that use bank numbers with bit 7 set now work correctly, for example "Castle Crisis".
  • Import conversion for Williams 32 KB ROM is more robust now and always generates a new filename for the converted file.
  • File and conversion errors occuring during adding new entries are now reported correctly in the status bar.
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