Ishido: The Way of Stones

Last updated
Ishido The Way of Stones Cover.jpg
Developer(s) Publishing International
Publisher(s) Accolade
Producer(s) Brad Fregger
Designer(s) Michael Feinberg
Programmer(s) Ian Gilman and Mike Sandige
Composer(s) Ed Bogus (FM Towns)
Platform(s) Macintosh, MS-DOS, Sega Genesis, Atari Lynx, Game Boy, Amiga, Famicom Disk System, FM Towns, MSX2, NEC PC-8801, NEC PC-9801, Sharp X68000
Release1990
Genre(s) Puzzle
Mode(s) Single-player

Ishido: The Way of Stones is a puzzle video game released in 1990 by Accolade and developed by Publishing International. It was designed by Michael Feinberg and programmed by Ian Gilman and Michael Sandige. The game's producer was Brad Fregger, and Brodie Lockard (the designer of the Shanghai computer game) contributed with graphics.

Video game electronic game that involves interaction with a user interface to generate visual feedback on a video device such as a TV screen or computer monitor

A video game is an electronic game that involves interaction with a user interface to generate visual feedback on a two- or three-dimensional video display device such as a TV screen, virtual reality headset or computer monitor. Since the 1980s, video games have become an increasingly important part of the entertainment industry, and whether they are also a form of art is a matter of dispute.

Infogrames North America, Inc. was an American video game developer and publisher based in San Jose, California. The company was founded as Accolade in November 1984 by Alan Miller and Bob Whitehead, who had previously co-founded Activision in October 1979.

<i>Shanghai</i> (video game) 1986 video game

Shanghai is a computerized version of mahjong solitaire published by Activision in 1986 for the Amiga, Atari ST, Atari 8-bit family, Commodore 64, IBM PC, Macintosh, Apple IIGS and Master System.

Contents

Gameplay

Ishido is a puzzle board game consisting of a set of 72 stones and a game board of 96 squares.

Every stone has two attributes: a color and a symbol. There are six colors and six symbols in each stone set, thus creating 36 unique stones. Since each stone comes in a pair, there are therefore 72 stones in each stone set.

The primary objective of Ishido is to place all 72 stones onto the board of 96 squares. The challenge arises because stones must be placed adjacent to others that they match, either by color or symbol. When the board begins to fill up, this objective is not so easily accomplished.

A valuable move is the 4-way, in which a stone is placed in the midst of four others, two of which are matched by color, and two which are matched by symbol.

Ishido comes with 6 differently themed stone sets, 5 different game boards, and a variety of Oriental chimes and sound effects.

Ports and adaptations

Ishido was originally released for the Macintosh in 1990, with ports to MS-DOS, Amiga, Game Boy and Sega Genesis in the same year. The Atari Lynx and Famicom Disk System versions were published in 1991. The Microsoft Entertainment Pack contained an adaptation of Ishido called Stones.

Macintosh Family of personal computers designed, manufactured, and sold by Apple Inc.

The Macintosh is a family of personal computers designed, manufactured, and sold by Apple Inc. since January 1984. The original Macintosh was the first mass-market personal computer that featured a graphical user interface, built-in screen and mouse. Apple sold the Macintosh alongside its popular Apple II family of computers for almost ten years before they were discontinued in 1993.

MS-DOS Discontinued computer operating system

MS-DOS is an operating system for x86-based personal computers mostly developed by Microsoft. Collectively, MS-DOS, its rebranding as IBM PC DOS, and some operating systems attempting to be compatible with MS-DOS, are sometimes referred to as "DOS". MS-DOS was the main operating system for IBM PC compatible personal computers during the 1980s and the early 1990s, when it was gradually superseded by operating systems offering a graphical user interface (GUI), in various generations of the graphical Microsoft Windows operating system.

