Monday, 30 December 2013

Santa's Fixed - Again!

It would seem that the fixed Santa's Mission game was not 100%, although it did play sort of OK.

After some sterling work from Jason, the fully fixed and working (hopefully) file is now available for download from the Type-In Corner section.

Work on the next episode has now started after a short break, and there should be some good news in the next few days for those who have asked for DVD versions of the show.

Monday, 23 December 2013

Santa's Mission Fixed

It didn't take long for several people to offer help with the none-working type-in game featured in episode 24, Santa's Mission.

The game had many errors, mostly caused by my bad typing 30 years ago!

The aim of the game is to drop down from the sled and leave presents in every room. Santa can climb the ladders and climb up the chimneys. He can also dig. To keep his strength up he can eat the food on the tables, but too much will mean he is too fat to get up the chimney!

To control Santa use; Q:up, A:down, Z:left, X:right, D:dig (followed by a direction key), E:eat food.

I have also changed a few lines to make it not wipe out the lower floor under certain circumstances, and to print the food eaten correctly. It may not be perfect, but at least you can play it now.

Thanks go to Timmy and Jason for their help.

I have updated the downlink in the type-in corner section.

Sunday, 22 December 2013

The Spectrum Show 24

Welcome to The Spectrum Show Christmas Special. The show dedicated to the Sinclair ZX Spectrum.

It’s that time of year again, the time of drinking too much, eating too much and shouting at the television, and so we try to bring you some respite.

In this episode we take a look back to all the Christmas top ten games for the first four years of the ZX Spectrum’s life.

We play some Christmas themed games, and there are some terrible ones out there!

We also check out two Christmas type-ins – one of which needs your help to get working.

Seasonal greetings to all our viewers, thanks for your time.

Friday, 20 December 2013

The Spectrum Show Annual

Ladies and gentleman, The Spectrum Show proudly presents our Christmas gift to all viewers of the show – The Spectrum Show Annual 2013.

This downloadable PDF magazine features articles, reviews and specials from the video show and contains things not seen previously in the show.

Thanks to everyone who has viewed the show over the last year and a half, and for the encouraging comments on YouTube, World Of Spectrum and of course here.

Hope you enjoy it.

Download issue 1 Here

More issues coming soon. Check the link top right or click here.

Sunday, 1 December 2013

JetPac, +3, DIVide - At Last

My +3, with DIVide running JetPac
If you watched the last episode of the show (23) you would have seen my review of the DIVide, a brilliant device that provides huge, fast access storage for your Spectrum. It does, however, have some issues.

The main one for me was that my favourite game, JetPac, failed to work when used with a +3 and the DIVide.

Having spent hours searching the internet, and with the help of some Spectrum fans, I accidentally stumbled on the answer. As usual, it was in front of my face (so to speak!).

I toyed with re-flashing the device to EsxDos, that not only gave the option to load SNA files in 48K mode (which would fix the problem) but also allow write access to the storage.

I tested the DIVide on my 48K plus machine to make sure it was in full working order - it was. I tested different versions of the game, and even loaded from the original tape - again it worked, but only in 48K mode.

I knew the problem was this mode. Fatware dumped the user into USR 0 mode meaning the full 128k of RAM was available. Great for compatibility but bad for a selection of games that triggered the paging mode by accident. These games included some Ultimate Play The Game titles, including JetPac.

As I was running out of options I found the answer in the most obvious place, the Sinclair FAQ. (Link no longer active!). Right at the bottom it mentions the issues with 128k/48k compatibility, and to my delight, the answer.

Entering OUT 32765,48 prior to loading the .TAP file from the DIVide, forces the Spectrum into 'true' 48K mode. This then allows the game to load and play.

Now I have to go through all the problem titles and add this fix to the .TAP files so I don't have to enter it manually each time. But first, I'm going to a few games of JetPac.

Since this article I have found references to this method on the following sites:
The Spectrum +3 Manual on WOS
Product details on Lotharek.

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