Professional, Originally Released On DFS E00 Disc
Game Type : Arcade; Split-screen REPTON-style Maze Game For 2 Players
Authors : Ian Webster and Frazer Middleton
Standalone Release(s) : 1997: UGGIE'S GARDEN, Superior/Acornsoft, £6.95
Compilation Release(s) : None
Stated compatibility : Electron
Actual compatibility : Electron, BBC B, B+ and Master 128
Supplier : SUPERIOR/ACORNSOFT, 3 Manor Drive, Scawby, Brigg, NORTH
LINCOLNSHIRE DN20 9AX
Disc compatibility : CDFS E00, DFS E00
"UGGIE'S GARDEN - a two-player only, split-screen adventure in the style of the Repton series of games featuring large, detailed sprites.
Use items, monsters and friends to assist you in completing all twenty levels - then design your own, with the sophisticated sprite and screen editors!
Compatible with the BBC B, B+, Master 128 and Electron computers."
From 3.5"/5.25" DFS disc, simply insert the disc and tap SHIFT-BREAK. From cassette, rewind and type CH."" then press RETURN.
You must select either the game or editor from the first loading screen with keys 1 or 2.
Note that each screen for UGGIE'S GARDEN loads in separately. Therefore, if playing from cassette, note the reading on the cassette's counter for the beginning of each screen file.
How To Play The Game
Uggie lives in a garden where he picks apples from his orchard. Helping Uggie is his friend Bill, but beware, a monster lives in the garden who will try to eat them up!
Also, beware of your friend... He may try to kill you and pinch all the apples for himself!
You must make your way around the garden collecting the apples while avoiding the poisonous mushrooms and Uggie-eating plants. Dangerous boulders litter the garden and may fall and crush you! Doors bar your way and you must find keys to open them.
You must also make sure your 'friend' does not wake up the monster and set it upon you!
And don't forget to chop down the trees to get more apples!
PLAYER ONE PLAYER TWO
Z .................. Left .................... <
X .................. Right ................... >
F ................... Up ..................... *
C .................. Down .................... ?
1 ................. Suicide ................. 0
COPY/DELETE ....................... Pause/Resume
Q/S ............................... Sound Off/On
From the high-score table:
L ............................. Load Master File
P ............................... Enter Password
SPACE BAR ............................ Play game
Game Character Descriptions:
Uggie ............................... Player One
Bill ................................ Player Two
Boulders ..... Fall and crush you if unsupported
Walls .......................... Block your path
Invisible Exits ..... Walls you can walk through
Door .............. Only opens if you have a key
Key ............. Collect and use to open a door
Monster ...................... Deadly if touched
: Green ......... Causes monster to pursue Uggie
: Red ............ Causes monster to pursue Bill
Monster-neutralant Pill ...... Paralyses monster
Apples .......................... Collect these!
Plants ................................ Kill you
Plant-spray .... Kills all plants (when touched)
Earth ..... Supports boulders. Walk through this
Mushrooms ............................. Kill you
Trees ...... Obstruct. Chop down for more apples
Axe ........ Chops down all trees (when touched)
Note that you require one key per door. Each key disappears after it has been used. Plan your strategy so that you are not prevented from continuing by a locked door. Any player alive when the last of the apples is collected will progress to the next screen.
Should you complete UGGIE'S GARDEN, we'll organise a signed congratulatory certificate for you. You'll also be sent a software reward in the same sae.
How To Use The Editor
In common with most games of this sort, UGGIE'S GARDEN features a full editor package. This sophisticated utility allows you to redesign almost every aspect of the game. You can redefine the sprites, game colours, level maps and even the small map icons to create your own fiendishly puzzling suite of screens.
To load the editor, select 2 from the loading screen Menu. After the Editor has loaded, you will be presented with the following screen:
The Uggie's Garden
1 Edit Sprites
2 Edit Screen
3 Edit Icons
4 Edit Colours
5 Edit Master File
6 Save Master File
7 Save Screen
8 Load Master File
9 Load Screen
Each number corresponds to the stated function and listed below are the specific instruction for each. Note that the default (familiar) sprites and map icons of UGGIE'S GARDEN are already present in memory. However, as with the game itself, you must load in a particular screen separately in order to edit it.
If you have used a similar editor, such as that of the REPTON series, you are likely to find the Menu self-explanatory. If not, you will find the following tutorial useful.
