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From: xx004@cleveland.Freenet.Edu (Atari SIG) Subject: ST Power User: 23-Sep-90 #1 Date: Mon Apr 11 12:23:33 1994 Article 82 of freenet.sci.comp.atari.mags: From: aj205@cleveland.Freenet.Edu (Kevin Steele) Date: Sun, 7 Oct 90 17:36:10 GMT ST Power User Online Magazine Issue 1 September 23, 1990 The bi-monthly online magazine that shows you what's available in commerical and shareware programs for the Atari ST Chief Editor and Publisher............Brian Hilbern Reviewers.............................Brian Hilbern .............................Chris McBride .............................Jay Ford DTP Editor............................Jay Ford Temp Business Editor..................Brian Hilbern --------------------------------- If you have a shareware or commercial program you would like reviewed in our magazine please send the program, purchasing, and U.S. and Canadian pricing information to: ST Review P.O. Box 890117 Oklahoma City, OK 73189-0117 If you would like to upload your program you may by calling (405)691-0244 24hrs a day, 3/12/24. Please include full documentation and a list of the features to be placed in the magazine. You may write to me in Fido Net mail at 1:147/25 and send the message to Brian Hilbern. GEnie address L.HILBERN. --------------------------------- Contents this Week ------------------ o Information about this new magazine o Mainstream Publishing o ST and Business o Program Reviews Programs Reviewed this Week --------------------------- Program Name Program Type Type Price ----------------------------------------------------------- Second Generation BBS.......BBS...........SW.......$70 Reviewed by: Brian Hilbern View GIF 0.8...............Graphics.......SW.......$15 Reviewed by: Brian Hilbern Drakkhen.....................Game.......Comercial...$59.95 Reviewed by: Chris McBride Nova........................Game..........PD.......Free Reviewed by: Brian Hilbern Explode.....................Game..........PD.......Free Reviewed by: Brian Hilbern --------------------------------- Information about this magazine ------------------------------- This online magazine is being published to help show you what is available at your local computer store and what is available in the world of shareware. We felt that there was something missing in software reviews in magazines and that is shareware reviews. Also we noticed that a lot of commercial software reviews appeared in magazines sometimes months after their release. It's easy at times to find out about commercial software. You just go to your local dealer and demo the program. But now a lot of dealers don't demo programs as much as they used to and some software dealers will only have an IBM computer to demo programs and that leaves out us ST users. Or in some cases you don't live near anyone selling ST software and must rely on mail order. It's hard to demo a program from a mail order house. Shareware on the other hand is easy to try out. But have you ever spent 30 minutes downloading a program from a service that charges you $10 an hour only to find that the program won't do you any good and you end up deleting it an hour later? We are here to try and fill the gap. We will give you a non-biased review of the programs we review. We will rate the program by different categories. All the programs will be given a rating between 1 and 10. This magazine will also greatly benefit software authors. People will know the price of your program, were to obtain the program, and where to order the program. Our reviewers will be many different people. Anyone who wants may submit a review and the program you are reviewing (please do not review your own program). All DTP programs will be reviewed by someone who uses ST's for a publishing business, specific use ST software will be reviewed by the person that is most qualified to give an objective review. We are now looking for a games editor and a business editor. If you would like to apply for one of these positions just write a column and if we like what we see you can be the editor. Please include you name, mailing address, phone number, net mail address if any, and you GEnie or CIS mailing address if any. --------------------------------- MAINSTREAM PUBLISHING by Jay Ford Before we get started I'd like to invite everyone out there who puts out a newsletter on their ST's to get involved with the STix Newsletter Exchange program. How? Simple. Just send put STix on your mailing list and when we receive your publication, we'll put you on ours. I've found that this sort of an exchange program is an excellent way of communicating with other ST people and generally fosters a little bit of 'friendly competition' that will improve the quality of all our newsletters. Hope to see yours! ST Information eXchange (STix) P.O. Box 161 Nicoma Park, Oklahoma 73066 You have booted in your machine the first of a hopefully ongoing series of articles dealing with Publishing and the Atari ST. Dropping 'Desktop' was intentional- DTP implies semi or non- professional