An easter egg is often just one more program tossed in to a cumbersome mix of other programs; in this case, the German developers of the StarOffice application suite (later to be bought by Sun, further developed and given away for free as OpenOffice) threw in a clone of Space Invaders
that could only be invoked through its Calc (spreadsheet) application.
The game plays as one might expect, the player keyboard-controlling the left and right movements of a ship at the bottom of the screen as well as directing when it fires upward -- hopefully to hit aliens overhead, gradually descending as they glide with menace from side to side of the screen. The aliens shoot down as well, though the player starts with protective barriers overhead to hide beneath. Later levels introduce tougher alien opponents, including some requiring multiple direct strikes to kill and others that appear and disappear. Unusual play mechanisms here are that the player may have up to five shots on the screen at a given time, and that player shot and alien shot will cancel each other out.
In addition to the Space Invaders clone, OpenOffice Calc also knows how to play Tic-Tac-Toe to a stalemate, a mode which can be activated by entering =Game(A1:C3;”TicTacToe”)
into cel A4.
Earlier versions of the applications suite (up until StarOffice 4.0 Service Pack 2) also included a 3D Tetris game and a Frogger clone ("Froggie") in StarCalc and a Pac-Man clone ("Sunnyman") in StarWriter.
- "StarWars Galaxy" -- included game
- "Star-Wars" -- included game name on title screen
- "StarOffice" -- earlier version of OpenOffice
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To invoke the Space Invaders
clone, the player first enters the data
into a cell. The contents of the cell then change to "say what?
", whereupon the player enters further data there:
This becomes more difficult on subsequent sessions, where the cell instead recites a quote from The Hitchhikers' Guide to the Galaxy
, "oh no, not again!