Why Make Such a Thing?
I like the design and feel of the old Classic Macintosh GUI (resolution of 512x342, black & white). It’s clean and simple, but can achieve much with the limited controls it offers.
Some amazing games were made for the platform in it’s heyday, and many were very innovative, making the most of the unique and exclusive features that the Macintosh offered, over the competition.
However, many of those games were made before the FPS genre (and gaming as a whole) rapidly evolved through the 1990’s.
It would be nice to have an FPS game for System 6 era machines with a few more modern quality of life features and standardised conventions, while also adhering to period Macintosh design rules, and aesthetics.
Being a vintage Mac enthusiast, I eventually got around to giving HyperCard a serious go, working through tutorials, and seeing what all the fuss was about. About the same time, I was playing through Doom RPG (developed in mid 2000’s for pre-”smart” mobile phones), and thought that it could just about be recreated with the tools that HC offered.
After 12 months of working on it in my spare time, here’s the result.
The main feature of this release is just getting the first-person perspective drawing on screen.
The long term goal, is to have something approximating Doom RPG, including it’s feature set of:
- different classes of monsters (with simple path-finding)
- items / ammo / health system
- weapons / damage + melee
- interactable terminals and NPCs with text dialog
- locked doors + keys
- environmental hazards (fires to be put out, debris to be cleared)
- a simple shop / trade & inventory system
- different floor types (e.g. lava)
- scripted events (moving NPCs, destructible walls & map layout changes)
- palette based HUD elements
- transparent impassable walls (windows & bars)
- level map / overview (a rogue-like ascii point of view wouldn't take much to complete)
- Hidden doors, secret areas & easter eggs!
Maybe one day, even multiplayer could be implemented over AppleTalk. The technology exists!
Because this is developed in HyperCard, with scripts written in the 35+ year old interpretive language HyperTalk, performance is not great. But one advantage of this, is that because HyperTalk syntax is so close to natural language, it is easy for non-programmers to read through, learn, and make their own changes. Please do!
Can This Run on Original Hardware?
Technically Yes, practically No.
This project has been developed with Basilisk II & MinivMac, and performs best within these emulators.
All work completed so far has been done within the confines of Hypercard 2.4 (circa 1998) which does officially support machines as far back as the 1986 Macintosh Plus.
Running on System 6.0.8 in MinivMac emulating a Mac Plus with 4MB of RAM at “All Out” speed, still takes several seconds to update the view for each step the player takes.
I would have no clue how long the scripts in this stack would take to compute on the venerable 68000 CPU. It is best enjoyed in an emulator, with the horsepower of a modern machine behind it.
This demo requires:
- HyperCard 2.4.1 minimum.
- System 6.0.8 to Mac OS 9.2
- 4MB RAM or higher
- Screen resolution 512x342 or higher.
Additional tools are required if you want to customise the stack with your own textures.
The following Resolution and Colour combinations are available:
Best for B&W All-in-One Macintoshes.
Best for the Macintosh Colour Classic.
Good for Mac II and most other colour capable models into the 1990’s.
The B&W texture set currently only supports the smallest resolution mode.
How Do I Play?
If using an emulator, follow the relevant guides to get started:
Remember to attach the “First Person Demo” disk image, along side...Read more »