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HSC01 Round 11: Galactic Invasion / Outpost 19


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Galactic Invasion is the main game for Round 11 of the Astrocade High Score Club. Round 11 will last about three weeks. The round ends on Sunday, October 2'nd at 8pm MST.

Galactic Invasion

Galactic Invasion is a 4K game released by Astrovision in 1981. It is part of the Action/Skills Series. The game was originally released on cartridge as Galaxian. If you know who programmed this game, then let us know.








Galactic Invasion Instructions

Alien ships come at your missile launcher from every direction. They peel off from their formation singly or in groups of two or threes. The more aliens you destroy, the more of their reinforcements attack. Each ship is piloted by a highly skilled captain capable of maneuvering with incredible agility. Realistic sounds add to the intensity! Up to 4 Players.

Galactic Invasion (1 to 4 players)

Aim your missiles at the alien ships and score points for each one you hit! The colorful invaders spin around and soar across the screen in an attempt to destroy your base.

Excitement builds as they collide into (or bomb) one after another of your bases. Exploding several of their ships will make the aliens angry-- they'll attack you with greater speed and force than ever before.

Starting the Game

Choose Galactic Invasion by pressing 1 on the keypad or by using remote game selection (pull the trigger on hand control #1, turn the knob until 1 appears on the screen, then pull the trigger again).

Select the level of difficulty (0-9). At the easiest skill level (0), the alien ships destroy your base by crashing into it. As the levels become more difficult, the action becomes faster. At level 4, they start dropping bombs. With the higher levels, you engage in battle with more and more aliens at one time. They drop a larger number of bombs and descend with greater speed. By the time you reach level 9, it is next to impossible to survive the battle.

Choose the number of bases (1-9). You will have one base at a time which you will use as your missile launch pad. Your base will be shown on the lower part of the screen.

Enter the number of players (1-4).

Playing the Game

The hand control functions for Galactic Invasion are:

Trigger - Releases your missiles.
Knob - Has no function.
Joystick - Moves your base left or right.

The object of the game is to reach the highest score by destroying as many alien ships as possible. You'll have to move quickly to avoid the ships which peel off from their formation in groups of one, two, three or four.

After you select the number of players, the alien ships will immediately appear on the screen and will start descending on your base. Fire your shots quickly and take evasive action to avoid their ships.

When you have shot down all but one of the aliens, the remaining ship will become enraged. It will attack with such fury that you'll have to move quickly to avoid it.

If you manage to shoot down a complete set of ships, you will hear the sounds of another troop coming to battle. Since the aliens will always be joined by reinforcements, you cannot hope to destroy them all. However, as your skill increases, you will be able to achieve higher and higher scores.

At the top of the screen, you will see each player's number and score. The current player's number is highlighted in a different color. Players take turns firing at the aliens until all bases have been destroyed. The number in the center shows the remaining bases for each player.


When your missile hits an alien ship, points are awarded based on the position of that ship. The point values for the ships, from top to bottom, are:

Top Row:

In rack - 10
Diving with no escorts - 15
Diving with 1 escort - 20
Diving with 2 escorts, - 30

with at least 1 still diving

Diving with 2 escorts, and - 80

neither still diving

Middle Row:

In Rack - 5
Diving - 10

Bottom Row:

In Rack - 4
Diving - 8

Strategies for Winning

If a top row alien is hit during a dive, the ships will be stunned temporarily and they will cease firing for a moment. Take advantage of this time to move your base and fire another shot.

Also, the alien ships only drop bombs after their altitude is below the middle of the screen. Fire quickly and you will score more points.

Playing Again

To play Galactic Invasion again, press the RESET button and follow the instructions for starting the game.

The Galactic Invasion cartridge ROM image (called " galactic.bin") is part of this archive:


The Galactic Invasion manual is here:


Here is a video review of Galactic Invasion by Nice & Games:

The play settings for Galactic Invasion, are:

Skill Level - 4
# of Bases - 4

Skill level 4 is the first setting where the alien ships start dropping bombs at you during gameplay.

As usual, 10 points can be earned this round (excluding bonus points).