publishing. Computers have moved into every aspect of publishing and no 'proffessional' service is without them now... even the hard-liners who swore that Linotype, Stat Cameras and Pasteup were as far as typesetting technology could go and computers simply didn't produce the quality that the old methods did. The second reason is that 'Publishing' encompasses every aspect of the trade; we can't just talk about the ST and Atari's Desktop Publisher package. Being submerged in just one machine would cause a publishing service to go broke very quickly, and the home user to miss a lot of excellent products that CAN be used with their machine. To illustrate this point, our first article deals with the foundation of electronis publishing today: PosctScript. ******************** PostScript and the PostScript World Just what are we Talking about Anyway? ******************** PostScript (def). an interpreted page description language. Doesn't say much, does it? Like most technical definitions, it's short, concise and completely non-informative. PostScript is, essentially, a programming language purely for output devices (originally only for printers, but now there is Display PostScript as well). Like any programming language, it acts as an interpreter between the machines and users to allow easier programming in more 'human terms'. In fact, a PostScript (.PS) file bears a strong resemblance to a Pascal source code file. Few humans program in PostScript. It's most important function is to allow communication between different machines and software. For example, a Linotype 3400 series typesetter equipped with a PostScript interpreter can output a file whether it was created on an Atari ST in Timeworks Desktop Publisher, an IBM PC in Ventura Publisher, A Macintosh II with PageMaker 3.0, or a mainframe using Interleaf Publisher. In fact, PostScript is flexible enough that it has been adapted to every type (and most brands) of output device and virtually every piece of Publishing software made. The greatest strength of a Page Description Language (PDL) is that it provides a standard format for scalable-outline fonts. Even though there are three different Adobe PostScript Font Types, a PS user can conceivably have several thousand different typefaces available... and dozens of customizer programs at his fingertips. SCALABLE OUTLINE is the professional's way of making a computer typeface; PS uses nothing else. Generally, a PostScript printer has a whole computer of its own to interpret a file sent to it. This has it's pluses and minuses. A user can wind up buying a whole second computer system in his printer, for one minus. At least two meg of ram, a fast (ususally 32-bit) processor, a math co-processor, and sometimes even a hard drive that are used only for printing. Sometimes the cost of a laser printer can be double or trebeled this way. On the Plus side, souping up the printer can make for very, very fast output. Also, this means an old printer can be retro-fit with PostScript to improve it's quality and compatibility. Lately, PC-based PS interpreters have popped up, using the computer's memory and processor instead of the printer. They are the poor man's way of printing quality; they are also very, very slow (depending on the machine). In addition, the cheaper versions (especially the IBM's) do not use Compugraphic standard font outlines and don't yield the quality of the real Adobe product. Happily, the ST's own UltraScript is relatively quick and has wonderful font outlines with excellent overall output. Of coarse, PostScript isn't the only Page Description Language around. It is, however, the most complete. Like regular programming languages, PDL's have their strengths, weaknesses, and tradeoffs. PostScript's winning feature is that it is the most complete; it isn't fast, but it will do EVERYTHING, so a professional publisher is 99% likely to use it over something that will just say "I can't" at an unexpected time. PosctScript's drawbacks are twofold: it's slow (it's big!), and it's expensive. A license can add a lot of cost to a PostScript printer, which is why machines like the Apple LaserWriter are so much more expensive than something like an SLM-804. The industry's best art packages use Encapsulated PostScript (EPS) as their graphic standard, and all major publishers (EXCEPT Calamus) can import this artwork... which just happens to be available by the CD FULL. For final output, PostScript simply looks better than anything else made. Not even the mighty speed demon Calamus can match it's graphic quality (one of those trade-offs) and they are evenly matched on fonts, since both Calamus and PostScript were designed by the same company: Compugraphic. PostScript is also one of the few PDL's capable of color output or color seperations. What does this mean to ST'ers? PostScript means that we can purchase a package like PageStream and use professional graphics and fonts not meant for us in the first place. It means (with UltraScript) we can add something like the Spectre GCR and use excellent Mac publishing software, but don't have to pay out the Wazoo for a printer to output the results. It means we can print our documents to disk and take them to a printing service and have them output at 1,200-3,400 d.p.i.