Interpreter and Compiler Project

The Sample Games

There are six example programs supplied with the Tiny BASIC Interpreter and Compiler. They are all modern implementations of classic games from the 1960s and 1970s. All of them are simple scrolling text games played by entering numbers, and were chosen because they suit the limitations of Tiny BASIC. The pages in this section describe how to play each one, and what you can learn from the program code. You can get them by downloading Tiny BASIC itself, from the Compiler Downloads page.

Lunar Lander

Designed in 1969 and inspired by the Apollo moon landings, the Lunar Lander game puts you in control of the lander module as it makes its descent to the moon. With limited fuel you must decide how much thrust to apply and when, in order to bring the spacecraft down safely. The lander begins its descent at a set altitude and descending at a set speed, both of which are in abstract units: call them metres or yards ... (read more...)

Hunt the Hurkle

Dating from the early 1970s,  Hunt the Hurkle is a simplistic search game based on a grid. Because it's so simple to program, the game inspired lots of variations. One of those is another Tiny BASIC sample game ( Mugwump ), but there were also 3D variants with themes like submarine hunting, and variants with obstacles like Intergalactic Space Rescue . The basic idea is that there's a creature, the  Hurkle , hiding somewhere in the game world ... (read more...)


Having many similarities to Hunt the Hurkle , Mugwump is another game where you hunt for a creature on a 10x10 grid. It was released at around the same time. In  Mugwump , you have to find the eponymous creature on the grid by guessing at its coordinates. Each time you get it wrong, the game tells you how far away the Mugwump is from your chosen spot. This is in contrast to  Hunt the Hurkle , which ... (read more...)


Modern kingdom management games owe a debt to the game Hammurabi , which first appeared in the 1960s under the name  The Sumer Game . During your ten-year rule, you must manage wisely the resources of your kingdom and try to leave it in a more prosperous state than you inherited it. Hammurabi simulates a simple economy in the anient world, where land prices can fluctuate, harvests vary from year to year, and natural and man-made disasters can bring ... (read more...)

Hunt the Wumpus

In 1973, Gregory Yob was dissatisfied with grid-based games like Hunt the Hurkle and Mugwump . So he wrote  Hunt the Wumpus , whose aim - to hunt some creature - is the same but whose mechanics are very different. For the Wumpus is hidden in a network of caves. Each cave is linked by passages to three others, and the whole network is shaped like a dodecahedron , the corners being the caves and the edges the passageways ... (read more...)


Tic-tac-toe is the famous children's pencil-and-paper game, where the object is to form a line of three of your symbol (X or O) on a 3x3 grid before the opponent does the same. It's descended from the board game of  Three Men's Morris , which had a similar aim but limited the players to three pieces each which, once placed, could be moved around the board. This sample game allows the player to compete against the computer. The ... (read more...)


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