Galactic Invasion Bonus Points

There is just one way to score bonus points for Galactic Invasion:

1) High Score Reached on Level 9 with only 1 Base - 1 point to the player who earns the highest score with just one ship on skill level 9. This level starts out brutally-- the aliens fire so many shots that it is nearly impossible to avoid them!

Outpost 19 (BASIC Bonus Game)













This round's bonus game, Outpost 19 by WaveMakers, is a BASIC game released in, I think, 1983 on Tape 19 (with Music Keyboard as the "b-side"). This was later reprinted in Arcadian 7, no. 2 (Dec. 20, 1985): 30-31. A bug fix was printed in the next issue: Arcadian 7, no. 3 (Mar. 21, 1986): 35.

You can download the AstroBASIC version of Outpost 19 here:


The official documentation for Outpost 19 has not been archived. However, when the program was printed in the Arcadian, George Moses provided detailed instructions:

How to Play Outpost 19

You are stranded on an alien outpost with nobody to help you. While you wait and pray for a rescue party, the only hope you have of surviving is to gather the food parcels that exist in each of the 16 rooms of the outpost. A pull of the trigger will show you a full screen map of the outpost. The rooms with food parcels stashed will have room numbers. After you pick up a room's food parcel, that room will appear on the map as a blank room.

While you're chasing after the food parcels, the alien is chasing after you! His advantage is that he can go through walls, so his path toward you is more of a straight line, while your escape must be around obstacles in the rooms and through doorways provided. But you have a couple of aces in the hole. (1) You have the trigger-pull top-view map which also shows you which room the monster is in and where you are. (2) You have a transporter in each of the odd-numbered rooms! They're usually in the lower parts of the room. After you've played a few games you'll remember where they all are.

To become familiar with the workings of the transporters, look at the room map in this issue.


The large numbers are the numbers of the rooms containing the transporters. The small numbers are the numbers of the room you will transport to. Example: If you are in room 13 and just as the alien monster is ready to pounce, you nonchalantly step into the transporter. Poof! You'll find yourself in room 8. That's clear across the outpost and you've bought some time to hunt up some more food parcels before he can catch up to you.

How to Die

There are two ways you can get killed. (1) The monster touches you. (2) You try to grab a food parcel while the monster is in the same room (use your trigger map to see if he's coming before you grab the parcel). If you die, pull the trigger and start a new game.


This is one of the best "AstroBASIC" programs I've ever seen! And the only one that surpasses this is a Blue Ram BASIC version Mike did. It fills a 16K Blue Ram and has fantastic graphics, action and constant music. If you're interested, we can print it in a future Arcadian. Unfortunately, Mike Peace has packed his Bally Arcade away in a box somewhere and is presently programming on a (gasp, choke) Commodore-64. But, he gave us permission to print this program and some other previously unreleased tapes we'll print in the future.


Transporter Note [From Adam]


You'd think from the game's description that George Moses gives that you'd be able to find the transporters with no problem. That's not the case. As far as I can tell, the transporters seem to be invisible. I've only found one of them (in the first room that you start the game in), and it did transport me across the outpost-- but I had not idea that I was entering the transporter until I teleported.



As George Moses mentioned above, Outpost 19 was also released for Blue Ram BASIC. It looks much more like a cartridge game, as can be seen in this screenshot:


Dave Carson reviewed the BRB version of the game in his column Extended Memory Products Review, Arcadian, 6, no. 11/12 (Oct. 31, 1984): 118-119. You can read the review here:



If you have at least a 16K RAM expansion, then you can play the Blue Ram BASIC version of the game, which can be downloaded here:



The BRB version of Outpost 19 is also on Ken Lill's multicart (the UltiMuli Cart)-- but it still requires extra RAM to play the game. Also, I've run into some syntax error issues when playing the game from the multicart.

Outpost 19 Bonus Points

1) Playing Outpost 19 - You get a bonus point just for playing Outpost 19.

2) Outpost 19 High Score - You can earn another bonus point if you get the highest score for this game.

