Choose one of the following topics:

Introduction
Description
Controls
Menus
Score

Passwords


Introduction

My name is Philippe Lesire. I am a programmer and I live in Belgium. Back in 1993, Atomic was my very first Windows program. 6 years later, I have decided to clean it up and fix minor annoying things around. So this is kind of "Atomic 2K - Gold edition".  :o)

Atomic is completely freeware.
This game runs on Microsoft Windows 3.1, even on a monochrome display. Of course, it is compatible with Microsoft Windows 95 (or above), Microsoft Windows NT 3.1 (or above) and Microsoft Windows 2000, as well as any of the new known or unknown Windows versions that Bill could release in the future.  ;o)
I have no idea about Windows CE, though.

Current Atomic homepage is http://nightgem.come.to/windows.htm.
Feel free to send comments to me. To contact me, get my e-mail on my website at http://nightgem.come.to/
I have ported Atomic to Win32. Visual C++ 5.0 source code is freely available here.

 

Amiga Snapshot (click to enlarge)The first version of Atomic that I know of was released by Thalion in 1990 on the good old Amiga 500. Have a look at the screenshot on the right and compare it to the one in the next section.

MS-DOS Snapshot (click to enlarge)Since then, I have come by an MS-DOS version, which is only a pale but accurate copy (a 16 color copy, to be precise).

My Atomic game is a tribute to the cleverness of the original designers. All puzzles have been quite accurately recreated and I hope you will have fun playing them.

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Description

Basically, the goal is to recreate a molecule by moving its atoms around a small labyrinth. The main trouble is that atoms can be moved freely in 4 directions, but they can only stop when running into a wall, or another atom.

The place where you build the molecule is not important.

Snapshot (click to enlarge)The image to the right shows the main Atomic window.

  1. This is the puzzle arena. It is enclosed in walls. Atoms can only be moved within this arena.
  2. This is the model of the molecule you should form. It is made of several atoms.
  3. Here is one of the atoms. You can only move them horizontally and vertically. Atoms only stop when they run into something.
  4. Each molecule must be recreated within a time limit. This counter indicates how many seconds remain before the time runs out.
  5. This is the puzzle number. There are 30 different puzzles, each with a different layout and a different molecule to build.

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Controls

Starting the game

Press F2 to start a new game.
You may also use the New command from the Game menu.

Use the Start over command from the Game menu to restart current puzzle.

Moving atoms

Using the mouse, you can select atoms by clicking on them. You may then move them by dragging them in the desired direction.

Using the keyboard, you can select each atom in turn by pressing the TAB key. Arrow keys move the atom in the corresponding direction.

You may of course use a mix of both methods.

Pausing the game

Press the Escape key to pause the game. The Atomic window will minimize. The counter restarts when the window is restored.

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Menus

Game

New

Starts a new game. Equivalent to the F2 key.

Start over

Restarts the current puzzle from scratch. The game is not interrupted but your score falls back to zero. All atoms return to their initial place and the timer is restored to its maximum value.

Pause

Interrupts the game. Minimizes the game window. The counter is restarted when the game window is restored to its original position. Equivalent to the Escape key.

Password

Lets you enter a password. Use this to play a game starting at a different puzzle.

Exit

Exits the game.

View

Normal size

Displays the game window at its original size.

Zoom X 1.5

Displays the game window one and a half times bigger than normal. Using this mode, display can be significantly slower than the X 2 mode.

Zoom X 2

Displays the game window twice bigger than normal.

Zoom X 3

Displays the game window three times bigger than normal.

Color display

Toggles between color and black and white display. The black and white display is much more suited for monochrome screens.

Skill

Practice

Selects practice skill. In this mode, there is no timer and no score. Only 4 puzzles are available for practice.

Easy

Selects easy skill. You are awarded three times as much time as in hard skill.

Medium

Selects medium skill. You are awarded twice as much time as in hard skill.

Hard

Selects hard skill. Nothing to say, this is normal mode.  :o)

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Score

When a puzzle is completed, the score is increased by 100 points for each molecule atom, and by 10 points for each spare second.

If the counter falls to zero, the player can choose to give 500 points to restart the current puzzle. If he chooses not to, or if his score is below 500 points, then it's game over, man !  :o)

The use of the Start over command returns the score to zero.

Every 6 puzzles there is a bonus section. The goal is still to assemble pieces the right way, but this time if the counter falls to zero the player jumps to the next puzzle without penalty (and without bonus score).

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Passwords

You are awarded a different password every 6 puzzles. You can start a new game right from this puzzle by going to the Password command from the Game menu and typing in a valid password.

Passwords vary according to the current skill level.

It is said that the game features a hidden super-user password. This password would unlock unknown power to the user. Unfortunately this password remains sealed for those who fail to reach the end of the game (using any skill level but practice). Are you strong enough to reach it?   :o)

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Last document update: 17-April-2000