Prince of Persia for Commodore 64 Released!

Bill Loguidice's picture

A stunning conversion of the Apple II original, Prince of Persia, has been released for the Commodore 64. As original Prince of Persia author Jordan Mechner himself states on the site, back in 1989, he could never get anyone interested in doing a C-64 conversion because the 8-bit computer market was considered moribund at that time (it was certainly an accomplishment just getting Broderbund to put out the Apple II original at that time, despite the game's quality). Since the Apple II source code was lost, conversion author "mrsid", actually pain stakingly did a memory capture of the Apple II version and then reverse-engineered everything (and then clearly enhanced the game for the C-64's audio-visual abilities). Extraordinary! Check out the videos below and be sure to go to the site to download the cartridge image!


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clok1966
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cool

Thinking back to that game, and Kartatka you really see how ground breaking thery where. The platform game had been around, as side scrolling beat um ups.. but both of these games where an evoloution up from the current fair. I know PoP and Kartatka where 2 of my favorites.. Its to bad the current PoP games show no resemblance to the originals. I really want to go back and play both right now.

Bill Loguidice
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Xbox 360 version of PoP
clok1966 wrote:

Thinking back to that game, and Kartatka you really see how ground breaking thery where. The platform game had been around, as side scrolling beat um ups.. but both of these games where an evoloution up from the current fair. I know PoP and Kartatka where 2 of my favorites.. Its to bad the current PoP games show no resemblance to the originals. I really want to go back and play both right now.

There is a nice re-skinned version on XBLA that I enjoy a great deal. It's the original game, just with updated audio-visuals that aren't garish (a big pet peeve of mine with modern re-imaginings of original games). It's too bad no one has ever done anything with Karateka again. I'm no fighting game fan, but to me, this was one-on-one fighting done right since you didn't have to memorize a bunch of special moves to be successful, just have good timing.

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Rowdy Rob
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Looks awesome!

"Prince of Persia" is one of my all-time favorite games! I'd say it's easily in my top ten!

This C64 version looks amazing, way better than the Apple II version! Heck, in some ways it looks better than the Amiga version (which seemed like a straight port of the DOS version).

Bill Loguidice wrote:

It's too bad no one has ever done anything with Karateka again. I'm no fighting game fan, but to me, this was one-on-one fighting done right since you didn't have to memorize a bunch of special moves to be successful, just have good timing.

I agree, Karateka was a fighting game like no other I've played, with amazing (for its time) animation that really sold the martial arts fighting feel of the game. The game was quite short (and easy), though. This is a game that could have used a "Prince of Persia" style update.

In fact, I think the PoP game would have been even better as a Karateka update rather than an "Arabian Nights" style game. PoP's sword-fighting was fairly weak, gameplay wise. The same game, with Karateka-style fighting would have been awesome!

I highly enjoyed "Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time" when it was released. I thought they captured the feel of PoP quite nicely, while updating the game to modern 3D specs. The only major issue I had was the very poor 3D camera system, which interfered with the game at key points.

"Prince of Persia: The Warrior Within" was a severe letdown, seemingly going for the "gritty reboot" over the whimsical Sinbad-esque charm of the original. Plus, it got boring after a while.

Matt Barton
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I still think this game does

I still think this game does a better job of making a human body feel "weighty" than most other games (including recent ones). It feels like you're controlling a real person.

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Rowdy Rob
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Played it! It's GREAT!

Using the "C64 Forever" emulator, I booted up PoP and played through the first level! No question about it, this is the real deal! Stunning and awesome!

It's been a long time since I played the Amiga version, but the C64 version plays pretty much exactly the same as I remember the Amiga version playing.

The graphics are arguably better than the Amiga version! The resolution is (I'm sure) lower, but the fantastic animation still shows through. And while the resolution is lower than the Amiga version, the graphics are much more colorful and eye-pleasing!

The sound is very acceptable. The original was no sound odyssey itself, so no complaints in this department.

The sword-fighting seems easier than I remembered it, but maybe it's just faulty memory on my part. I need to play a bit more before making any conclusions.

It's all here, folks! "Prince of Persia" on the Commodore 64! It looks and plays amazing! It's a dazzling program, considering how it was developed! GET IT NOW!!!!!

