Trucker (video game)
Trucker is a truck driving simulation game developed and published by Hughes Glantzberg for MS-DOS in 1982, distributed as an opensource Advanced BASIC program. The game has since been reworked by hobbyists and upgraded with better display and sound. In the game, you play as a truck driver on a long-haul from California to New York. Your goal is to get to your destination on time while incurring as few expenses as possible in order to increase your profits. You must choose your route and monitor your speed, gas, and weight as well as the road conditions along the trip.
I was first exposed to Trucker from the Big Rig update released in the Keypunch Software shovelware title, Convoy. My cousin and I played the game a couple times around 1989. We had fun purposely speeding to get caught by the police, over-filling our gas tank, and driving while sleep-deprived until we crashed. When we played the game seriously, it always crashed when we reached New York, so we stopped playing it. In the mid-1990s, when I was getting on local BBSes in my area, I remember seeing Super Rig, a BBS door port of the game and feeling nostalgic for the old game, but impressed at the new ANSI graphics.It wasn't until 2020 that I found out the game was much older.
The game was distributed as source. I have beaten the Big Rig version several times.
Best Version: DOS
— This section contains spoilers! —
- The game goes into depth simulating your truck's weight. In addition to your cargo, the weight of your diesel fuel is included when you hit a weigh station. This means you can make more money by hauling more cargo as long as you keep your tank low on gas, but this adds to the risk of running out of gas if you can't find a truck stop.
- Trying to min/max speed, versus time, and likelihood of being pulled over is fun for a little while.
- The routes from California to New York appear to be accurate. In addition to being updated as you pass cities, and cross state lines, the game even informs you when you enter a new time zone.
- Some of the later remakes added better color support, music and sound, and ANSI art.
- The game is horribly monotonous. You'll see pretty much all it has to offer on your first play through, and, even then most of that game will be doing the same thing over and over.
- The game is media challenged. The original game has no graphics, very little sound, and no colors, although, not much else could be expected on PCs at the time.
|1982-??-??||MS-DOS||Advanced BASIC||Hughes Glantzberg||Distribution method unkown.|
|1986-??-??||MS-DOS||GW-BASIC||Bill Pogue||Distributed as Big Rig. Updated with color and sound, no source.|
|1987-07-15||MS-DOS||GW-BASIC||Bill Pogue||Big Rig published by Keypunch Software in Convoy. Hacked to remove author's name, often crashes when you reach the end.|
|1989-??-??||MS-DOS||QuickBASIC||Marvin Davis||A BBS door game published as Super Rig. Updated with ANSI graphics.|
|1993-03-??||Cross-platform||REXX||Simon Husin||Port to REXX.|
|2014-??-??||Windows||Visual Basic||Jim Kitchen||Adds text-to-speech and sound effects.|
This collection includes the original source code of Trucker, a compiled binary, and every other remake and version of the game I could find.