I've talked about Tower of Love before, but that was a much different version of the game. That version was all about the intro screen and my initial attempt at the story. I even showed another design I had made. To my surprise, I had a third version of the adventure that I started. Time to share!
# A little bit of story.
Unlike the first article I shared, the intro of this game starts with a map. But this is not the same map as that one. I actually found the printout of the map attached to the program. I was surprised and didn’t realize it was for Tower of Love until I read the title. Even better, it had some story.
Tower of Love, Chapter 1, Opening Screenshot, 1984 by Steven Reid
Okay, it isn’t a ton of story. At least not by modern standards. Given the ZX81 had such limited memory, that shouldn’t surprising. This program with a map and two paragraphs of text weighs in at 2KB or an 1/8 of the available memory. That doesn’t give me much for additional text, graphics or even game mechanics. For that reason alone, I suspect that is why this game didn’t get much further.
# The Story continues.
The story itself isn’t bad. I did clean up the text a bit to fit properly on the screens. The story sets up the map and is open ended. I often wonder what I had planned next. Would I let the player wander that map? Would there be directions and rooms? i really don’t know.
Tower of Love, Chapter 1, Second Screenshot, 1984 by Steven Reid
I do like the way the text is presented. Each paragraph fits into the bottom underneath the map. Gives kind of an adventure vibe with text. I give the player time to read and press a button. Sadly, since this is only a couple of paragraphs it repeats pretty quickly.
# The map and more.
I decided to look through my old notebook and actually found the original map. This helped me type in the map. It is a long
The minimal nature works for this program. I do think scrolling the text would be more interesting. There are a couple of ways to do that in BASIC, but if I decided to improve I’d probably use machine code. I have a lot of routines to compress text and print it to the screen. The only problem is would this be a text adventure or something else?
Overall it was a pretty fun little program. Not quite the full screen treatment of the original version. But it works.