April 26, 2005

Nonexistent Games, Reappearing

by peterb

Last October I wrote about a Star Trek game for the Apple II that I remembered playing in the early 1980s. It had the somewhat disconcerting habit of spewing out page-long quotes from Marcus Aurelius's Meditations. It was so incongruous that I wasn't sure if the game actually existed, or if I was just remembering some sort of odd dream. The other week, to my surprise, someone wrote me saying: "Hey. I remember that game. In fact, I have it on a disk."

The problem is that this person's Apple II disk drive is completely broken, so he's not even sure if the disk is still readable. With luck, he'll be sending me the disk soon, and I'll try to recover the data from it and get it into a disk image form and onto the various Apple II archives on the net.

If that's the only good thing that ever comes out of Tea Leaves, I'll feel like it's enough.

In comments on that same post, Mark Josef asked about a game that eventually turned out to be Green Globs and Graphing Equations. I couldn't find a disk image of that game, but since that time, someone has written a simple Javascript version of the game. It's a little dodgy and doesn't run well in some browsers, but it at least gives a sense of what the original game was like.

So I am emboldened by this trend, and want to make more disappeared games return. So it's Stump the Game Geek time once again: pick a game that you used to play, that you can barely remember, whose name you've forgotten, and describe it in the comments below. I (or our Alert Readers) will try to identify it and tell you where to find it.

Posted by peterb at April 26, 2005 09:16 PM | Bookmark This

Probably easy:

Large mushrooms with feet being shot on an Apple II+

Posted by Mike at April 26, 2005 11:01 PM

It's worth pointing out that the first hit when googling "Marcus Aurelius's Meditations" is "Google Answers: Star Trek Apple 2 game that quoted Marcus Aurelius's 'Meditations'".

Truly this is the essence of the internet: instead of Gutenberg's copy of Meditations, you get an unanswered question about an obscure videogame for a long-dead platform.

(It would appear that your comment system strips out links, so here's URLs:

Posted by Josh Myer at April 26, 2005 11:26 PM

Josh: Yeah, I posted that google answers query. No one was able to claim the $25 bounty, to my regret.

Posted by peterb at April 27, 2005 12:22 AM

I THINK I remember this game as well. What I recall is that you almost always had to resort to some sort of weirdness devised by Spock that might kill you, or might solve the problem. After you deployed the weirdness, Spock would say something like "Fascinating...we survived" or it would read "F-a-s-c-i...." and you were all dead.

Is this the same game? I might have it too, in one of several boxes. The chance of actually finding it is remote, sadly.

Posted by Xian Plus at May 4, 2005 04:24 PM

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