I REMEMBER CONCENTRATION is distributed as shareware. You may copy and distribute this software freely, provided that each copy you make contains ALL of the programme's files, completely unaltered. You may not collect a fee for this software (other than fees for media and/or handling costs). All copies of this software are subject to these same conditions. If you enjoy playing I REMEMBER CONCENTRATION, you are requested to register your copy. For a registration fee of $10 (U.S.) or $15 (Canadian), you will receive the latest update of the software, plus a printed copy of the rules and documentation, and at least 75 picture puzzles. Please see the opening panel of I REMEMBER CONCENTRATION for details. Thanks for your support!

Brief Idea of the Game

I Remember Concentration is a game for two players. Each player takes turns selecting two numbers from the numbered playing board revealing two "prizes". If the prizes match, that prize is added to the list of prizes accumulated by that player so far, and the matching spaces are turned to reveal two pieces of a hidden rebus puzzle. The first player to successfully solve the picture puzzle scores the "value" of the prizes and wins the game.

Installing the Game

PC Installation (requires an IBM compatible PC capable of supporting MS-DOS 4.0 applications directly or in a DOS window, with a graphics adapter that can support CGA (VGA or SVGA graphics adapters normally support this))  Unzip the I Remember Concentration files to an available directory (e.g., c:\irconcen). Be sure to set up I Remember Concentration to have 196K of available memory (see your DOS or Windows user manual for more details on setting up a DOS application). MS Windows installations can make use of the icon file irconcen.ico. Set up the I Remember Concentration command line to run the file irconcen.exe.

HP100LX/HP200LX Installation Install I Remember Concentration on an HP100LX or HP200LX into a newly-created c:\irconcen directory, using the standard HP palmtop tools for DOS applications. It's best to set I Remember Concentration to run from the Application Manager so you can adjust the memory requirements. In the Application Manager, enter the following into the "Path" setting:

c:\irconcen\irconcen.exe -l |196

You can set up an icon for I Remember Concentration using the file irconcen.icn (see your HP user manual for more details).

Playing the Game

You need to tell I Remember Concentration how many people are playing. Enter 2 for a two-player game or 1 to play against the computer (you can also enter a 0 to watch two computer players play against each other). You can use up to eight letters, hyphens or apostrophes in each name.

The player whose name you entered first takes the first turn. That player must enter a number between 1 and 30 to reveal the prize hidden there. He or she then enters a second number, trying to reveal the match for the first pick. If the two revealed prizes do not match, they will be turned back, and the opponent's turn will begin. If the two revealed prizes do match, the prize matched is added to the matching player's prize list. Then two parts of the rebus puzzle are revealed where the matching prizes were located. The player who made the match can try to solve the rebus and win the game. If the answer is wrong (or the player cannot determine an answer) that player continues his or her turn by selecting two more numbers. If the answer is right, the player wins the game.

Solving the Rebus

A rebus is a traditional form of puzzle consisting of pictures whose names, when read aloud, sound out a well-known phrase, title, name, etc. The pictures can be objects, letters or numbers.

Each time players make a match, the parts of the rebus hidden at the matched prizes' locations are revealed. As more matches are made, more of the puzzle can be seen. The challenge for both players is not only to decipher the puzzle, but also to guess at those parts of the puzzle still hidden. The first player to make a match and solve the puzzle wins.

When deciphering the rebus, there are some simple rules to remember. First, a plus sign ("+") is like punctuation--it shows where pictures naturally connect as part of the same word in the solution (keep in mind that a picture can itself belong to more than one word). Second, when letters appear in the puzzle, generally the name of the letter is sounded out if the letter is in quote marks (e.g., "eks" for "X", "you" for "U") or is capitalized. Otherwise, the sound is normally used (e.g., "ks" for x).

Players should be careful when entering solutions. Spelling must be correct. However, punctuation and extra spaces are ignored, and uppercase and lowercase letters are treated as the same.