3) Video of Outpost 19 - To continue to promote Astrocade BASIC programs, a bonus point will be awarded to the first person to upload a video of Outpost 19 containing a full game. If the video is a video review, then you'll earn two points!

Please post all of your scores for both games here. Scores posted on the Bally Alley discussion group will no longer be accepted. If you post a video score, then please note the score obtained in the video-- as this makes it easier for me to keep track of all the scores.

Have fun defending the Galactic Empire (or whatever it is you're protecting) in Galactic Invasion and find your food and avoid the baddie in Outpost 19.


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Outpost 19 is a pretty amazing game for little 'ol "AstroBASIC." I find myself strangely infatuated with it; I have already spent several hours playing it today. The transporters, which are absolutely required to escape the alien, are invisible (and therefore difficult to find). That's a shame; they should have been marked in each room for the player. As it is, you have to stumble across the transporters by searching each room carefully. Luckily, the transporters are always in the same location. If they were randomly placed, the game would be too difficult to play.


Today, I made a map of Outpost 19 in Photoshop. The map contains the location of each of the eight transporter (marked in green), plus the destination (marked in red). The map was a cinch to make using the skills that I honed a few years ago creating The Temple of Apshai Trilogy maps in Photoshop. Well, it was a cinch to make the map... but it did take quite a bit of time to create it. Here are my results:




I wish that I had a color printer to print this map out-- it's useful in B&W... but it would be much easier to use in color. Maybe I'll get it printed at a copy store.



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George Moses implies that Outpost 19 was never released on tape, but I wasn't sure if that was true. I checked the Bob Fabris Collection looking for any information that might help me settle on an answer. I came across the original letter that George sent to Bob Fabris. I've OCRed it and am including part of it here:

December 5, 1985

Dear Bob,

Enclosed are 5 programs for your next Arcadian.

They are:

1. Outpost 19 by Mike Peace.
2. Van Gam by Bob Weber.
3. Sub Search by Bob Weber
4. Hangman by Bob Weber
5. Concentration by Bob Weber

The masterpiece of the bunch is Mike Peace's Outpost 19. He wrote it two years ago but never released it for sale. I got his permission to print it. All he wants in return is a subscription to your current volume of the Arcadian. Send it to: [...]

Don't give up! Let's do at least the four issues you talked about. I have tons of good programs I can send you. These are the type of programs that would take a large amount of time to print out effectively because there are a lot of arrays to dump out as well as snaps and shows for the Blue Ram Basic programs. If you think there are a lot of extended basic people out there I have some real beauts!

That's the reason it's taken all week to get you these listings. I had to take the printer home from the office a couple of times. I was having some trouble dumping the large array for Mike's program, but I finally got it figured out after many hours of tinkering with the code. I forgot that the Bally doesn't handshake with the printer at 300 baud. I had the printer set up to go over each line twice, which takes time. Meanwhile the array was piling into the printer's buffer space faster than the printer could dump it onto paper, so after the first fifty string locations the data started overflowing onto the floor! So I cut back to single strike and that solved the problem.

I finally have my Blue Ram parallel printer and modem interface, so I could send you some copy over the phone if you ever have the need for it. Best regards to all and Merry Christmas!

Bally Forever!!!
George Moses

From this letter, it appears that Outpost 19 never was published. That's unfortunate. I wonder if it wasn't released due to the so-called U.S. "crash" of 1983.



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I played Outpost 19 with my map on Friday. That map really helps! Without it, I would have been lost. Here's my high score so far:


Outpost 19 - 1,198




That score was achieved by getting all the food on the first level. I died collecting the food in the first room (Room 11) of level 2. Be careful, and don't make the same mistake as I did. On the second level, the monster started off right near me. When I collected the food (out of habit from level 1), the food killed me (you can't collect the food with the monster in the room).


The term "monster" is such a generic term. Let's give that poor creature a name! If I'm going to be scared of a monster, then it should be something, you know, scary. How about if this monster is one of Lovecraft's Elder Things? These are extra terrestrials-- but they're not like Eliot's E.T. Elder things are sort of plant/creature hybrid type, uh, things. Drawings of them that I've found on the Internet don't do them justice (they look sort of lame), but in my imagination, when reading At the Mountains of Madness-- those Elder Things look truly like they would certainly want to chase me around an alien outpost.


