Cavern Duel is a two player maze game for RISC OS.
26th Feb 2011 - Version 1.271 available.
32-bit conversion of the game is a long way off, due to work and family commitments.
Cavern Duel puts yourself and your opponent within a complex labryinth of cave tunnels. The objective is simple - to find and kill your opponent, before he or she does!
The game is played using a split screen, showing overhead views of yourself and your opponent roaming about the maze, collecting food, weaponry and armour. Collecting such items improves your chances when you finally engage in battle.
Your health and armour are indicated by vertical bars to the right of the play area. Your current weapon is shown above your health and armour indicators.
Some of the weapons you come across within the maze are better than others. Potion bottles are also in abundance. Some however, have undesirable effects, such as reducing your health, which won't be helpful after you've barely escaped with your life just moments before.
- Two player split screen
- Keyboard controls
- Various kinds of weaponry
- Good (or bad) potions to help (or hinder) you
- Location map of your opponent
- Several differently designed levels to choose from
- In-game settings allow for easier or harder game
Most of the game was written in 1994, with further amends made in 1997 and 1998, with some minor changes in 2007 and 2011. As of July 2020, the game runs unmodified on RPCEmu, running either of the Easy Start bundles. One version runs RISC OS 3.71, which is effectively the 90s version, while the other runs RISC OS Direct, which is based on RISC OS 5.24, which is the open sourced version available to Raspberry Pi, and various other pieces of hardware. That said, I have no idea how the game runs on new hardware, only under emulation via RPCEmu. Do please try it out, and let me know if it works on your hardware. AMR2/3 based hardware will run the game, albeit slowly.
Create your own caves
A fully multi-tasking level editor is included, enabling you to create and edit your own levels! Some example files are included to start you off, along with full instructions.
Although the editor works under RISC OS 4.02, do ensure you are in a high-resolution screen mode, as the windows appear too high up on anything less. This is something I'll deal with as soon as I have the time.
The game is rather dated now, but it's still worth a few hours good fun with your mates! I'm hoping to support it (sporadically) over the years. Here are some of the changes I have in mind, in no particular order of importance:
- Using Dr Wimp for !CavernEd (this will take some time, but will result in a more easy to use editor for everyone)
- Get the game running on all versions of RISC OS, particularly RISC OS 5 and 6.
- Improve the graphics. Even with 256 colours, the game looks rather 8-bit.
- Improve code. The game is written in Basic, which proves too much for older machines. Andy Southgate's Gamesuite is a likely candidate for improving the code.
- Change layout/enlarge game graphics. Rather than top to bottom, position the players left to right, and double the height of the sprites.