If you’re a geek who was born before 1975 or wrote a computer program before 1990, the name “Lunar Lander” probably has a special meaning to you. Instead of thinking about Armstrong and Aldrin, your mind goes first to a monochrome vector graphics display, and trying desperately not to drain the fuel tank while straining not to come in too fast.
Well, a man named Seb Lee-Delisle has created not only an excellent Flash recreation of the original Lunar Lander, but also a very nicely done (and just as, if not more, difficult) 3D version. I never encountered the game in the arcade, but I vividly remember the ten-year-old me spending way, way too much time (in my parents’ view, anyway) in front of our family’s IBM PC, staring intently at the then-awesome CGA graphics and pounding desperately at the arrow keys as I realized my lander was going to slam into an outcropping. These Flash games are just as hard as I remember the original being, just as (consequently) frustrating, and just as fun. I still haven’t managed to successfully land the 3D one, though not for lack of trying.
I would like to see a full-featured version, with the abilities to adjust the gravity and add an atmosphere that I recall from the old PC game, but I’ll happily kill some time with these. And maybe I’ll leaf through the old 5.25″ floppy disks my parents still have to see if the version of the game I wrote in Turbo Pascal back in ’85 or so is still there…not that I have the faintest idea how to read a 5.25″ disk these days.
(Image via Wikipedia.)