Gold Runner 2000 is a Lode Runner style game, though much more advanced than the originals, or the original Gold Runner and Gold Runner II that were done by Dave Dies for the Coco 1/2. The game itself is a preview version of the much larger Digger II:Return of the Saint that Chet released later, although, in some ways, it is more advanced than even that game is. This was the first major game for the Coco 3 that featured multi-channel digitized sound (and music) running at the same time as horizontal and vertical scrolling terrain (each level is actually about 3 screens high and wide). This version displayed your lives and score inbetween levels (or deaths on your part), while the sequel kept them on the screen while hardware scrolling was going on (but lost the music in the background because of CPU time limitations). The whole reason that this game was done was because of a challenge by Eric Crichlow, who wrote a similiar game for the MM/1 computer (a 68070 based machine with a MUCH more advanced graphics chip than the Coco 3). Chet argued that it was possible to make a game just as good, if not better, on the Coco 3 itself. Chet narrowly lost the bet, as he didn't get it completely done before the deadline agreed upon by the bet. Chet also apparently had started a 6309 only version, that was capable of either 2 channel sound WITH the score/lives staying on the screen, or 3 channel sound... but I don't believe that this was ever completed.
The premise is the same as Lode Runner... you are trying to collect all the gold bars on a level, while digging holes to trap guards. Once you get them all, an extra ladder appears, which allows you to climb to the next level. This version has 5 levels to go through, each with their own theme clip.
The downloadable version here is in .DSK format for MESS (I don't believe it will run correctly on Jeff Vavasour's Coco III emulator... but feel free to try. If it works, let me know) or a real Coco 3. If you can not make real disks out of DSK files with one of the emulator tools, and you have OS-9 (or NitrOS9), you can download a Basic09 program that will let you create a real 35 track disk from the .DSK image file. You will also need a copy of DMODE, if you don't have it already, to do so. To actually run the game, boot using the G2000bt disk, by typing LOADM "GR2K". When it prompts you to flip the disk over, insert the G2000lvl disk (or swap the DSK file in the emulator).
Title: Gold Runner 2000
Author: Chet Simpson (some design work done by Eric Crichlow, from the original MM/1 version)
Publisher: MediaLink Development
Requires: Color Computer 3, 512K RAM, disk, joystick optional.
Download G2000.ZIP (Contains both .DSK images)
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