Option 1 : Edit Sprites
Selecting this option allows you to either create a whole new series of game sprites or simply modify the original ones. The sprites are part of the "Master File", explained below. However, this does not concern us yet as the original UGGIE'S GARDEN sprites (with which you will be familiar through playing the game) are present in memory when the editor has loaded.
On pressing option 1, the Menu disappears and is replaced by the following screen:
| Edit |
| Sprite | <---- Gives an enlarged image of a chosen
| Window | sprite for pixel-perfect editing
___|__|___ <---- Shows the actual size of the above sprite
|_Colour:R_| <---- Gives the currently selected colour
______ __ ______
|Sprite| |__| |Store.| <---- The "Store" (Selectable)
|Function:_Get_______| <---- Gives the action to be performed upon
a sprite selected from the store
To operate the sprite editing facilities is simplicity itself. Notice that the "o" cursor can be navigated (within the Edit Sprite window) with Z, X, * and ? and that pressing SPACE places a dot at the location of the cursor. The currently selected colour, shown in a horizontal bar in the centre of the screen, can be altered with the keys 0, 1, 2 and 3. (You may want to use different colours the default ones - changing these is done via option 4 of the Main Menu.)
As you make changes in the Edit Sprite window, you will notice that the equivalent pixels in the smaller window beneath it display the sprite actual size (as it will appear in the game). The beauty of the UGGIE'S GARDEN editor over some of those in other packages is that the activity in the Edit Sprite window does NOT affect any sprite which has already been created until you specifically "overwrite" the particular sprite.
To demonstrate this, use the keys < and >. The box between "Sprite" and "Store" will cycle all of the sprites which can be edited, or that you may choose to "overwrite" with a new sprite you have created in the Edit Sprite window. The first sprite is one of a blank space. Although you are free to experiment with this sprite, altering it from this state is not recommended as it is will cause strange effects when you come to test your finished screen.
Assuming you haven't yet created a masterpiece in the Edit Sprite window, you can "blow up" any of the sprites in this "store" (to edit their pixels) by pressing RETURN. This executes the currently selected "function" shown in the bar at the bottom of the screen. For retrieving a sprite from the "store" the function is "Get".
The sprite will now appear enlarged in both the Edit Sprite window and the actual size window beneath it. You can make any changes you wish to it with the movement keys and SPACE without affecting in any way the "stored" version. You can also choose to subject it to other functions (described below) before you decide to store it again.
Note that you must understand the properties of each sprite and their position in the cycle as you cannot define the properties yourself. So to create a deadly, immobile, animated sprite, you must overwrite the two "plant" definitions with your own sprites. If you do not, you will end up with weird effects when selecting the Animate function and in the finished game itself.
To scroll through the functions available, use the keys N and M. The following list gives the action each function performs.
Get Gets whichever sprite is displayed in the "store" window, and transfers it to the Edit Sprite window. Throughout editing, the original sprite is untouched
Store Stores the sprite in the Edit Sprite window 'over' whichever sprite is displayed in the "store" window. This is the only option that changes a "stored" sprite
Clear Clears the Edit Sprite window
Mirror X Flips the pixels in the Edit Sprite window vertically
Mirror Y Flips the pixels in the Edit Sprite window horizontally
Inverse This maps all colour 0 pixels to colour 3 and all colour 1 pixels to colour 2, but only on the Sprite to be Edited. You may use this function to make a sprite appear "highlighted" or "outlined". Selecting the option a second time naturally restores the colours to as they were
Change Changes all of the colour beneath the cursor to the currently selected colour. So to change all the red pixels to green ones, select green, move to a red pixel and press RETURN
Merge Merges the sprite displayed in the "store" window with that in the Edit Sprite window
Animate This option, only applicable to the "character" sprites - Uggie, Bill, the plants and the monster - flips between the appropriate two sprites to show if the persistence of vision effect makes the characters appear to 'move'
Especially when creating animated sprites, you can create one sprite and store it over the two appropriate positions in the "store". In that way, the minor modifications you make to the second sprite make it quicker to create.
To leave the Edit Sprites section, press ESCAPE. You will be returned to the Main Menu.
Option 2 : Edit Screen
To edit an existing screen, it is first necessary to use option 9 to load it into memory. If this is not done, pressing this option will display a empty space 'map' bordered by walls and mushrooms, allowing you to create your own screen from scratch.
As with the Sprites Designer, you control a small cursor 'o' which is situated in the top left hand corner of the map display area. Extreme bottom left is displayed the "currently selected sprite". The designing process is carried out by 'move and drop'. You move with the Z, X, * and ? keys and drop with SPACE.
