DRONE DUSTERS BY BOB AYIK Drone Dusters is a fast and furious machine language game based on the tank-action arcade hit Targ. To complete one of the game's 15 screens, you must run over all 13 pulsating dots or shoot all nine pursuing drones that are trying to run over you. You can play Drone Dusters with a joystick or from the keyboard. Plug the joystick into port 1. First, copy DRONE.EXE to another disk which has the DOS.SYS and DUP.SYS files on it. XXX Next, rename DRONE.EXE to AUTORUN.SYS. Now turn off your Atari and place this disk in your drive. Remove any cartridges (XL/XE owners hold down the [OPTION] key) and turn on your Atari. Drone Dusters will load and run automatically. Each of the first eight screens adds a pre-set group of blocks to the grid. But the last seven screens add blocks randomly. Display colors also change at each new screen, so it's rare that you'll see the same screen twice during a game. XXX If you prefer not to play with the joystick, keyboard moves are as follows. To go left, press [S]]. To go right, press [D]. Up is [U] and down is [N]. Pressing [CONTROL] [Q] aborts the game and takes you back to the title screen. Pressing [ESC] takes you back to DOS. To play another game, press the joystick button or any key and then press [START]. Your tank consists of two superimposed players, with a different design for each of the four directions it can face. You can move in reverse at any time, and you can "turn a corner" before reaching it XXX simply by pushing the joystick or a key for the turn. When the tank reaches the first corner in that direction, it will turn toward it. Be aware, however, that the tank likes to keep moving -- YOU must find out how to stop it. The nine drones are bit-mapped Graphics 1 characters requiring 15 redefined characters for each direction a drone can face. Drone speed increases with every fourth screen, as well as when five or one drones are left on a screen (after the first two screens). Maximum drone speed is never faster than the tank. XXX When you get to the fourth screen, you'll start seeing a UFO -- a rotating triangular object. As the UFO movement speeds up, so does its spin rate. It will appear in a corner of the grid and flash briefly, taunting you to shoot it. And when you do blast it apart, it will reappear shortly thereafter and move faster. But it will never get faster than your tank. The UFO chases the tank with a "smarter" algorithm than the drones, and it constantly fires bullets at the tank, so keep on your toes. XXX Each drone you shoot is worth 35 points. Running over a dot gets you 25. Shooting down a UFO is worth 95 points. You'll earn 1,000 points for each screen you complete, up to 9,000 points. At 20,000 points you'll get an extra tank.
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