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Elite on the BBC Micro and NES

Downloading and installing Elite over Econet

How to download and install Elite over Econet

To load Elite on your Econet network, you'll need to download the disc image from here:

Note that this disc contains updated versions of BBC Master and 6502 Second Processor Elite that work when loaded from a fileserver over Econet. It does not contain a multi-player version, and the game itself is unchanged from the original Acornsoft releases. The only difference is that it loads over Econet.

The 6502 Second Processor version works on both the BBC Master Turbo and the BBC Micro with an external 6502 Second Processor. There's no version for the unexpanded BBC Micro as Econet needs an extra page of memory compared to the disc filing system, and there's no way of freeing up that much space without dropping features, and that just wouldn't be the same. As a result, this release will only work on a BBC Micro if it has a 6502 Second Processor.

The Master version is based on the Compact release, so it supports digital joysticks and works on both the Master 128 and Master Compact.

Installation instructions
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To install Elite on your Econet network, download the disc image and do the following:

  1. Create a directory on the server called $.Elite and copy the ReadMe file and all the ELT* files into this directory (see below if you want to install the game into a different location).
  2. Do one of the following, depending on who you want to be able to play the game:
    • Either copy EliteM and EliteSP into $.Library and $.Library1 (if you want all users to be able to play Elite).
    • Or copy EliteM and EliteSP into each individual user's main directory (if you want to restrict it to those users only).
  3. Create a directory called Elite in the top level of each user's main directory, and copy the MAX file there.
  4. Users can then play Elite by typing the following:

    *EliteM (to play BBC Master 128 Elite)

    *EliteSP (to play 6502 Second Processor Elite)

    If you copied EliteM and EliteSP into the user's directory in step 2 above, they will need to use *DIR to go to that directory first.
  5. Commander files will be saved into the individual user's Elite directory.

If you have problems, you can post to this Stardot thread and I'll do my best to help.

Installation notes
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The installation process can be tailored as follows:

  • If you want to install the Elite binaries in step 1 into a different directory on the server (i.e. not $.Elite), then you can use a hex editor on the EliteM and EliteSP binaries to load the game from your preferred directory instead. Simply change the *DIR $.Elite string at the end of each binary to point to your new directory, and everything should work - just make sure that the string is still terminated by a &0D carriage return character. So if you want to install Elite in $.Games.Elite, for example, edit the end of each binary, changing *DIR $.Elite to *DIR $.Games.Elite (followed by &0D).
  • Alternatively, you can change the path by building your own installation disc using the elite-over-econet repository, by changing the path in the MESS1 variable in the elite-boot-6502sp.asm and elite-boot-master.asm sources.

And here are some notes on running Elite:

  • If a user tries to run Elite but doesn't have a $.Elite folder in their main user directory, the game will not load.
  • If you choose to install Elite on a per-user basis in step 2 above, then the EliteM and EliteSP binaries can go anywhere within their directory structure, but they will need to *DIR to that directory before *EliteM and *EliteSP will work.

If you can't get the above working, let me know in this Stardot thread and I'll try to help.

Release history
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Elite over Econet has had the following releases:

  • 2024-01-16 - Initial release

You can check the release for a given disc image by loading the disc and typing *TYPE README to display the credits. The build date is at the end.

Known issues
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To make this work on a Master ET, you may need to change the station number to 129. The reason for this is not clear, but it seems to work; other station numbers get logged out and can't access commander files. See this Stardot thread for more details.