2013
06.06
Five Hundred game screenshot

Five Hundred game

Update: Version 1.00 now available – get it from this link!

Wow, far, far too long between posts!

Icefall development is currently on hold for a little while as… the problem is… I’m not finding it as fun to play as it should be. So I think I need to take a break and focus on something smaller and easier for a little while.

Out of all my past projects, my “X500” game is the one I still get the most comments and emails about. Back in the day, I wanted to play the Five Hundred card game, but, looking around the ‘net, decent implementations were pretty much non-existant. So I created a version and released it online. Surprisingly, it actually was fairly well received and became quite popular (Completely Free Software gave it a “5 stars award” which was pretty cool).

Unfortunately, back at that time I was working on a game/graphics library that was source-compatible between DOS and Windows/DirectX versions… (looking back, I have no idea why I clung to DOS compatibility for so long.. oh well). As a consequence, I couldn’t implement a 100% compatible DirectX implementation for the Windows version… and as a result,  it no longer runs currently on modern Windows versions.

So, time for a rewrite! Looking around the internet, I came to the disappointing realisation that there are still no really good Five Hundred games out there! So I’m currently putting the finishing touches on a redesign (early screenshot of the new version above) for Windows XP, Vista, Windows 7, and 8 PCs (yes, it will even support touchscreen play since I recently bought a Surface Pro tablet for testing).

I also want to take the opportunity to improve some of the AI from the old version. I hope to release the final version by the end of June!

3 comments so far

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  1. looking forward to it- I recently started playing a “live” version of 500 about two months ago and find it addictive 🙂

    The version we play is 45 cards, only 2’s and 3’s are removed-kitty=5 cards. We also have no-trick (250 pts) open face (500 pts) and double no-trick (500 pts). With the double no-trick, after bid-winner makes his choice from the kitty, remaining five cards are passed to partner for same- all four people are then players. I like your option of changing player names (can match my real play). Possibly a player(s) select partner option?

    Some versions give a second bid opportunity to those that have been out-bid.

    I currently have two PC’s, one is WIN XP, the other is WIN 7- My WIN XP is in-process of being replaced with the WIN 7 PC, so am waiting for your new upgrade.

    Thanks, Bill

  2. same comment here. it’s a long lasting app. looking forward to the update too.

    in social games involving humans btw, we simply ban misere.

    in five player version the successful bidder chooses the partner for that round.

    • @William: thanks for the tips. It’s been a long time since I have played in person and was having some trouble remembering the finer points. However, I just managed to get the original game working again in a Win2K virtual machine, which helps a lot.

      @Mikero: if you’re Mike Andrew, then I did try to reply to your email but didn’t make it past your spam filter.