ScuzzBlog: Diaries January 2022

Entry 27th January 2022: Post 1: The One - That annoying little BRAT!.

The One - That annoying little BRAT!.

For what seems an eternity I have had this busted disk sitting on
the desk for the game 'BRAT!' It all started very innocently, with
a request for a copy of the disk. Sadly I discovered it wasn't
working. Worse was to follow with subsequent copies failing to
load or refusing to play properly. It seemed that everyone that
had a copy of this disk had had one problem or another.

First up let me talk briefly about The One. If you know of the
work of Rob Northern you will be familiar with his dual format
and even tri-format disks. This enabled differing platforms to be
supported on the same disk. So in addition to say the Amiga there
could also be an Atari game on the disk. This proved popular with
magazines supporting differing platforms. The One was one such
mag that had features on the differing platform games. Many of
of the titles 'Cross-Mojinated' so it was sensible to try and
attract as wide a reader base.

Things changed eventually when the magazine started to issue disks
with the title of 100% Amiga. As opposed to 50% Atari. So when
you collect 'The One' disk you may get befuddled by both content
and the name on the label. I think 'BRAT!' marked the last dual
format disk in April 91 ... [Let me just check that]. I am correct
and the new look of 'The One' for Amiga Games only was first issued
in May 1991. The disks were .. E.Motion and ELF and the label on
the disk says 100% Amiga.

Back to that annoying BRAT! A few days ago I purchased yet another
copy of the disk together with the magazine for April 1991. I really
had no idea whether the disk would work, but here is what happened.

Amiga 1200: The disk began to boot but printed garbled text. The
disk is only suited to OCS and ECS.

Amiga 500 with external floppy and A590: The disk basically hung
on the loading cycle just before the de-crunching process.

Amiga 600: Interestingly I got the same result as the A1200.

Amiga 500 with external floppy drive and GVP sidecar 4MB FAST RAM.

For this I left the GVP switched off and the computer booted but
hung on the de-crunch. I tried again but with a random empty floppy
in the external drive. This time I got into the game but when I
started playing the screen froze and I had a red screen.

Last try .. I powered up the GVP and this time I got into the game
and was able to play no problem. So excited was I that I went and
retrieved disk box L24 and nabbed Disk A and B of BRAT! and played
for half an hour. The idea of the game is to lay down small tiles
or directional markers on the ground to point the BRAT to where
there are rewards etc. The screen is constantly scrolling so you
have to be quick and there are limitations on use. The game for me
is pretty annoying as you are endlessly activating icons from the
menu and placing them on the ground. I have to say I didn't enjoy
it. BUT, the demo disk does work.

Sadly Mr Northern made it impossible to ADF the disk, which appears
on the Workbench screen. I am sure you can DMS the thing but even
with all my XCOPY tools I chose not to make a duplicate.

So there you have it I finally am able to put that disk away. Some
challenges do take a very long time to resolve and I still have
plenty on the go. My saved searches on Ebay are quite extensive.
Occasionally one does pop up on the Bay but asking for ten thousand
dollars for Elvira is a bit steep.... well unless she actually came
with the game. OOH ERRRR !!!

I took the opportunity to check the CHIP, FAST and SLOW RAM on the
computer and used the AVAIL command in the SHELL to show the RAM.
This machine benefits from 4MB FAST in the GVP. Also it is the later
motherboard and has the 1MB ECS AGNUS. The hard drive may only be
49MB but for an A500 its perfectly acceptable. I still can play with
The Mistress ... or the lady in black !!

Better go.

The One - That annoying little BRAT!.

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Last updated 27th January 2022

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