Rise Of The Cybermen
The Doctor murmurs, "It's happening again. CYBERMEN!"
The Cybermen crash through the windows surrounding the Doctor. They tell
him that they have been upgraded to "Human.2", the next level of
mankind. Every citizen will receive a compulsory free upgrade and become
like them. The Doctor asks what would happen if he refused. A Cyberman
replies that if he would not be made compatible, he will be deleted, and
reaches for the Doctor.
The Cybermen surround the Doctor and he raises his hands, fists
clenched. He tells the Cybermen that he surrenders and will submit to
the upgrade, but the Cybermen ignore him. A Cyberman declares the Doctor
as incompatible and inferior: Man will be reborn as Cyberman but the
Doctor will perish under "maximum deletion."
I have been playing a lot of Malagai lately. It is a really good Atari
2600 game that a lot of people don't even know about. You should give it
a try. You are trapped in a maze with some really weird Aliens and the
only way out is thru 3 locked gates/airlocks. Guess who has the keys?
As I play games I usually come up with a few ideas about making changes
and Malagai was no different. The first thing that I wanted to change
was the enemies. The original Aliens were just too similar and the game
is hard enough without chasing the wrong keyholder. So I changed them
all to Robots that each had a distinctive look. Next I wanted to change
the player sprite. In Malagai you are a floating spaceman with a
jetpack. It is a cool looking sprite but doesn't really fit the maze
theme. I changed it to a running man sprite. As I was play-testing the
changes I noticed that the original sprite sizes overlapped the mazes so
I clipped them by a few pixels to square them between the maze walls.
At this stage I already enjoyed the game more then the original.
So, That's it then. Another finished hack. Not quite. Why leave things
alone when you can change them? I decided to change the three maze level
colors. I prefer primary colors so the new maze colors are Blue, Red,
Bright Green. Next up the Title screen. I think the name Malagai
actually hurts a game like this. What does Malagai mean? Malagai is
actually the name of the race of Aliens in the original game. Malagai is
a good name for Aliens but a bad name for a game. Most people don't
know what a Malagai is or how to pronounce it. How do you tell your
friends about this great new game when you can't even say the name? So
lets see, We have a game with Robots in a maze and the Robots can go
into an attack mode. A few titles I came up with:
They are all OK but they don't quite do it. Then I started thinking about movies with Robot type enemies:
Daleks?? Hmmmm. Always wanted a Doctor Who game for the Atari 2600. So
Daleks it is. After a few minutes of trying to make three distinctive
Daleks I decided not to use them. Wait a minute, Doctor Who also has
CYBERMEN!!! That's it. And it just so happens that there was a revival
of the Cybermen on the new Doctor Who show on SciFI Channel. So now I
have the name of the hack, RISE of the CYBERMEN!
I use Hack-O-Matic for most of my hacks and in the description of how I
made this hack I leave out a lot of the tedious trial and error of
searching for code that controls graphics, colors, etc.. Sometimes the
smallest detail can take the longest to add or change. I am amazed at
how a few changes and a tie-in to a show I like really increases the
enjoyment I have playing the game. So there you have a rough overview of
how I hack a game. I usually don't have a plan other then to make a few
changes and it just evolves into something. Give it a try with one of