Publishers

American Eagle
Coastal Software
Commonwealth Software
Earthware Computer Services
Edu-Ware
Highlands Computer Services
Infocom
Magnum Software
Phoenix Software
Speakeasy Software
The Logical Choice
Others

Title: Dogfight Publisher: Microlab Inc
Type: Game Author: Bill Basham

Year of release:

1980
Platforms: Apple II
Copies sold: ?

Dogfight is a very early jet-fighting action game written by Bill Basham and published by Microlab. The game can be played against the computer - more interestingly, though, one of its unique features, certainly for 1980, is that up to 8 players can play at once - although that would likely make for a crowded area around the computer!

Bill Basham talks about Dogfight: "I was living in Rockford, Illinois at the time, and I must have seen Microlab in a magazine or something. Since they were close by, I think that's why I contacted them. I think it was published originally in 1980, but the instruction manual with the package I have says copyright 1983 and that it is "Dogfight II", an update to the original game.

I decided to write the game after I got an Apple II and started programming it in machine language. Originally, I just wanted to see how many balls I could animate across the screen at once. I think I invented the look up table form of animation, as opposed to calculating the image. Anyway, I ended up with a lot of balls flying around, and then decided to do something with them. So it was initially just a programming exercise which became a game. I settled on 8 planes with 4 bullets per plane. There was also a trailing number and a possible helicopter rotor blade, so there were 7 images per plane, or 56 images animated at once. I figured that was close to the max I could animate smoothly.

There's a good story about the prize for getting 10,000 points. I had a special code pop up if you got 10,000 points, and the publisher said the first one to send in the code would win a trip to Chicago. Well, it turned out to be impossible to get 10,000 points, but somebody sent in the code. I had a little trick in there for hackers so they sent in a false code if it was hacked, and the code was a false code. I told the Microlab guy it was false, and then a few months later another code appeared. I figured this one was hacked too, but it was a true code, so Microlab tried to call the guy to arrange his free trip to Chicago. I figured if he could hack code that well, he deserved the trip. But he had given the name of a prostitute in Cincinnati! Needless to say, she wasn't interested in a trip to Chicago to demonstrate her prowess at playing Dogfight.

I'm not sure how many copies were sold, sorry. I know it wasn't a lot of money in royalties. After writing Dogfight and publishing it through Microlab, I went on to write Diversi-DOS. Microlab wasn't selling Dogfight by then, so I decided to include it as a freebee with Diversi-DOS."

SCREENSHOTS


Apple II


Apple II


Apple II

PACKAGING VARIATIONS


Cardboard case



DISK IMAGES

dogfight.nib (Apple II)
Dogfight original disk (still copy protected)



GAMES
Amnesia
Beneath Apple Manor
Dogfight
Gruds in Space
Mystery House
Real Life
The Lost Ark of the Covenant
The Princess and the Valley of Fire
Whiz Kid

OTHERS
Amnesia manuscript
Real Life reviews


Leave some mail to the GUE

85987 visitors have been in the GUE since 20 June 2006

Best viewed at 1024 by 768 or higher resolution