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The Royal Game of Ur

Posted: Wed Jun 12, 2024 2:37 pm
by Yves
Hi Martin,

Where can we get the files (16k datapack) for this game ? ... cks/urgame

The Royal Game of Ur

Posted: Wed Jun 12, 2024 3:59 pm
by Martin
Hi Yves and everyone watching

Answer... Nowhere yet I'm still writing it! I'll offer it to forum members before going public..

I suggest those interested watch the two video's mentioned (here) so they understand the rules and game play before getting to grips with the Organiser LZ/LZ64 version

My Nana used to say "patience is a virtue"

Re: The Royal Game of Ur

Posted: Sun Jun 16, 2024 12:26 pm
by Daren
Had never heard of this before - very clever idea to port it to Psion Martin!

Re: The Royal Game of Ur

Posted: Mon Jun 17, 2024 2:58 pm
by Martin
Royal Game of Ur for the Psion Organiser II LZ/LZ64

Version 1.0 BETA Release

I managed to purchase some 16K Datapaks from Peter and can now offer for BETA release half a dozen copies of UrGame to Forum members to try. On a first come first served basis those interested should PM me with their address so I can post one out.

Further information can be found (here).

Sincerely and in good faith

Re: The Royal Game of Ur

Posted: Sat Jun 22, 2024 8:30 am
by PaulK
Thanks for sending through Martin!

Very much appreciated.

I'm flying to the US for work this week, so will hopefully get a chance to play Ur while away.

I'll provide some feedback in the coming weeks.

Many thanks
Paul 😀

Re: The Royal Game of Ur

Posted: Sat Jun 29, 2024 6:11 am
by MartinP
Thanks Martin for the wooden and Psion versions of this game.
The wooden one is a lovely piece of craftsmanship and great for playing with the family, whereas the Psion version is good for when they've given up, but you still want to play!

It's a great game, quite addictive, and seems to have a statistical balance mechanism to improve the chances of the losing player.

I like how the dice work and how you managed to fit so much info into the remaining space on the screen, clever use of upper and lower case letters to avoid having to use spaces. And very clear and beautiful documentation, as always from you, Martin

Not found any bugs yet, but there are a few things I can suggest to improve it:
1. Being able to select pieces by cursor (or by number, as it is now) would speed the learning curve to get started with the game (memorising the numbers is slow at first, but becomes quicker once you learn them).
2. Would be nice if the pieces blinked before and after moving, especially so you can see where the Psion player has moved.
3. Also, for Psion moves, would be better if the info section of the screen just summarised the move, no need to see the same messages as for the human player.

Highly recommended, give it a go!


Re: The Royal Game of Ur

Posted: Thu Jul 04, 2024 11:26 am
by PaulK

Excellent game! Thanks very much for sending through. There is something cool about playing an ancient game, on relatively ancient hardware. Almost like the LZ/LZ64 was designed specifically to play Ur! The way you've designed the UI is very clever - love the binary dice representations.

Not much more to add beyond what Martin P has said really. Not come across any bugs either - it works exactly as you describe in the excellent documentation. I agree that a cursor that you can move over the board to select specific counters would be a great addition - the current method does work, it just slows things up while learning, but I guess as time goes on, this will be less of a barrier.

As noted in the manual, the game asks you to "press space" in many places. This is good to allow you to know where you are in the process. However, if you don't press space, after a few seconds, the programme executes anyway displaying messages and cycling through without any user input, so it is possible to miss what the message is telling you. I know this is as intended, but personally, I prefer to step through the programme as needed, without the automatic progression. This is just my personal preference though, and others may find the auto progression better.

Purely cosmetically, it might be cool to change the "P" and "H" with some UDG to represent the human player and Psion. The original physical board is a piece of art, and given the huge limitation with the Psion Org 2 graphics, its impossible to get anywhere close to that, but some UDGs for the player "icons" might add a bit more flare.

I've come up with these, but am certainly no artist!

UDG 0,14,10,14,4,31,4,10,17
UDG 1,0,17,17,14,0,31,0,0
Psion Player.png
Human Player.png
Overall, its a fantastic game, and very well written - thanks for your efforts, really great to see new, creative software coming out on the Org2 in 2024! This cool little machine will never die!

All the best,
Paul :-)

Re: The Royal Game of Ur

Posted: Thu Jul 04, 2024 5:51 pm
by PaulK
Doesn't get much closer than this!

Sadly the Psion rolled a 1 before I did and won, but it was a close game throughout!

Great fun :-)


The Royal Game of Ur

Posted: Thu Jul 04, 2024 8:51 pm
by Martin
Fantastic.. I'm glad you like it...

I wrote it and I still can't get over how it always rolls what it needs even to the extent of rolling two 4's and a 2 to capture a token on (10)


PS I'm currently writing an adventure game apparently now called 'interactive fiction'. I find this interesting from a few angles. (1) using a two line screen to widen the appeal, (2) trying to keep the routines short so it will run on an 8K CM. (3) writing it from scratch with no reference to previous examples.

James Mahaffey wrote two such adventures for the Organiser; ALZAN and Adventure (here)

Re: The Royal Game of Ur

Posted: Fri Jul 05, 2024 2:22 pm
by 1333david
I'd also like to add my recommendation to anyone who has not played the Royal Game of Ur. My daughter and I really enjoy playing it. The gameplay has simalirities to the boardgame "Frustration" but plays much better with two players. Just the right amount of skill and luck. Frustration is annoying having to get a six on the dice before a new piece can enter the board. This is not the case in the Royal Game of Ur and it's much better for it. I also like the game variations in the boardgame which Martin has explained well in the written instructions.

The Psion implementation of the game is really well done too and I especially like the binary dice. I agree with MartinP's improvement comments and it would be great to see it converted to a 2 line version one day (maybe I can try?). A must for any Psion LZ owner....thank you so much for introducing this game to us Martin.