Home News FAQ Gametypes Links Contributors ToDo Download Help
Companies Computers Gamesystems Authors Timeline Interpreters Emulator


Softside was the leading type-it-in-yourself magazine for the TRS-80 in the 70s.

Dog Star Adventure

Text only Written 1979 by Lance Micklus.
Runs on:
Notes: Dogstar was the first microcomputer adventure game to have its source published (in the May 1979 issue of Softside), and as a result almost all BASIC adventure games after it were based on its structure and algorithms. (The same thing happened in December of 1980 when Scott Adams published Pirate's Adventure in Byte magazine: once people figured out how it worked, they started creating their own Adams-style adventure games.)

A lot of later Basic adventures (like those by Greg Hassett) were built on the Dog Star design.

Dogstar was also available from something called The Software Exchange, Inc.

At some point in time, the ownership of Dog Star Adventure ended up with Misosys, whose owner gave Tim Mann (mann@src.dec.com) permission to post all his old software. The TRS-80 .BAS file that can be downloaded from here has a primitive form of copy-protection (or maybe it was anti-cheat protection): one of the line numbers early on is zapped to 65535, which stops the LIST command and the SAVE,A command from listing or saving beyond that point.

Comments: Dogstar was your typical you're stuck in an enemy place with a broken ship... get parts... don't get caught and get away... featuring credit cards, guns, atomic whatzit to power the craft...

Package blurb:


by Lance Micklus

The evil General Doom and his Roche Soldiers are ready to launch an attack against the Forces of Freedom, led by Princess Leya. Enroute to a secret command center on the planet Harris 7, Princess Leya's ship was attacked by Doom. She is now being held prisoner on one of his battle cruisers. It is a sorry day indeed!

The capture holds extra prizes for Doom and his men: onboard Princess Leya's ship is the entire treasury of her Freedom Fighting Force in a chest containing Melidium Crystals, the currency used in this galaxy. The Princess is also wearing a necklace made of shinestones. Encoded in one of the stones is the location and strength of her Freedom Fighting Force. Hopefully, Doom has not yet discovered the secret of the necklace.

I, your computer, am your puppet. I'm hidden aboard the Princess's ship. It is possibly, although very difficult, that we may be able to save the day by rescuing Princess Leya, her necklace, and the treasury. But even if we don't, anything we can do to foil General Doom's plans may help win a victory for peace in the galaxy.

We must be very careful of guards who are all over the ship. We could easily be caught and imprisoned. Sometimes you may only have enough time to give me one command, which if not the appropriate action to take, could easily end the game for both of us.

I understand ordinary English in one- or two-word commands. If you want me to go somewhere, just give me a direction. I can GET or DROP something just by your typing GET or DROP plus the name of the object. You can SAVE a game on either tape or disk by typing SAVE. A previously saved game can be restored with the command LOAD. Other words I understand include HELP, INVEN, LOOK, SCORE, and QUIT. In addition to these, there are many other words in my vocabulary. The fun of playing ADVENTURE is not only trying to figure out what to do, but how to explain it to me.


The game of ADVENTURE was developed several years ago at the Artificial Intelligence Lab at Stanford University. The original game was written in FORTRAN and required a rather large amount of disk drive storage space. The object of the game was to explore an immense cave and bring back to a building aboveground the many treasures found beneath the earth.

Had it not been for the difficulties involved in implementing the game on various computer systems, ADVENTURE might very well have become more popular than STAR TREK. With the advent of microcomputers, a new effort was made to overcome the need for disk drives and large amounts of memory. As a result of this effort, several new versions of ADVENTURE have been released, not only for the TRS-80, but for other systems as well. Even though these new micro versions of ADVENTURE may deviate substantially from the original, they all share that same childish logic characteristic of ADVENTURE.

In playing the game, you are basically trying to solve a puzzle. At times you may find yourself running around in circles; you may even go somewhere and find you actually went nowhere. Use your imagination and apply childlike logic. Finally, never forget that everything in this strange computer-created world has a purpose ... there are clues everywhere!


(The above text is the article associated with Dog Star Adventure in Softside.)

Dog Star Adventure is available for off-site download

Adventureland was created by Hans Persson and is now maintained by Stefan Meier.

If you find any errors or have information that is missing, please let me know