-- national magazine quality. It means we communicate with the Real World and needn't worry that our machine brand isn't what everyone else has. Products Mentioned *********************************************************** Atari ST, SLM-804- Atari Corp. 360 Carribean Dr. Door 4E Sunnyvale, CA 94089 (408) 745-2367 PostScript- Adobe Inc. 1585 Charleston Rd. P.O. Box 7900 Mountain View, CA 940397900 Apple Laserwriter, Macintosh, Macintosh II- copyright Apple Computer Inc. Timeworks Desktop Publisher- Timeworks Inc. 444 Lake Cook Deer Field, IL 60015 (312) 948-9202 Ventura Publisher- copyright Xerox Corporation PageMaker 3.0- copyright Aldus Systems Interleaf Publisher- copyright IBM Calamus Desktop Publisher- I.S.D. Marketing 2651 John St. Unit #3 Markham, Ontario Canada L3R2WS (416) 479-1880 UltraScript- ImaGem Corp. P.O. Box 58101 Santa Clara Ca. 95052 PageStream Desktop Publisher- Soft-Logik Publishing Corp. P.O. Box 290070 St. Loius, MO 63129 314-894-8608 800-829-8608 BBS 314-894-0057 -------------------------------- ST AND BUSINESS By Brian Hilbern I have been using Atari ST's in business for a little over 3 years now. I have suffered some ridicule by my IBM using friends during that period of time. Each time the ST has stood strong to any criticism. This article will be an attempt to help bring the business side of the ST to the light. Many ST users don't know what business software is out there for the ST. I know several ST owners that use IBM's for business just because they didn't know about business software for the ST. The first area I will be talking about is retail programs. There are several out there for the ST that have everything IBM programs have including cash drawer support and bar code readers. Sales Pro --------- The first products I will be talking about are the programs from Hi-Tech Advisors. They are makers of high quality business software for ST's and IBM's. The first program is called Sales Pro. Sales Pro is a retail sales program that is very expandable with the use of add-on modules and is powerful by it's self. Sales Pro Features ------------------ Process Sales and Returns, Inventory Management, Notes, Lay-away's, and accounts receivable, Account Payable, Purchase Orders, Reports, Vendor Files, Deposits and Credits, Floor Planning, Service Center, Back orders and customer files, General Ledger, UPS Shipmate, and much more. Accessories ----------- 'Bill To', allows printing of Bill To: Ship: information on invoices Utilities, removes bad dates, makes files dBase compatible, insert one vendor I.D. into all inventory records, allows price percentage changes to all prices. Bar Code Accessory that allows using a bar code reader with Sales Pro Optional Hardware ----------------- Bar Code Reader Cash Drawer SBM ST ------ Another program for the ST designed for a retail or wholesale environment is SBM ST from Newell Industries. This is a point of sale program that can handle almost all sales functions. Features -------- Produces invoices, purchase orders, statements, mailing labels, price labels, quotes, sales and account reports, plus much more. Inventory Control ----------------- Each inventory record consist of item number, part number, description, vendor number, quantity on hand, location, reorder point, quantity on order, cost, sale price, quantity sold, dollar amount sold, and product group. Accounts -------- Account records consist of account number, name and address, terms, total purchased, total paid, last invoice date, and balance due. As you can see from the information on these two products either one would be a good point of sale program for you. The Atari ST makes a great point of sale system. With software like this available I don't see why more Atari dealers don't use this software. It doesn't look good for an authorized Atari dealer to be using IBM's when software like this is available for the ST. Hi-Tech Advisors also has a full line of other business software for retail environments. They have programs for video stores, gas stations, clubs, and churches. Take a look at what the ST has to offer and you might find yourself putting that IBM you use for business up for sale like I did. In the next issue I will be showing you some more of the ST business power. So until then..... Products mentioned in this article ---------------------------------- Sales-Pro $99 Church Manager $199 Fuel-Pro $199 Video/Rental-Pro $299 Super Video/Rental Pro $499 Club Manager $199 Hi-Tech Advisors P.O. Box 7524 Winter Haven, FL 33883-7524 1-800-882-4310 SBM ST $69.95 Newell Industries P.O. Box 253 Wylie, TX 75098 (214)442-6612 --------------------------------- SOFTWARE REVIEWS --------------------------------- Second Generation BBS --------------------- Reviewed by: Brian Hilbern Requires: ST with 1 meg RAM Hard Drive is strongly recommended Color or Mono though color