Hello, Guest the thread was viewed6.5k times and contains 36 replies

last post from retroCombs at the

MEGAZINE - a type-in magazine for the MEGA65?

  • Probably everyone of you remembers "type-in magazines" from the 80s - paper magazines with BASIC listings, ready to be typed-in on your own homecomputer.

    Some of you might have heard of the recent German type-in magazine called "Weihnachten auf dem Commodore" (= Christmas on the Commodore), which launched in 2018 and spawned 4 issues since then, with around 20 listings each. The idea behind this magazine was to bring back some nostalgia during the quiet winter months, as many users have fond memories of receiving their Commodore computers as a Christmas gift. The magazine would allow them to experience the good old days again by sitting in front of their computer, taking a sip out of their tea cup, and typing in some nice little Christmas-themed games or animations.

    all 4 issues of the BASIC x-mas type-in magazine "Weihnachten auf dem Commodore"

    The magazine was very well-received and readers shared nice stories of how they typed in those programs, some even did that with their kids and had great fun. There is something magical about having something appear on your screen seemingly out of nowhere, right after typing just a few lines of BASIC.

    Now the MEGA65 is approaching, and compared to the C64, it has a much better BASIC and runs a lot faster. Thus, it should be possible to create some really great new BASIC games, and it would be fun to share them in a real paper magazine for others to enjoy!

    If you would like to help making this "MEGAZINE" come true, please provide a program which fits the following rules:

    • provide a game or otherwise "fun" program
      • people should be able to enjoy the program after they typed it in after all!
      • less is more, you don't need to code the next Turrican in BASIC, something short and sweet will be perfectly fine!
    • use 100% BASIC
      • use proper BASIC commands instead of POKEs (i.e. BACKGROUND instead of POKE 53281, etc)
      • please do not use assembly routines, the MEGA65's BASIC should be fast enough
    • focus on readability
      • no need to cram loads of commands into a single line
      • make use of some REM comments, at least to divide the listing visually into logical sections
    • don't spoil the fun!
      • the program has to be previously unreleased
      • do not publish the program on the mega65 filehost or on discord etc - typing in the program by oneself shall be part of the fun!

    Deadline for submissions is: 30th SEPTEMBER 2022

    Submit the game as a runnable PRG file to: zeha@drwuro.com

    Also provide a small description if possible, and add some notes if certain ROM versions are necessary (ideally your program should run on the "official" ROM version)

    After that, the magazine will hopefully go to print and can be purchased for a little price + shipping. Of course, everyone who provides a listing will receive his issue for free :)

    I hope you like this idea and we'll create something nice together!

  • Hmm, intriguing. What about taking a previous entry that's barely playable on C64 and making it Mega?

    i have the feeling i know which one you're talking about :) sure, why not, it will be a quite different listing after all (and a different experience too :) )

  • Tolle Idee! Ich habe einen Nachricht an #general am MEGA65 Discord angepinnt.



  • One hint from my side as well.
    I am not sure, if it's implemented on the MEGA65 SDcard on delivery (i should know, but just to much in my head these days ;-) ), there's a D81 image on Discord:


    There are all BASIC commands (up-to-date) from the reference manual as tiny example PRGs for experimenting.

  • OK, above link is working now.

  • Hi dudes and dudettes,

    yesterday I created a little mockup of a possible title page of the first MEGAZINE issue - but I won't reveal that right now! For the XMAS magazines, the cover was always kept secret until the magazine was sent out to the receivers. So they had a nice little surprise in the mail. Probably we will have it like that with the MEGAZINE as well :)

    During the work on my small BASIC example game "The Wall" ( The Wall (simple BASIC65 game based on a Lazy Jones mini-game) ), which I created mainly to get myself into MEGA65 coding, I tried to create a listing that focuses on readability over execution speed - because I think on a 40 MHz machine, it shouldn't be a problem to have some extra spaces between e.g. things like "FOR" and "I":

    Gone are the days of having unreadable spaghetti code like this:

    I think it will not only be easier to read and type in, it will also make it easier to understand for beginners. Of course, the syntax highlighting also helps a lot. Though I somehow like the "cramped" approach on the C64, probably because of pure nostalgia, I think it would be nice if we had readable listings for the MEGAZINE (i.e. like in the first example). Also, it will be easier to find mistakes. In the XMAS magazines, there's a checksummer, but we haven't got one for the MEGA yet. And I'm not sure if we will have one until the MEGAZINE comes out (because someone else created it, and this user is no longer around in the forums - and we don't know if he's even interested in the MEGA).

    So just in case we won't have a checksummer for the MEGAZINE, I think readable listings will have to do the trick. Here's the full listing btw, and actually I spotted some "formatting mistakes" myself already - I guess it's hard to get used to a "nice" kind of coding on an 8-bit machine, when you're used to cramp everything together 8)

    and don't worry, Snoopy, in the printed version of the MEGAZINE, there won't be wall and cactus chars in the listing, of course ;)

  • Hi ZeHa

    are they supposed to be such small programs again, like with the C64'er at Christmas time.

    Or can they be a bit bigger.

    I don't know if I have time for that at the moment, because I'm busy with BD I clone.

    Well just like with the Christmas magazine, there is not really a limit, but in the end, the readers will choose which programs they will type-in and which they will pass. I'd say that the shorter and more readable the listing, the higher the chance that someone will take his time and type it into his computer. So all in all, people who submit a program should focus on something that people might be willing to type.

    Due to the improved BASIC, with more dedicated keywords and less POKEs, and due to the higher execution speed, which should make it possible to add a bit more "air" to the listing (less cramped lines, etc), I would expect that many of the programs in the MEGAZINE would be naturally shorter and more readable than their "Christmas" counterparts.

    In the end, I think a nice mixture of shorter and longer programs will make for an interesting magazine. In the Christmas magazines, we had everything from being just a few lines to spanning multiple pages, so I think a good mixture will be cool anyways :)