The Ultimate RPG For Commodore 64

By Jim Rossignol on November 15th, 2010 at 4:09 pm.

So, so tired.
Kieron points out that this is probably, realistically, literally the “ultimate” RPG for the Commodore 64, as its website claims, since it’s likely to be the last one ever to be produced. Newcomer is part adventure, part RPG, and it’s coming out on the C64 this year, probably. Protovision claim to have spent twenty years working on the game, the details for which can be found on the product page here. At 70-280 hours on the first playthrough, it’s certainly a contender for one of the bigger single-player games to be hitting our personal computers this year, even if it might be tough to find a working C64 to play it on. If we can dig one up, we might even have to give it a look. The game certainly seems ambitious for a C64 title. Two megabytes total data! How did they fill up all that space?

[Thanks to Mihai, who first wrote about Newcomer here, for pointing this out.]

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78 Comments »

  1. Antsy says:

    Superb! How many cassettes does it come on?

    • Premium User Badge

      stahlwerk says:

      quoting http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Commodore_Datasette

      “Datasettes could typically store about 100 kByte per 30 minute side.”

      makes 3000 kB = x * 100 * 2

      => x = 15 datasettes

      oh my.

    • the wiseass says:

      But… but the waiting time will be sooooooo worth it. Unless there’s a power cut.

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      Hodge says:

      It’s odd that they don’t seem to be doing a cartridge version, which would completely eradicate all the loading and disk-swapping issues. I know carts are a lot more expensive, but still…

  2. jeremypeel says:

    Non…
    Non…
    Non…
    Nonplussed. Screams labour of love though and I’m a sucker for a deep RPG, so let’s see what happens.

    First ever EDIT: Also, the name of the game is highly unsuitable for the situation in which it finds itself. I find myself amused as a result. Wish there was a word for that.

  3. Army of None says:

    Oh my. Will need to get myself an emulator for this if possible.

    • Jimmy says:

      This one works wonders for me, and has done since 2004. I have had this emulator longer than the C64 (before getting an Atari STFM 520), which makes all this nostalgia stuff a bit freaky. Will I be all retro about my C64 emulator? [first post ate by rps spamatron, then told to 'slow down', rps website is being a c$nt]

  4. Premium User Badge

    Starcide says:

    awesome, my original C64 still works! so i might well get this.

  5. JohnnyMaverik says:

    O.o

    Will there be a pc port? The commodore 64 is a few years older than me ergo by the time I was gaming it was all SNES and Megadrive and I’ve never even been in the same room as a commadore 64, let alone owned one.

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      Okami says:

      I pity you.

    • Kefren says:

      WinVICE is the name for the PC version.

    • Xercies says:

      I’ve seen it through a glass in the science museum…if that counts?

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      Jerricho says:

      I’ll be holding out for the Atari 65XE port.

      What manner of luddite have I become? This would surely already be compatible.

    • Miguelese says:

      I have two in the loft, think one of them works too. I Think I’ll dust it off for 30 mins of waiting to be dissapointed by a game of Forbidden Forest …which will always hold a special place in my childhood memories. /sigh

    • the wiseass says:

      Atari 1040ST all the way baby.

  6. patricij says:

    I think I might wait a bit for AMSTRAD CPC port myself :)

    • Renzatic says:

      Ha! AMSTRAD! What a wiener. I’m gonna wait for the far superior Atari ST port myself.

    • Maxheadroom says:

      back in my highschool days the only thing us C64 owners and the Speccy crowd could agree on was that we were both superior to Amstrad CPC464 owners :-)

    • Nick says:

      And you were wrong. Well, the speccy ones were anyway.

      ¬_¬

    • leeder_krenon says:

      the amstrad was definitely the red headed step child of 8 bit gaming. it might have been technically proficient, but it was dull. rich kids had c64s, misfits had speccys, boring kids had amstrads.

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      jaheira says:

      But Amstrad had Roland in the Caves!

    • Carra says:

      Should work on my own Amstrad C464 :)

  7. mod the world says:

    This is not PC gaming related.

    • KingCathcart says:

      Are you saying the C64 isn’t a personal computer?

    • UncleLou says:

      Are you saying the C64 isn’t a personal computer?

      I think that’s what he’s saying.

      Let’s ask Wikipedia:
      “A personal computer (PC) is any general-purpose computer whose size, capabilities, and original sales price make it useful for individuals”.

      Yep, that’s the C64 in a nutshell. And it goes on:

      “During the C64′s lifetime, sales totaled 17 million units, making it the best-selling single personal computer model of all time.”

      Looks like he’s terribly wrong. The fool. :)

    • Premium User Badge

      stahlwerk says:

      But is it 100% IBM-PC compatible?

