Articles by Steven


Steven has written 459 articles.
Having Fun Learning How to Draw Lines on My ZX81
When Simeon Dwyer shared his machine language line drawing routine, I immediately thought of redoing ďThe Picture.Ē Most of my z80 assembly has been with my Gem Quest game. I decided it would be a nice diversion to work on something else, even if a quick one…
Posted Apr 30 6 min read

Not My Best Try at Programming an Ultima Clone
Iíve talked about ZX-Ultima before. It was first attempt at building an Ultima like game on the ZX81 using BASIC. Written in 2012, it was a pretty ambitious project for me. I really enjoyed playing Ultima III on my C64 as a teenager. I always wondered what it would look like on my ZX81. It was bad…
Posted Mar 31 5 min read

A Developer Diary in Pictures for Gem Quest, a ZX81 RPG
If youíve been following me the last couple of months, you know Iíve been revisiting Gem Quest. Intended to be an Ultima style game for the ZX81, outside of a few demoís I really hadnít gotten far. That isnít the case now…
Posted Mar 07 8 min read

How to Build a ZX81 Ultima Game Part 2: Gem Quest
After sharing Tiles, I started to dig into my previous attempts at building an adventure game. Digging through my past research, I thought about encoding the world differently. Sadly, my experiments using MCODER failed…
Posted Feb 25 6 min read

How to Build a ZX81 Ultima Game
In 2012 I wanted to see if I could make an Ultima style game on the ZX81. I had an ambitious plan centered on the tile based graphics. After a few months of testing, I was able to create a working prototype called Tiles. Although the game isnít done, the idea behind it shows promise…
Posted Jan 31 10 min read

My Adventure with Appleís M1 and Blender
Although my late 2013 MacBook Pro still works well, it was showing itís age. Sadly, I found it freezing from time to time and generally not running like it used to. Given that my Windowís laptops lasted only a few years, Iíve been very happy with longevity my mac…
Posted Jan 01 4 min read

How I Used My ZX81 to Draw the Iconic OP Logo
As 2020 wound down, I had a couple of different ideas for new ZX81 programs. Most of them were graphic programs of various sorts. Themes ranged from dumpster fire pictures, an advent calendar, a virus action game, to a solo RPG…
Posted Dec 27, 2020 4 min read

Happy Holidays! Here Is a Fun Render to Close out the Year.
Tis the season to render Santa. Well that wasnít really my plan, but it worked out that way. I was browsing around Bricklinks, mostly trying to update some of the recent sets. Searching for a small reindeer figure, I ran across LEGO set 1628 Santa with Reindeer and Sleigh…
Posted Dec 24, 2020 7 min read

Creating Charts on Your ZX81 Couldnít Be More Simple
As usual, I procrastinated a bit in finishing my ZX81 program for November. Between holidays, work, and NaNoWriMo, I didnít get around to it until this last weekend. I decided to try something a little different for this monthís program…
Posted Nov 30, 2020 7 min read

Entering a Program Shouldn't Be This Frustrating
Back in July, I made a mistake and entered in Star Probe again. I had forgotten that Iíd already shared it. But, unlike my first attempt, I had taken a different approach which made it a much different game. Jumping ahead, I decided to finish what I started…
Posted Oct 25, 2020 12 min read

Here Is a Silly Test Program for the ZX81
September proved to be a rather busy month, at work and home. It isnít unusual for me, and I usually find time to throw a render or program together. As this month closed, I found myself in need of a program to share and not a lot of time…
Posted Sep 29, 2020 3 min read

Here Is My Crazy Idea to Make a ZX81 Game with a Printer
Back in the day I learned to program on school PDP-11 with a 6 teletypes and a CRT attached. I was still in computer club at the time, thinking the 8" floppies were pretty cool. To my despair, the poor thing died that Summer and, when I took my programming class, it was on an Atari 800…
Posted Aug 29, 2020 8 min read

Now Is a Good Time to Build My Mini ZX81
A retro blast from the past! The four chip Sinclair ZX81 was the first computer I owned and I thought it would be fun to build a LEGO version of it. The 2K of memory (in my US version) was pretty limited…
Posted Aug 09, 2020 4 min read

Adding a New Topic Category: LEGO Building
I haven’t added a new topic in awhile, but I ran into a bit of a problem lately. As an AFOL (Adult Fan of LEGO), I recently got back into building with real LEGO bricks. In doing so, I decided to start taking pictures of some of the sets of been building…
Posted Aug 08, 2020 3 min read

Introducing Tree Winter, My Second LEGO MOC
After finishing Tree Fall, I had an idea to turn it into a winter scene. I thought it would be easy to swap out a few parts with white ones, but my wife disagreed. She recommended some changes and, after some trial and error, I created Tree Winter! Something different. Although like my previous MO…
Posted Aug 08, 2020 3 min read

Can You Win in This Easy Game of ZX81 Dice
Lately, I’ve been reflecting on my programming journey. It is hard to believe that it has been over nine years since I started writing my monthly articles. I’m nearing the end of my printouts, and thought I’d write about my ZX81 Dice Game. Walk down retro lane. Although I’d s…
Posted Jul 31, 2020 5 min read

Introducing My First LEGO MOC Called Tree Fall
Awhile back, I had an idea on a run for a little LEGO vignette. My vision included a small tree on a hill. Most often, my mind refocuses on my workout the vision fades. This time, the idea stuck and became reality as Tree Fall. From idea to render. Using a simple 4x4 pattern, I started to build my…
Posted Jul 13, 2020 5 min read