Speaking of alien outpost. If I'm on an alien outpost... am I the invader? Is this so-called "monster" only trying to protect itself? And, if this outpost isn't where I live, how come there is so much food on it that I can eat?


(Yeah, if you think too much about a videogame, then you too can come up with questions like this.)



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  • 2 weeks later...







I haven't gotten to the BASIC game yet, but I did do the "hard" level (and man is it hard) and the regular on G.I. This game, for a popular title, is damn tough! Best I could do was a little less than roadrunner, but I think I did reasonably well on the level 9 challenge. Should call it suicide mission!


I'd like to add how proud I am of my "new" Colortrak 2000 TV that I acquired at Salvation Army for the hefty sum of $5.99. February 1986 manufacture date! I would have been blown away then! Honestly though, what a solid TV still.

Edited by nd2003grad
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Tried again...improved "regular" score on Invasion and did Outpost 19. I found this to be a spooky game, especially when played at midnight. I let my imagination go and found it (and its sound) to really set a mood of dread. I wasn't very good at it not knowing the map that well, but it's a game that could have been huge back in the day!



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I believe that Tomb Pirates was never officially released either. It's too bad--WaveMaker's later games were some of their best.


I don't think this is how Outpost 19 is supposed to look. Maybe it's because I loaded it on a Home Library Computer. Oh well, I'm pretty sure I didn't beat Adam's score in any case, so I'll just take the participation point.




I got 832 on Galactic Invasion. It's quite a fast paced game.



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Wow, I just realized that this round is over already I thought that it was ending this coming Sunday. What an idiot I am-- and I'm supposed to be the one in charge of this high score club?!? Please, nobody fire me! I had planned to play both games more tonight because my 13-year old nephew is going to be spending the night tonight. I was hoping to play both games with him and maybe even record his thoughts on the games.


Not too many people played this round... would it be acceptable to everyone if we extended this round to this coming Sunday (Oct 9'th)?



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No objection. These were good games! I'd like another chance as well.


Cool-- I'll post some more scores. I didn't get a chance to play any of this round's high score club games with my nephew, as we played games on my Sega Genesis instead. We played a lot of Altered Beast: he really dug that game. The last time he was here we played a ton of Gunfight on the Astrocade, and (believe it or not), he wanted to play it again (he said, "I love that game"), but we didn't get around to it.


I did play Galactic Invasion using both an Atari joystick and an NES controller on real Astrocade hardware. This game is really quite hard and a bit unfair. Even on level 4 (the first level where the baddies shoot), you hardly get an opportunity to dodge their shots. Plus, the screen area is quite small and avoiding the baddies is quite tough. I expected to find this game fun once I dug into it, but instead I'm finding myself a little frustrated with it.



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I've now played many rounds of Galactic Invasion. I seem to have topped-out at about 600 or so. I'm surprised I'm doing so badly at this game-- it is so much easier on other platforms:


Galactic Invasion - 648 (Skill Level 4 with 4 Bases)




I thought playing this game on difficulty level 4 was hard. When I upped the ante and played on difficultly 9 with no extra "lives," I did just awful:


Galactic Invasion - 150 (Skill Level 9 with 1 Base)




On level 9, you're lucky to take out any ships while they're diving down at you. The only reason I managed to get 150 points is because once I managed to shoot one of the diving baddies for 80 points.


Galactic Invasion seems to be a good example of a great looking Astrocade game with superb graphics and wonderful sound effects that just isn't too fun to play because it's too damn hard. Or is it just me?



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I believe that Tomb Pirates was never officially released either. It's too bad--WaveMaker's later games were some of their best.


Tomb Pirates was supposed to be released on WaveMakers' Tape 20: QB-2B / Tomb Pirates. Does this mean that the Q*Bert clone, QB-2B wasn't ever released either? Here are three screenshots of QB-2B:





Is anyone interested in playing QB-2B in the next HSC round?