      (what a weird time that was)

    • mod the world says:

      You are all still jealous of my 286 it seems. :P

    • MadTinkerer says:

      Hey, the “IBM” and the “Radio Shack” both say they prefer the C64. So I’d listen to them if I were you.

    • Robomutt says:

      I thought we called them “microcomputers”. Spectrum shits on stupid Commodore 64 Commodore are rubbish grey men in suits booo.

      spook-perv and yet I then went on to champion Amiga versus ST, then against PC and Mac. I gave up on my Amiga even later than Ben Vost.

  8. Premium User Badge

    stahlwerk says:

    So, what’s your emulator of choice? Kinda interested in trying this.

    • Jimmy says:

      This one works wonders for me, and has done since 2004. I have had this emulator longer than the C64 (before getting an Atari STFM 520), which makes all this nostalgia stuff a bit freaky. Will I be all retro about my C64 emulator?

    • Jimmy says:

      There is the CCS64 emulator. I have been using that since 2004, longer than I had the original C64 now (88-93), which is kind of odd. It’s very stable and feature rich.

    • caesarbear says:

      I also prefer CCS64 (ccs64.com). Tons of features and it feels the most genuine.

  9. UncleLou says:

    Wow.

    Last time turned on my C 64, it worked perfectly fine.

    However, that was in 1989, I think.

    • Quasar says:

      I was born that year.

    • a says:

      I was born the next. Scary! Anyway this looks very intriguing, even if I’ve never seen a C64 in my life.

    • a says:

      I was born the year after. Scary! Anyway this looks very intriguing, even if I’ve never seen a C64 in my life.

  10. Premium User Badge

    JB says:

    I might have to get Mrs JB’s C64 out of the loft and see if it still works. I was a speccy user myself.

    • unclebulgaria says:

      I detected your foul stench as soon as you commented …

  11. Navagon says:

    Twenty years you say? What’s their next project? Episode 3?

    I take it this is going to be provided wrapped with an emulator, right? Because I don’t think they’re going to recoup 20 years of expenses by selling it on cassettes.

  12. Premium User Badge

    Sinomatic says:

    Unless I can run it on a sort-of-broken Amiga 500 or a sort-of-broken Dragon 32, then I guess I’m out of luck.

    • Kefren says:

      As implied elsewhere, just use an emulator on a PC (NOT an Amiga500 – it wasn’t powerful enough to run a C64 emulator. I tried.)

      WinVice is a really good free C64 emulator, I have used it for years for all my C64 games.
      http://www.viceteam.org/
      I love a bit of multiplayer Barbarian, IK+, Bruce Lee, Laser Squad or Clean Up Service.

    • Premium User Badge

      Sinomatic says:

      I know, I was joking ;)

      But thanks for the link, saves me going looking.

      Also, IK+…. YES.

    • the wiseass says:

      Ah yes Barbarian. I had good times with this game when I was six, decapitating my enemy and giggling manically. The golden age of gaming, long before parental control was invented.

    • Renzatic says:

      Oh damn, I played Barbarian on my old AtariST and loved it. I remember the first time I pulled off the decapitation maneuver. At some point I pressed up-left on the joystick, hit the fire button, and BAM! Rolling head time.

      This was in the days before Mortal Kombat, so even the smallest bit of violence would impress the hell out of your average 11 year old. I remember calling my friends up after first seeing it, frothing at the mouth, all excited like “Hey, dude! I did the most bodacious bit of carnage in this videogame. Yeah. It was completely tubular. Yeah. Uh huh. Uh huh. Oh, i would go so far to say that it was indeed radical to the max.”

      Comeon. It was the early 90′s. We all talked like that.

    • Kefren says:

      Maybe the ST controls were different, but for the C64 and Spectrum it was fire + left (assuming you were facing right and hadn’t jumped over your rolling opponent). That implemented the excellent spin to decapitation, giving your opponent a second to duck or do any other move – or die. The decapitation was a great risk/reward decision for the attacker.

      Fire and diagonally up away from the enemy for the sword spin move (web of death?) looked impressive.

    • Renzatic says:

      @Kefren

      I believe you’re right. Granted, it has been about a decade and a half since I last played it (damn, I’m old).

      Damn, now I wanna try and find a disk image and fire it up in STEEM.

  13. dogsolitude_uk says:

    Wonderful! I only had a C64 for a brief period whilst at Uni (I bought it for £35 from some second-hand shop back in the early 90′s), but it was great fun. The loading times were far worse than the Spectrum, the graphics somehow blockier, but lack-of-colour-clash, proper sprite support and 3-channel SID music by Rob Hubbard really made that machine for me.

    Complete pig to program the version of BASIC though. Bl00dy pokes for everything. But the games… Oh the games… And the music.

