THINGs in the 1984 ChipWitverse

posted in: Devlog, Nostalgia | 0

One of the challenges of designing ChipWits was to come up with a simple but fun world for the bots to play in. When Mike Johnston and I started to shape our vision of the game we spent a lot of time coming up with a list of THINGs for the ChipWits to eat, zap, bump into, and score points with.

ChipWits’ language IBOL would be useless if it didn’t have THINGs to interact with.

Here from my old, stained, yellow legal pad notes is an early list:

Yellow legal pad with THING ideas for the original 1984 ChipWits

From the baddies row we used the ELECTROCRAB and the BOMB in the original game. I have no idea what the 2-legged mushroom and robot cactus are supposed to be.

We ditched obstacle things. I can see a pit and a lock but have no idea what the fireplace-looking thing is.

Listed goodies were a socket, a gem, and a key (to go with the lock obstacle). We didn’t use any of these.

Passages were also ditched. Open door became DOOR. We didn’t implement steps.

Here’s a later list, in 2 parts:

Yellow legal pad with THING ideas for the original 1984 ChipWits: creep, battery, wall, door, socket, gem, marker, droids

Creep became ELECTROCRAB.

Battery for fuel became PIE and COFFEE.

We used WALL and DOOR.

We ditched the socket. The idea was that the CW could plug into a socket to refuel. In parentheses: need a PLUG op.

Gems, markers, and droids all wound up on the cutting room floor.

Yellow legal pad with THING ideas for 1984 ChipWits: nothing, bomb, rock, pit, person, unknown

Of these six only BOMB made it into the original game. “Nothing” is an interesting idea. I think it was to make sure there was an open spot when moving. It became IFFEEL FLOOR.

I have no idea what we were planning to do with person or unknown.

It’s fun looking back at these early notes.

This is the list of THINGs in the classic version of ChipWits:

  • PIE – Fuel
  • COFFEE – Fuel
  • DISK – Points
  • OILCAN – Points
  • ELECTROCRAB – Baddy, drains fuel
  • BOUNCER – Baddy, increases damage
  • BOMB – Baddy, full damage
  • WALL – Environment, damage
  • FLOOR – Environment
  • DOOR – Environment


Which THINGs should have made it into 1984 ChipWits? Are there any new THINGs you’d like to see in the reboot? Add your comments below!

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