LOAD "*",8,1

I was cleaning out the garage a while back and finally tossed out my 1541 drive. I almost kept it, but have long since lost track of the C64 I had when I was a kid.

I remember  making “double sided disks” with my Mom’s  hole puncher and making sure that if I wanted to save it, I promptly taped it up and put “white out” on whatever label was there and scrawled  in my own title such as “steve’s program”

My very first computer that I can really remember, was a Vic20 with a cassette drive ( not sure if you could even really call them drives ). I was in 4th grade, or around that time, and remember that during recess we were allowed to play on it if it was our turn.

Then, my family bought a C64 – we never had any gaming consoles as my Dad figured they would just rot our brains. Ahh , but he didn’t count on all the games which could be had on the Commodore.

Mission Impossible ( many many hours wasted there ) Lode Runner ( I think it had 101 levels  or some such nonsense ) and Oregon trail to name just a few.

But, one of my odd childhood memories involves sitting and typing in line after line of DATA statements from the backs of the Commodore and Ahoy!   magazines.

I had no idea what I was doing for the most part, blindly typing in row after row of statements like:

540 data255,255,255

550 data234,170,171

560 data128,0,1

570 data135,199,193


I remember pages and pages of these data statement and other BASIC commands. And when I was done.. well it ran 45% of the  time.

I clearly remember when my older brother showed me how to write a joystick controller routine using PEEK and then how to graph out  our own sprites so we could make basic  faces and stuff.

And  the C64 also had cartridge games – I think we had some spaceship game which had Beethovan or Bach as a theme song to it… I can still hear it in my head as I blasted my way through space ( anyone remember the name of that game? No IMDB for C64 out there .. )

As I entered middle school I dropped computers altogether, in favor of girls and sports.  Then, in the summer of 1991, I had just moved to Seattle, a movie called Terminator 2 came out and I was hooked on special effects. I  bought a special effects book and in the back was a free demo version of Caligari Truespace – after that I scrimped and saved so I could buy a used version of 3DSr4 for  DOS ( the seller also had a number of IPAS as a bonus ) and promptly figured out that  computers could do some cool things and wanted to do “something” with computers in the future.

Anyway – thought I would share some random thoughts  with folks today J

If anyone remembers the name of the crazy classical music space  game – let me know.

And Dad, thanks for buying that C64.







Comments (7)

  1. computer guy says:

    sys 32768 – run machine language

    sys 41952 – run machine language

    (Compute! the magazine – before the internet)

    sys 64732 – reset computer?

    I could be wrong on some, but remember those? Ya the good old days, now that i’m remembering I’m going to find that C64 emulator software.

    i will look for the game too.

    – "Stay a while, staayyy forever…Ha Ha Ha" EA Mission Impossible.

  2. Wow, talk about bringing back memories!

    I’d guess the game you are referring to was ‘Elite’, and it had something like the 2001 Music when you engaged the auto docking feature.

    I miss the games for the C64… Most really were terrible, but there were a few that were so FUN, they stick in the mind forever.  Elite was certainly one of those.  Racing Destruction Set was another.  So much time lost, so much fun had 🙂

  3. computer guy says:

    one more memory about the cassete tapes.

    Did you ever do this? I remember putting the tape in a friends player either his car (better results) or at home. someone who did not know what it was or what sounds would come out. telling them it was a new wave music and to turn up the volume before playing it. Then squelll squeeek sqreeeech sreech squablle and they would have a puzzled look with the expression what the hell is that!

  4. MemiLavi says:

    Oh, the memories…

    My ancient C64 is now stored in my Mother’s house. A couple of years ago I found it while looking for something else, and decided to try it. Connected its strange triangular power supply, turned on the switch and… voila! got the familiar C64 blue screen (as opposed to BSOD…). Ah, those amazing PEEK and POKE… and not to mention my all-time hits – Frantic Freddie and Human Race!

  5. neuralocity says:

    check out lemon64.com, people are still making things for the C64.

    And if you want a laugh, http://digg.com/apple/Hey_Mac_TV_Ads_I_m_a_Commodore_64

  6. SpatDSG says:

    ahah! I remembered it – ok well actually my brother did.

    Star Ranger – screenshots here



  7. Gaussdog says:

    Loooove that most Brilliant if machines!!

    Spent all those hours typing in programs and being forced to learn in the process.

    At first it was basic BASIC, but the they made a MLX, machine language editor, and you programs would look something like:

    10 255,128,64,32, 255

    a line number followed by some base whatever info, and the last number was a checksum, so you NEVER made an error again,…. But you also never learned anything again,…

    Too bad i decided that PC's would never take off and hit out of programming completely,..

    25 years of programming? I'd be RICH by now!!!!!!!

    Lode Runner, heehee, Gauntlet would run out of memory around level 25 or so,

    and Galaga too at some point I think ,….64K!!! heeeeeheeeeeheeeeee!!!!

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