Also as with the Sprites Designer, you can use keys < and > to select which sprite you wish to place. As you do so you will notice that not only does the "currently selected sprite" box change but so too does the cursor; it becomes an smaller version of the sprite, known as an icon. By using such icons, it is far easier to design the map fully on screen.
You may place any character in any place within the area shown on screen and should aim to create small puzzling areas which need to be conquered to gain, for example, a key, before moving onto the next. Let your imagination run wild!
To alter a particular icon, simply move the cursor over it and press DELETE, or 'drop' an alternative icon on top to it.
Note that you can only place ONE monster, Bill or Uggie icon on each screen. Note also that the border should not be altered as it exists to prevent a player from running off the side of the screen!
When you have finished designing your screen, press ESCAPE to return to the Main Menu. Screens are saved individually with option 7.
Option 3 : Edit Icons
Selecting this option allows you to either modify or create a whole new series of icons to complement any new sprites you have defined. These icons will form part of the "Master File", explained below. Note though that, unlike the sprites, the icons themselves are not displayed during the gameplay of UGGIE'S GARDEN. They are purely for your benefit in designing Screens via option 2.
On pressing option 3, the Menu disappears and is replaced by the following screen:
| Edit | _
| Icon | |_| <---- Gives an enlarged image of a chosen
| Window | icon; smaller box shows it 'map size'
___|__|___ <---- Shows the icon selected by the cursor 2
|_Colour:R_| <---- Gives the currently selected colour
|__| | Oxxxxxxxxx | <---- Left: The sprite the icon represents
| xxxxxxxxxx | Right: The thirty icons selectable
Editing icons features two cursors, represented above by "o" and "O". The "o" cursor is navigated within the Edit Icon window with the Z, X, * and ? keys while SPACE places a dot of the currently selected colour at its current location. As with the Edit Sprite option, the colour is shown in a horizontal bar in the centre of the screen and can be altered with the keys 0, 1, 2 and 3. (See option 4 for changing the default colours.)
The second cursor "O" is navigated within the icon store with the cursor keys. Using these, particular icons can be "got" or "stored" (replaced) over others in a similar way to the Edit Sprites option. For example, you may design the icon of a new main character to replace Uggie in the
Edit Icon window either by:
1. moving the "O" cursor to the Uggie icon, pressing G (to "Get" it and bring it into the Edit Sprite option), altering it to suit and then pressing S (to "Store" it over the old Uggie sprite), or:
2. simply designing the new icon in the Edit Sprite window, using the cursor keys to move the "O" cursor over the Uggie icon then pressing S.
Once again, the icon you are currently working on will not "overwrite" any of the stored icons until you specifically request that it does so.
Option 4 : Colour Editor
This option alters the default colours. As UGGIE'S GARDEN is a Mode 5 game, only four colours may be present on screen at once. However, you may like to change these colours to suit your new sprites and icons. To do so, press 4 from the Main Menu.
The screen will clear and display the sprites currently in memory to aid experimentation. Press keys 0 to 3 to advance the colour of that number through the sequence:
Black -> Red -> Green -> Yellow -> Blue -> Magenta -> Cyan -> White -> Black -> etc
Press ESCAPE to store the colours and return to the Main Menu.
Option 5 : Edit Master File
UGGIE'S GARDEN saves individual screens separately and holds all other information (Passwords, sprite and icon designs and number of screens) in a Master File. The Master File for the default screens of the game is built into both the Game and the Editor. However, you will need to change a few of its variables for optimum performance with your own saved screens and sprites.
Select option 5 and you will be presented with the following information, plus the defined sprites and icons which will form the Master File:
Filename: Scr <---- Press key 1 to edit this
No of screens: 30 <---- Press key 2 to edit this
Password No. 1: SCR1 <---- Press key 3 to edit this
This is actually the prefix to the name of each screen and it, and the number of the screen you have currently reached when playing the game, form the filename for the screen it searches for. So, for example, when you first play the original UGGIE'S GARDEN, "Scr"+"1" is searched for ("Scr1"). Each successive screen completed adds 1 to the screen number until the value in "No. of screens" is reached whereupon you are given a congratulatory message and the game ends.
If you create a set of sprites based on ALICE IN WONDERLAND you may like to type 1 and alter "Scr" to "Alice" and save screens (using option 7) as Alice1, Alice2, etc.