Special "Prizes"

Wild Cards - A "Wild Card" will match any prize on the board, and there are two "Wild Cards" in every game. If a player matches both wild cards, he or she selects two more numbers to match each wild card just picked. If a prize is matched with a "Wild Card", its original match will then only match the other "Wild Card". If two different prizes are matched by "Wild Card"s, their normal matching prizes will remain "orphaned" on the board and cannot be matched. If players select an "orphaned" prize, they can pass their turn immediately by entering "p" when prompted to pick their second number. It is also possible to match the same prize twice with two different "Wild Card"s. If the same player makes both matches, the duplication is indicated on the matching player's prize board by a checkmark () beside the prize. If duplicate prizes are won when the puzzle is solved, they are awarded as two separate prizes.

Take 1 Gift A player matching a "Take 1 Gift" must take one of the opponent's prizes already matched. The prize board will be displayed with an arrow highlighting the opponent's first prize. The up and down arrow keys are used to select the prize to take, followed by the Enter key to take the prize. Players should aim to "Take" their opponent's most expensive prize. The prize selected will move to the other side of the prize board. If the opponent has only one prize in his prize list, that prize is taken automatically. "Take 1 Gift"'s must be used immediately, so if an opponent has no prizes to take, the "Take 1 Gift" has no effect.

Forfeit 1 Gift A player matching a "Forfeit 1 Gift" must give away a prize to the opponent. This works the same way as with "Take 1 Gift"'s, except that the player will choose a prize to give the opponent. Players should aim to "Forfeit" their least expensive prize if possible, one of the "gag" prizes. Like "Take 1 Gift"'s, "Forfeit 1 Gift"'s apply immediately. If a player has no prizes to forfeit, the "Forfeit 1 Gift" has no effect.

Ending the Game

The game continues until one player solves the puzzle, or until all the prizes have been matched. If the last player to make a match cannot solve the puzzle, the opponent can try to win by solving it. If the opponent cannot solve the puzzle, the game is a draw. The players get one extra chance to solve the puzzle when "Wild Card"s have left two "orphaned" prizes. In that case, the last two parts of the puzzle are revealed, and each player gets a chance to win by solving the fully-revealed puzzle. If the players still cannot solve the puzzle, the game ends in a draw.

If one player does solve the puzzle, that player wins the game. The "value" of the winner's prizes is tallied up and shown. If the player's score is high enough, he or she will qualify for the "Top Ten" list shown if the tally is one of the top ten highest.

Special Commands

To help with strategy and provide control during your game, you can enter one of the following commands whenever you are prompted to enter a number:

L (List) -- Displays the prize board. Press Enter to resume the game.

Q (Quit) -- Checks to be sure you mean it, then ends the I Remember Concentration programme. Note this stops the game immediately without recording a winner or a high score.

P (Pass) - Passes a player's turn. This is a strategic move. A good time to use this is when you select a prize that has been "orphaned" by a previous match with a "Wild Card" (after both "Wild Card"s are gone). Passing prevents you from giving away information to your opponent when you can't make a match anyway.

S (Sound) Turns the sound on or off.

Credits

Growing up in Toronto in the early 1960's meant access to about five television channels through the TV antenna -- seven on a clear day. Three of those channels were the Buffalo NBC, CBS and ABC affiliates. After the Canadian channels finished the children's programs, I spent a lot of time watching Hugh Downs host Concentration on NBC. The "feel" of the show -- the rotating prisms with the slides and puzzles, the sound of the motors that controlled the board, the prizes sliding on and off the prize board -- stuck with me over the years. Twenty-three years later I needed a project to apply C programming skills to, and I Remember Concentration was born. If you remember Concentration, you will find this version recalls some of the syndicated version (with Jack Narz) along with the Hugh Downs version. The syndicated version used larger numbers on the board and colour puzzles on a white background -- which works better on a computer. Everything else sticks to the original. Enjoy!

Click here to download "I Remember Concentration" . . .

©2008 Dan Brennan