Parallax Painter was one of the first games Andrew Gower ever created, which appeared on the Cunning and Devious Games site. It is the longest lasting game and has appeared on the most sites (along with TetraLink which started on Games Domain as Quad-Link, then went to the Jagex site and can now be found on FunOrb).
Parallax Painter first appeared on Cunning and Devious Games, then it was remade on the Jagex website as Vertigo before they remade it on FunOrb yet again as Vertigo 2 Both Vertigo and Vertigo 2 can be found on the Jagex and FunOrb sites however Parallax Painter is completely unavailable. It is also one of the only two Cunning and Devious Games that were re-made recently (the other being DeviousMUD being remade into RuneScape). It is easy to see how this game has evolved, if you look at the current version, Vertigo 2, you can see that there is hardly any difference other than the blob now has arms, you can see him hold the paint, the graphics are now 3D, the general style of the game has changed, you now log into it, it isn't for sale (unless you count membership), there are many more levels, there is a multiplayer version and it features on the internet alongside many other FunOrb games.
Parallax Painter Cunning And Devious Games Programming and music by Andrew Gower Graphics and Design by Paul and Andrew Gower Levels by Paul Gower Testing by Peter Oliver Written in 100% Assembler using Devpac 2 Copyright 1995
Parallax painter is a superb three dimensional platform game. It features smooth multi-directional triple layered parallax scrolling, with scaling graphics and the ability to jump between layers, in maps up to 15 layers deep. The main character is brilliantly drawn and animated making it full of personality. The game also features stunning 4 channel digitised music, even whilst you play! With 7 different soundtracks. 3 Stunning different modes of play. A one player mode, plus 2 multi player modes for double the action. With a fast update rate it is easy to control once mastered, and with a total of 120 levels its game which will last despite its addictiveness.
1. Turn off the computer and disconnect all unnecessary peripherals. We recommend that you leave your computer switched off for thirty seconds in case a virus has installed itself into your computers memory. This will kill a virus if one is present
2. Insert the disk into the drive and switch the computer on. An icon with the words 'parallax.prg' underneath it should appear on the screen. Position the mouse pointer over it using the mouse, and double click on it using the lefthand mouse button. The game will now begin to load. Do not remove the disk from the drive whilst the game is playing.
3. If you remove write protect from the disk, (by moving the little tab in the top right hand corner so you cannot see through the hole). Then the program will automatically save any high scores you achieve.
Starting The Game Once the game has finished loading the title screen should appear. Press the fire button on the joystick (connected to port 0) to bring up an options box. From here you can select if you want to play a 1 or 2 player game, and if you have played the game previously you can type in a password you have collected, to start where you left off. If it is your first time playing, or you have not yet reached far enough into the game to collect a password you can ignore this.
The game types Moving the joystick up or down will move the arrows in the option box so they either point to '1 player', '2 player' or 'competative'. Below is a brief summary of the different modes.
1 player. On this mode you play the game on your own using the joystick in port 0. You must paint all the blue blocks on each level purple or destroy them in some other way to progress onto the next level. During this mode you will be given passwords every few levels so you do not have to repeat levels you have already completed.
2 player. On this mode you can play a different set of levels which have been designed for 2 people to play at once. To use this mode you will need to connect a second joystick into port 1 (The port normally used by the mouse) for the other player to use. This mode is similar to 1 player mode in that the aim is to paint all the blue blocks purple. The difference is that 2 people need to work together to complete the levels. The screen is split in half showing player 1's position on the left and player 2 on the right. Some levels are only possible if the 2 players cooperate. For example if the players start in different positions, and 1 player must paint one part of the level which the other player cannot reach. A different set of passwords is used for the 2 player levels which can be collected by either player when found.
Competative. This is another mode which 2 players play at once. The difference is that unlike the other 2 player mode you do not work together, but try and achieve opposite aims. The level will start of with half the blocks painted blue, and the other half painted purple. Player 1 (Red) is trying to paint all the blocks purple, but Player 2 (Orange) is trying to paint them all blue! Whoever can paint fastest will win. It is also possible to push the other player about by bumping into them. For instance you could try and push the opposing player over your colour paint. This type of level will end after a fixed amount of time has run out. The amount of time remaining can be seen on a counter in the top left hand corner of the screen whilst playing. Whoever has painted most blocks will win a point, and then the game will proceed onto the next level. A draw results in both players being given a point. After each level a score box will be shown, displaying how many blocks were of each colour, and the total scores achieved by each player so far. Unlike the other modes passwords do not need be collected, but are displayed at the start of each level.
