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Great Hierophant
August 5th, 2009, 03:46 PM
The Tandy 1000 SX is a swell machine for pre-1990 PC gaming. However, there are some limitations on the machine:

1. Incompatibilities
Generally the only early games that will not work on a Tandy 1000 SX are those requiring BASIC in ROM and do not work with GWBASIC.

2. EGA & VGA
Some games (Commander Keen 1-6, Duke Nukem) do not support the Tandy Graphics Adapter and require a true EGA or VGA card to work. Fortunately, you can install one in this machine.

3. Raster Tricks
This machine has nearly perfect CGA compatibility, and as an added bonus, does not display "snow." Unfortunately, some games employ raster tricks that are timing critical and will not work correctly on the internal graphics adapter because of the speed. Jungle Hunt is one such game, the palette changes about 4 scanlines after it should. The rolling effect in Digger's high score screen is not right either.

4. Keyboard
The Tandy 1000s pre S/R/TL use their own keyboard with a custom layout. I have yet to encounter a game that would not work with it. If the discrete cursor keys do not work, then use the number pad keys just like on an IBM Model F keyboard.

5. Joysticks
Pre S/R/TLs do not allow you to disable your joystick ports, so you may need to find Tandy specific joysticks or build an adapter.

6. Mouse
Tandy 1000s, except for the TX and S/R/TLs, do not come with a serial port, so you will need to provide one or get a bus mouse and card.

7. Speed
The Tandy 1000 SX has two speeds, 4.77MHz and 7.16MHz. Even the fast speed will hardly allow you to play many games using a 320x200x16 resolution. There is an accelerator card called the 286 Express that can tame some of those games. However, it will only give you just under AT speeds. By contrast, a TX or TL/2/3 starts at AT speeds and can go up to respectable 386 speeds with an accelerator.

8. Expansion
The Tandy 1000 SX has five 8-bit ISA slots. Unfortunately, the case only allows for cards 10" long or less. The power supply only supplies 67W, which is low even for 8-bit machines. The -5v pin may not be active, which certain cards use.

9. Tandy Games
Many games that support the Tandy 1000 require a separate installation, so you would need the original disks to make it work.

10. Composite Color CGA Games
Many games that support the Tandy Graphics Adapter and the CGA will force you to use the TGA. If you want CGA RGB or composite, you will have to use another computer. The composite colors are different compared to the IBM PC CGA.

hargle
August 6th, 2009, 06:46 AM
you might consider putting this in our wiki-there's some good information here, and I'd hate to see it get lost in the bowels of the forum after a couple months...

Fallo
August 6th, 2009, 01:31 PM
1. Incompatibilities
Generally the only early games that will not work on a Tandy 1000 SX are those requiring BASIC in ROM and do not work with GWBASIC.

What games are those? I've never heard of any game that requires cassette BASIC to work.


2. EGA & VGA
Some games (Commander Keen 1-6, Duke Nukem) do not support the Tandy Graphics Adapter and require a true EGA or VGA card to work. Fortunately, you can install one in this machine.

VGA games generally run too slow on machines that are less than 10 Mhz, so you wouldn't really want to do that anyway.




3. Raster Tricks
This machine has nearly perfect CGA compatibility, and as an added bonus, does not display "snow." Unfortunately, some games employ raster tricks that are timing critical and will not work correctly on the internal graphics adapter because of the speed. Jungle Hunt is one such game, the palette changes about 4 scanlines after it should. The rolling effect in Digger's high score screen is not right either.

You should be able to get these to work by setting the machine to 4.77 Mhz with the MODE SLOW command in Tandy DOS. For booter games, you can set slow mode by pressing F4 immediately after the POST beep.

It isn't just CGA games that have raster tricks. The PC port of Ghostbusters (which is PCjr/Tandy only) uses the 160x200x16 mode for the playfield, and the score counter at the bottom is in 320x200 resolution (probably 40-column text mode). On non-8088 Tandys, you have to switch to slow mode for the raster split to work properly.

Jungle Hunt does only work on real CGA. It just locks up on VGA, and DOSBox can't even run it. At least Digger runs on VGA (albeit with severely messed-up graphics).




4. Keyboard
The Tandy 1000s pre S/R/TL use their own keyboard with a custom layout. I have yet to encounter a game that would not work with it. If the discrete cursor keys do not work, then use the number pad keys just like on an IBM Model F keyboard.

Yes, the scancodes are different for some of the keys, although only those that aren't present on standard keyboards (eg. the cursor keys).




