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Bernie and the Cubic Conundrum (WIP)


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I'd like to introduce Bernie and the Cubic Conundrum.


I started Bernie a few months ago but put the project on hold while I was working on other things. Bernie is now ready to share in the form of a basic demo.


Demo is available link at the bottom of this post.




Bernie and the Cubic Conundrum takes inspiration from Q*Bert and a few other games but changes up the main gameplay tropes with additional elements and of course, Bernie :) 




Bernie will have a lot of features, a few are already in and working.


  • 50+ levels planned (maybe as many as 75)
  • PAL + NTSC palettes and localisation out of the box.
  • 1 and 2 player taking turns, plus "Co-opertition" (idea from Borderlands 3). In Co-opertition, players work together to clear the round but the player who clears most squares wins the round and the Bonus. So it's kind of like a deathless deathmatch.
  • Standard and Expert Modes
  • Atari Vox support for saving scores
  • Atari Vox support for speech (adult and kid friendly - nothing too "industrial", no hard curses so don't worry), or you can just turn it off.
  • Visual instruction section for easy "pick up and play".
  • Multiple enemy types with different abilities.
  • Power Pills to turn enemies in to tasty low calorie nutritious snacks.
  • Trap tiles, trapdoor tiles, hole tiles, freeze traps.
  • Timers, (have to have timers for speed runs! Actually more like MrDo's timers.)
  • Game speeds up as you progress, enemies take less time to think, bombers are faster, freezers appear, traps appear etc.


To Do


A fair bit to do but the game is looking good enough to share some details and now a demo.


  • SFX & Music
  • Bernie's movement animation (right now he's using the "surprised" Bernie frame and while that looks funny, wasn't the intended outcome!)
  • More enemies
  • Better level transitions.
  • Tidy up collisions.


Anyway, here is Bernie. My wife was kind enough to Crochet a real Bernie for me after she saw my sprites taking shape. (Why Bernie? well that's a story for another day).




Some screen grabs :





You Tube Vid :







  • Demo is tested working on NTSC and PAL with Dragonfly. Should work with Concerto and most emulators.
  • The demo has 7 playable levels.
  • Some levels need you to change colour once, some twice, some will reverse if you enter the same square twice.
  • There is no sound other than some AV speech phrases.
  • There are known glitches and strange things do happen :) 
  • Select = Change level on the title page.





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13 hours ago, Muddyfunster said:
On 2/7/2021 at 9:47 PM, ZeroPage Homebrew said:

Looks like a blast! It has some gameplay elements of Q*Bert without the 45 degree angle, that means Tanya won't be falling off the edges as much!


Looking forward to it! ?


- James

We hope for full "Tanya Certification" in the near future!


I've always had the same issues as Tanya with the isometric perspective of Qbert. What's funny is after the ZPH episode where the new 2600 Qbert was being played, I started playing with some ideas for an orthographic perspective Qbert-like game (just on paper - no actual code). It looks like you have come up with something much cooler than I had been able to dream up myself. I'm really looking forward to being able to try out a demo!

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31 minutes ago, sixersfan105 said:

Btw this reminds me a bit of the much more rudimentary Grid Bug for Mattel Aquarius. Especially in your "Expert Mode," where tiles revert back if you touch them a second time - same deal in Grid Bug as a general rule. I'm excited to get my hands on a playable demo!

Grid bug looks interesting, I've never had much exposure to the Aquarius or Intellivision. A lot of these old games have great concepts and challenges that would translate really well with a more updated approach to graphics and sound. Thanks for linking :) 

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