is prefered This is a BBS program written by Jason Strautman. It is a full BBS program with file areas, message areas, online games, and message networking through F-Net. The program uses SIG's rather than combining all file and message areas. Features -------- From the SG BBS Instructions ---------------------------- SG can support up to 16 different SIG's (just like forums or RT's) on each system. SIG's can have their own SigOp(s) with SysOp-type access that is only good on their own SIG. Each SIG can have their own surveys (polls), questionnaires, 64 message bases, and 64 libraries. BBS lists are shared throughout the system, and menus can either be placed in one directory to be shared by all SIG's or can be created specifically for each SIG. (Some SIG's can even use one version of a menu and others can use their own separate menus.) The system setup (where the commands are placed on the menus, which commands are accessable, etc.) can be edited for each different SIG, and there are almost 70 commands to cover most everything imaginable. Global commands (those that are available system-wide) may also be defined. Message base features: Threads of messages (an original message and any replies are all part of the same thread) can be selected and read individually in addition to the normal "read all new messages." Messages with files attached will also be supported in the full version of the software. Also, SysOps/SigOps can change people's access to message bases AND decide which message bases will be active for their users (only active bases are accessed by most commands). There is also a reply by E-Mail option, for SysOps who do not wish to enable private messages, and, of course, anonymous messages may be posted if the SysOp wished to enable them. Library features: Files may be searched on their keywords, age, description, library, uploader, or filename. Searches may then be expanded (where files that were previously "found" AND those found in the last search will be marked) or narrowed (where files must meet both sets of requirements) and any found files may be batchmarked, listed, or browsed (full descriptions). Naturally, batch transfers are allowed. Additional protocols may be added simply by editing a file and supplying an external program (like XYZ.TTP) to make the actual transfer. Up to 100 protocols may be in use at one time (although finding the symbols to represent them may be more difficult). A reply feature is provided so that users may send the uploader of a file a comment with little effort. Files do not need to be in any specific folder or partition, so you can even take files off of your own partitions on your HD and make them available for download. Profile features: All of the normal profile features (like upload/download ratios, etc.) are available, although any user may have an unlimited "limit," such as unlimited daily uploads or unlimited messages. Otherwise, limits must range from 0-32767. In addition to a download access level, 32 different flags are available (I use these to set the user's default SIG), with an additional 8 flags for each SIG (the SigOp's may only edit SIG flags in theConnection at local terminal on 08/15/1990 at 21:21:40. Jason Strautman/SG SYSOP (100001) connected. ser or SysOp/SigOp. Also, there is a batch edit available where you can make specific changes on users' profiles (you can limit the changes to users with certain access levels), which saves the trouble of having tens of validation masks (which you would need if you have several SIG's with SigOps.) The batch edit options (one for general access level and one for SigOps) will not change a user's access level unless requested, so you could possibly change all user's upload/download ratio in several keystrokes without altering other parts of their profile. Assorted features: An override option is provided so that you can be prompted (by a short tone) whenever a user does not have access to a certain feature, and then give them "access" to that feature without changing his profile. Function keys are provided for most functions, including entering, exiting, or (de)activating chat mode. Also, it is virtually impossible for a SigOp to raise their own access level, as SigOp/SysOp shell commands are only loaded at boot-up, preventing someone from changing the menus on-line. Also, SigOps cannot change anything in their general profile (only library/message access in their SIG or SIG flags). Support is provided for 5 graphic modes, and graphic modes can even be passed onto SG-type doors programs (by type, such as IGS, ASCII, VT-52, etc.). Any menu (including action menus at message, E-Mail, and library prompts) may have different versions for each graphic mode, especially handy for IGS users and for making point-and-click menus). Naturally, FoReM-type doors are supported (the DORINFO1.DAT is created - I'm working on the FOREM.DAT file). GEM support can be provided in the form of dialog boxes, desk accessories, and file selector boxes (including alternate selectors). Message Bases ------------- The