Author Topic: 10-pin bowling in the good old days  (Read 3526 times)


  • Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 266
    • Raymond's page
10-pin bowling in the good old days
« on: April 15, 2016, 01:36:34 PM »
I was looking at some of the old DOS programs I wrote almost 30 years ago after I purchased a 386. That was before my internet era and also before I became aware of the existence of 32-bit assembly. Graphic cards had no integrated processor and GDI was unknown.

One of those programs was to simulate the 10-pin bowling game. The graphics were simple (no cute mannequin throwing the ball) but I made an effort to follow as well as I could the laws of physics pertaining to collisions. Most bowling games currently available today on the internet were designed by people not having the slightest notion of physics (probably not even knowing how to spell it).

I included many options which I felt I needed for enjoying the game to the fullest. The most important one was to be able to test the resulting pin fall under preset conditions of (1) oil conditioning on the alley, (2) pin weight, (3) starting position, (4) aiming point, (5) ball spin, and (6) ball speed.

Once you get the feeling of how those may affect your score, you could probably be able to maintain an average around 170 with minimal practice. You can most probably raise it to 200 or above once you become somewhat more proficient.

If you decide to try out your gaming skills, I would strongly recommend that you study the included description file BOWL.TXT which explains all the options. If you do read it, you will certainly have a chuckle from the minimal requirements for running the game smoothly. You will also notice that the program is a .com file; I never felt the need to convert those .com files into .exe files.

Obviously, the program can only run in DOS mode. I downloaded DOSBox v0.74 on my laptop equipped with an AMD Radeon HD 7310 Graphics chip and runs under Windows10, followed the DOSBox installation instructions and was amazed at how smoothly the program ran.

I'm not sure if I still have the original 16-bit source code. However, I may be able to answer some general questions about certain aspects of the program.

The attached .zip file contains everything required to run the game as long as everything is in the same folder. Hope someone can enjoy some of it.
Whenever you assume something, you risk being wrong half the time.