Chip Hageman
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Thanks Bill. Can't believe

Thanks Bill. Can't believe this one slipped by me! I have a couple of EasyFlash carts lying around but I had to ebay a new power supply for my C64. Guess I'll be trying this one out at the end of the week.

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Bill Loguidice
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EasyFlash question
Chip Hageman wrote:

I have a couple of EasyFlash carts lying around but I had to ebay a new power supply for my C64. Guess I'll be trying this one out at the end of the week.

I was thinking of getting an EasyFlash in a few weeks (games like this and the LucasArts games seem to demand it!). It's my understanding that EasyFlash support is now enabled in the 1541U-II (which I already have) and will be available with the next firmware update (though there probably won't be write support, supposedly, due to limitations with the hardware). Anyway, how do you program your EasyFlash carts? I conceptually understand how it's programmed from the C-64 side, but can't figure out from what little I've read how it's programmed from the PC side.

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Chip Hageman
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Easyflash
Bill Loguidice wrote:

I was thinking of getting an EasyFlash in a few weeks (games like this and the LucasArts games seem to demand it!). It's my understanding that EasyFlash support is now enabled in the 1541U-II (which I already have) and will be available with the next firmware update (though there probably won't be write support, supposedly, due to limitations with the hardware). Anyway, how do you program your EasyFlash carts? I conceptually understand how it's programmed from the C-64 side, but can't figure out from what little I've read how it's programmed from the PC side.

The EasyFlash is a great little device to have. Head over to lemon64 and PM Michael Betz. I think he still has a sizable portion of his last production run available.. About $34 fully assembled with label.

I program it by loading the cart image to my uIEC/SD and then flash the image with the EasyProg.

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Matt Barton
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Man, just imagine what they

Man, just imagine what they could do with an Atari 8-bit port. Just imagine it!

Sorry, couldn't resist. :)

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Rowdy Rob
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Hold the source code.
Matt Barton wrote:

Man, just imagine what they could do with an Atari 8-bit port. Just imagine it!

Sorry, couldn't resist. :)

Yes, but unfortunately, we'll have to settle for a C64 version. :-)

But seriously, unless "mrsid" releases the source code for the C64 version, I don't see an Atari 8-bit version happening. And as much as I love the Atari 8-bit, I think he should NOT release the code. At least not for a LONG while.

The C64 version is just an astounding achievement, considering what he had to go through. Reading his developer's blog, "Mrsid" proves he is a genius of an unfathomable order. It took an incredible amount of programming/hacking skill, perseverance, and an alien level of intellect to produce such a great achievement!

If he releases the source code, then Atari 8-bit programmers could do a port, benefitting the Atari 8-bit community. Could a version that seems superior to the C64 version be made? Sure, it's possible, I suppose. Heck, even other C64 programmers could take his code and release even better versions!

But two things could happen if Atari 8-bit programmers got hold of the C64 source code.

1) The game is "improved" over the C64 version in some fashion, adding fuel to some Atari fanboys' ridiculous tirade. "See, the Atari is better, nyah nyah."
or....
2) The game, improved or not, is ported to the Atari, is enjoyed by the fanbase with no "fanboyism," but little or no credit or recognition will be given to mrsid.

Either way, the story of mrsid's incredible achievement will be set aside and not given the megaprops he deserves. And I seriously suspect that a guy who calls himself "mrsid" is a Commodore 64 fanboy, and he wouldn't react kindly to either scenario. :-)

As for improving it, I think the C64 version is as good as it needs to be. It's not so much a testament to platform supremacy so much as a singular mega-talented guy's supremacy! If Atari users want a version, they might want to follow mrsid's lead and reverse-engineer the original code themselves!

Better yet, I'm sure there are plenty of classic games that were never released for the Atari 8-bit that could use a similar level of dedication to port over!

Truthfully, as an Atari 8-bit enthusiast, I would love for mrsid to release his code so other platforms, including the Atari 8-bit, might be able to have ports of their own! But after seeing some of the ugly posts here from "my team" on AA recently, I wonder if we Atari guys deserve one.

So, for now, I think he should hold on to the source code. As much as I love the Atari 8-bit, this is a mega-slam-dunk for "Team Commodore." Hats off to mrsid!

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