No of screens
The Master File must specify the number of screens to be completed before the player has won. It may be any value. If you simply want to test the screen you have created, press 2 and set it to 1.
Each screen requires a password. All passwords for all screens are stored in the Master File, so the Game Menu can detect if any given password is valid, and then detect which screen that password is for and load it.
To view the passwords for each screen, use the * and ? keys. The password will flick either up or down. When you have detected the screen for which you wish to enter or change the password, press 3.
Option 6 : Save Master File
This simply saves the information created by option 5 to disc or tape. You will be asked for a filename and whether or not you wish to "Lock" the file. Only type Y if you are sure you will not need to alter the Master File at a later date.
At first glance, this process may appear awkward as it results in two separate files (the Master File followed by the Screen the player has reached) needing to be loaded into the UGGIE'S GARDEN Game. However, as the Master File does only need to be loaded once it soon feels natural.
A Master File does not hold the data for the Screen you have designed. Use option 7 to save the screen.
Option 7 : Save Screen
This will save the current screen in memory (each one you have loaded or designed) to tape or disc. You will be asked to enter a filename and should ensure that it begins with the prefix stated in the Master File followed by the appropriate number. (eg. Scr1)
Option 8 : Load Master File
This option allows you to load in a previous Master File (or that of the original UGGIE'S GARDEN game itself). Enter the filename and make changes to it with option 5.
Option 9 : Load Screen
This will allow you to load in any screen from disc or tape to make changes to it. Type in its filename (eg. Scr1) and, after loading, alter it with option 2.
Testing A Screen
The steps you must go through to test your own masterpieces are:
1. Load the UGGIE'S GARDEN Editor
2. Create a screen (using option 2)
3. Design alternative sprites if necessary (option 1)
4. Design alternative icons if necessary (option 3)
5. Alter the default colours if necessary (option 4)
6. Create a new Master File (using option 5), specifying the "prefix" of the filename, the number of screens (1) and the password for that 1 screen
7. Save the Master File (using option 8)
8. Save the screen (using option 7)
9. Press BREAK
10. Load the UGGIE'S GARDEN Game
11. Press F to load the Master File (after inserting your own tape/disc with the saved files on)
12. Press SPACE to commence playing, or 'P' followed by the password for the test screen
13. Wait for that screen to load
14. Ensure the screen can be completed
To develop a set of screens is then just the simple matter of increasing the number of screens and passwords in the Master File by 1 and using option 7 to save further screens with the suffixes 2, 3, 4, etc.
Finally, if playing from disc, always use a blank formatted disc for experimentation of this kind and never use the original.
Instructions' Source : UGGIE'S GARDEN (Superior/Acornsoft) Back Inlay (Italicised
text). Further instructions by The Acorn Electron Haven.
In a two-dimensional maze-like orchard of apples, plants and trees, it's finally time to meet Uggie and Bill, the two stars of UGGIE'S GARDEN. It's been a long time coming for all - including author Ian Webster. Originally a Superior/Acornsoft release, the game's been passed to and from ProAction, appeared on the Stairway to Hell website under the "unreleased" category and spent nearly eight years in 8bit limbo! Surprising for a game which may claim it succeeds the REPTON series.
Fans of the little green reptile may not be paying attention yet as numerous clones have claimed such succession (CLOGGER, SURVIVORS and MINER being just three!) but imagine this: two players both with their own windows, each with their own "Repton" sprite but both situated in the same playing area!
The idea is certainly unique and intriguing. All sorts of possibilities occur. How much more difficult would clearing a map of diamonds be when, not only are many of them supporting rocks (rather precariously) but you must also reckon on the unpredictable keypresses of your friend? Imagine your friend turns nasty and clears earth from beneath a number of rocks above you, sending them hurtling down onto your head! And if you yourself are puzzling over how to navigate through a maze of them but know your friend is underneath you, do you risk killing him by taking the last diamond?
UGGIE'S GARDEN says, providing we can get hold of one Electron/BBC and one friend, we can stop dreaming and try it! In this two player only game, players control cute little creatures with big heads and eyes who must clear bizarre and, at times, extremely deadly, screens of apples (the substitute for the diamonds, natch!). The two sprites are each very different and distinguished quite easily: apart from the different design, Uggie is green and Bill is red.
The main game screen is divided horizontally into two windows, each showing a small percentage of the game maze-like area. As each player moves left, right, up or down, the window scrolls by a block in the chosen direction, keeping the wily character centre-screen. Each window scrolls completely independently of the other and not uncommonly, Uggie will see Bill moving around in his own (Uggie's) window while, at the same time, Uggie appears briefly in Bill's.
