• Judland's Commodore Blog

  • by judland

These are the ramblings of a happy Commodore computer user since 1983. I cover topics on both the C64 and C128, reviewing my favorite games and applications, as well as share some of my favorite memories from the 8-bit era. If you'd like to read more, you can visit my blog at: https://www.my64.in.nf -or- https://www.my128.in.nf


My First Game on the C64

A question that I see crop up, from time to time, is “what was the first game you ever played on your C64?” It's an interesting question and I enjoy hearing and reading other's answer to this question. For me, it's not an easy question to answer.

Originally posted on Mar-09-2019 on my Commodore Blog...

My initial interactions with the C64 was with the BASIC interpreter and my tinkering with BASIC 2.0. So, my first “game” was a simple number guessing game created with few lines of BASIC.

Another factor that delayed my exposure to gaming on the C64 was the lack of access to any sort of data storage device for the first six months or so of owning my machine. When my parents bought me my C64, all I had to go along with it was a 1702 monitor. So, any programs or games I had at my disposal had to come from printed sources, which I could type in myself. The only way I could try out the programs that were on the demo disk, which shipped with my C64, was to go to my elementary school (which I graduated from the previous year) in the evenings and use the C64 and floppy drive, which they had in their library.

However, I do recall the first non word or number guessing game, which I typed into my C64, and that game was “Bug Run”. I can't quite recall which book/manual this game was from, but I'd have to say that I must have been in one of the manuals that shipped with my C64. Or, at least, that's how I remember it.

The goal of the game is to get your “bug” from one end of the screen to the other, without getting stomped on by the row of boots above you. You used the < and > keys to move, and the game made use of sprites (for the boots) and had sound effects. So it was, by all accounts, a “video game”; albeit, not a very complicated one.

This was the sort of thing that amazed me about computers and what a person could do with them (with the right know-how). With just a bit of code and some typing, you can create just about anything on that little computer screen! It was that ability to unlock one's imagination that endeared me to my Commodore 64 and those early days of home computing.

There were a few other type-in games that I had to program into my C64, but Bug Run was the first that I can remember.  As for commercial games, the first I can remember ever playing on my C64 was Jupiter Lander.

A disk image that contains the Bug Run game is included in my original posting, on my blog.

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