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"Games I" - ALICE

Your rating: None Average: 5 (2 votes)
Year released:
[www].se [ftp].se [mirror].us [mirror].de (126.33 KB)
MD5: fe660c0f1969a6b79b198a3f2ced6179
For System 1 - 5
[www].se [ftp].se [mirror].us [mirror].de
Games_I_ALICE.img (409.46 KB)
MD5: cd78ea612406ea3f78a9b0d1681bd33c
For System 1 - 5
[www].se [ftp].se [mirror].us [mirror].de
ALICE.sit (129.23 KB)
MD5: 1443c6eb3a7f480dc2f8844d7b629068
For System 1 - 5
This game works with: Mini vMac

This is a prototype version of the game "Through the Looking Glass", released on the Lisa as "Alice". The game was written by Steve Capps.

First upload: zipped 400K MFS .dsk for use with emulators. Bootable. Works in Mini Vmac.
Second Upload: raw DiskCopy 4.2 .image (rename to .image)
Third upload: Stuffit 3 .sit archive containing the disk image, for copying, extraction and writing on a real Compact Macintosh. The machine and floppy disk drive will need to be capable of writing 400 Kilobyte MFS formatted floppy diskettes.

The original disk was too badly damaged from time, to be able to be properly imaged using DiskCopy 4.2 on my Macintosh SE that this disk (and many others) came with. So, using my methods- A FloppyEmu device - , Mini Vmac, and HFV Explorer on Windows, I was able to copy the program and the OS Folder from the original disk to an emulated HD20 hard disk, take the SD card out of the FloppyEmu, and get it on my modern system.

This means that this is NOT a 1:1 image or copy of the original failing disk, and I have determined it is probably impossible to save it. Additionally, the "Get Info" date stamp on the ALICE application is incorrect from the original disk being used in the drive. The creation date was originally sometime in Dec 1983, when I originally received the machine and cache of disks. Unfortunately, I was using it without it being write-protected before knowing better and getting my FloppyEmu, and some of the contents became corrupt, including that Get Info date. However, I was able to save it for software preservation purposes, and rebuild it to be similar to the original, so people who would know better than me can compare it to the other leaked prototype versions of this game.

Another users evaluation to me through private communications:

"Yes, the published game along with the two unfinished versions are
available on .dsk images in a single MacZip archive:

(The game's creator, Steve Capps, even downloaded it from the Garden
10 years ago to use in Mini vMac and left an appreciative comment. I
can't emphasize enough that there is nothing dangerous about uploading
software this ancient. Even on the few occasions when a company has
wanted something removed from the Garden, they just sent a takedown
notice to the admins and the admins took it down.)

A page at the Cutting Room Floor wiki for cut video game content goes
in-depth about the differences between the Alice prototypes and the
final game. Since your copy has a lower-case "alice" on the title
screen, it should be closer or identical to the earlier version."

My modern, high end gaming machine is simply too fast in launching ALICE in Mini Vmac, even at 1x speed toggle in the emulator, for me to provide a screenshot of the splash screen of the game, but it does indeed say "alice" in lowercase, not "Through the Looking Glass", as in the only official release.

Since the disk was so damaged, and the Get Info creation date is missing, the only way to know for sure if this version is unique, or simply a copy of the earliest development version already posted here, would be to compare the two versions in a hex editor, ask Steve Capps, otherwise look at the code (or resource and data forks) in ResEdit, or something to that effect. I am by no means a coder or programmer but a hardware guy. Also, this prototype version of the game as well as a lot of the stuff on the other disks I have, and the release of the original Macintosh "128k", all came out before I was even born.

Please rate and leave comments, and let me know if you have any issues with my disk images, DiskCopy image, .sit, etc.

Architecture: 68k

The game does actually appear to run under OS 6.0.8, lol, but it's probably just better to run it off the .dsk or image the disk and use that. Then write protect it after imaging.


iwakurarein's picture
by iwakurarein - 2019, August 16 - 6:53pm

Play "Through the Looking Glass" instead of this if you want to play this game.

I will also plug Steve Capps website:

In case anyone asks again- it was buried in the description (which is a wall of text, I admit, but those are kind of necessary to document these disks for posterity).

24bit's picture
by 24bit - 2019, August 16 - 11:50am

Thanks for the detailed explanation iwakurarein!
You are of course right that these rare items rescued from floppy are of archival interest in the first place.

Not exactly IIGS_User, its a custom built flavour of MiniVMac from Paul´s old site. The monitor is a LG TN panel 1600x900 (T420).
(I was tempted to swap that one for a IPS panel, but such old laptops are rarely worth the hassle or the money.)
I can share some old MiniVMac builds when need should be, but would rather recommend building on your own with Xcode 2.4 against Snow Leopard. The resulting apps will run from 10.6 to 10.14. - it should be doable to build for Tiger, but I gave up, as I don´t need MiniVMac with Tiger badly.

iwakurarein's picture
by iwakurarein - 2019, August 15 - 4:25pm

@ 24bit: This is not the finished version of the game- it is a prototype. There is no way to win. Even if you clear the board of all pieces, nothing happens- no win screen, the pieces don't reset, etc. and the only thing you can really do is Command+Q to quit the game.

You probably want "Through the Looking Glass" instead, as that is the actual finished, playable game. From what I understand, the game is kind of a combination of speed chess, and 80s arcade action games of the time (with lives, fast and difficult gameplay, high scores being the goal, etc.)

I suggest reading this:

The basic gameplay is to eliminate all pieces using only Alice. At first she moves like a queen, but as the game progresses, she can move less and less, and by the end can only move like a king (one square in any direction). Additionally, the computer can move more and more pieces per turn as the game goes on. It is supposed to be played very very quickly to remove computer pieces as fast as possible, and I am guessing the finished version gives you only a few "lives" that decrement when the computer attacks and captures Alice.

Given that I am not great at regular ass chess by any means, this isn't really my thing and I have little interest. I'd imagine you'd need to be quite good at normal chess first. But if you want to play it, I highly suggest playing the finished game. (Hint: I do know that in the finished game, you can access a hidden settings menu that displays the cheshire cat by spam-clicking the score at the top of the screen repeatedly. It doesn't work in this prototype. You may be able to make it slightly easier to learn until you get better that way.)

This version is only here for posterity, archival, comparison, etc. It isn't really finished enough to play. Not really my thing either: I like Moria, Rogue, Wizardry, etc. if I want a more cerebral game.

Hope this helps.

IIGS_User's picture
by IIGS_User - 2019, August 15 - 4:20pm

According to the picture size, 24bit, using Retina-capable screen?

24bit's picture
by 24bit - 2019, August 15 - 11:44am

Do you have any idea how Alice can be played? I´m not much of a gamer, as you may have guessed. Wink
Some action is taking place on mouse click.


The Information sreen looks Alice like at least. Smile