The idea of UGGIE'S GARDEN, as with the REPTON series, is not to get crushed by falling rocks, not to collide with the monsters (or monster, there is only one in UGGIE'S GARDEN) and to free hidden treasures (more apples!) from safes. There are some stark differences between the game formats though. For example, the monster does not hatch from an egg but lives in the orchard with the two players, usually pretty quietly. That is, unless Uggie or Bill eat a pill of the opposite colour to themselves whereupon it dashes off after the player of that colour! He similarly is invincible and cannot be crushed with boulders.
The safes/key idea, where a key is collected and all safes then open, is implemented through trees/axe. But there are also keys lying around the maze that a player may use to open doors. One key vanishes for each door the player walks through; brainstraining is mandatory on many higher screens where numbers of doors outnumber the keys fitting them!
Yet another feature is the invisible exit. Or rather, the piece of wall that can actually be passed through horizontally to get out of a seemingly impossible situation. Green shaking plants (that disappear if the spray is collected) and deadly mushrooms also litter the map so tread carefully!
The literature with the ProAction UGGIE'S GARDEN release assumes the player will work all this out by either trial and error or by remembering it from the disk version's on-screen instructions, and both make a big play of warning "beware of your friend" re the kind of situations envisaged at the beginning of this review. Yet players will find quickly that many of the game's puzzle elements require two players, so getting rid of Uggie/Bill to "pinch all the apples" is not in the best interests of either! Ignore their advice and progress via teamwork.
The game does play reasonably well. The tape version is multi-load, loading in one screen at a time (probably because of the extra memory required for the two windows' machine code routines) and a password facility is incorporated so screens completed can be skipped. Although each screen only takes a few seconds to load in, an annoyance is that the present screen is not preserved in memory when you die. So if you are playing Screen 1, quit and then press SPACE to begin it again, you have to rewind the tape a bit and reload it.
Also the monster, mentioned earlier, is very unpredictable; sometimes remaining completely dormant (even after you've 'set it' on the other character) for hours and then, just as you've decided it's dead, going on a murderous rampage at the speed of light! When it impacts, and the character dies with a zzzziiipppp, it returns to its dormant state and frequently then sits unmoving again, barring the way to a vital passageway - even when live bait is paraded under its nose!
The game contains twenty screens of increasing difficulty but where it really delights is through its editor. Why, oh why, didn't ProAction see fit to document how to use this Editor package?! My request for the User Guide (which should've been sent as part of the package) was met with a PDF file containing gems like "our master instructions do not describe how to return to the menu from here. We'd be very interested to find out."
Added CJR. This e-mail came
from Frazer Middleton:
Re: Your notes on Uggies Garden: “My request for the User Guide (which should've been sent as part of the package) was met with a PDF file containing gems like "our master instructions do not describe how to return to the menu from here. We'd be very interested to find out." You should know that the reason for this lack of description is that we never released the product to ProAction, nor did we give Superior the authority to make such a release. We offered the program to Superior Software in 1990 (I’m pretty sure, it might have been 1989) and it was “shelved” for possible release on a future compilation. We never heard from Superior again, but have recently noticed a number of websites touting the program as a released product. As for your comments on playability, you’re probably correct – it was a long time ago, and we were both teenagers with dreams of fame and fortune, but for its time, I remember it playing pretty well. We were also about 2 years too late for fame and fortune! J I admire your efforts in documenting everything: I probably have a copy of the original documentation somewhere, but I’ll be blown if I know where it is! Sincerely, Frazer Middleton Vanderbilt University
Fortunately, after a few weeks' fiddling and note-taking, we have figured out every last function and can supply a much-needed Guide of our own. With such, the editor becomes a sinch to use and allows almost every element of the game to be redefined. You can draw your own sprites and screens - and even your own editor screen icons! - and create whatever scenarios take your fancy! You can go even further, defining how many screens are contained within your new game (before the congrats message), their passwords and the default colours. All this is done from one utility called from the equally superb Loading Screen.
Despite the few faults highlighted, UGGIE'S GARDEN has much to recommend it, not least of which being Superior's seal of approval. It takes a very clever twist on the REPTON theme and injects it with some new ideas and an incredible suite of editing facilities. And did I mention the cute characters who wave "Game Over"...?
Dave Edwards, EUG #57