I've spent some time playing games from my own collection on the C64 Mini, but discovered an issue with disk images containing multiple games. The issue being, the Mini only loads the first file it finds on any disk image, preventing you from playing any other games that may be stored on that disk.
This turns out to be a bit of a problem for me, as I have many disk images with more than one game stored on them. So, how could I get these disk images into a usable state for the C64 Mini? This is where, once again, the floppy disk publication Loadstar comes to the rescue.
In issue #45, Loadstar published a simple utility, written by Shawn Ort, called Auto-Menu. What this program does is read the directory of the disk that is in the disk drive, then assigns a number to each file stored on the disk. It then gives you the opportunity to load and run any of the programs listed by simply typing the file's assigned number and pressing
I thought that this program would be perfect for making my multi-game disks useable on the Mini. All I needed to do was ensure that Auto-Menu was the first program on the disk.
So, it works like this: First, this is a multi-game disk that I want to be able to use with the Mini.
As it is, the only game that the Mini will see and load on this disk image would be Out Run (the first file on the disk). So, what you want to do is get a copy of Auto-Menu onto the disk image and ensure that it is the first file in the directory. There are all sorts of tools you can use to do this task, but apart from creating disk images with VICE, I prefer using CommodoreServer to build D64s, as most of my Commodore disk images are stored there, in my account. For more on how to use on-line services like this, check out my previous blog entry, here.
Once you have Auto-Menu saved to the disk image. Go ahead and load it up on the C64 Mini, and you will be greeted with a screen similar to this:
Now, you can see all of the games/files that are included on the disk image. To load up the game you wish to play, simply use the Mini's virtual keyboard and type
R, then enter the number of the file you want and then
RETURN. Your game will then start to load.
And, there you have it, a simple way to get multi-game disk images playable on the C64 Mini!
For more information on this subject, check out the C64 Mini Wiki page.
Also, if you'd prefer to do all of this on your C64 or C128 (or emulator), there's a helpful tool, which was published in issue #21 of Loadstar, called Disk Frisk that allows you to easily reorganize files on a floppy disk directory.
Just simply save Auto-Menu to any existing floppy disk (or D64 image), then use Disk Frisk to move it to the top of the directory listing.