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Desc:Before 'The Sims' or Tamogotchi, there was the 'House on a Disk'
Category:Video Games, Educational
Tags:1980s, Commodore 64, 8-bit, virtual pet, Life Simulator
Submitted:Binro the Heretic
Date:12/11/12
Views:1666
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Comment count is 13
SteamPoweredKleenex
I remember this. It was the computer version of Sea Monkeys: The ads/description promised so much, but in the end, you were staring at something that was so dull you just wanted to watch it commit suicide.

I do wonder what easter eggs were hidden in the code, but I wasn't about to waste time finding out when I could be playing Elite.
Jet Bin Fever
Games that aren't played. There are so many of those.
Binro the Heretic
My little computer dude was cool. He had a white polo with a purple collar and some serious eighties shades. His name was Darren. It was fun to annoy him by making the doorbell ring as soon as he got in the shower or making the phone ring as soon as he laid down to sleep. He would get bitchy and refuse to interact until I gave him a few pats on the head.

It's probably hard for a lot of people to understand, but for a kid like me with kind of a crummy life, it was very soothing to be able to sit for a half-hour or so and watch this happy little guy in his nice peaceful house.

Then I would fire up "Barbarian: The Ultimate Warrior" and chop dudes' faces with a sword.

I'm kind of surprised this hasn't been revived as a screensaver or a tablet game.

Incidentally, "Little Computer People" was coded by David "Pitfall!" Crane based on an idea by Rich Gold, creator of the Power Glove for the NES.
MrBuddy
He should have sued Maxis when they came out with The Sims.

Old_Zircon
But where do I download the nude patch?
John Holmes Motherfucker
My C64 was worthless for anything except word processing, but nothing has ever been better than word processing with Speedscript. No menus, just keybindings. Hard to learn at first , easy to love after that. Back then, I thought of myself as a writer. II was young, free, and completely alone, no need for a network connection.

I wrote a novel on my C64. It was very bad. But still.
Binro the Heretic
GEOS was the way to go. I wrote the fuck out of some horrible stories in GEOWrite.

FABIO
I remember using Newsroom on the C64, which was basically a very primitive and limited early/mid 80s version of Microsoft Publisher. Dragging and dropping a large picture took nearly 5 minutes for the computer to calculate and catch up. I made two one page newsletters for my gradeschool class before burning out on how long it took.

Binro the Heretic
I was lucky in that I have drawing talent. I would just leave blank spaces for illustrations, make ink drawings of the appropriate dimensions and glue them to the printouts with rubber cement. Then I could just photocopy the pages with the added illustrations.

It didn't make up for the fact the stories were terrible, but I got a lot of compliments on the pictures.

Syd Midnight
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Syd Midnight
Newsroom came with hilarious clip art, the grinning guy in sunglasses I used for my article on how I was a cool dude, for a newspaper I published for my siblings

Toenails
Why, back in my day, I typed my novellas out on an actual typewriter. And they were one-hundred times as bad as you could only dream of.

Don't even get me started on my collection of "poems"...

Binro the Heretic
Before I even got my Vic-20, I had an old portable Smith Corona I got at a thrift store for five dollars. It was white with a white plastic lid that some previous owner tried to smarten up with pinstripes of red and blue running down the left edge.

It only had numeral 2 through 9. My dad had to explain to me that the lowercase "L" was the one and uppercase "O" was the zero.

I only ever wrote one complete story on it because it was so clunky and because I had to fix all my numerous errors with correction fluid.

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