message areas are somewhat complicated to use. Reading new messages in a SIG is not easy unless you are shown like I had to be. The message base edit commands are lacking but are functional. The message bases need work. This program has F-Net but I was not able to try that feature. File Areas ---------- The file areas are one of the best features of this BBS. They are easy to use and have several functions not available on most BBS program like being able to send E-mail to the uploader of a file from the file area. There are several transfer protocols on the program including X modem, Y modem, Y batch, and Z modem. You can limit a persons access to a particular files. SysOp Commands -------------- The SysOp shell is very easy to use and validating new users is very easy. There is a full range of DOS type commands, file area editing, message base editing, and user editing features. The SysOp shell is nice. Overall View ------------ Second Generation BBS is a nice program but needs a lot of work. It would be confusing for first time modem users as well as some veteran users. I spent an hour on the program and sometimes needed help and I have been using modems and calling bulletin boards for around 14 years. I didn't get to view the documentation because all I was allowed to try was the demo. The price for this program is $70. Price.........2 Quality.......5 Ease of Use...4 Features......8 Overall Rating..5 Second Generation may be ordered by sending a check or money order for $70 to: Jason Strautman 239 Redwood San Antonio, TX 78209 His BBS number is (512)828-8165 and his GEnie mail address is J.STRAUTMAN. --------------------------------- View GIF 0.8 ------------ Reviewed by: Brian Hilbern Requirements: Any ST View GIF 0.8 is a shareware program written by Craig S. Buchanan. This program is used to view graphics. Features -------- This program has just about anything you can want from a graphics viewer. It displays GIF, NEO, MAC, and Degas pictures. With this program you can view large GIF pictures that before you couldn't view with any other ST GIF viewer. It will convert the 256 color GIF pictures to grey scale for easy viewing. This program doesn't crunch the picture for viewing. It uses a GEM window to view the picture and allows you to scroll up, down, left, and right. You can clip the picture for saving to NEO or Degas or you can shrink the picture to save the whole thing but then it will be crunched. This program also supports overscan though I wasn't able to try that feature. The program also allows you to translate 256 color GIF to 256 color gray scale for image processing using the Atari Image Manager. It will also convert to Spectrum and CP8. Future Enhancements ------------------- Support for 4096 color palletes in now in the works. Support for the resolution of the TT is also in the future. Overall View ------------ If you like GIF pictures this program is for you. It is worth every penny. There is nothing out there that can touch this program in features and use. I highly recommend it to everyone that like GIF pictures. Price...........8 Quality........10 Ease of Use.....9 Features.......10 Overall Rating..9 This program may be ordered by sending a check or money order for $15 to: Craig S. Buchanan 4-319 Mackay St. Ottawa, Ont. K1M 2B7 Canada This program was released in Febuary of 1990 so it is a little old but I felt it was a good program and needed some more recognition. The $15 price is for Canada I assume so if you are in the United States you should probably contact the author before ordering. --------------------------------- Drakken ------- Data East USA, Inc. 1850 Little Orchard Street Licensed from Infogames San Jose, California 95125 Price $59.95 (408)386-7074 Review written by Chris McBride _______________________________________________________________________________ Adventure / Role Playing Game Includes: 2 disks - copy protected - not hard drive installable - density unknown Background Storybook Instruction guide Requires: Color Monitor ST w/ 512K Features: Great on screen graphics digitized sounds 4 separately or singly controlled characters a island playing area with many castles and settlements The Game: Drakken is a new game that is being distributed by Data East but was originally created by those at Infogrames in France. Infogrames has a long history in the ST game world of creating good games with good graphics and good playability. Data East unfortunately has a reputation of producing shallow shoot-em-ups and has very few good games available for the ST market. I had hoped upon purchasing this program that it would be Data East's final triumph and that they would finally have a hit on their hands, because it has long been rumoured that Data East was getting out of the ST software world as soon as possible. And they might succeed with Drakken because it really is a good game with new ideas in a slightly overworked genre of programs. Drakken is a world where magic is fading fast because of one erronious Paladin that destroyed the last Dragon in the