Amiga family of personal computers sold by Commodore

The Amiga is a family of personal computers introduced by Commodore in 1985. The original model was part of a wave of 16- and 32-bit computers that featured 256 KB or more of RAM, mouse-based GUIs, and significantly improved graphics and audio over 8-bit systems. This wave included the Atari ST—released the same year—Apple's Macintosh, and later the Apple IIGS. Based on the Motorola 68000 microprocessor, the Amiga differed from its contemporaries through the inclusion of custom hardware to accelerate graphics and sound, including sprites and a blitter, and a pre-emptive multitasking operating system called AmigaOS.

The Genesis port of the game was involved in the copyright trial, Sega v. Accolade.

<i>Sega v. Accolade</i>

Sega Enterprises Ltd. v. Accolade, Inc., 977 F.2d 1510, is a case in which the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit applied American intellectual property law to the reverse engineering of computer software. Stemming from the publishing of several Sega Genesis games by video game publisher Accolade, which had disassembled Genesis software in order to publish games without being licensed by Sega, the case involved several overlapping issues, including the scope of copyright, permissible uses for trademarks, and the scope of the fair use doctrine for computer code.

An actual physical board game version of Ishido was published in Japan by ASCII in 1992.

Reception

Compute! called the Macintosh version of Ishido "addictive ... a peaceful encounter with an Oriental flavor". [1] The New York Times wrote that it "is one of those deceptively simple games, like Go, that gradually reveal their subtleties ... most engrossing". [2] Computer Gaming World called the game "a remarkably complex entertainment resource, with some pleasant surprises". The magazine liked Ishido's VGA graphics, and concluded that it would please both novice and experienced strategy game players. [3] The Atari Lynx version of the game was reviewed in 1992 in Dragon #181 by Hartley, Patricia, and Kirk Lesser in "The Role of Computers" column. The reviewers gave the game 5 out of 5 stars. [4]

<i>Compute!</i>

Compute!, often stylized as COMPUTE!, was an American home computer magazine that was published from 1979 to 1994. Its origins can be traced to 1978 in Len Lindsay's PET Gazette, one of the first magazines for the Commodore PET computer. In its 1980s heyday Compute! covered all major platforms, and several single-platform spinoffs of the magazine were launched. The most successful of these was Compute!'s Gazette, catering to VIC-20 and Commodore 64 computer users.

<i>The New York Times</i> Daily broadsheet newspaper based in New York City

The New York Times is an American newspaper based in New York City with worldwide influence and readership. Founded in 1851, the paper has won 125 Pulitzer Prizes, more than any other newspaper. The Times is ranked 17th in the world by circulation and 2nd in the U.S.

Go (game) Abstract strategy board game for two players

Go is an abstract strategy board game for two players, in which the aim is to surround more territory than the opponent. The game was invented in China more than 2,500 years ago and is believed to be the oldest board game continuously played to the present day. A 2016 survey by the International Go Federation's 75 member nations found that there are over 46 million people worldwide who know how to play Go and over 20 million current players, the majority of whom live in East Asia.

Entertainment Weekly gave the game a B+ ." [5]

Ishido was rated 'Five Mice' by MacUser ,[ citation needed ] and entered into the MacUser Game Hall of Fame.[ citation needed ] It also won PC Magazine 's Best Strategy Game of the Year Award in 1990.[ citation needed ]

MacUser was a monthly computer magazine published by Dennis Publishing Ltd. and licensed by Felden in the UK. It ceased publication in 2015.

<i>PC Magazine</i> magazine

PC Magazine is an American computer magazine published by Ziff Davis. A print edition was published from 1982 to January 2009. Publication of online editions started in late 1994 and continues to this day.

Reviewing Ishido's re-release in 1995, MacUser gave it 4 out of 5 mice. [6]

Oracle and legend

Integrated into Ishido is an oracle, a way to ask questions of the ancient Chinese Book of Changes, the I Ching .

First the user poses a question. Then they meditate upon it while playing the game. When they attain a '4-way' match, Ishido, utilizing the same algorithm as the authentic yarrow stalk method of consulting the oracle, obtains an answer.

