An ancient computer game: Osric the Stoat

Click to launch game

(click on picture to launch simulation)

This game was written in the "R" programming language and was presumeably utilized by the children of Druids. The screen shot illustrated depicts the hero of the game, Osric the stoat, atop an Elm tree, throwing a stick at the hedgehogs below.

"The fact that real stoats don't actually climb trees, and that the hedgehogs are oversized and crudely rendered did not dissuade eager Druish children from playing this delightful game, I am sure. Just as in modern day video games, we sometimes see equine gorillas, and walking mushrooms," said Dr. Tunalu.

This game was discovered in the form of a "rod memory" at Walton Heath. This discarded piece of software was unfortunately used by later Britons as a "hurdle track": it was laid down to make a dry path thru the wet marshlands of Somerset. Unfortunately, this misuse has caused many of the sticks to become waterlogged and damaged, thus it has been a major undertaking for Institute software engineers to recover the "R" program for the original game.

The screen shot shown is from one of the few largely intact pieces of the rod memory. The corruption at the bottom of the image is the result of missing or damaged rods.

Institute computer scientists are using induction and reverse engineering to recreate much of the game, in it's original "R" language form. The simulation runs on an "R" language simulator which is being programmed for modern day computing systems.