A Commodore 64 game in the special edition of a German vinyl from the 1980s

A few months have passed since I last talked about games hidden in vinyl records because I’m starting to have quite a few of them (and it’s becoming difficult to find). And the record Heartware gave me a bit of trouble, both in finding it and retrieving the data.

Instead of repeating all the previous articles each time, I’ll refer you to the dedicated page, which explains what I do with vinyl records and lists all the pages containing programs, explanations, etc.


I heard about this record in a YouTube video, in which the author retrieves the program to use it on a real Commodore 64. But when searching for the record, I didn’t pay attention to one point: it has two editions, very similar. In fact, the Germans from Heartware released the album twice, and only the second version contains the program for the Commodore 64. But the covers are identical, the only real difference being the presence of a sticker indicating the presence of the program as well as changes to certain tracks. It’s quite bizarre: the covers are identical (as are the references) but not the content.

Original version cover

Modified version cover

The sticker

The second issue comes from the track itself. First, it’s located after the audio, but there’s an endless groove to separate them. This is not very practical: you have to place the needle in the right spot and manually shift it enough to catch the right groove… but not too much to miss the beginning. Then, the track is very tight, and there seems to be a pressing error. I have exactly the same problem as in the YouTube video: a small section of the recording has lower volume, which then increases (the screenshot shows the problem).

The track is properly separated

The volume issue is clearly visible

In practice, I had quite a few issues retrieving the data. I used the same tools as for the other Commodore 64 programs but without success after about thirty attempts. Eventually, I used a tool called TAPClean Front End to obtain a usable file. In more detail, I recorded the data in WAV (mono, 44 kHz) with sufficient level, then converted the WAV to TAP with Audiotap, before opening it with TAPClean. In the latter, I simply clicked on Test as shown in the screenshot and obtained a functional corrected PRG file.



The program itself remains quite simple, it’s only about ~4 KB, and it’s a fairly basic game in which you have to move a pig along a narrowing path. You can choose the level (of difficulty, I suppose) and the speed. It’s played with a joystick (on port #2, important) on the Commodore 64 and works well with the Denise emulator on macOS. In the video, I tried level 1 speed 5, then 9, and finally 1.