An original translation of the I Ching, which used the Wilhelm/Baynes and Anthony translations as primary sources, was written for the game by Michael Feinberg.

The original Ishido game was published by Publishing International in a limited edition in a hand-made walnut slip box. Then the following year, 1990, Accolade published the first mass-market version.

Ishido came with a 20-page booklet, "The Legend of Ishido". It began:

One misty spring morning in 1989, in the remote mountains of China's Han Shan province, a Mendicant monk of the Northern School of the White Crane branch of Taoism, walked silently out through the front gates of the Heavenly Peak Temple

The monk carried a stone board, a set of seventy-two carved stone pieces, and an ancient scroll inscribed with brush and ink in elegant calligraphic script.

He also carried with him a secret which had lain cloistered and hidden for thousands of years.

The story was fictional and written by Michael Feinberg. Nevertheless, many believed that Ishido actually was an ancient game, recently re-discovered. [7]

Related Research Articles

Atari ST home computer

The Atari ST is a line of home computers from Atari Corporation and the successor to the Atari 8-bit family. The initial ST model, the 520ST, saw limited release in April–June 1985 and was widely available in July. The Atari ST is the first personal computer to come with a bitmapped color GUI, using a version of Digital Research's GEM released in February 1985. The 1040ST, released in 1986, is the first personal computer to ship with a megabyte of RAM in the base configuration and also the first with a cost-per-kilobyte of less than US$1.

Atari Lynx handheld game console

The Atari Lynx is a 16-bit handheld game console that was released by Atari Corporation in September 1989 in North America, and in Europe and Japan in 1990. It was the world's first handheld electronic game with a color LCD. It was also notable for its advanced graphics and ambidextrous layout. The Lynx competed with the Game Boy, as well as the Game Gear and TurboExpress, both released the following year. It was discontinued in 1996.

<i>Lemmings</i> (video game) video game originally developed by DMA Design and published by Psygnosis in 1991

Lemmings is a puzzle-platformer video game originally developed by DMA Design in Dundee, Scotland and published by Psygnosis for the Amiga in 1991 and later ported for numerous other platforms. The game was programmed by Mike Dailly and David Jones, and was inspired by a simple animation that Dailly created while experimenting with Deluxe Paint.

<i>Arkanoid</i> 1986 video game

Arkanoid is an arcade game released by Taito in 1986. It expanded upon Atari's Breakout games of the 1970s by adding power-ups, different types of bricks, a variety of level layouts, and more sculpted, layered visuals. The title refers to a doomed mother ship from which the player's ship, the Vaus, escapes. It was widely ported to contemporary systems and followed by a series of remakes and sequels, including the 1987 arcade game Arkanoid: Revenge of Doh. Arkanoid revived the Breakout concept, resulting in many clones and similar games for home computers, even over a decade later.

Apple IIGS Apple II series 16-bit computer

The Apple IIGS, the fifth and most powerful of the Apple II family, is a 16-bit personal computer produced by Apple Computer, Inc. While featuring the Macintosh look and feel, and resolution and color similar to the Commodore Amiga and Atari ST, it remains compatible with earlier Apple II models. The "GS" in the name stands for "Graphics and Sound," referring to its enhanced multimedia hardware, especially its state of the art audio.

<i>Shadow of the Beast</i> 1989 computer game

Shadow of the Beast is a platform game developed by Reflections and published by Psygnosis in 1989. The original version was released for the Amiga, and was later ported to many other systems. The game was known for its graphics, with many colours on screen and up to twelve levels of parallax scrolling backdrops, and for its atmospheric score composed by David Whittaker that used high-quality instrument samples.

<i>Defender of the Crown</i> 1986 video game

Defender of the Crown is a strategy computer game designed by Kellyn Beck. It was Cinemaware's first game, and was originally released for the Commodore Amiga in 1986, setting a new standard for graphic quality in home computer games.

