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BurgerTime Manual Cover
BurgerTime (Front Cover) [1]
Publisher(s) Data East USA (Distributed by Texas Instruments (TI)
Original Retail Price $29.95 (USD)
Programmer(s) John Phillips
Part# PHM 3233
Format(s) Solid State SoftwareTM Command Module
Release 1984 (1st quarter)
Genre(s) Action, Platform

BurgerTime for the TI-99/4A is a port of the original arcade game of the same name by Data East USA. The TI-99/4A version was released during the first quarter of 1984, and distributed by Texas Instruments (TI) as part#: 3233. BurgerTime was released on Solid State SoftwareTM Command Module and originally sold for $29.95 (USD). John Phillips debugged BurgerTime for the TI-99/4A although he didn't program the entire game for the system.


Burgertime is an Action/Platform game. In BurgerTime, the player controls chef Peter Pepper. The object of the game is to complete as many hamburgers as possible by walking over the elements that make up the sandwiches, causing them to fall to the plate below. When all the ingredients of a hamburger have fallen to the plate, that burger is complete. A level in BurgerTime is finished when all the hamburgers on the level are complete.

However, Peter Pepper is not alone on the board, allowed to complete the hamburgers at his leisure. There are enemy food items that chase him and attempt to touch and take away one of the player's lives. These enemies include Mr. Hot Dog, Mr. Pickle, and Mr. Egg. Each of the enemy types has its own skills and features. The enemies can be crushed by food items as they fall upon them, can ride food items that they are on top of as they fall, causing them to fall twice as far, or stunned with pepper spray. All these actions merely take the enemy away for a time. The enemies always return.

Scoring occurs every time Peter Pepper causes an ingredient to fall to a level below. There are six levels of play in each round, with each level becoming increasingly more challenging, and each round getting tougher to complete. The number of peppers the player can use to stun enemies is also limited, but the player can obtain more peppers by collecting ice cream cones or coffee cups that appear on the screen during each level of play. The game ends when the player loses all of his/her Peter Peppers by allowing them to be touched by the enemies.

Advertising Blurbs

Front Cover of Manual

BurgerTime Cartridge for TI-99/4A

You are Peter PepperTM the chef. Ghastly pickles, terrifying hot dogs, and menacings eggs are invading your kitchen! Can you escape the villains in time to make your Burgers?

Triton Catalog - Spring 1984

You're Peter Pepper, chef in a kitchen whose action gives new meaning to fast food! Rush to make your burgers, while under attack from horrendous hot dogs, petrifying pickles, and eggs that are scrambling to get you! Then go on to the next challenge - 6 different mazes in all. (Wired Remote Controllers recommended.)

Fun Fact

John Phillips debugged BurgerTime, giving him the opportunity to insert a personal plug into the program. Pressing "*" on the title screen pops up a message stating, "Code Modification by John M. Phillips." Although not a true cheat code, like John Phillips was famous for inserting into the games he coded, it's at least an Easter Egg letting others know his hand was involved in the coding.

Retrogaming Times Review

In Retrogaming Times Magazine issue #60, in a review of several ports of BurgerTime for different consoles and computer systems, the TI-99/4A version took the silver medal behind the Colecovision port. The writer of the article stated the following concerning the TI-99/4A version:

   "The TI continues to impress and this version makes it almost a tossup for the gold (won by the Colecovision). The Gameplay is very good (8/10) but does not offer: start level options; ability to throw pepper and move at the same time; a high score display; and no bonus pepper for completing a level. Level 2 adds a 5 layer burger, with cheese being the fifth topping. The Addictiveness is enjoyable (8/10) and fun to watch the unique activity of the villains as they can get bounced or squashed and then get up and walk again. There is still a delay before they pursuit you. The Graphics are sharp (8/10) and the Sound is pleasant (8/10), complete with a musical score. The Controls are perfect (10/10) using an Atari joystick." [2]



You are Peter PepperTM the chef. The food in your kitchen is out of control and is trying to catch and destroy you! As you rush through your kitchen frantically building burgers, the terrible villains - Mr. HotdogTM, Mr. PickleTM, and Mr. EggTM - chase you relentlessly. Escape the villains by crushing them with burger layers or stunning them with pepper. Make your burgers and go on to the next challenge!

With BurgerTime, you can:

  • Move Chef Peter Pepper through six different mazes
  • Enjoy lively graphics that feature a chef who walks and climbs
  • Experience new challenges as your skills improve
  • Play with Joystick Controllers or keyboard control

Peter Pepper, Mr. Hotdog, Mr. Pickle, and Mr. Egg are trademarks of Data East USA, Inc.

Playing BurgerTime

When the BurgerTime title screen appears, press any key to begin the game. Make burgers by moving Peter Pepper over the layers of food until they fall into the plates at the bottom of the screen. Avoid the villains as they chase you through the kitchen, or stun them by throwing pepper.

You earn points and extra chefs by making burgers and by destroying villains with the falling layers. Pick up ice cream cones and coffee cups to gain extra points and pepper throws. After making four burgers, you advance to a new kitchen with a different pattern. The game ends when you lose your last chef.

The Hero -- Peter Pepper

Chef Peter Pepper marches over buns, burger patties, lettuce, and cheese to make burgers.

Chef Peter Pepper

  • Walks over burger layers and makes them fall to other levels
  • Begins each game with five other chefs and five pepper throws
  • Stuns villains with pepper
  • Destroys one or more villains with falling burger layers
  • Adds a chef to his staff with every 10,000 points

But Beware!

If Chef Peter Pepper is touched by a villain,

  • One chef is destroyed
  • Play resumes with a new chef

When throwing pepper, Chef Peter Pepper

  • Cannot move
  • Can throw pepper only a short distance in the direction he faces

The Villains -- Mr. Hot Dog, Mr. Pickle, and Mr. Egg

The villains pursue Chef Peter Pepper through his kitchen.

A villain can

  • Combine forces with one or two other villains
  • Turn invisible for a few seconds
  • Reappear in another place after being destroyed

A villain is destroyed when

  • Crushed by a burger layer
  • Dropped with a burger layer

When hit by pepper, a villain

  • Stops
  • Changes color and shape
  • Allows the chef to pass through it unharmed
  • Regains its usual powers after several seconds

The Kitchens

After your chef has made four burgers, he advances automatically to the next kitchen. Each kitchen has one of six increasingly difficult patterns.

The number of times your chef advances to a new kitchen is shown on the pattern counter.

Earning Points and Bonuses

You earn points for each level that a burger layer falls and for destroying villains. You also earn points and pepper throws for picking up ice cream cones and coffee cups.

Food Item Value
Burger Layer 50 points for each level it falls
Hot Dog 100 points
Pickle 200 points
Egg 300 points
Example Example
Ice Cream Cone 500 points and 1 pepper throw
Coffee Cup 1000 points and 1 pepper throw

Strategy Tips

Your chef moves more slowly on the stairs-avoid stairs if you must escape a villain.

When possible, allow a villain to fall with a burger layer. The extra weight may cause the burger layer to fall two levels.

If two or more villains combine, you can stun them with one pepper throw.



External Links