5. Joysticks
Pre S/R/TLs do not allow you to disable your joystick ports, so you may need to find Tandy specific joysticks or build an adapter.

That is a problem, especially since the real Tandy sticks have sharp edges and are uncomfortable to use for any lengthy period.




6. Mouse
Tandy 1000s, except for the TX and S/R/TLs, do not come with a serial port, so you will need to provide one or get a bus mouse and card.

Instead of a serial port, the SX has...a light pen port, shared only with the original 1000. Trying to find the light pen for them is nearly impossible.




7. Speed
The Tandy 1000 SX has two speeds, 4.77MHz and 7.16MHz. Even the fast speed will hardly allow you to play many games using a 320x200x16 resolution.

Depends. Games that were written in assembly language (most arcade titles) should be fine. You wouldn't want to try Sierra SCI games, though, or anything that says "8 Mhz or better" on the box.




8. Expansion
The Tandy 1000 SX has five 8-bit ISA slots. Unfortunately, the case only allows for cards 10" long or less. The power supply only supplies 67W, which is low even for 8-bit machines. The -5v pin may not be active, which certain cards use.

The missing -5V line is only a problem on original 1000s. It was corrected pretty quickly after Tandy discovered that a network card they were selling needed it.




9. Tandy Games
Many games that support the Tandy 1000 require a separate installation, so you would need the original disks to make it work.

Debatable. Arcade games typically don't have a setup program and just ask you on startup what video mode you want to use. Lucasarts games don't have an install program either, or Sierra AGI games. SCI games do, and for those you would want an original copy (preferably a true original and not a compilation pack version). The same goes for strategy games, since they usually can't be played without a manual. Wolfpack (which I have an original of) has one with 90 pages (!)




10. Composite Color CGA Games
Many games that support the Tandy Graphics Adapter and the CGA will force you to use the TGA. If you want CGA RGB or composite, you will have to use another computer. The composite colors are different compared to the IBM PC CGA.

Again, not a problem except possibly on the booter version of King's Quest 2. As I mentioned above, most games ask you what video mode you want, or if they do auto detect (as AGI and Lucasarts games do), they can be manually overridden.

The only exception might be Jumpman and certain Sierra booters like Troll's Tale that support the 160x200x16 mode, but check the BIOS ID byte to see if they're running on a PCjr. On Tandys, they only run in normal CGA mode. The above mentioned games support composite mode, so you can still get 16 colors, and since they use 640x200 composite graphics, it will look the same as on real CGA (the difference only applies to non-white colors). On the downside, you won't get the 3-voice sound.

There is one other limitation of the SX you left out: it can't have a full 768k of memory. Since some is stolen by the video, the most you can have is 576k.

Cloudschatze
August 6th, 2009, 02:33 PM
The missing -5V line is only a problem on original 1000s. It was corrected pretty quickly after Tandy discovered that a network card they were selling needed it.

According to the SX technical reference manual, the Tandy power-supply does not provide -5V. A 7905 voltage-converter can be found on the motherboard, but apparently only provides -5V to the printer interface, and not to the expansion slots.

Great Hierophant
August 6th, 2009, 04:29 PM
Responses (I'm too lazy to quote)

1. See here:
http://www.mobygames.com/attribute/sheet/attributeId,112/

I know I read somewhere that Casino Games from IBM will not work with GWBASIC.

2. Probably not, but there are EGA games that will run tolerably.

3. The tricks I mention do not work correctly even in the slow mode.

Other than the aforementioned raster issues, Jungle Hunt plays just fine on the T1000, as does Digger.

4. Some key combinations are quite different on the Tandy as opposed to the IBM keyboard. But it is not that bad overall if you know your IBM PC Model F layout.

5. The boxy joystick was quite popular in the early days of PC gaming. I prefer to use a joystick with a full handle grip or a Gravis Gamepad if analog control is not required. The Tandy/PCjr. sticks are very good for breakout-type games because they allow you to switch between self-centering and floating.

6. Instead of a serial port, the SX has...a light pen port, shared only with the original 1000. Trying to find the light pen for them is nearly impossible.

Indeed! However, if you have a Tandy Deluxe Mouse, you will not need the serial port for a mouse because it plugs into a joystick port.

7. Early Lucasarts SCUMM games may be playable at that speed, as are most AGI games, but interepreter games are generally to be avoided.

