You know your QuickBASIC game is in trouble when...

We all have programming troubles.  If you've ever tried to make a QB game then you'll easily identify with these statements:

block.gif (826 bytes) You catch your head programmer at the bookstore flipping through BASIC for Dummies and haggling with the cashier over the price.

block.gif (826 bytes) Someone on your programming team asks, "Hey, what's an array?"

block.gif (826 bytes) Your graphic artist sends you thirty-five 23 X 31 tiles for your tile based RPG.

block.gif (826 bytes) The AI for the enemies in your game begins laughing at you.

block.gif (826 bytes) The AI for the enemies in your game asks you whether you're real and its artificial, or they're real and you're artificial; you start to wonder...

block.gif (826 bytes) Someone on your programming team calmly turns to you and asks, "What does 'AI' stand for?"

block.gif (826 bytes) You loose track of time and forget to brew another expresso, and Star Bucks calls you to make sure you're alright.

block.gif (826 bytes) You sit down to begin debugging your game and when what you think has been five minutes has passed, you find yourself swimming in melted candle wax.

block.gif (826 bytes) You decide to go to class on time one day and the professor nearly faints.

block.gif (826 bytes) You bring your copy of The Revolutionary Guide to QBASIC to church one day before remembering you were supposed to bring that other Bible.

block.gif (826 bytes) Three days before you're sure the game will be complete you are plagued by "Out of memory" errors.

block.gif (826 bytes) You are resisting a powerful temptation to engage in assembly programming for the game you promised would be "100% pure QB."

block.gif (826 bytes) You feel guilty for having "unclean" thoughts about the virtues of C programming and how much easier things might turn out to be...

block.gif (826 bytes) Your family and / or friends begin giving you odd looks when they walk by the computer.  It's as if they've never seen a toilet seat in place of a computer chair...

block.gif (826 bytes) When you begin seeing the real world in oddly pulsating, green characters that slowly move down your field of vision...

block.gif (826 bytes) When your enemy AI begins calling you "Dave" at odd times.

block.gif (826 bytes) You begin using old Coke and Dr. Pepper 12 pack boxes as furniture.

block.gif (826 bytes) You can't help but notice and complain about how "Two dimensional" all your relationships are...

block.gif (826 bytes) You haven't seen a beverage coaster that was originally manufactured for placing beverages upon and not the result of faulty equipment in over three years.

block.gif (826 bytes) All of your QB error messages address you as "Dave" and include ambiguous personal messages such as, "I'm afraid I can't let you do that..."

block.gif (826 bytes) You hum some of the tunes to your favorite CDs for hours before realizing they stopped playing several hours ago.

block.gif (826 bytes) Amongst your collection of favorite music you often listen to whilst coding are the soundtracks to all your favorite commercial games.

block.gif (826 bytes) You begin to worry about finishing your game before DOS ceases to exist.

block.gif (826 bytes) You overhear your head programmer in the next room saying "Dialog Box???" to himself / herself as if repeating it from something he / she just read.

block.gif (826 bytes) Enjoying the outdoors on a beautiful summer day consists of opening the window next to your computer.

block.gif (826 bytes) You are often asked, "Who are you talking to in there?"

block.gif (826 bytes) You overhear your head programmer attempting to sound out the word "graphic" as gra-p-hic.

block.gif (826 bytes) You keep telling yourself how great your program will look on a newer machine.

block.gif (826 bytes) You suddenly learn, with a sickening realization, that your head programmer was thinking you were talking about a space game when you said you wanted to make it a "multiple module" game.

block.gif (826 bytes) You suddenly realize the person you've been corresponding with for help on your game doesn't actually speak the same spoken language as you -- your emails have just consisted mostly of QB reserved words.

block.gif (826 bytes) After your game has been up on your site for three weeks and you've emailed it to everyone you know, you discover x was supposed to equal 1, not 2.  

block.gif (826 bytes) Visits to your system clock are quite common.  People who receive email from you always ask why your computer is perpetually set on December 17, 1996.  Coincidentally, you have three shareware programs that you downloaded that day...

block.gif (826 bytes) When the title of your game is a direct reflection of how you felt towards your computer after debugging it for four hours straight.

block.gif (826 bytes) When you include buttons in the game just because you've "always wanted a button that said that..."

block.gif (826 bytes) When the Ctrl, Alt, and Delete keys begin cracking and you feel sorry for your reset button, which you believe to be in immediate danger.

block.gif (826 bytes) You feel DEBUG.EXE is more user friendly than QuickBASIC.

block.gif (826 bytes) When your graphic artist decides to make your program "stand alone" and says, "Oh, well I can just send them to you in DATA statements..."

block.gif (826 bytes) You realize the copy of the palette you sent your graphic artist starts counting with the color 1, not color 0.

block.gif (826 bytes) When your head programmer says something like, "Hey, we've gotta find out who this 'Ray' guy is -- we could learn a lot from his 'casting' demo."

block.gif (826 bytes) You confuse the .BAK and .BAS files.

block.gif (826 bytes) Your idea of one minute and someone else's idea of one minute is the difference between the power of QuickBASIC and Assembly.

block.gif (826 bytes) You often hear, "Oh, yea that's nice.  But what would really be cool is if..."

block.gif (826 bytes) You're absolutely positive you have a backup of everything.

block.gif (826 bytes) Your head programmer asks you if you've got a copy of the infamous "QuickBASIC disassmbler" because he / she wants to reverse engineer something Angelo Mottola made.

block.gif (826 bytes) Your head programmer ever mentions the word "disassemble."

block.gif (826 bytes) After not working on a "flawless" program for four weeks, it has more errors than you can imagine.

block.gif (826 bytes) You have to cut the size of the visible screen in half because of memory problems...and now it's time to shift work from the intro to the game.


Like what you see?  Want to see more?  This particular article was inspired by something I saw at another web site -- "You know your game is in trouble" with contributions from commercial game writers.  Visit it for many more laughs! 

This site is also an excellent resource for anyone wanting to learn more about game AI programming.  Check it out.


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Copyright 2000 by Timothy D. Mowrer for Secret Weapon Software.