Lost Treasures

August 17, 2015

Episode 6: Miner 2049er

Miner 2049er: Interview with Bill Hogue

Miner 2049er Box

We’re a little star struck this week as we speak with Bill Hogue, the creator and progammer of 1982’s Miner 2049er.  Both Sean and Syd grew up with Miner 2049er as one of our gaming obsessions.  In today’s episode we learn more about how the game came to be and what Bill was trying to accomplish by making this particular game.

Bill’s Personal Site: Big Five Software


Miner 2049er Screen


latform games have always been my favourite type of game. While many people today would likely cite Super Mario Bros. as their first and favourite platform game, there were many that came before it and some that might just stick out in your mind as amazing games even though they don’t have the same pedigree or success as that little Italian plumber.

Such is the case for “Miner 2049er”, a platform game created by Bill Hogue and published by Big Five Software in 1982. Miner was incredibly successful for the time, being converted to almost every single computer and gaming platform available (and many to come later, such as the Game Boy).

Miner was notable for the time because it contained 10 screens in which the player could explore when many games (such as Donkey Kong) maxed out at 4 to 5 screens. The game was carefully crafted and polished, leading to much demand for a sequel that never quite lived up to the original. In fact, Hogue cancelled the sequel Scraper Caper in 1984 and eventually released Bounty Bob Strikes Back in 1985. By then, the Miner train had all but moved on and the sequel failed to bring in the sales of the original.

Today you can get the game on iOS with a remake (that also contains the original levels) and Hogue himself coded an emulator that plays his game, faithful to the original Atari 8-bit version, on his website bigfivesoftware.com.

Hogue created a major buzz with this game at the time, even appearing on Good Morning America on ABC. He has since worked at companies like Technicolor and now Walt Disney Imagineering, all based upon his initial experience with Radio Shack and Atari computers.

If you have never played this game, you have to check it out. An experience that will both challenge you and make you smile.

Tune into twitch.tv/gh101 every Friday at 11:30EST for a livestream of our featured game

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About the Author

Sean is an avid gamer and lover of all thing tech. He is a dedicated husband and the father to three beautiful daughters. In addition to taking his love of gaming to a new level with this site, Sean is also host of our podcasts: The OMG! Hour, Lost Treasures of Gaming, and Primetime as well as the bi-weekly podcast mashup show, Gamers Unscripted. Follow Sean on Twitter as @Xiantayne and this blog as @OMGnexus.



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