8. This should be an easy fix, especially if there is a regulator somewhere on the board.

9. I have seen this with VGA games like Lemmings, Wing Commander, Dark Queen of Krynn and EGA games like Wasteland, Fountain of Dreams, Dragon Wars, Hard Nova. Also, Sierra and Lucasarts made seperate 16 and 256 color versions of many of their games, with the 16 color versions more difficult to find.

10. If an AGI game detects a Tandy, then it will not let you use any other graphics mode.

Another consideration. Actually, in DOS only 16K is taken (because it is using text mode) Graphics modes on the Tandy take up 32K, unless using multiple graphics pages (I don't know of any games that take thta much.) However DOS generally takes at least another 32K away from you, but this may not be true in every case.

Fallo
August 6th, 2009, 08:47 PM
I know I read somewhere that Casino Games from IBM will not work with GWBASIC.

I couldn't imagine why it wouldn't work, unless it uses the cassette port on the 5150 for some reason.




2. Probably not, but there are EGA games that will run tolerably.

EGA games mostly all use the 320x200x16 mode, which is 32k just like the Tandy 320x200 mode. The VGA 320x200x256 mode is 64k and thus a bit too much for slower machines.




3. The tricks I mention do not work correctly even in the slow mode.

Other than the aforementioned raster issues, Jungle Hunt plays just fine on the T1000, as does Digger.

Digger just uses the normal CGA 320x200x4 mode, but sets it by writing directly to the registers, which is why it produces a scrambled mess on VGA. I don't know exactly why Jungle Hunt completely fails on VGA. Moon Patrol also locks up after about 5-7 seconds of play.




4. Some key combinations are quite different on the Tandy as opposed to the IBM keyboard. But it is not that bad overall if you know your IBM PC Model F layout.

Well, you press Alt+Break or Hold instead of Scroll Lock. Some early Sierra games like Ulysses and the Golden Fleece use Scroll Lock.




5. The boxy joystick was quite popular in the early days of PC gaming. I prefer to use a joystick with a full handle grip or a Gravis Gamepad if analog control is not required. The Tandy/PCjr. sticks are very good for breakout-type games because they allow you to switch between self-centering and floating.

True. I one saw a joystick that looked exactly like the Tandy ones, but with a standard 15-pin connector.




Indeed! However, if you have a Tandy Deluxe Mouse, you will not need the serial port for a mouse because it plugs into a joystick port.

That's the mouse for the TRS-80 CoCo, correct? If it's read off of the joystick ports, then that means it only works with software that has joystick support.

As for light pens, if you could find a Tandy pen, at least it has an external port to connect to, as opposed to the IBM CGA card which requires you to run the cord inside the computer's case.




7. Early Lucasarts SCUMM games may be playable at that speed, as are most AGI games, but interepreter games are generally to be avoided.

I've tried Maniac Mansion (low-res) on my 5150, and it's a little slow, but otherwise playable. BTW, the version included with DOTT does not work on 8088 machines (the Tandy support is messed up there as well). You need the original standalone version. Last Crusade and Monkey Island are too slow for anything under 8 Mhz.

As for Sierra games, all AGI should be fine on 8088s, but SCI is a no go. KQ4 on my 5150 is so slow that when you enter the dwarves' diamond mine, the music starts playing about 8 seconds before the graphics appear (!)




9. I have seen this with VGA games like Lemmings, Wing Commander, Dark Queen of Krynn and EGA games like Wasteland, Fountain of Dreams, Dragon Wars, Hard Nova. Also, Sierra and Lucasarts made seperate 16 and 256 color versions of many of their games, with the 16 color versions more difficult to find.

I've never played any of those games. I was thinking of Arkanoid, Bubble Bobble, and Double Dragon, all of which ask you on startup what graphics mode you want (BB saves your settings, the other two don't).

The enhanced versions of Lucasarts games are indeed easier to find than the originals, although that's not so much the case with Sierra games.




10. If an AGI game detects a Tandy, then it will not let you use any other graphics mode.

You can't force it into CGA mode by typing SIERRA -R or SIERRA -C?




Another consideration. Actually, in DOS only 16K is taken (because it is using text mode) Graphics modes on the Tandy take up 32K, unless using multiple graphics pages (I don't know of any games that take thta much.) However DOS generally takes at least another 32K away from you, but this may not be true in every case.

Text, CGA, and 160x200 graphics use 16k, while the other two modes are 32k (64k for the 640x200x16 mode on later T1000s). The amount of memory DOS uses varies. DOS 3.30 occupies about 60k or so. DOS 5.0 and 6.x use even more. The Tandy video can in fact allocate as much as 256k of memory, although no software actually needs that much

Great Hierophant
August 7th, 2009, 06:35 AM
I couldn't imagine why it wouldn't work, unless it uses the cassette port on the 5150 for some reason.

