Many thanks to the readers who’ve been following and commenting on my old journals. Originally, I’d planned to end the feature here — in October 1989, with the release of Apple II Prince of Persia, four years in the making.
Now that we’ve reached that milestone, though, I realize that no self-respecting storyteller would end at such a critical moment, with my worst fears about the game’s commercial prospects soon to be horribly confirmed. So I’ll let my 20-years-younger self keep on blogging from the past a while longer.
Meanwhile, here are answers to some nostalgia-oriented readers’ questions — this one from Ugur Mengilli:
In which programming language was PoP written?
From Nabil Nawaz:
What language did you program Karateka in? How long did it take to code the game?
I coded both Karateka and POP in 6502 assembly language. Looks like this:
CLRMEM LDA #$00 ;Set up zero value TAY ;Initialize index pointer CLRM1 STA (TOPNT),Y ;Clear memory location INY ;Advance index pointer DEX ;Decrement counter BNE CLRM1 ;Not zero, continue checking RTS ;Return
Karateka took me about two years and POP four. Both were significantly slowed down by other things I was attempting at the same time (like finishing college, and writing my first screenplay), as the old journals show.
From Sam Assenberg:
I am Sam and I still play the original Prince of Persia almost every day. I’m a big fan of you and Prince of Persia!
Soon, Prince of Persia exists 20 year and we, my uncle and I, are planning a Prince of Persia anniversary! He played it during a few years after it had been released and I started to play when I was about seven years old, almost nine years ago. We love it very much.
We’ve searched all over the web for the exact release date of PoP (we need that for the anniversary), but we couldn’t find it. And that’s our question for you: when has PoP been released exactly?
I had to check the old journals myself to find the answer. The first Apple II version was published in the U.S. on October 3, 1989. So, still six months away. Thanks, Sam and your uncle, for reminding me!
If you’d like to read the old journals from the beginning, they start here.