world. Evidentially the dragon was the embodyment of all the magic in the world, and when it was destroyed all the magic was too. Well the Paladin was discovered soon after his horrible deed by the rulers of the land and put to death for his trouble. At about the same time that the Paladin was killing the last dragon in the world there was a ship that was sailing the seas of Drakken, and when the magic faded the Wind-Wizard of the ship was unable to create the winds that would give the ship power to move forward. Thus the ship drifted for a week or so but finally ran a ground in some completely unknown place hat was totally foreign to the sailors. This foreignness of the land became quite apparent when the sailors made their first run in with the locals. It seems that the locals of this new land were decended from Dragons and looked exactly like it. Well these Drakkens, as they came to be called, were none to friendly and almost completely destroyed the landing party. The Wind-Wizard and a couple of others were one of the few to make it back. They came back to the capital city and told their story to the rulers who immediately sent the call out for the best adventurers in the threatened to take over the world. The game play is interesting to say the least. You control 4 characters of your creation of the usual RPG mismash of fighters, magic users, thieves, etc. These four characters can either be controlled in a 'group mode' or a in a 'character mode'. Group mode is where you control the whole party to move them around in the landscape. When your in group mode the landscape moves around you much like or better than it would in a flight simulator (except your stuck to the ground), the screen updates are fast the graphics are well done and the group is easy to control. In character mode you can control each of the characters on the screen separately, this mode is used for fighting and exploring castles and houses. Either the keyboard or the mouse or the joystick can be used to move your players around. The Magic system consists of already learned spells that depend on your level as to whether they're available or not. To set a character to use spells instead of fighting you click on the sword icon on the lower left corner of the screen and it switches to some kind of magical script. You can then click on the script and it will change to different words. Each word is a different spell, and to find out which word does which spell you have to look in the back of the story book. To fight you just leave the above icon set to a sword and as soon as someone appears they will attack. There are also icons to talk with other characters, closely inspect items, save the game, take objects, activate mechanisms, and greet other characters. The low down: Drakken is a good game with a potential of being a great game except for some problems. As I've mentioned before the graphics are really good with a close attention to detail that you find in really good games. The sound is kind of sparse but I feel that there's enough of it to make an impact on the game. The background story book is well written and worth reading but unfortunately it doesn't tell you how to play the game, and worse yet the instruction guide doesn't either. All the instruction guide does is vaguely tell you what each object on the screen is for, and what the keystrokes are. I didn't find one thing in the game that actually told me HOW to play it. Maybe that's my failing and I should have been able to play the game with the information provided, well some people may be able to do that but I need a little more instructions especially for a game of this size. An example of what I mean: When you first appear in the game you're in the middle of a path with a castle like structure in front of you. You move towards the castle with and intent to go inside it and find out whatis in it. Once you get to the castle the game automatically puts you in character mode and you proceeded across the moat into the gate. A shark that is moving around the castle in the moat suddenly jumps over the drawbridge and kills your character. You try again, same thing happens. And within less than 3 minutes of starting the game for the very first time all your characters are dead and you have to start over. Not good. I still haven't made it inside that castle. Its a great game, but entirely too difficult to play (for me). I think I'll wait for the hint book on this one. Graphics ......... 9 Sound ............ 8 Playability ...... 4 Instructions ..... 5 Value for Money .. 7 --------------------- Overall Score .... 