1989 has seen many sequels and prequels in video games and several new titles such as Phantasy Star II, Golden Axe and Bonk's Adventure, and Super Mario Land

<i>California Games</i> sports video game

California Games is a 1987 Epyx sports video game originally released for the Apple II and Commodore 64 and ported to other home computers and video game consoles. Branching from their popular Summer Games and Winter Games series, this game consists of a collection of outdoor sports purportedly popular in California. The game was successful for Epyx and spawned a sequel.

<i>Winter Games</i> 1986 sports video game

Winter Games is a sports video game developed by Epyx, based on sports featured in the Winter Olympic Games.

The following history of the Amiga documents the development and commercial history of the Amiga, a home computer product line manufactured from the middle 1980s up to today.

The Amiga computer can be used to emulate several other computer platforms, including legacy platforms such as the Commodore 64, and its contemporary rivals such as the IBM PC and the Macintosh.

<i>Mean 18</i> 1986 video game

Mean 18 is a computer golf games designed by Rex Bradford with graphics by George Karalias, both of the small game development company Microsmiths, and released by Accolade for MS-DOS in 1986. It was ported to the Amiga, Apple IIgs, Atari 7800, Atari ST, and Macintosh.

In computing, a screen of death is an informal term for a type of computer operating system error message, displayed onscreen when the system has experienced a fatal error. Computer users have dubbed these messages "screens of death" as they typically result in unsaved work being lost and often indicate serious problems with the system's hardware or software. These error screens are usually the result of a kernel panic, although the terms are frequently used interchangeably. Most screens of death are displayed on an even background color with a message advising the user to restart the computer.

<i>Welltris</i> 1989 video game

Welltris is a puzzle video game, developed by Doka and licensed to Bullet-Proof Software. Adaptations were made by Sphere, Inc., for Spectrum Holobyte, and by Infogrames. It was originally released for MS-DOS and Macintosh in 1989. It was subsequently ported to the Amiga, Amstrad CPC and Atari ST in 1990 and the ZX Spectrum and Commodore 64 in 1991.

<i>Oids</i> 1987 video game

Oids is a video game released in 1987 by FTL Games. The game was originally released on the Atari ST, followed by a conversion for the Apple Macintosh. A version for the Commodore Amiga was eventually released in 2014, due to reverse engineering the ST version. The Atari ST, created entirely by Dan Hewitt, version was a cult favorite in the UK, where it received rave reviews.

<i>Premier Manager</i> football management simulator video game

Premier Manager is a football management simulator video game for the Amiga, Atari ST and MS-DOS platforms. It was released in 1992 by Gremlin Interactive. Later the game was converted to the Sega Genesis. While the Amiga, Atari and MS-DOS versions were all similar, the Genesis version more closely resembled Premier Manager 2. The objective of the game is to manage a football club successfully within the top five divisions of the English league system. Premier Manager is the first game in the Premier Manager series.

References

  1. Aycock, Heidi E. H. (December 1989). "Compute! Specific: Mac". Compute!. p. 16.
  2. Shannon, L. R. (1990-09-18). "Scattered Stones, Enigmas And Fun". The New York Times. Retrieved 30 July 2014.
  3. Ackelson, Caitlin; Emrich, Alan (January 1991). "Only the Oracle Knows ... / A Review of Accolade's Ishido". Computer Gaming World. p. 19. Retrieved 17 November 2013.
  4. Lesser, Hartley; Lesser, Patricia; Lesser, Kirk (May 1992). "The Role of Computers". Dragon (181): 57–62.
  5. "Ishido: The Way of Stones". EW.com. Retrieved 2018-11-03.
  6. LeVitus, Bob (November 1995). "The Game Room". MacUser . Archived from the original on February 17, 2001.
  7. Scott, Jason; textfiles.com, "Ishido: The Way of Stones" (retrieved on 2007-09-16)