Meetup #5 – 2020-02-15

Our fifth meet-up saw a sharp drop in attendance, but it was really difficult to find a single day that even a simple majority of people could attend. We were back to five people this time around, but a good time was still had.

Sean arrived first and set up his Spectrum+ and went to work on a little BASIC programming, something that would have taken about two minutes on a Commodore 64 but this was a lesson in patience to be sure! But it was an interesting experience nonetheless.

Justin and Sean took turns with Space Junk on the Spectrum+, which is an impressive-looking game for the system, with a tough learning curve. Figuring out how to turn your ship the way you want took a surprisingly long time! But I think that contributed to the fun. Curt showed up a bit later and took a crack at it, too.

Then Curt’s Apple IIc took over for a while and he showed us a graphic demo and a few games, such as Star Trek and Lemonade. No photos, it seems, but an honorable mention to Justin for soldering on a connection to Sean’s X1 D keyboard. Works like a charm.

Next up was Ohgami-san’s very portable setup – the Pasocon Mini 8001 with PCG (programmable character generator) and ultra-lightweight LCD monitor. He may be our youngest member, but he showed off some serious old-school techniques, hand-drawing custom characters on a paper grid and inputting them into the system to be saved and reloaded. Respect.

And Sven brought out his Commodore 128, that’s right, the British rendition of the unholy Trinity – Apple/Commodore/Spectrum all on the same table. We played a brand-new game on Sven’s 128 – Millie and Mollie. His joystick port stopped working in the middle but he and Curt waved screwdrivers and multimeters menacingly at it and it started working again.

The day wrapped up with some more Spectrum gaming – playing Opz, 3D Monster Maze, and City Bomb.

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