Passwords If you see a block which looks like a question mark during the game walking over it will display the password for the current level. This should be written down so you can use it to restart at this particular level should you die. Note: On competative levels, passwords are given at the start of each level without the need for a question mark block to be found. Once you have a password you should move the arrows on the option box to point to the mode on which the password was found. The password should be then typed in using the keyboard, and it should appear in the black box underneath the different game options. Passwords from one type of game cannot be used on another. For instance if you had a 2 player mode password it would not work on 1 player mode. Not typing in a password, typing in an unknown password. Or typing in a password for a different mode without moving up the arrows will result in the game loading level 1 instead. Once you have typed in a password and selected the correct mode press the fire button on the joystick to start the game.
Controls The main character is moved by moving the joystick in the required direction. During the game you are looking down upon the action. Be careful you have quite a lot of momentum. Pressing the fire button results in the character jumping up 'out of the screen' Towards you. If there are any blocks above you will land upon them. If at any time there is nothing below you then you will fall downwards 'into the screen' until you land upon something. If you fall off the bottom of the level you will lose a life and have to restart. To collect an object or use a block simply move the character over it. The only other controls are used to activate special features. On the keyboard. Pressing F1 will quit the game, and return you back to the title screen. F9 Activates a jetpack should you have collected one. F10 Activates a stick of dynamite if you have collected any, exploding the surrounding blocks. On 2 player mode F7 activates player 2's jetpack and F8 activates player 2's dynamite.
The blocks A summary of what all the blocks in the game do, and how to use them can be found by leaving the computer untouched on the title screen for several seconds. Instructions on all the blocks with accompanying diagrams will scroll past. Pressing the fire button at any time will abort this and bring up the options box. Blocks are normally activated when the centre of the main character is positioned over them, however there are a few exceptions such as sticky blocks, or cracked blocks. The other exception is moving blocks which are activated if any part of the character is touching them.
Moving blocks Some blocks in the game move about. There are 3 types of moving block. Moving in the x-axis (left and right), the y axis (up and down), and the z axis (in and out). These all behave the same way except in the direction they are moving in. Standing upon a moving block causes you to move with it. However standing on more than one moving block at once can have interesting effects on your movement, which is used to make the later levels more difficult. If a moving block hits a non-moving block or the edge of the map it will turn around and start moving back in the direction it came from. The other type of special block is the flashing block which appear and disappear at a regular rate. Different blocks will flash at different rates. This feature is used to create puzzles, or make levels more difficult.
Using Paint Down in the bottom left hand corner of the screen you will see an icon of a paint pot. This displays how much paint you are currently holding. Moving over a paint pot will completely fill this icon up, normally paint pot's are used up once collected, except on 2 player competative mode where they would run out quickly if this was so. One paint pot's worth of paint can paint 5 blocks. As you paint blocks the amount of paint left will gradually go down. You cannot refill your paint pot until it is totally empty. Please note that to win a level all blue blocks must be painted or destroyed. This includes blue paint pots. So if a level has a blue paint pot on, you will have to use it up, and then paint the blue blocks purple again. Alternatively you can destroy it in some other way, e.g dynamite. Be careful not to end up with all the tiles painted, and just a blue paint pot left over. If you are still holding some purple paint you will not be allowed to collect the blue paint pot, and you will have to restart the level.
The control panel The panel in the bottom left hand corner displays everything you need to know whilst playing the game. The indicator which looks like a transparent paint pot shows how much paint you have remaining. See Above. Next to this it shows the number of lives you have left. You start the game with 3 spare lives. As you lose lives the spares shown here will be deleted. Above this is the number of jetpacks you have, and the amount of dynamite you have collected. At the start of the game you will have neither of these. N.B you cannot carry dynamite, paint, or jetpacks from one level to another. If you have more than 3 lives, jetpacks, or sticks of dynamite only 3 will be shown here, but the extra will still be remembered by the program.
Game Over Once you run out of lives you will be told what score you achieved. This is calculated by the number of blocks painted. Every block painted achieves 5 points. Each bonus block collected gives 20 points. If you have a particularly good score you will be asked to type in your name using the keyboard. When you have entered your name press 'Return' on the keyboard. Your score will be placed on a table