Würgertime

An hommage to the game “Burger Time” for the Uzebox retro-minimalist game console

Download Würgertime UZE binary View on GitHub

What is it?

Würgertime is a game for the Uzebox retro-minimalist game console.

Why retro?
Because you get all the fuzzy feeling of early 1980ies arcade machines, video games and home computers.
Why minimalist?
Because the Uzebox console is basically one all-purpose €5 chip, an ATmega644 overclocked at 28MHz, a crystal, some capacitors and a few resistors, which you can connect to a standard TV set. That ATmega644 microcontroller offers only 65536 bytes ROM and 4096 bytes RAM and each game (and the game loader) has to fit into that tight space.
Why Würgertime?
Because all that is really old meat. Würger rhymes on burger and the German word würgen means to retch.

How to play it?

The most obvious idea is to buy a Uzebox. Or a EUzebox. Or a Uzebox Jamma. They differ in details. Or build one of those or your own design yourself. It can be done on a breadboard in an hour. Parts cost about €10. There are also people selling kits with a preprogrammed ATmega644, a nice PCB and case. You don’t need an ISP programmer for the initial flash programming of the game loader then. Download the Würgertime UZE binary, put it on the SD card and load it through the game loader into your Uzebox.

Too complicated? You can also play Würgertime and other Uzebox games in an emulator. There are several, I recommend CUzebox. Download the CUzebox Linux binary or the CUzebox MS-Windows Binary from Jubatian, and feed the Würgertime UZE binary into it.

Still too complicated? Meh. Ok. Feed the Würgertime UZE binary into Nicksen’s in-browser emulator.

Okay, but what is this game about?

Würgertime is a silly little platformer. You control a short fat cook and have to stomp burger parts down the shelves so the burgers —or was it Würgers?— land on the plates ready for the customers to eat. (Yeah, those people have guts of steel … or something like that.) Falling burger pieces cascade! That does not only make your life easier but also gives you extra score. Same for burger pieces knocking your opponents off-screen. If you find yourself in a pickle (pun intended) you can throw a pepper. When all burgersWürgers in a level are served, there is a bonus stage. Pick up a valueable item for each opponent knocked off the screen due to serving the last burger. Pick up the cockroaches at all other opponent start points. The remaining bonus is credited to your score. Oh, and hurry! At bonus 250, the game doubles its speed to remind you of that.

You need it more systematic? Ok. Here you go.

Controls

You need the directions up, down, left, right and any of the fire buttons. They are all the same in this game. Steer the cook through the ladder and platform maze. Jumping? Silly you! Look at your physique! On a platform, walk right or left, then change to up or down and the cook will take the exit at the next ladder entry. Same for right or left while climbing a ladder. A warning: the unmarked ladder exits are up-only ones. With any fire button, you can throw pepper at your opponents. Careful, you have only three per cook.

Burgers

Burgers consist of bun bottom, cheese+salad, patty, tomato, and bun top. In many levels, some pieces are left out. Some levels have gaps between burger parts, either with stops or without. Find it out. In later levels you may be required to stomp burger pieces twice so cascades of falling pieces become even more useful.

Opponents

Each level has up to four opponents. If you hit an opponent off-screen, it gets replaced by another one after a while. There are four different types. Which one is selected by the level you are in, as well as the opponent start points. Each one has its own strategy to be a pain in your … neck.

Egghead
A matter of common knowledge, eggheads put some silly idea into their minds and then, they insist on executing it. They are no different in Würgertime. They select a burger piece, run to it and when they reached their goal, they select another burger piece and so on. The good thing about them is they don’t turn around out of sudden so it is safe to run right behind them. The egghead leaves fries behind.
Sausageman
It’s a green one! Yeah. This expired sausage is pretty unenjoyable. It chases you all the time, and it may suddenly turn. Don’t approach from behind. And make sure to get rid of it soon! The Sausageman leaves a soda behind.
Mr Mustard
This bottle of clotted mustard does what’s natural to its species. It spills its yellow contents everywhere it does not belong … well, in this game not everywhere, but on ladders below you specifically. If you happen to step on such a ladder, you slip down to the next exit, followed by a painful impact, and long, immobilizing wails. Climbing a squirted ladder requires you cleaning it first, slowly. Mr Mustard leaves pepper behind.
Anticook
Doing the Moonwalk, this opponent actually helps you completing your task. On the minus side, you may be knocked off-screen by the burger pieces he stomps. His movement strategy is as least as uninspiring as that of the expired sausage. The Anticook leaves a crown behind.

Score

Burger tile stomped1 point
Burger piece falls10 points
Burger piece cascades20 points
Opponent knocked off-screen50 points
Roach bonus item collected50 points
Fries bonus item collected150 points
Soda bonus item collected250 points
Pepper bonus item collected500 points + 1 pepper
Crown bonus item collected1000 points + 1 cook
Small burger completed150 points
Medium burger completed250 points
Large burger completed500 points

Game Development

Contact the author

Please check at the sources or the discussion thread at the Uzebox forums for up-to-date information on development progress. You may also use the Github bug tracker to file bugs or feature requests.

Level Editor

There is a level editor! It’s written in Tcl so it should be cross-platform, though it’s only tested on Linux so far. There are some things to keep in mind before making your own levels. So if you are interested in making your own levels, please drop me a message.