I assume one of the first undocumented effects on the VIC-II was the ability to display sprites in the (upper and lower) border area. I wonder how and when this was first discovered and used? Was it in a game, in an intro or a demo?

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    The Atari's did this from 1979, and there were many examples (Star Raiders IIRC). This was possible because the sprites were, in effect, an entirely separate graphic systems with its own coordinates lacking the built-in borders applied to the playfield. Jan 15, 2019 at 19:08
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    @MauryMarkowitz the OP specifically references the VIC-II in his original question and the tag is for the C64. Perhaps the OP should have specified which brand/model of computer he meant in the question as well. But I took this question as relating to the C64.
    – cbmeeks
    Jan 15, 2019 at 20:34

2 Answers 2


There was an article in the german 64'er magazine 12/1985 (pages 76/77) describing how to put sprites into lower/top border including a type-in listing. The article states also that no game has used this technique so far. As author of the article Holger Gehrmann was given, together with Achim Hübner as editor. The program is called Hyperscreen and was written by Holger Gehrmann.

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    Thanks, this seems to be the answer I was looking for! At least the text cautiously claims a "world's first": "Es scheint weltweit auch noch kein Programm erschienen zu sein, das diese Möglichkeit ausnutzt". Well, not really a proof there wasn't something in the cracking scene earlier, but very likely. I really didn't expect the first occurence in a german magazine :) Jan 21, 2019 at 8:33

Top\bottom border was first done in an FCG Intro of 1985

Side borders in 1001 Crew Border Letter I demo in 1986.

  • hmm thanks, side border is definitely interesting, didn't know that one either! But, I don't see any border usage at all in this FCG intro? Are you sure this is the correct link? Jan 15, 2019 at 9:23
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    I think Felix is right, I checked out the FCG Intro 1985 and changed the border color. Then one can see that the top/border part is not opened.
    – Peter B.
    Jan 15, 2019 at 13:01

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