Prince of Persia®: The Sands of Time

The original Apple 2 source code for Prince of Persia (1989) has been found by Jordan Mechner's father during a spot of spring cleaning.

A chuffed Jordan Mechner will now try to convert the archaic disks into a readable format for today's computers. And then he'll share what he can of the original Prince of Persia code on his website.

"My dad called from New York to tell me he was doing some spring cleaning and had shipped me a carton of old games and other stuff of mine he'd found in the back of a closet," Jordan Mechner wrote. "The carton arrived yesterday. My jaw dropped when I saw what was inside.

'Jordan Mechner finds original Apple 2 Prince of Persia source code' Screenshot pop

Apple 2 source code for the original, 1989 Prince of Persia.

"No, I don't mean the stacks of Spanish Drosoft versions of POP and Karateka," he added, referencing the picture. "I mean those three little plastic 3.5" disk boxes nestled among them, which appear to contain the original Apple 2 source doe of Prince of Persia that I've been searching for, off and on, for the past 10 years, pestering everyone from Doug Carlston to Danny Gorlin and everyone who ever worked at Broderbund, and finally gave up hope of ever finding [it].

"I knew it wasn't like me to throw stuff out!"

The original, Apple 2 Prince of Persia game was released in 1989. It was ported wide and far. But it wasn't until 2003, and Mechner's Ubisoft collaboration on Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time, that the brand gained the status it enjoys today.

Ubisoft released a not-rubbish remake of the original Price of Persia game for Xbox Live Arcade and PlayStation Network in 2007.

Mechner also wrote the story for the Jerry Bruckheimer Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time film, which aired in 2010.

Half-Life 2

For some, a video game doesn't stop when the power is turned off - their gaming experiences are bleeding into their day-to-day lives.

This can lead to video game-like reactions to real-life situations, Nottingham Trent University and Stockholm University have discovered.

It's called Game Transfer Phenomena.

The study - Game Transfer Phenomena in Video Game Playing: A Qualitative Interview Study - interviewed 42 "frequent" gamers aged between 15 and 21 years old. "Many" of the subjects "appeared to integrate elements of video game playing into their real lives".

The full study must be bought for $30. One amusing excerpt reported on The Metro website describe a 15 year-old boy wanting to use a gravity gun from Half-Life 2 to fetch something from the fridge. And why not?

One 19-year-old Price of Persia: Sands of Time enthusiast dropped his sandwich and immediately his finger used to press the rewind-time button twitched. A natural response.

Another 19-year-old thought he could use World of Warcraft's search function to locate his brother in a crowd. What a good idea.

Apparently half of the gamers interviewed said they'd looked for something from a video game to solve a real-life issue. One interviewee apparently saw a menu of topics available for him to think about (Heavy Rain?); another formulated a list of possible responses after being insulted (Mass Effect 2?).

Of course, there is a darker side to all of this. Use of aggressive, criminal and/or violent fantasies as solutions to real-life problems were reported by "a few" of the players.

The Daily Mail focused on one particular 15-year-old who said that "sometimes" he wants to be able to get a gun and "shoot down" people. "Irritating people", mind you.

"A recurring trend suggests that intensive gaming may lead to negative psychological, emotional or behavioural consequences," concluded report author professor Mark Griffiths, "with enormous implications for software developers, parents, policy makers and mental health professionals."

This research is being followed up by a study of 2000 gamers.

The Game Transfer Phenomena report hits headlines a day after Grand Theft Auto was linked to a shooting spree and eventually a murder onboard a Royal Navy submarine.

Video: What a useful tool the Gravity Gun would be.


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