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Yeah, I haven't seen any evidence that Tapes 19 (Outpost 19 / Music Keyboard) and 20 (QB-2B / Tomb Pirates) were commercially released. Outpost 19 and Music Keyboard were printed in the Arcadian. I don't think most people had any way to get QB-2B and Tomb Pirates, though they must have gotten passed around in the community to some extent, since Mike White had a copy to give us.

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This round was extended to, well... sometime this week. It ends... now. All scores posted to this point count! Hooray!

There were four qualifying entries for the high score contest. Chris played Galactic Invasion last night on my Astrocade using my NES controller. He managed to score 1,078 points, but he declined to officially enter his score for this round.

Final Tables

Galactic Invasion (Skill Level 4)

1st nd2003grad 1,195 (Level 4) 10 pts
2nd ranger_lennier 832 (Level 4) 9 pts

3rd roadrunner 768 (Level 4) 8 pts
4th BallyAlley 648 (Level 4) 7 pts

The bonus point is awarded to nd2003grad for scoring the highest on the incredibly tough skill level 9 (with only one life) of Galactic Invasion. Note that no points are awarded for any place except first place.

Galactic Invasion (Skill Level 9)

1st nd2003grad 232 (Level 9) 1 pt
BallyAlley 150 (Level 9) 0 pts

Every player who played the BASIC bonus game gets a point. BallyAlley earned an extra point for getting the highest score on Outpost 19. If someone else had made the Outpost 19 map, then that would have earned a bonus point... but since I made the map, it would hardly be fair to award myself a bonus point!

Outpost 19

1st BallyAlley 1,198 2 pts
2nd nd2003grad 1,025 1 pt
3rd ranger_lennier Unknown 1pt (Home Library Computer-Scrambled Display)

No one made a video for Outpost 19, so there's no bonus point awarded for that.

Total points awarded this round:

1st nd2003grad 10 + 1 + 1 = 12 pts !@
2nd ranger_lennier 9 + 0 + 1 = 10 pts @

3rd BallyAlley 7 + 0 + 2 = 9 pts @#

4th roadrunner 8 + 0 + 0 = 8 pts

Bonus Points Key:

Galactic Invasion

! - Highest Score on Skill Level 9.

Outpost 19

@ - Playing Outpost 19
# - Outpost 19 High Score
$ - Video of Outpost 19. (No Point Awarded)

Please, check your scores. ;)

Congratulations to Round 10's winner... nd2003grad!


Galactic Invasion is a fun game, but it's rather on the hard side. When Chris played Skill level 9, he commented to me that the programmers of the game were "probably laughing their asses off" watching people playtest the game. Yeah, I agree: Skill Level 9 is a bit of a joke-- you pretty-much can't help but die in just a matter of seconds. Yet, it's impressive to see the speed of the aliens and the amount of firepower the baddies throw your way on level 9.

I'm trying an experiment for the next round. Round 12's main game will be The Adventures of Robby Roto. This game was never released for the Bally Arcade/Astrocade. What gives? Well, "Robby Robo" is an arcade game that uses the "Astrocade chipset" and high-resolution ("commercial") mode (four times the Astrocade's resolution). Unless you happen to own one of these extremely rare arcade games (in which case I should probably award a bonus point!), then you'll have to play this game in the MAME emulator. Happily, Jamie (formally Jay) Fenton, the programmer of this "Robby Roto," allows the ROM images to be freely distributed and they're available directly from the MAME site.

The BASIC bonus game will be QB-2B (an unreleased Q*Bert clone) by WaveMakers. I'll post the start of round 12 in the next few days, but feel free to start playing these two games anytime.

Thanks for playing!


Edited by ballyalley
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Round 12 of the Astrocade High Score Club has begun. The main game this round is an arcade game called The Adventures of Robby Roto! by Bally/Midway. How is this Astrocade related? This arcade game uses what's usually referred to as the "Astrocade chipset." The BASIC bonus game is a Q*bert-inspired game called QB-2B by WaveMakers. You can participate in round 12 here:




Come and join the fun!



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