6.6 --------------------------------- Nova ---- Reviewed by Brian Hilbern Requirements 512K Colour Low Res Use keyboard keys for movement Nova is a fast paced shoot-em-up space game similar to the arcade game Galaxian. It is written by Arunan Thaya-Paran in machine code using HiSoft's Devpac. The graphics were drawn using Rainbird's Advanced OCP Art Studio. The game starts out hard but gets a little easier as you go. There are many stages in this game and each one is more difficult that the later. This is a challenging game but can be conquered with a lot of playing. The graphics are very nice. One thing I didn't like about the game was that you didn't get a free ship after you reached a certain score. The game is hard without that free ship. You'll be entertained by this game for many hours. The game is PD so look for it on your favorite BBS and download it as soon as possible, you'll be glad you did. Playability.....9 Instructions....8 Graphics........9 Sound...........7 Overall.........8 --------------------------------- Explode ------- Reviewed by Brian Hilbern Requirements: Any ST Programing by Peter D. Hibbs Explode is a game designed for the thinking types among you. The first thing you must do before playing Explode is to unplug that joystick and plug in your brain and prepare yourself for some serious brain busting. The object of the game is to turn all the pieces on the board to your own colour. To play the game move the mouse pointer to a square and click the left mouse button. This will add one to that square in your colour (you cannot select a square with your opponents piece on it). Each square has a critical explode value; The corner squares are 2, the edge squares are 3 and all central squares are 4. When the number on a piece reaches its critical value, the square will explode and the pieces with move to the adjacent 2, 3 or 4 squares. If any of these adjacent squares have your opponent's pieces on them, they will change to your colour thus capturing that square. If a captured square reaches its critical value, it will inturn explode and may capture further squares in a chain reaction across the board. Explode doesn't offer a lot of fancy graphics or a lot of sound. It is a fun game none the less. I have spent many hours playing this game. It is challenging game. It is PD so be sure to look for it on your favorite BBS, it's worth downloading. Overall......8 --------------------------------- P R E S S R E L E A S E C E N T E R ------------------------------------- Quick ST II Update Information Seurat Version 2.0 Turbo * Blitz Verison 3.0x Quick ST II version 2.2 ======================= - faster! - new features! - 68030 compatible! - new phone numbers! - newsletter for registered users! - German language version in Europe! - expanded credit card and shipping support! Price: $19.95 U.S. Branch Always Software 14150 N.E. 20th Street, Suite 302 Bellevue, WA 98007 U.S.A. Order line: (206)-643-9697 (10am to 6pm Pacific Time) FAX: (206)-643-3844 (24 hours) Telephone: (206)-885-5893 (24 hours) Compuserve: 73657,2714 GEnie: DAREKM This is to announce that an update to our popular screen accelerator, Quick ST II version 2.2, is being released this Friday, September 14, 1990. It will be on sale at the upcoming Atari shows in Glendale and Washington. Quick ST 2.2 will go on sale at dealers across the U.S. and Canada in October. A German version will also go on sale in Europe. Existing registered users of Quick ST and Quick ST II can upgrade immediately. Features: --------- Quick ST 2.2 is a software screen accelerator. When used on any Atari ST, Atari STE, or Mega ST, it speeds up the text and graphics operations on the screen. Almost any text or GEM based program runs faster as a result, making your ST perform like a much faster machine. No hardware modifications are required. And the ability to install custom background patterns and pictures is included! Quick ST 2.2 is very memory efficient, using less than 30K of memory for the standard version, and less than 20K for the 2.2G version (also included). An extra 32K of memory is required for background pictures. Quick ST 2.2 is fully compatible with hardware accelerators, such as the T16 accelerator from Fast Technologies, the Blitter chip, and even the 68030 chip. When used with a hardware accelerator, Quick ST 2.2 provides a speed increase on top of the speed increase of the hardware accelerator. Quick ST 2.2 has a number of improvements compared to Quick ST 2.1 and earlier versions. Some of the new improvements include: Support for the ISAC graphics card (which gives a screen resolution of 1024x768 pixels in 16 colors). Moniterm monitors and Overscan modifications are still supported, as is the MonSTEr emulator (in all 3 screen resolutions). Blitter support for faster screen scrolling, and it now checks the status of the blitter chip to see if it is disabled. This allows Quick ST 2.2 to run on machines with defective blitter chips. GEM line drawing and rectangle fills are even faster than before. 