Elite / Frontier Elite - Original - Acorn Electron

I've always wondered about this - perhaps someone can give me an answer?

When I was a kid, I had the Acorn Electron version of Elite (on tape). The game wasn't too far off the Beeb version but did lack a few items.

One missing thing in particular was a lack of Thargoids or Witchspace.

Now I'm guessing this was a memory issue? Did the Electron version have less than the 22k that the Beeb had? Perhaps they were too complex for the Electron?

I'd be curious to know if anyone happens to have the answer?
 
Many thanks :)

I was aware of some differences such as lack of mode 7 and it only having the ability to play one of 3 sound channels at any one time. I didn't realise that there were other limitations. Until now.

Even more amazing that the game made it on to the Electron.
 
I'm amazed it made it to the Electron - and I didn't know about it! I started with Frontier - which is dated enough as it is; I just can't get into the original game at all.
 
Hi Caspar,
The Electron Elite was my first Elite too. From what I can remember the limitations were due to memory and Hardware limitations.
I remember no suns, no Thargroids, no rotation lines on the planets and the planets themselves not being circular but being made up of 12-16 lines on the circumference.

When the Spectrum version came out my mates at school used to joke about the brick wall effect. When 2 or more objects were on the screen at once the frame rate bottomed out.

Hope this helps.
Regards
Darkman2371
 
Hi Caspar,
The Electron Elite was my first Elite too. From what I can remember the limitations were due to memory and Hardware limitations.
I remember no suns, no Thargroids, no rotation lines on the planets and the planets themselves not being circular but being made up of 12-16 lines on the circumference.
Wow, didn't know that about the planets!
What killed it for me was the fact that the whole display was in black and white. Apparently the Electron had a different graphics chip which didn't allow the mode change trick :(
 
Retro Gamer ran an articles on the Electron a few years ago and said said that Braben and Bell let a note inside the Electron they use to make Elite.
 
My first experience of Elite was with the Electron version. I spent some time looking for the suns before I could be convinced they weren't there. :S

Hoping for a little more astronomy in Elite: Dangerous.
 
I've always wondered about this - perhaps someone can give me an answer?

When I was a kid, I had the Acorn Electron version of Elite (on tape). The game wasn't too far off the Beeb version but did lack a few items.

One missing thing in particular was a lack of Thargoids or Witchspace.

Now I'm guessing this was a memory issue? Did the Electron version have less than the 22k that the Beeb had? Perhaps they were too complex for the Electron?

I'd be curious to know if anyone happens to have the answer?

For me this was the first free play, open world game, killer gorilla, swoop and chuckle egg were fine, but Elite gave me endless hours of exploration and discovery, not to mention combat experience, Electron never got support of major game publishers, We had to make make do with our own version of popular games, but Elite on Electron, put us there with the best of em!
 
Most of the Electron was made up of a single ULA chip that had to do everything, so it was comparatively crippled when compared to the Beeb (no Mode 7 teletext, less memory in higher colour modes, less processing speed etc). That was my first Acorn machine that I played Elite on, as said before with lots of limitations and stuck in Mode 4 monochrome. :( Used to play it at school on their Beebs before getting my own! :D
 
What killed it for me was the fact that the whole display was in black and white. Apparently the Electron had a different graphics chip which didn't allow the mode change trick :(
You can actually do the mode change trick with the Electron, however it would have taken up 4 times as much memory for that small bit of Mode 1 display. I suppose they could have used the blank areas to the left and right of the display for data storage like some later games did. But that would have looked messy.
 
I played on a friends electron and I recall the galactic hyperspace never worked.
You're correct, it didn't when published by Acornsoft. I don't know if it was fixed and then you could get a replacement at the time, but certainly once Superior Software published the Acornsoft back catalogue, the Electron version worked.
 
My first Elite was Electron as well.

The old Elk had quite a lot going for it which was sadly, never fully used. Seemingly, professional software developers could get better returns from the Beeb. That left us Elk users with hand me downs and whatever Roland Waddilove (remember him) could dig up.

There were a number of good routines developed and some pretty impressive hardware addons, for which the Elk was designed, of course.

I was regularly using my old elk to the mid 90s, mainly for word processing.

Ultimately, though the Elk suffered the same handicap that all 8 bit machines had, unreliable storage. Loosing some important documents, stored on 3.5" floppy forced me to buy a decent PC.

We get used to the worry of viruses and adware yet forget that these are very much PC problems. The PS's OS is writeable while the 8 bit machines had the OS burnt onto eprom.
 
First time I ever saw Elite it was on an Electron - can remember it to this day, it was 1984, I was 11...

And I have never looked back! Just never looses it's appeal, does it, eh!?
 
My first Elite was Electron as well.

The old Elk had quite a lot going for it which was sadly, never fully used. Seemingly, professional software developers could get better returns from the Beeb. That left us Elk users with hand me downs and whatever Roland Waddilove (remember him) could dig up.

...
I remember Roland Waddilove! He was quite prolific in Electron User magazine as I recall- I spent a lot of time typing in his games and routines. I seem to remember some sort of game designer he wrote that could help produce sprites, I certainly learnt a lot from his articles.

Lack of Mode 7 (teletext) and memory overhead made it harder to code for the Elk, let alone the speed deficit when compared to the Beeb- no wonder programmers preferred the more capable machine. I've still got a soft spot for the Electron- indeed I've still got my original machine, although it doesn't work for more than a couple of minutes before crashing... :(
 
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