Program By BOB AYIK
Drone Dusters, Antic's September 1988 Super Disk Bonus, is a fast and frantic tank-action game that's reminiscent of the arcade hit Targ. Written in powerful machine language, Drone Dusters works on all 8-bit Atari computers with at least 48K memory. You will be challenged by 15 different combat screens-where your only escape is to either run over all 13 pulsating dots on the screen or shoot all nine pursuing drones that are trying to run over you.
Each of the first eight screens adds a preset group of blocks to the grid-but the final seven screens add blocks randomly! Display colors also change with each new screen, so it's rare that you'll see the exact same screen twice during a game. Drone speed increases on every fourth screen, as well as when five or one drones are left on a screen.
When you get to the fourth screen, you'll also start seeing the rotating UFO. It appears in a corner of the grid and flashes briefly, taunting you to shoot it. When you do blast it apart, it will reappear shortly afterward and move faster. But neither the drones or the UFO ever 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, you must use strategy to evade the bullets because you can't outrun them.
You can operate Drone Dusters with either a joystick or your keyboard. You can move forward, sideways or reverse. You can even preset a turn before you reach the next corner. However, the tank likes to keep moving-and YOU must figure out how to stop it.
Drone Dusters was programmed by lawyer Bob Ayik of Maple Shade, New Jersey. Ayik debuted in the May 1988 sixth-anniversary Antic with Perfected Pong. Drone Dusters is nearly twice as big as this earlier ambitious machine-language game, so printing it as a type-in BASIC translation would require some six pages packed with nothing but data statement numerals.
To road or print out the instruction file for Drone Dusters, select choice 5 on the Side B main menu to this month's Antic Disk. Assembly language programmers will find the Drone Dusters source code available on ANTIC ONLINE this month. At nearly 400 sectors, this source code was too large to fit on an Antic Disk.
Your September 1988 Antic Disk-featuring the Drone Dusters Super Bonus as well as all regular type-in programs from this issue plus other extras-will be shipped to you within 24 hours after your order is received. Just phone Toll-Free to the Antic Disk Desk at (800) 2347001. The monthly disk costs only $5.95 (plus $2 for shipping and handling) on your Visa or MasterCard. Or mail a $5.95 check (plus $2 shipping and handling) to Antic Disk Desk, 544 Second Street, San Francisco, CA 94107.
Programmers: Antic wants to see your most ambitious programs, even those too large or complex for printing as a type-in listing. High-quality programs in any language that has a runtime version are now eligible for consideration as a Super Disk Bonus.