68020/68030 accelerator board support is available on a second disk for $10 more. Quick ST 2.2 also supports the original 3 graphics modes on the TT. Full TT support will be available in Quick ST 3.0. The Desktop Customizer now allows you to temporarily disable Quick ST 2.2 from the menu bar, for easy "before" and "after" speed comparisons. We found this feature handy when demonstating Quick ST 2.2 at the recent World Of Atari show in San Jose, and you will too. Several bugs have been fixed with Word Up 3.0, Laser C, Opus, Wordflair, GFA Basic 3.0, and other programs. Two bugs relaeted to the fast GDOS font drawing are fixed. First, a bug that caused Word Up 3.0 to occasionally display garbled text when scrolling is fixed. And outlined GDOS fonts now get drawn correctly on a color monitor. The Quick ST 2.2 package also includes the MonSTEr high resolution monitor emulator, the Quick Index benchmark utility, Quick View, and of course, the Quick ST II Desktop Customizer. Starting in November, all registered users of Quick ST II and Quick Tools will receive a periodic newsletter which gives information about updates (such as Quick ST III), tips for using the software, answers to commonly asked questions, and other information. To receive the newsletter, you MUST fill out and send in the registration card that came with your Quick ST II or Quick Tools software. How to order Quick ST 2.2: -------------------------- Quick ST 2.2 can be ordered directly by credit card (VISA, Mastercard, and Discover) through Xanth Corporation. Various shipping methods are available, including UPS, DHL, Express Mail, and First Class Mail. Call the order line between 10am and 6pm, Monday to Friday. Most orders received before noon will be shipped out the same day. Shipping charges will depend on the shipping method chosen and the country being shipped to. If ordering by mail, send a check or money order for $19.95 + shipping ($3 in Canada and the U.S., $5 elsewhere) in U.S. funds and allow 3-4 weeks for delivery. Make all checks payable to Branch Always Software. No C.O.D's. How to upgrade to Quick ST 2.2: ------------------------------- To upgrade to Quick ST 2.2 from an earlier version we MUST already have your registration card. Take your original Quick ST or Quick ST II disk, include the appropriate update fee, and mail it to Branch Always Software. Please note the new upgrade prices: $3 - If you purchased Quick ST 2.1 after August 31, 1990. If you did not purchase it directly from us, include a copy of the receipt showing the date and dealer name it was purchased from. $5 - If you are upgrading from Quick ST version 2.0 or 2.1 and live in Canada or the United States. $10 - If you do not live in Canada or the U.S., if you are upgrading from Quick ST version 1.8 or earlier, if you lost the original Quick ST disk, or if it is inconvenient to send the original disk. Sorry, if we do not have your registration card, we don't know about you and you cannot upgrade and you will not receive the newsletter. So dig up those Quick ST packages and mail in the registration cards folks! NOTE: $5 off discount coupons which appered this summer in various ST magazines we valid for purchasing Quick ST 2.1 only, and cannot be used to purchase Quick ST 2.2. Quick ST III ------------ Rumors of Quick ST III (a.k.a. Quick TT) have been circulating for a while. It was our original intention to write a new TT compatible screen accelerator to take advantage of the 68030 chip and the new TT graphics modes and have it released at around this time. That was based on original estimates on the release date of the TT in North America, which have now come and gone. So a decision was made to take some of the features of Quick ST III and some badly needed bug fixes and make the Quick ST 2.2 release for the ST computer. Quick ST III also runs on any standard ST, although it has much higher memory requirements and a hard disk is recommended. Until we have a better idea of when the TT will be available, what the ST market will be like a few months from now, what sort of new hardware (i.e. accelerator boards or new ST models) will be available, consider Quick ST III to be vaporware. Please do not phone us asking when it will ship or for more information about it. When we decide on a release date, which will probably not be until at least the end of the year, that information will be sent out in a newsletter to all registered Quick ST II users. For now, enjoy Quick ST 2.2! ----------------------------------------------------------------- This magazine may be distributed freely as long as no part is edited. Portions of this magazine may be reproduced as long as credit is given to the person who wrote the article and the issue number and name of the magazine is included. H&H Enterprises accepts no liability. The reviews are those of the authors and not of this publication. Advertising information my be obtained by writing to the address below or calling the BBS at (405)691-0244. All materials submited become the property of the magazine and may be edited. All programs submited become the property of H&H Enterprises in exchange for the advertising. (c) 1990, H&H Enterprises. When sending programs please include Canada and U.S. prices. Product names shown in this publication are the registered trademarks of the manufactures of the products. H&H Enterprises P.O. Box 890117 Oklahoma City, OK 73189-0117 ----------------------------------------------------------------- Kevin Steele (aj205.Cleveland.Freenet.Edu)
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