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Questions for Mark 'Kick Off' Greenshields

Posted: Wed Mar 27, 2019 8:39 am
by DRS
Hope you're all doing well. My next Desert Island Disks castaway has been making games since the early 80s and it's an entertaining and (by his own admission) mixed bag of good and bad stuff! Mark is still in the industry, now based in Orlando making games, so hope you can find time to post a question or two for me to ask him - and I'll make sure your name gets in the mag.

Thanks as always - this is for RG194 and here's a list Mark sent me of his games to get you thinking.

All the best
Paul

Bomber Run – self published in stores in Glasgow.
Snake – Published by a Glasgow company (trying to find the name)
Bombo - Alligata
Live and Let Die – Domark – not completed
Split Personalities - Domark
Hades Nebula – Nexus then Cascade
Blazer – Nexus then Cascade
Counterforce -
Phantomas (never released) - Codemasters
Frankenstein - Zeppelin
Power Pyramids – Quicksilva I think
Extreme – Digital Integration
Kick off - Anco
Super Kick off - Anco
Tip off - Anco
Rally Cross Challenge - Anco
Gilbert Escape from Drill – Enigma Variations
Rik the Roadie – Alternative Software
Wombles – Alternative Software
Postman Pat – Alternative Software
Postman Pat 2 – Alternative Software
Real Stunt Experts
Thomas the Tank Engine – Alternative Software
Sooty and Sweep – Alternative Software
Sooty and Sweep fun with Numbers– Alternative Software
The official Father Christmas – Alternative Software
Slug – Alternative Software
Ninja Scooter Simulator - Silverbird
19 Cascade
Alien Olympics (amiga)

I also wrote 4 books, 3 of which were published.

Mastering the Commodore 64 – Interface Publications
Mastering Machine code on the Commodore 64 – Interface Publications
40 best Machine Code Routines for the Commodore 64 - Duckworth

Between the mid 90s and mid 00s, Mark moved into game production - you can see some of his work here https://www.mobygames.com/developer/she ... rId,67919/

He then set up Firebrand games and they've produced a lot of driving games, particularly for Nintendo consoles - see here!
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Firebrand_Games

Re: Questions for Mark 'Kick Off' Greenshields

Posted: Wed Mar 27, 2019 3:40 pm
by merman
Would you ever go back to coding for the C64?

What was your C64 development setup?

Did you swap ideas and code with any other programmers back then?

Can you still beat any of your old games?

Re: Questions for Mark 'Kick Off' Greenshields

Posted: Wed Mar 27, 2019 7:59 pm
by NorthWay
How well did the books sell?

Re: Questions for Mark 'Kick Off' Greenshields

Posted: Sun Mar 31, 2019 9:40 am
by DRS
Thanks Merman and Northway for chipping in - always appreciate it chaps. I'm talking to Mark via Skype next Thursday so do post any more questions and I'll get your name in the mag folks. Cheers.

Re: Questions for Mark 'Kick Off' Greenshields

Posted: Sun Mar 31, 2019 2:13 pm
by NorthWay
Wait, what, wasn't that "Dino Dini's Kick Off"??? What's the relationship here?
Did Bombo attract any legal interest?
I could swear there was a Live and Let Die game? With boat racing possibly?
Did being a published book author give you more status (in general), and did it ease you getting sw deals?
Were you friendly with any other (in)famous programmers?

Re: Questions for Mark 'Kick Off' Greenshields

Posted: Thu Apr 04, 2019 10:26 am
by PostieDoc
I'm assuming he did the C64 conversion of Kick Off.
What was the thinking behind changing to a horizontal game rather than vertical?
Were the 8-bit machines too limited to handle vertical football games?

Re: Questions for Mark 'Kick Off' Greenshields

Posted: Thu Apr 04, 2019 2:07 pm
by merman
NorthWay wrote:
Sun Mar 31, 2019 2:13 pm
Wait, what, wasn't that "Dino Dini's Kick Off"??? What's the relationship here?
Did Bombo attract any legal interest?
I could swear there was a Live and Let Die game? With boat racing possibly?
Did being a published book author give you more status (in general), and did it ease you getting sw deals?
Were you friendly with any other (in)famous programmers?
Yes. Mark's game was actually the SECOND attempt at Live & Let Die, the earlier game was abandoned and Mark (working in-house) started on a new project - that was put on hold while he converted Split Personalities to the C64 (see issue 191).

Mark's game wasn't finished, then Domark saw "Aquablasta" by Bob & Dave Thomas for Elite being promoted at a trade show (using their Buggy Boy "engine", swapping buggies for speedboats).

With a new score panel, world map and Bond-themed missions Aquablasta became Live & Let Die...

Re: Questions for Mark 'Kick Off' Greenshields

Posted: Thu Apr 04, 2019 5:44 pm
by mr jenzie
did he ever get to meet either GILBERT or SOOTY/SWEEP
and if he did, how were they?
:mrgreen:

Re: Questions for Mark 'Kick Off' Greenshields

Posted: Thu Apr 11, 2019 2:54 pm
by TheAlex
Did you have to do much research in terms of watching childrens' programmes?

Were you made aware of a bug in the Amstrad CPCs Sooty and Sweep where the game froze every time you entered the bathroom?

How did you get the handling so perfect on Postman Pat's van? I played that game recently and it still holds up. Thomas the Tank Engine, on the other hand... Both had cracking interpretations of the theme tunes though - amongst the best on the CPC. How did you (or whoever it was) make them so good?

Re: Questions for Mark 'Kick Off' Greenshields

Posted: Fri Apr 12, 2019 11:55 am
by DRS
Right, I spoke to Mark last week so sorry TheAlex - which is a pity as you seem to really know stuff about some of his games!!! Do post a question next time I do an interview and I'll really try to get you in. Cheers everyone who posted questions before I did interview - have managed to one in from all of you (except PostieDoc because he didn't really have an answer so again, if you post a question next time, I'll get you in if possible mate!)