The Death Star Trench Sim

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Wildcard Stream Vol. 45 - Star Wars: Return of the Dropped Packets

The jankiest trench runs you ever did see. Plus some Jedi mazes and instant death VR sims!

Authored By: Dr. Dos
Published: Jun 5, 2023
Part of Series: Wildcard Streams
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♦ Livestream of 3 ZZT worlds. ♦

♦ Stream Contents ♦
• (1:22) "The Death Star Trench Sim" by AHMorrow (1997) []
• (4:36) "Star Wars: Luke Skywalker Missions" by Unknown (1995) []
• (37:50) "Star Wars: The Trench Battle" by Steve Reed (1997) []
• (54:20) End of Ad Break 1

After last Sunday's disastrous stream attempt in which my Internet just crapped out about 5 minutes into recording, things have improved this time to nearly a full hour! Which was at least enough to get through three of the five games that were scheduled.

Starting with a very bland trench run that basically plays itself. The Death Star Trench Sim consists of your X-Wing moving east with buttons to move up and down and shoot forward. You don't need to move up and down ever, and the enemies shoot themselves enough that you might not even have to shoot on most stages. Several objects are also designed to attack the player rather than the X-Wing, resulting in a very fast game with very little to do.

The Luke Skywalker Missions afterwards at least have some ambition. Although the beginning isn't too exciting with featureless rooms filled with ruffians and small mazes for Luke to navigate as he searches for Leia, things improve a bit in the second mission.

There are also some cute ideas like looking at TIE fighters from the guns aboard the Falcon and being able to shoot them as they're made of breakable walls. Each mission ending on what's essentially a title screen for the next mission pretty novel too! There's some interesting ideas here beyond the simple action.

Of course there's also a multi-board space maze where players need to walk east across like five boards and any other exit will get you killed.

The third mission goes back to being unpleasant, with Luke receiving VR Jedi training, unlocking abilities by... solving lengthy mazes. That's it.

For the final mission he must put his skills to the test by answering multiple choice problems about what to do if his lightsaber rolls away with incorrect answers inflicting no punishment or killing him instantly. Plus some blind guessing as to which objects will give him a key and which will kill him instead. Kind of a rough end to this one.

Finally, another trench run game that manages to be even weirder than the first, despite playing 99% the same. Lots of bugs, little to do. Though at least the final level requires players to time their shot to actually blow up the Death Star. And the ending screen is one of ZZT's finest with a lion-like Obi Wan watching Luke receive his medal to a resounding "CONGRAGULATIONS". Congragulations indeed.

A fourth game was started for a minute, before once more my Internet decided that uploading is forbidden and I have to call the stream early. At least it was right at the start of the next game.

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♦ Originally streamed on June 4th, 2023 ♦

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