That's the mouse for the TRS-80 CoCo, correct? If it's read off of the joystick ports, then that means it only works with software that has joystick support.

As for Sierra games, all AGI should be fine on 8088s, but SCI is a no go. KQ4 on my 5150 is so slow that when you enter the dwarves' diamond mine, the music starts playing about 8 seconds before the graphics appear (!)

You can't force it into CGA mode by typing SIERRA -R or SIERRA -C?




I don't know why Casino Games will not work with GWBASIC, thats just what I read.

There are drivers that allow you to emulate a Microsoft mouse with the Deluxe Mouse, which does connect to the joystick ports. See here:
http://www.oldskool.org/guides/tvdog/utilities.html
You need a mouse driver anyway for DOS programs.

Some AGI version 3 games, like the Manhunters and KQ4, benefit from the fast 8088 of the SX. But these games will not be forced into using anything other than Tandy graphics and sound, even with -c and -r.

Fallo
August 7th, 2009, 09:26 AM
I don't know why Casino Games will not work with GWBASIC, thats just what I read.

I think I've figured out the reason why. Casino Games probably manipulates BASIC's system variables, which can PEEKed and POKEd after typing DEF SEG without any segment name. On all versions of BASICA, the system variables are at the same location in BASIC's data segment. However, GWBASIC's variables are in different locations depending on what version it is.


You need a mouse driver anyway for DOS programs.

That goes without saying.


Some AGI version 3 games, like the Manhunters and KQ4, benefit from the fast 8088 of the SX. But these games will not be forced into using anything other than Tandy graphics and sound, even with -c and -r.

I don't have a Tandy 1000, but I will have to try that with DOSBox and see.

The AGI KQ4 is not easy to find at all, since it was only available during the first printing of the game.

Great Hierophant
August 7th, 2009, 11:47 AM
I think I've figured out the reason why. Casino Games probably manipulates BASIC's system variables, which can PEEKed and POKEd after typing DEF SEG without any segment name. On all versions of BASICA, the system variables are at the same location in BASIC's data segment. However, GWBASIC's variables are in different locations depending on what version it is.

I don't have a Tandy 1000, but I will have to try that with DOSBox and see.



Perhaps there is a version of GWBASIC that has the variables in the same place as BASICA or can be made to put the variables in the same place.

DOSBox may not give you a true representation of how games that autodetect Tandy work. As an example, in Maniac Mansion and Zak McKracken, these games will autodetect Tandy sound even if the active video is not Tandy on real hardware. In DOSBox, you will not hear Tandy sound.

Fallo
August 8th, 2009, 10:20 AM
Perhaps there is a version of GWBASIC that has the variables in the same place as BASICA or can be made to put the variables in the same place.

I have a BASIC book that lists all the system variables and their locations for BASICA, GWBASIC 2.11, and some for GWBASIC 3.20. Other versions might differ from those.


DOSBox may not give you a true representation of how games that autodetect Tandy work. As an example, in Maniac Mansion and Zak McKracken, these games will autodetect Tandy sound even if the active video is not Tandy on real hardware. In DOSBox, you will not hear Tandy sound.

Ok, I tried KQ2 with DOSBox. You're right; it won't work in CGA mode on a Tandy.

Great Hierophant
August 8th, 2009, 02:01 PM
I have a BASIC book that lists all the system variables and their locations for BASICA, GWBASIC 2.11, and some for GWBASIC 3.20. Other versions might differ from those.


Perhaps if you used GWBASIC 2.11 instead of 3.20 (probably more common), Casino Games may work.

dr.zeissler
November 27th, 2015, 12:12 PM
Tandy 1000 Gaming issues or known problems?

Do not start:
- WinterGames/SummerGames CGA (com+dat-file)
- Xenon (TDY-Version)
- Defender (has no sounds)
- Speedball (has no sounds, has no floor)

Do not find:
- F16-Falcon (TDY-Version)
- Hostages (TDY-Version)
- North&South (TDY-Version)
- TestDrive1 (TDY-Version)
- DefenderOfTheCrown (TDY-Version)

Where can I get a replacement-floppy für my 1000RL ?

Thx
Doc

****
Winter-Games starts with a winter.com with about 2K bytes, if it is only around 400bytes it dos not start.
currently searching fur summer-games and world-games with the bigger *.com start file.