Each player controls a dog that runs around on the screen. A blue fire hydrant pops up somewhere on the screen. You and your opponent race to claim it. You claim the hydrant by touching it or by shooting a bone at it. If you shoot and miss, you must pick up your bone before you can use it again.
If you claim the blue hydrant before your opponent, it becomes yours and changes to your color. Then a new blue (unclaimed) hydrant pops up somewhere else on the screen. If you run into a hydrant already claimed by your opponent, you are frozen for two seconds.
The row of hydrants at the top keeps track of your claimed hydrants versus those of your opponent. If the whole row becomes your color, you win the game.
A reckless driver drives through occasionally, knocking out claimed hydrants. You must avoid getting run over.
To download and play the game, go to my Atari 800 Emulator page.
This was my first and most successful game; about 10,000 copies were sold. In spite of its simple graphics and game-play, Dog Daze brings excitement and laughter to the players, especially children.
The manager of the Atari Program Exchange (APX) in the early 1980s, Fred Thorlin, fondly remembers Dog Daze as the "most fun" of many "superior and remarkable" programs sold by APX. You can read an interview with Mr. Thorlin, conducted by computer journalist Kevin Savetz, at the Atari Archives web site.
In the September 1982 issue of Creative Computing
magazine, software reviewer Sandy Small describes Dog
Daze as "excellent," "truly enjoyable," and "highly
recommended." I was excited to find out about the
article during a phone conversation with Shamus programmer William
Mataga. I asked him what the article said, so he began reading it to me:
"We had just finished a picnic lunch of barbecued spareribs." "What!" I
exclaimed. "Is this a review of my game?" To read the whole review, see
the copy at atariarchives.org.
Dog Daze ©1981 Gray Chang, Claim Jumper
©1982 Synapse Software, Bumpomov's Dogs ©1983 Gray
Chang, Web page ©2003 Gray Chang