  14. Bullwinkle says:

    I’ve been thinking about upgrading from my VIC-20. This might finally push me over the edge.

  15. westyfield says:

    Commodore what now?
    /childofthe90s

  16. geldonyetich says:

    If that’s their publisher’s idea of a deadline, they must be the luckiest game development company in the world.

  17. Sobric says:

    Oooohhh I have a C64. It might still work (it did about 10 years a go). I might pick this up.

  18. MadTinkerer says:

    There’s a new Commodore 64 game? It’s more alive than ever before!

    (that’s the main ad I remember from back in the day)

  19. Grey_Ghost says:

    I used to use a special DOS program back in the day to connect to a C64 BBS. Man it had some great games to play on it.

  20. Jay says:

    But how about all us VIC20 users? What are we supposed to do? Oh well, back to playing Pitfall for me then :(

  21. kraz says:

    Holy shit. I remember seeing this exact screenshot some in the “Previews” section of a local gaming mag some 15 years ago. Or was it 18…?

  22. disperse says:

    Hmm, interesting screenshots.

    *clicks to make them bigger*

    Oh, there’s no bigger version.

    Wait… those are full resolution screenshots aren’t they?

  23. Fumarole says:

    This is why PC gaming will never die.

    • DigitalSignalX says:

      Amen. While consoles will fade into obscurity, PC’s will still rule the world from the attic. Or that box in the garage.

  24. Hippo says:

    “Kieron points out that this is probably, realistically, literally the “ultimate” RPG for the Commodore 64, as its website claims, since it’s likely to be the last one ever to be produced.”

    The funny thing is that, no, there are several new RPG projects for the C64 under development. The guy who did Realms of Quest for the Vic 20 last year is making a C64-RPG, and there’s also Crimson Twilight.

    I think you’d be surprised at how many C64-games we get each year, including several commersial titles (homebrew, but professionally packaged et.c.)

    • getter77 says:

      Have any links handy to keep tabs on such happenings in this scene? Last fresh C64 I remember was that Castlevania/Metroid’ish fantasy game with the spiffy youtube trailer a year or so ago…

  25. Mark says:

    When is the oldest verifiable documentation of this game’s development? An announcement, perhaps. This could be a record-breaker, folks! The Wayback Machine’s records show the oldest news post on the game’s official site is dated 31 August, 1999, but it seems to have been long underway by that time. Can anybody help?

  26. leeder_krenon says:

    shame it’s for such a shitty computer. when is the speccy version due out?

  27. Greg says:

    Just to be clear:

    The game will also be available as a free download for PC, Mac, and Linux computers — because there are C64 emulators for all of them, and IBelanszky, one of the developers, will be packaging emulators with the versions for those platforms.

  28. Mattressi says:

    Are the developers foreign? Some of the English seems a little off. Look at the “Neil’s skills” screenshot. What the bloody hell is “handarm”? I assumed they meant either handgun or hand-to-hand, but ‘pistol’ and ‘fistfight’ are other skills. Seriously, what is handarm!?

    • Premium User Badge

      phlebas says:

      A weapon wielded by hand. Sword/knife/axe/truncheon/statuette.

  29. Bob says:

    given that you’d have to be completely insane to spend 20 years working on a game for a system that has been obsolete for over 20 years, there’s a good chance that this game will be very creative and original (due to the aforementioned insanity).

  30. Lacheex says:

    Is that Billy Joel on the cover?

  31. Vivian says:

    I dunno if I could handle 180,000+ words of that awkward engrish.

  32. Vivian says:

    I dunno if I could handle 180,000+ words of that awkward English. It makes everything sound like a Zack Parsons joke caption.

  33. bob says:

    Now they just need to travel back in time and blow peoples minds in 1987. It’s going to be rad.

  34. theOther_bob says:

    Now they just need to travel back in time and blow people’s minds in 1987. It’s going to be rad!

  35. Bonedancer says:

    Protovision? I remember them printing some teaser ads about some amazing advance in computer gaming back in 1983. When I tried to hack in to their system to take a look, I unwittingly found my way through a backdoor into a NORAD military simulator and damn near started World War III by accident.

    Good times.

  36. Bassism says:

    This looks awesome. I finally have a legitimate excuse to bring my C64 home from my dad’s house.

    Also to all you people whining about being younger than the C64, I’m -also- younger than the C64, but I still have one. No excuse!

  37. boole says:

    This is old news! The first public release of this game was in 1999-2001 or so, and cracks of it date back to 2001. There are still five or so worthwhile games released for the C64 every year, but what’s more interesting is the very active demoscene, with music, graphics and demo releases pretty much every day.

  38. BonusWavePilot says:

    Wait… so the Commodore *is* keeping up with me?